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Every once in a while, there’s a moment where all my favorite interests intersect, and my love for film, music, pop culture, and fashion become one. Luckily, this culmination has come to a head in one specific trend that lives in my mind rent-free: Men in jewelry. Of course, men’s jewelry is by no means anything new. In more recent history, the ‘80s had a plethora of famous men such as Prince, Dennis Rodman, and Lenny Kravitz who weren’t afraid to layer on the jewels. These icons paved the way for the moments my colleagues and I tend to gush over: Hollywood’s best-dressed men showing up to the red carpet dripping in jewels.
And while it may be easy to write off men’s jewelry as something only Harry Styles could pull off, it seems that the trend is everywhere. From popular shows like Hulu’s original series, Normal People creating buzz around Paul Mescal’s character’s signature chain, to Spring/Summer 2021’s most prominent jewelry trends, it’s been made crystal clear that the jewels aren’t just for the girls. Jewelry is universal—it is something that anyone can wear, as it’s unisex and can challenge gender norms. But if you’re not convinced just yet, keep scrolling as we’ve rounded up 21 famous men that make a serious case for men’s jewelry. Just a warning, though: Their drip may cause severe dehydration.
Photo by Daniel Zuchnik/Getty Images
WHO: A$AP Rocky
WHAT: Loewe Paris Fashion Week SS20
WEAR: Choker and pearls
No one quite champions men’s jewelry quite like A$AP Rocky. As someone that’s always been a “fashion killa,” he jumped on the jewelry bandwagon long before anyone else. Rocky embraces all jewelry like it’s no problem on the red carpet or at a runway presentation.
Whether it’s you or your favorite man in your life, we highly recommend you layer on the jewelry like Rocky to get the full effect.
Stephane Cardinale - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images; Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images
WHO: Timotheé Chalamet
WHAT: Little Women Premiere in Paris, 2019
WEAR: Rings and a keychain
If you thought I forgot about the time Timotheé Chalamet showed up to the premiere of Little Women wearing a chain, rings and carrying a single Eiffel Tower keychain, then think again. Does a keychain technically count as jewelry? Not really, but seeing accessories of all kinds being worn as such is something that we can get behind thoroughly.
WEAR: Pearl necklaces, gold chains, and pendant necklaces
Latin pop sensation Bad Bunny is never afraid to serve a look or layer on the jewels. From wearing a full diamond face mask to layering on pearls and chains from some of our favorite demi-fine jewelry brands, Bad Bunny continuously challenges gender norms through his approach to personal style, one necklace at a time.
Don’t be afraid to layer on your necklaces like Bad Bunny.
Rich Fury/MTV VMAs 2020/Getty Images for MTV
WHO: Machine Gun Kelly
WHAT: 2020 MTV Video Music Awards
WEAR: Pearl necklace with silver hardware
If Avril Lavigne’s famous song, Sk8er Boi, had a physical manifestation, it would be in the form of a string of pearls on Machine Gun Kelly’s neck. There are many iconic MTV Video Music Awards looks, but the artist’s pink head-to-toe outfit with a single string of pearls shook the internet in a way that ensures its place in history books. Whoever said boys don’t wear pink or pearls never met MGK.
I’ve always been a serious Drake fan, but for me, it goes beyond his music. No other male artist has been able to elevate the cause of men’s jewelry quite like Champagne Papi. You can always find Drake dancing in some diamonds somewhere. And while he may be championing OVO’s first F/W 2020 women’s collection, one thing we can always thank Drake for his love for big rings.
Keep yourself icy like Drizzy with this silver and crystal choker.
WHO: Charles Melton
WHAT:Bad Boys for Life film premiere, 2020
WEAR: Single chain
We here at Who What Wear have always been fans of Charles Melton and his style. Can you blame us? Take his look above for an example; styling a classic cut suit with a single chain is too much to handle. All we know is that while his relationship status may be TBD, the star’s ability to make us thirsty for more men in jewelry is a given.
