How to Look Country

Two Parts:Looking Country for MenLooking Country for Women

When putting together a country-themed outfit, there’s a fine line between modern touches of country style and Grand Ole Opry caricature. So how can you dress with a country flair without going full-on Dolly Parton? Use these tips and tricks to carry off a stylish look with just the right amount of country inspiration.

Part 1
Looking Country for Men

  1. Image titled Look Country Step 1
    Look for the right bottoms. Country style is all about the jean, but jeans aren’t your only option for bottoms.
    • For men, jeans are definitely the primary option for bottom-wear, but dark-colored jeans or corduroys can also be part of a country-inspired look, particularly if you’re trying to dress up your look.
    • When looking for pants, look for a close fit with legs just wide enough to accommodate some cowboy boots. No skinny jeans or baggy pants.
  2. Image titled Look Country Step 2
    Find the perfect shirt. Certain cuts and prints unequivocally evoke country style--your job is just to choose one.
    • Long-sleeved button-down shirts are as much an integral part of the country look as blue jeans. If you want a country-inspired look for your shirt, look for plaid, embroidered, or checkered button-down shirts.
    • If you want to dress up your country look, go for button-down shirts with pearl snap buttons.
  3. Image titled Look Country Step 3
    Put a hat on it. Cowboy hats are easily the most classically identifiable feature of a country-inspired look.
    • For men, simple, solid colored felt or straw cowboy hats are the go-to. Some hats might include some subtle detailing, but generally you want to aim for simplicity.
    • To get the right fit, look for a hat that fits one to two finger-widths above the eyebrows and ears and sits securely, but not too snugly, around your head.
    • A nice, clean, crisp cowboy hat works for a dressed-up look as well.
  4. Image titled Look Country Step 4
    Find your footwear. Of course the most country-inspired footwear for both men and women is the cowboy boot.
    • The boot style of choice for men is your standard roper boot with a flat heel and square or rounded toes (pointed toes are somewhat of a no-no in certain circles).[1]
    • If you’re going out, wear a dark-colored pair of clean, sharp-looking boots.
  5. Image titled Look Country Step 5
    Get your belt on. Thick leather belts with chunky belt buckles are important center pieces of country-inspired style.
    • Black or brown leather belts with a chunky silver buckle are staples of country style. More elaborate belts may feature studs or tooled leather, but often the buckle is the true star.
    • Big, unmistakable belt buckles are one of the more fun aspects of country style, but use some restraint when going that route. If you’re going to wear a loud buckle, tone down the rest of the outfit to avoid looking overdone or costumey.
    • If you already have several distinctly country-style elements in your outfit (fringed vest or skirt, pearl-snap shirt, etc.), opt for a more toned-down belt and buckle. An understated three-piece silver buckle, for example, adds country appeal without overwhelming the outfit.
  6. Image titled Look Country Step 6
    Pick the right jewelry. When it comes to country style, silver is always the go-to.
    • The jewelry options for men are generally fewer than for women. When looking for jewelry, opt for chunky silver rings or perhaps a more subtle silver necklace.
    • As an alternative to jewelry, a bandana worn tied around the neck or folded into a shirt pocket can give a taste of country to an otherwise plain outfit.
  7. Image titled Look Country Step 7
    Throw on a vest or jacket. The right vest or jacket can add subtle country style to an outfit, so keep an eye out for flattering styles.
    • Look for a country-inspired sport or leather jacket to add a bit of edge to an everyday ensemble.
    • Wearing a nice classically cut vest can also be a good option if you’re dressing up a bit for a night out.
  8. Image titled Look Country Step 8
    Keep your hair simple. Men’s hairstyles are about as simple as it gets: short and basic cuts are the way to go.
    • Because country style is about the hat more than the hair, a country-inspired hairstyle should be something that works easily with and doesn’t steal any thunder from a cowboy hat.

