Men’s Style: Show Some Ankle

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In the latest attempt to be edgy, fashion designers are putting men’s ankles front and centre. The latest round of autumn and winter creations featured plenty of ankles on display, including on models clad in denim and jackets. From shortened trousers to rolled-up chinos and even cropped slacks, men’s ankles, often clad in high-end socks, are on full display. The time of the male ankle has arrived and true fashion mavens know that in the ever-changing fashion world, once you get a whiff of a trend, it’s time to jump on it before the boat leaves the dock.


Designers looking to change men’s fashion began introducing the male ankle to fashion connoisseurs during high-profile fashion events. Designers flocked to Paris in advance of the fall fashion season to put forth their latest creations that showcase the humble ankle. Designs ranged from extreme tailored suit trousers that end just below the knee to shortened trouser hems. Many designers confirmed that these styles will be in production soon.

So what’s the big deal? Well, unlike trends in womenswear, menswear is very reluctant to cross certain fashion boundaries and that includes exposing the ankle. The emphasis in the past few years has been on accessories, offering men a way to customize their traditional pieces. However, the new frontier of the ankle gives men around the world an option for something bolder and more risqué than they’re used to. The fashion trend is nothing new according to some designers who note that pant lengths were shorter in the 1950s, though not necessarily as short as some designers are making them.

Like with all good trends, magazines and entertainment programs latched onto the idea of the shortened trouser and broadcast it loudly. Celebrities and fashionable men saw the trend and decided to take it mainstream.

How to Do it Right

If you’re itching to raise the hem on your favourite pair of pants, you need to know the proper way to do it. The easiest way to make sure you’re doing it right is to look at what you plan to expose. A pale and hairy expanse of ankle is nothing to look at, but a statement shoe can make the idea work. After all, what’s the point of having fancy shoes if you can’t show them off?

Obviously, the best way to showcase your shoes is to raise your cuffs, show a little ankle and put your leather loafers on full display. Adding a little skin softens the look and gives the wearer a hint of femininity. The cropped trouser is extremely versatile and you can push the look as far as you’re willing to go; show a little skin or show a lot.

Of course, as soon as you start showing a little ankle, you’ll immediately become the fashion guru amongst your friends. People will think you not only got the fashion memo that morning, but that you possibly even wrote it. A little bit of lower leg can dress up a plain shirt, a jumper, a hoodie or even a sports coat. Best of all it takes virtually no effort and works with casual or dress styles.

If you’re ever in doubt about your look, stand in front of a full-length mirror and ask yourself if you’re showing enough ankle. If you go too conservative and don’t show enough ankle, you risk looking like you’re wearing shrunken pants rather than deliberately shortened trousers. This is especially true for casual denim pieces.

Another caution is taking width into account when selecting regular pants to have shortened to expose the ankle. Wide leg pants that are shortened too much will resemble long shorts. They will make you appear shorter, particularly if they hit mid-calf. Exposing too much calf will also distract from the ankle, which should be avoided.

Combinations to Try

There are no hard set rules with the exposed ankle. Basically, whatever you’re comfortable with goes. Try combining an exciting shoe with a punch of personality, like snakeskin, with your usual office trouser, shortened to just above the ankle. The look will still be professional, but will also give you an opportunity to inject your personal style into your workplace.

Any type of pants may be shortened to expose the ankle, but some care must be made when selecting a shoe to complete the combo. Avoid high-tops and styles that cover the ankle. Look for shoes with a decorative edge along the top and don’t forget the basic rule of fashion that your socks should be matched to your pants and not your shoes. Just because your pants are shortened doesn’t mean you can forget basic rules of style. If your ankles will be exposed without the cover of socks, consider grooming them before allowing them out. Total hair removal isn’t necessary, but take care of how your socks are cutting and make sure hair doesn’t contrast against the top of the sock. You can use a small amount of styling gel to hold ankle hair in place if humidity is a problem.

Wrapping it up.

Whether you show a little or a lot, flashing a little ankle is always a great way to improve your favourite outfits. Pair your shortened trousers with a fabulous shoe for the best results. Experiment with your style and make your own combinations to find the look that’s right for you. The perfect combination will be comfortable, sophisticated and stylish. Soon, the men around you will be emulating your look and letting their ankles free from the sock prisons they’ve been bound in.


  1. Elissa

    March 5, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    I like reading your posts thanks for posting.

    • Dapperfied

      March 18, 2015 at 9:37 pm

      Glad to hear Elissa!

  2. Riqat

    March 5, 2015 at 4:46 pm

    It’s going to be ending of mine day, but before end I am reading this post as so interesting!

    • Dapperfied

      March 18, 2015 at 9:37 pm

      Great to hear, hope it helps!

  3. Adam

    March 5, 2015 at 4:56 pm

    Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you penning this write-up and also the rest of the site is really good.

    • Dapperfied

      March 18, 2015 at 9:36 pm

      Thanks a lot Adam!

  4. David

    March 6, 2015 at 12:45 pm

    I will be showing some ankle soon thanks for the tips.

    • Dapperfied

      March 18, 2015 at 9:36 pm

      Glad it helped!

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