Clothing styles in Italy
Italy’s clothing styles vary from the north to the south so it’s difficult to plan what to wear. Milan and the north of the country have a very fashionable and even luxurious style and the people customize their style according to personal tastes. Rome and the south have more local trends and traditions.
Adapt the way you’re dressed to the occasion
Italians adapt the way they dress to the moment of the day, the occasion and the place they are visiting. Men aren’t wearing shorts and tank tops in the evening. When visiting churches or cathedrals it is not recommended to wear shoulder-less clothing, shorts and mini-skirts.
Showing respect also means that you dress up according to the level of the place or people you are visiting, even if there is no formal dress code mentioned. Explicit dress codes are relatively rare in Italy, because people usually know how to dress according to the place.
Some clothing combinations may also look funny to Italians, like wearing white socks under trousers or wearing socks with sandals. In case of a doubt it is always better to overdress for a specific occasion than the opposite. Remember, that for Italians style and elegance is translated by the overall picture and not by specific attires such as tie. Wearing a tie on a jeans or an imperfectly ironed shirt is considered inappropriate. The first thing Italians will look at are your shoes and then the quality of the fabrics.
Italian women always wear makeup, usually very natural one, and have their hair, eyebrows and nails done, but they hardly wear perfume.
It is better to avoid sweat suits or sports shoes in the city, except if you are doing sports. The only exception to this may be very stylish, branded sport shoes, but not flashy and have to look very new.