What Do Indian Men Wear?


India is a culturally diverse country with a rich history and a wide range of traditional clothing styles. The attire of Indian men varies greatly depending on the region, climate, occasion, and personal preference. In this article, we will explore the different types of clothing worn by Indian men, their significance, and the cultural context surrounding them.

Traditional Clothing

Traditional Indian clothing reflects the country’s diverse cultural heritage. Each state in India has its unique traditional attire for men. Here are some of the most popular traditional clothing styles:


The dhoti is a traditional garment worn by men in India. It is a rectangular piece of cloth that is wrapped around the waist and legs, similar to a long skirt. Dhotis are typically made from cotton or silk and are commonly worn in South India and rural areas. They are often paired with a kurta, a loose-fitting tunic.


The kurta is a long, loose-fitting shirt that is worn by Indian men. It is typically made from cotton or silk and can be plain or embellished with intricate embroidery. Kurtas are versatile and can be paired with dhotis, pajamas, or jeans, depending on the occasion.


The sherwani is a formal attire worn by Indian men on special occasions such as weddings or festivals. It is a long coat-like garment that is usually made from silk or brocade fabric. Sherwanis are often heavily embroidered and adorned with decorative buttons, making them an elegant choice for formal events.


Pajamas are loose-fitting trousers that are often paired with kurtas or sherwanis. They are usually made from lightweight fabrics such as cotton or silk. Pajamas are comfortable and widely worn by Indian men as casual or sleepwear.


The turban is a headgear worn by men in many regions of India. It is a long piece of cloth that is wrapped around the head to form a turban. Turbans vary in style, color, and size, and often carry regional significance. They are worn for religious, cultural, or practical purposes.

Regional Variations

India’s diverse cultural landscape gives rise to a wide range of regional clothing styles for men. Let’s explore some of the prominent regional variations:


The lungi is a traditional garment worn by men in South India. It is a simple, rectangular piece of cloth that is tied around the waist and extends to the ankles. Lungis are commonly made from cotton and are lightweight, making them suitable for the hot and humid climate of the region.


The panjabi, also known as a kurta-pajama, is a popular attire worn by men in Punjab and other parts of North India. It consists of a knee-length shirt (kurta) and loose-fitting trousers (pajama). Panjabis are often brightly colored and intricately patterned, reflecting the vibrancy of the region’s culture.


The mundu is a traditional garment worn by men in Kerala, a state in South India. It is a white cotton cloth that is draped around the waist and worn as a lower garment. Mundus are often paired with a simple shirt or a traditional jacket called a jubba.


The pheta is a traditional turban worn by men in Maharashtra, a western state in India. It is usually made from cotton or silk and is known for its unique shape and style. Phetas are worn during festivals, weddings, and other auspicious occasions.

Modern Clothing

While traditional clothing styles continue to be cherished and worn on special occasions, Indian men also embrace modern attire in their everyday lives. Let’s explore some popular modern clothing choices:

Shirt and Trousers

A shirt and trousers combination is a common choice for Indian men in urban areas. This Western-inspired attire is favored for its versatility and comfort. Shirts can be paired with formal trousers for a professional look or with jeans for a more casual style.

T-shirts and Jeans

T-shirts and jeans have become increasingly popular among Indian men, especially the younger generation. They offer a casual and trendy look and are suitable for various occasions, including social gatherings and outings.

Western Formal Wear

Many Indian men opt for Western formal wear, such as suits and blazers, for professional settings or formal events. This attire exudes elegance and sophistication and is commonly worn in corporate environments and upscale social gatherings.


Indian men have a diverse range of clothing options, ranging from traditional attire that reflects their cultural heritage to modern clothing styles embraced in urban areas. Traditional garments like dhotis, kurtas, sherwanis, turbans, and lungis continue to hold cultural significance and are worn on special occasions. Regional variations add further diversity to men’s clothing choices across India. Additionally, modern clothing choices such as shirts, trousers, jeans, T-shirts, and Western formal wear are popular in everyday life. The clothing preferences of Indian men are influenced by factors such as climate, region, occasion, and personal style. Overall, Indian men’s clothing reflects the country’s rich cultural tapestry and the evolving fashion trends of the modern era.

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