When it comes to men’s clothing, especially tailoring, there often isn’t that much room for expression and experimentation. That’s why the details are so important — small accessories can go a long way in making an ordinary outfit extraordinary. A timeless accessory that livens up any suit or sport coat is a pocket square.
There’s understandable confusion about the differences between a pocket square and a handkerchief. After all, their history is closely intertwined. Men would keep handkerchiefs in their breast pocket for utilitarian purposes, but the advent of tissues caused a decline in the popularity of handkerchiefs. However, as a fashion statement, keeping a small fabric square in one’s breast pocket endured. As their utilitarian roots faded, pocket squares evolved beyond plain white cotton to include colorful, patterned silk options that are available today.
The difference between a handkerchief and pocket square now mostly comes down to size and fabric. While you definitely shouldn’t use a silk pocket square to clean your nose, you can still use a cotton handkerchief as a pocket square. Just make sure that isn’t too big (it may look bulky) and that you don’t also use it to clean your nose (self-explanatory).
As for which to choose, there’s a lot of room for experimentation. You can go with linen and cotton for a more casual look or traditional silk for a sophisticated and formal look. Patterns and colors are nearly endless. It’s best to go for something that complements the tie, rather than one that exactly matches. You want the pocket square to feel effortless and personal rather than staid and stuffy. With that in mind, these are some of the best pocket squares on Amazon right now.
1. Selected Hanky 100% Cotton Men’s Handkerchief White
This set of 12 handkerchiefs is from Selected Hanky. They make fine pocket squares to add a subtle style increase to your suit, without drawing the eye away from the more important sartorial elements at play. They’re handkerchiefs, but they’re well suited to be worn as pocket squares. They’re made from cotton and have a subtly textured patterns across. We like that the pattern color matches that of the base, so that the style is subtle without being garish.
Pros: Comes in a set of 12, can be kept as a handkerchief or used as a pocket square.
Cons: Prone to staining thanks to lighter color.
2. John William Men’s Pocket Square
These pocket squares from John William are made of premium, soft silk fabric and are a great extra accessory to spiff up your formal outfit. Colors include red, black, navy and white. Or, lean into the luxuriousness with the rich, deep burgundy color. The squares are 12″ x 12″, so they’re neither too big nor too small and are carefully sewn by hand for assured high quality.
Pros: Genuine silk, available in numerous classic colors.
Cons: Only includes one pocket square. May arrive wrinkled, but gentle ironing should take care of it.
3. DanDiao Men’s Pocket Squares
This set of 30 different pocket squares will fulfill many of your stylistic and handkerchief needs with one purchase. It includes a wide variety of colors that you can mix and match with different outfits and each one measures about 8 1/2 square inches so they’re small enough to fit in your pocket and big enough to not fall in.
Pros: Pack includes many colors, perfect size for a pocket, made of soft satin that’s comfortable to wear.
Cons: Small size. Polyester, not real silk.
4. Jeatonge Set of Pocket Squares
This pocket square set from Jeatonge has 20 different pocket squares to choose from in a variety of colors and patterns. The fun and lively bunch gives you plenty of options for picking and choosing which ones go with which outfits, and they come in a holder to keep them organized. The material is a high quality blend of polyester and silk, and each one is 10″ x 10″ so you’ll have plenty of fabric to fold and accessorize with. This pack includes some classic colors as well as fun patterns to dress up with so it’ll be a while before you run out of choices.
Pros: Plenty of fabrics and colors to choose from, high quality fabric blend, comes with their own holder.
Cons: The colors are brighter on one side than the other.
5. Retreez 5-Piece Pocket Square Set
This pocket square gift box set from Retreez contains five coordinated pocket squares of complimentary colors. Each pocket square is made of 100% high-quality microfiber material and has stitched edges to prevent fraying. Each one is 12″ x 12″ so there’s plenty of room to experiment with different folding techniques, and there’s a wide variety of color themes and patterns to choose from.
Pros: Color coordinated patterns, high-quality microfiber material, stitched edges for durability.
Cons: Dry clean only for care.