How to Wear a Bandana | Men’s Style

Written By Bakes

Avid writer on Men's Hair, Grooming, and Lifestyle!

In this article, let’s look at an oft-overlooked piece of clothing – the bandana. Is it worth the hype? Find out more about how to wear a bandana to elevate your outfit.

It might seem like men don’t have many options when it comes to expressing style and fashion. However, if you know to look for versatile accessories and articles of clothing, you can unleash the creativity in you through style.

Here’s where bandanas come in. Bandanas might seem like an insignificant accessory when you look at them on their own. But when you add a bandana to your outfit, whether as a scarf or on your wrist, you can catapult your look to another level.

What is a Bandana?

bandana example styles

Before we look into how to wear a bandana, let’s answer some questions for the less fashion-savvy dudes out there.

What is a bandana? This is a small square or triangular piece of fabric, almost like a kerchief, that is solely worn as an expression of style and individuality. You can’t call any old cloth a bandana, though – it must have a specific pattern and color to be considered a good enough bandana. Bandanas are so distinctive that you can tell them from a mile away. In fact, you can also find bandana-patterned shirts, shorts, and pants.

This seemingly benign piece of fabric actually has deep roots. Let’s find out more.

The origins of the bandana

The word bandana is actually derived from the Sanskrit word “badhnati,” which means “to tie.” This refers to the process in creating the bandana patterns, which includes tie and dye. Bandanas originally featured paisley designs that were famous in India at the time. The bandana style and fabric also has significant Persian influences, mainly due to the trade routes between the two places.

 This tiny scrap of fabric floated on coastal winds to become one of the most essential fabrics for men’s fashion in the West. However, the bandana isn’t just a fashion icon. It is a shield from dust, sea spray, and the scorching heat of the sun. It has served cowboys, pirates, and travelers throughout the world.

This fashion statement has a lot of history and meaning to it. It’s a versatile piece of fabric that can transform an entire outfit. The best part? You can wear a bandana with casual clothes and formal attire!

Here are the best ways on how to wear a Bandana

Now that we have dug into the bandana’s history, it’s time to explore some techniques on how to wear a bandana when you need to uplift your outfit. Remember that you can never go wrong with a bandana. Whether you wear it with a suit or a pair of jeans, this powerful piece won’t cause a fashion faux-pas.

8 Creative Ways to Wear a Bandana:


You may choose to adorn your head with a bandana. One of the best ways to learn how to wear a bandana is to wrap it around your head. The good news? There are two ways to wear a bandana on your head. Let’s take a look:

how to cover your head with a bandana

  • A- Covering entire Head

Maybe you need something trendy yet functional to tie back your hair. Consider wearing a bandana over the top of your head. To do this, fold your bandana into a triangular shape, and hold it over your temple. Tie back the two ends of the bandana at the back of your head, right above your neck. Then, flip the other end of the bandana over your hair. This is one of the best ways to handle unruly hair. Of course, you don’t need a reason to tie a bandana over your head. You can do it as a way to flaunt your style too.

  • B- Across Forehead

If you think using a bandana to cover your head is a bit much, there are other ways to use a bandana to adorn your head. You can also fold your bandana into a thin rectangle and tie it across your forehead. You also have creative freedom over where to place the knot of the bandana. It can remain at the back of your neck, out of sight, or at the sides or middle of your forehead. You may have seen this style popularized by famous celebrities like Tupac and Johnny Depp.

Around Your Neck (Big or Small)

How to Wear a Bandana

A$AP Rocky is another famous celebrity who loves his bandanas. He ties a small bandana on his neck, but not flush against his neck, though – he leaves a little breathing room. The knot is visible at the front, and the two ends largely visible or tucked inside his top.

But that’s not the only way to wear a bandana on your neck. You can also tie a big bandana over your neck like a scarf. You can wear this over your chest on a plain white tee to bring attention to the bandana’s color and design. Additionally, you can tie a bandana like a boy scout, with the larger part of the fabric going over your back.

On Your Wrist

wrist style

In men’s fashion, the finer details of an outfit can elevate its status over the average guy’s. In this case, it could be a simple bandana tied on the wrist. A bandana on the wrist can do no harm – only good. Of course, you can only wear a bandana on your hand if you have a shorter sleeve or a vest on.

Consider adding a bandana a little above your wrist so you can have room for your watch and a few rugged leather bracelets. Of course, some men will just give the bandana its own hand, so their watch also has its showtime.

Attached to Jean Pocket

mens jeans

Another aloof way for how to wear a bandana? Just stuff it into the pocket of your jeans, so it pokes out a bit while still being secure in your pocket. It doesn’t take any effort to put this bandana look off. As we keep saying – you can never go wrong with a bandana. You can also tie one edge of your bandana to a belt loop so it can flutter in the breeze without any effort.

On Your Ankle or Leg

wrap on leg

The fashionable man will consider tying a bandana to his ankle or leg as an option. This works best if you’re wearing shorter jeans or shorts; that way, you can actually show it off. You can also roll up the ends of your pants to make room for a roughly knotted bandana on your leg. Bandanas also pair well with ankle boots. In some cases, you can even tie a bandana on your calf on top of your fitting jeans.

As a Pocket Square

How to Wear a Bandana (1)

Having a bandana peak out of a suit jacket is the ultimate fashion statement. The bandana will provide a pop of color and playfulness over a serious jacket. Fold it neatly so it can sit naturally inside your pocket. It’s best to stick to silky fabric when it comes to using bandanas for pocket squares. Choose bolder colors like red, blue, and yellow to add a dash of creativity to your outfit. Bandanas will elevate you from just a regular guy wearing a suit to a guy wearing a suit with a bandana.

Covering Your face

covering your face

Back in the day, when masks were more fashion statement than functional, it was a bit rare to cover your face. Still, it could be pulled off. Nowadays, it’s a must to wear a mask due to the pandemic. This may be a good thing for the fashion-conscious dudes. You can now seamlessly integrate a bandana into your outfit to show some class while taking care of your health. You can tie your bandana as a facemask, but it’s better to wear it on top of a medical mask.

On Your Hat

Lastly on how to wear a bandana: as a hat accessory. In addition to wearing a bandana as an accessory for your outfit, you can use it to elevate individual articles of clothing. Case in point: Hats. Bring attention to your hat by tying a bandana around the top of the hat. This adds a pop of color to an otherwise normal-looking hat. It’s the little details that take your getup to the next level.

Express Yourself with a Bandana

In this article, we have taken a look at how to wear a bandana for men. The bandana works well with any outfit, no matter the occasion. If you need to wear a suit, no problem – use a bandana as a pocket square. Undoubtedly though, bandanas shine for casual outfits. Wear them on your forehead, neck, and even ankle. Bandanas are a quiet but powerful piece in an outfit. They elevate your outfit to another level.

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