Why bow ties are better than traditional neckties

by Jeff Gissing | @jeffgissing

I first encountered a real living person wearing a bow tie in 1994 as a freshman at Samford University. Since that time, I’ve periodically worn bow ties (I currently own six or seven) and have flirted with making bow ties my exclusive neckwear choice. Every guy should consider owning and regularly wearing a bow tie. Here are five reasons.

  1. Bow ties are easy to tie. There is a common misperception that tying a bow tie is difficult. Nothing could be further from the truth. If you tie your shoes on a regular basis then you can tie a bow tie. If you don’t wear shoes that requiring tying then you probably shouldn’t be wearing a tie to begin with.
  2. Bow ties exude confidence. Fewer than five percent of men wear bow ties. Nothing says, “I am confident of my manhood,” like rejecting the herd, the 95% of men, who stick to a regular tie.
  3. Keep company with great minds and great men. Think about men known for wearing bow ties: Winston Churchill, George Will, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Dennis Sansom (for a more complete list go here). Consider: no recent president has worn a bow tie on a regular basis. Could this be the cause of our national malaise?
  4. Bow ties are eminently safe (yet risky). No man wearing a bow tie was ever sucked into a shredder or mutilated in any other office accident on the basis of his neckwear. The bow tie is safe yet fashionable, but with an edge (think Indiana Jones).
  5. Bow ties offer a classy critique of “business casual.” Growing up did you ever seriously aspire to wearing a golf shirt and dockers to work? The bow tie is technically less formal than the traditional tie but offers a classier and more formal look than a polo shirt–embrace it.

Do you wear a bow tie regularly? Why? Why not?