Confession: Ever since spotting actor Yahya Abdul-Mateen II in HBO’s Watchmen series, my friends and I have been somewhat obsessed with him. It’s not just the fact he unabashedly posts things on Instagram that would be considered a “trap,” or even that he recently won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor; it’s a fact he knows how to serve a look. I mean, what other man can wear a pink suit with a brooch and chain and still make a girl swoon? Yes, I’ve fallen, and no, I really can’t get over this.
Despite the fact we’re in the middle of a pandemic, the men of Hollywood did not fail to bring the heat when it came to serving up some of the spiciest jewelry looks this year. One of those men was the Colombian singer Maluma. Pairing suits with on-trend jewelry pieces such as oversized statement chunky chokers burned down the notion of an otherwise boring suit.
Chokers will continue to be big this season, so why not treat yourself or your partner?
WHO: Justin Bieber
WHAT: SNL Rehearsals, 2020
WEAR: Beaded necklace
While we’ve spent copious amounts of time obsessing over Hailey Bieber’s style, it should be stated on the record that we shouldn’t ignore Justin Bieber himself. Not only does he know how to serve a street-style look (and even has his line of merchandise), but he’s a great example of how to style men’s jewelry for everyday use. Pairing kitschy beaded pieces with a jumper is only one example of the down-right yummy jewelry looks he’s able to cook up.
Prefer the necklace Bieber is wearing? Shop pieces from his merch line here.
Randy Holmes via Getty Images
WHO: Lakeith Stanfield
WHAT: ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live
WEAR: Long pendant necklace
The first time I saw Lakeith Stanfield on screen, it was in FX’s breakout show Atlanta. Since that moment, I’ve remained intrigued. Not just because he always plays rather eccentric and dark characters (aside from starring alongside Issa Rae in the romantic film The Photograph), but also because his style is eclectic. He’s never afraid to layer on the rings or the pendant necklaces, and for that, I have the utmost respect.
Pendant necklaces are something everyone can get behind—especially when they’re from Omi Woods.
WHO: Shawn Mendes
WHAT: 62nd Annual Grammy Awards
WEAR: Precious gemstone and diamond necklace
Another artist leading the way when it comes to wearing men’s jewelry on and off the red carpet? None other than Canadian singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes. Maybe it’s the music, or perhaps it’s the fact he wears gemstone and diamond necklaces with ease that causes us to be weak in the knees. How will we ever know?
BRB will be dreaming of Shawn Mendes wearing this oversize chain with a rectangular onyx gemstone and sparkling topaz.
Rich Fury/MTV VMAs 2020/Getty Images for MTV
WHO: Jaden Smith
WHAT: 2020 MTV Video Music Awards
WEAR: Colorful pearls and layered on chain bracelets
Long before it was popular or socially “acceptable,” Jaden Smith used style to challenge gender norms around what’s considered apropos dressing for men. His ability to pull off everything from skirts to layered on pearls has made him a style icon in his own right.
Reminder: There are no rules for men’s jewelry, so don’t be afraid to go full maximalist and pair chain bracelets with pearl necklaces for a look Jaden Smith would wear himself.
WHO: Brad Pitt
WHAT: 76th Venice Film Festival
WEAR: Layered long necklaces
If you thought that this list only included the newer faces to Hollywood, you guessed wrong. Jewelry isn’t just for the “younger” or female-identifying—it is universal, people. And no one quite makes a case for men’s jewelry better for it than veteran star Brad Pitt. If Pitt approves, then everyone else needs to get in line.
Your baby may not be Brad Pitt, but they can wear a silver curbed Bottega Veneta chain, which is not a bad compromise, if you’re asking us.
