Not Your Mother's Pearls Here — Why I'm Taking Inspiration From Marc Jacobs & Harry Styles

Pearl jewelry summons up a range of references depending on who, and from where, you ask. From modern day southern belles to Queen Elizabeth I, pearls invoke an air of formality, having decorated the garbs of royalty and necklines of preppy enthusiasts over time. This moment, however, feels refreshingly different with 2020's male fashion icons showing us how to wear pearls. With the likes of Harry Styles, A$AP Rocky, and Marc Jacobs clashing the oh-so precious quality of this lustrous treasure against functional pieces like a hooded sweater or graphic tee, the new way to style pearl jewelry is practical for daily wear, and in my opinion, much cooler.

Like many women out there, my personal relationship with pearls (and jewelry) began when my mother gave me her pearl necklace and matching studs. The milky opalescent sheen and subtle suggestion of luxury is what drew me to this shiny round object. I loved how it illuminated my skin so I would pair the necklace and earrings with similar ladylike fabrics and silhouettes as often as I could — dressing up my casual southern California attire with these feminine and formal touches. Fast forward many years, multiple reiterations of pearl jewelry, and a personal style evolution from that girl many (many) years ago, I am again inspired, and excited, to incorporate pearls into my daily uniform, but this time through the eye of juxtaposition.

See below for outfit inspirations from the leading men of this style treatment as well as variations of pearl jewelry from affordable to investment pieces that you'll keep for a lifetime.

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How To Wear Pearls According To 2020's Male Fashion Icons: Marc Jacobs

Take note here on the multiple contrasts Marc Jacobs effortlessly combines — hoodie, pleated skirt, platform boots. Looking at his purple hair, his look reminds me of a Japanese schoolgirl anime (which I love). It shows that you don't have to adhere to the dusty formula of sticking to dressy pieces to style with pearls.

How To Wear Pearls According To Male Fashion Icons: A$AP Rocky

A$AP Rocky is never not seen donning a major jewelry moment, as shown above with the double pearl strand necklace and large pearl cocktail rings. He is masterful when it comes to mixing casual cool clothing with his bijoux, adding texture and layers for a more is more appeal.

How To Wear Pearls According To Male Fashion Icons: Harry Styles

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The unexpected choice of pearls, say over a silver gothic necklace, is what makes Harry Styles' look so fresh and now. Pair with a graphic tee, plaid shacket (shirt jacket), and high-waisted pant to complete your off-duty outfit that you can refer to time and time again.