Key Difference – Casual vs Formal Wear
Casual and formal wear are two of the main dress codes that contain totally different styles. Casual wear is the clothing that is used for everyday wear. Formal wear is the clothing that is worn for formal occasions such as weddings, state dinners, and various ceremonial and official events. The key difference between casual and formal wear is that casual wear emphasises comfort and informality whereas formal wear emphasises elegance and formality.
What is Casual Wear?
Casual wear refers to the clothes we use for everyday wear. This style emphasises on comfort, relaxation, and informality. It includes a wide range of clothes and styles. Casual dressing gives first place to personal expression and comfort over formality and conformity.
Tee-shirts (polo shirts, turtlenecks, etc.), jeans, jackets, khakis, hoodies, summer dresses, skirts, sneakers, loafers and sandals are examples for casual wear. Sportswear, clothes worn for manual labour also falls under casual wear. It can be worn when you are going on trips, shopping, and casual outings with friends. This style is also worn by high school and college students unless the schools don’t have a specific uniform. Casual wear is usually made from materials such as cotton, jersey, denim, polyester and flannel. Casual wear is not made from expensive and dressy materials such as chiffon, brocade, and velvet. Casual wear should not be worn for ceremonial events, parties, weddings and other formal events, business meetings or to work (in offices).
What is Formal Wear?
Formal wear refers to clothing that is suitable for formal events such as ceremonial events, weddings, balls, formal dinners, etc. Formal wear is nowadays mostly worn at formal dances, high school prom dances, and entertainment industry award programs.
Although most people associate black tie with formal wear, the satirically proper dress code for formal wear is white tie for evening and morning dress for daytime. Women are supposed to wear ball gowns or formal evening (floor length) gowns. Uniforms such as formal military uniforms, law court dress, academic and graduate dress are also considered as formal wear.
The following list will give a clear description of the dress code for formal wear.
Formal Wear for Men
- Black dress coat (tailcoat), matching trousers with two stripes of satin or braid (Europe or the UK) or a single stripe (the US)
- White vest
- White bow tie
- White piqué wing-collared shirt with stiff front
- Shirt studs and cuff links
- White or grey gloves
- Black patent shoes and black dress socks
Formal Wear for Women
- Floor length evening gown long gloves (optional)
- Long gloves (optional)
What is the difference between Casual and Formal Wear?
Casual vs Formal
|Casual is everyday wear.||Formal wear is worn for formal events.|
|Casual wear is worn for informal and relaxed occasions such as trips, shopping, meeting friends, etc.||Formal wear is worn for formal events such as ceremonial events, weddings, state dinners, etc.|
|Casual wear includes jeans, tee-shirts, skirts, summer dresses, hoodies, etc.||Formal wear includes dress shirts, dress coats, ties, trousers, long evening gowns, etc.|
|Sneakers, loafers, slippers, and sandals are worn for casual wear.||High-quality shoes are worn for formal wear.|
|Materials such as cotton, jersey, denim, polyester and flannel are used to make casual wear clothing.||Materials such as satin, velvet, silk, brocade, etc. are used to make formal wear clothing.|
|Casual wear will make you feel comfortable and relaxed.||Formal wear can make you feel confined and uncomfortable.|
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