The corporate world and the world of business at large are quite conservative when it comes to dress codes and sartorial rules. There is a correct reason why businessmen are generally expected to wear suits and that is that the clothes one wears are a representation of two things.
Firstly, the main reason why men in business environments are required or at least expected to wear classic suits is because a suit is a sign of professionalism and correct conduct. While it is pretty clear that you could conduct business very well in shorts and a muscle shirt, you want the person who sits in front of you when you are signing contracts to give you a visual cue that he is capable of following orders, rules and of doing things correctly – which are all things incorporated in wearing a suit correctly.
The second reason is that a suit is a rather impersonal way of dressing. While you can express your personality through small details and careful choices, suits are the general sign of distance. And that, in some ways, is the right way to approach business. In a world filled with details, connections and personal passions, one of the last things you need is to engage with everyone’s intimate world, with their quirks and hobbies, with their own ways of seeing things and world view. In other words, when you are doing business, it’s all about the work – and that’s how it should be. Otherwise, things tend to become extremely complicated.
Therefore, a man’s sartorial choices when it comes to colors and business suits tend to be quite limited, but this doesn’t mean there are no ways of looking great.
There are a few classic (and new classic) colors that is hard to go wrong with.
Black. Black is a somber color, but it is also a powerful color. Some even recommend not wearing black because it is too powerful. However, for many, black is the best color, since it is completely neutral, it conveys little personal information and looks very strict.
Charcoal. For those who want the sternness of black, but with a more toned down and friendly vibe, charcoal is a great way to go.
Gray. For a youthful and dynamic look, you can go for a gray suit.
Dark blue. If your workplace allows it, dark blue is a wonderful option for a suit, especially in a more relaxed business environment.
Beige, khaki, brown. In theory, every neutral would go well. In fashion, neutrals are colors that go with any color. These are beige, khaki, brown, ivory, tan, etc. These colors are OK, but it is most likely that you won’t look really good in them, since they are quite dull and suits cover a lot of your body, making you look rather boring.
Also, wearing bright colors is still a major taboo in the corporate world, even though colors such as burgundy are sometimes being accepted.