Randy Holmes/ABC via Getty Images
WHO: Michael B. Jordan
WHAT: ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live
WEAR: A pinky ring
It’s not a roundup of men who can make a girl drool without the one and only Michael B. Jordan. Aside from being named People’s sexiest man alive or starring in some of the most beloved films, Jordan knows how to rock some jewels (I’m not talking about wedding bands, either). He’s regularly spotted wearing a pinky ring, and that, my friends, is male chicness.
Some men can wear the hell out of some gemstones. Jason Moma is one of them. If you’re worried that a men’s jewelry piece with stones such as jade or turquoise may feel too bohemian, then we highly recommend taking a cue from Momoa and pairing it with a suit for a look that may have earthy vibes but is downright heavenly.
This malachite stone and diamond pendant necklace is just beautiful.
Fred Hayes/Getty Images for SAGindie
WHO: Alexander Hodge
WHAT: Sundance Film Festival, 2020
WEAR: Small hoop earrings, silver cuff, turquoise bracelet
Insecure fans know that the breakout bae of the last season of the show was actor Alexander Hodge. And while his role as Andrew is worth watching, his style is something that deserves to be on your radar as well. He's never afraid to shy away from studs, a long chain, or layered bracelets.
Don’t be afraid to layer on the bracelets like Hodge, as bangles will be huge come spring 2021.
WHO: Lil Nas X
WHAT: Tom Ford A/W 20 Show
WEAR: Single hoop earring
Music genres aren’t the only thing that Lil Nas X has crossed since rising to fame—his approach to style knows no bounds. From serving up head-to-toe sequin looks at the 2019 MTV VMAs to never being afraid to shying away from wearing a single earring, Lil Nas X is the rapper proving both that men can sparkle just as much as women.
You can wear this single silver cross earring out on the Old Town Road.
Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images
WHO: Jacob Elordi
WHAT: Napa Valley Film Festival, 2020
WEAR: Minimal silver pieces
While most people would say Jacob Elordi’s breakout performance in HBO’s Euphoria is what caught their attention, for me, it’s his ability to rock some jewelry. What’s noteworthy about his approach to styling jewelry is that he opts for minimal layering pieces that aren’t overtly attention-grabbing but are intriguing enough to give the newcomer a second glance.
Having a go-to ring (that’s not a wedding band) is the key for anyone to up their jewelry game.
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for dcp
WHO: Suga (Min Yoon-gi) of BTS
WHAT: 2019 Billboard Music Awards
WEAR: Small hoops
Please do not come after me, but I’m fully aware that there are other members of the wildly popular Korean band BTS that wear jewelry like pros. But I’m quite obsessed with the fact Suga always is wearing hoops. He’ll pair them with everything from cropped sweaters to bedazzled suits, really solidifying the point that jewelry looks just as good on the boys as the girls.
You can’t be a member of the BTS, but you can buy a pair of small hoops they’d wear.
Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images
WHO: Harry Styles
WHAT: The BRIT Awards 2020
WEAR: Single pearl
You’ve made it to the end, and if your will is strong, then you’re not fully dehydrated from the full thirst-trap this story is meant to be. But don’t count your blessings yet because we still haven’t taken a moment to recognize our favorite British pop star, Harry Styles. Many celebrities have championed men’s jewelry, but none have quite been able to captivate the conversation around men in pearls, quite like Styles. After all, who else had a plethora of stars—including Timotheé Chalamet himself—make a nod to his iconic style on Saturday Niight Live? Whether you’re for or against men’s jewelry, it doesn’t matter because Harry Styles had made it here to stay.
It’s not watermelon, but we have a feeling Harry Styles would be all about this pearl necklace.
WHO: Dev Patel
WHAT: The Personal History of David Copperfield premiere, 2019
When all else fails and you’ve reached the end of a story about men’s jewelry and still aren’t sold, you turn to the one and only: Dev Patel. Embracing jewelry is a journey, and if you even can’t wrap your head around the idea of you (or your favorite man) stepping out in some pearls, then start simply with a good watch. I promise it’s something the most jewelry-adverse men can get behind.