Part 2
Looking Country for Women

  1. Image titled Look Country Step 9
    Look for the right pants or skirt. Women have a few more options in this realm than men, including skirts and shorts.
    • Jeans are still the classic choice when it comes to a country aesthetic, though the jeans for women are often a bit flashier than their male counterparts. Studs and sparkles on the front and/or back pockets are popular with the younger and trendier country fashion set, and close-fitting, curve-hugging boot-cut jeans are preferred.[2]
    • Short-shorts, cut-off denim shorts, denim skirts (long and short), and floral, flowy skirts are all options as well. Bonus points if they come in American flag or hunting camo print.
  2. Image titled Look Country Step 10
    Choose the right shirt. Women’s tops feature diverse colors, styles, and prints. Some prints, like rustic florals, plaids, or embroidery, are a particularly identifiable as country-inspired.
    • Long-sleeved button-downs are also the most classically country option, though rolling the sleeves of your long-sleeved shirt is a commonly acceptable element of the country look.
  3. Image titled Look Country Step 11
    Wear a loose, airy dress. Country style favors airy summer-style dresses that have a loose sway to them.
    • Choose a dress with a loose fit or with a bodice and flowing skirt. Both fit the classic country profile.
    • Look for dresses with light, floral prints, studded or fringed detail, lace, or leather belted accents.[3]
    • If you’ll be going out, look for a dress with particularly nice embroidery detail and/or beading.
  4. Image titled Look Country Step 12
    Get some great boots. For women, the choice of cowboy boots is nearly endless and covers a range of styles, from tooled leather boots with a squared-off toe to floral embroidered boots with a pointed toe. Have fun mixing cowboy boots with dresses, skirts, and jeans to add a taste of country to otherwise standard outfits.
    • There’s some debate as to whether boots can be worn over rather than under jeans. The more style avant-garde have opted to experiment with wearing your boots over your pants, but if you want to play it a little safer, stick to wearing your pants over your boots.[4]
    • If you’d prefer to expand beyond boots, flip-flops and sandals with studs, charms, and sparkles are also options.
    • If you’re going out, you can pair a nice set of cowboy boots with a nicer dress for a more casual elegant look, or you can opt for a pair of boots with a higher heel, higher shaft, and/or finer detailing to dress up a look.
  5. Image titled Look Country Step 13
    Get yourself a hat. A cowboy hat will instantly countrify any ensemble and can be a lot of fun to wear.
    • The cowboy hat options for women are largely the same as for men--felt or straw, solid colors--but there’s a bit more leeway in terms of adornment.
    • Women’s hats may include more elaborate studded details, turquoise accents, or rhinestones for added flash.
    • If you’re dressing up for a night out, it’s best to leave the hat behind. Unlike for men, cowboy hats will most likely dress down a woman’s outfit. Opt instead to wear your hair up or in loose waves.
  6. Image titled Look Country Step 14
    Wear a bandana. Bandanas are conventionally associated with the country look because cowboys and ranchers would wear them on trail rides to keep dust out of their noses and mouths, but modern country fashion now incorporates bandanas in a range of ways.
    • Wearing a bandana loosely tied around your neck or over your hair can add a touch of country whimsy.
    • You can also look for bandana-print shirts, skirts, and dresses that pay homage to cowboy style.
  7. Image titled Look Country Step 15
    Find a great belt. Women’s belts come in two main styles: classic and modern. Classic belts are worn through your belt loops, while modern belts are meant to be seen and are worn over shirts, dresses, etc.
    • Adding a classic belt with a chunky buckle to a pair of jeans or shorts gives an instant country feel to most any outfit. Wearing a thick belt with a large buckle over a button-down shirt or loose sweater is a more modern way to embrace country style.
    • Big elaborate belt buckles are definitely a fun part of country style, but use some restraint if you go with a statement belt buckle. Tone down the rest of the outfit to avoid looking overdone or costumey. That is, if you already have several distinctly country-style elements in your outfit (fringed vest or skirt, a cowboy hat, etc.), opt for a belt with a more subtle buckle.
    • A classic three-piece silver buckle, for example, can add country appeal without overwhelming the outfit.
  8. Image titled Look Country Step 16
    Add some jewelry. When it comes to country-inspired jewelry, go chunky or go home.
    • Look for chunky silver jewelry, especially with turquoise accents and floral motifs.[5]
    • As with belt buckles, don’t go overboard with your jewelry choices. If you opt to wear a big statement piece of jewelry and keep the rest of your outfit somewhat subdued to avoid looking overdone.
  9. Image titled Look Country Step 17
    Throw on a vest or jacket. Depending on the vest or jacket, it can add anything from a subtle hint of country inspiration to unmistakable country flair to an outfit.
    • For women, loose, fringed vests can add major vintage country-chic to an outfit,[6] while denim jackets can bring casual country flair to a dress or skirt.
  10. Image titled Look Country Step 18
    Keep your hair simple. For the most part, country-style hair is simple--the old-school mountain of teased hair has long since been eclipsed by more stripped-down modern styles.
    • Feminine styles are the way to go. Long, loose waves work well alone or under a cowboy hat for a soft, romantic look, while side braids and low ponytails work similarly well under hats.


  • If it features American-flag print, it will work with country style.
  • Plaid can't go wrong with this look.
  • Be sure you find pants that are long enough to cover the tops of your boots when you sit.[7]
  • If you’re going with fringe, stick to one fringed accessory at a time--any more and you risk looking a bit cheesy.[8]

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Categories: Fashion Styles