It’s no secret that the Nigerian fashion industry is very influential thanks to the tremendous growth achieved in the last decade. The adoration for wearing the Native style wear reinforces cultural pride, and Nigerian clothing for men is no exception. Nigerian fashion trends are setting the pace in the global fashion arena. As a result, Nigerian attires have crossed the border and not uncommon to locate various Nigerian outfits on the red carpet. Nigeria's refined taste in fashion and unapologetic embrace of their ethnic and traditional clothing has been the defining element pushing the success of the attires in the global fashion scene. The latest styles are a blend of the traditional attire with modern design techniques that embody the diverse cultural entities found in the West African country. Intrigued? Keep reading to learn of the various Nigerian outfits making a mark in the fashion scene.
By infusing a modern touch to the native attires, a wide variety of stunning designs suited for both official and casual wardrobes become available. As they say, fashion is a repetitive process; and the once native style is today the face of fashion globally. From African print Ankara to native inspired gowns, Nigerian native attire styles are the root to some global labels that dot the African continent and the world at large.
1. Native 'Isiagu'-inspired outfits
The ‘Isiagu’ AKA chieftaincy outfit was a traditional Nigerian traditional wear of the Igbo people. Even today, the style is still smashing. Generally, the design looks like a shirt with embellished tribal gold patterns and colours. The ‘Isiagu’ predominantly features graphics representing horses, crowns, lions, swords, or other tribal motifs.
The word ‘Isiagu’ comes from the phrase “lion’s head” pointing to the conspicuous lion head motif on the fabric. ‘Isiagu’ is majorly worn with plain trousers. One can complement the outfit with accessories like a necklace and cap. The 'Isiagu' is traditionally used as men African wear for engagement.
Be sure to wear an ‘Isiagu’ to a formal event; even better, it’s an equivalent and could be used as an alternative to a western suit. The garment is no longer regarded as a royal attire as was the case. The latest designs and fabrics with diverse shades of colours are to die for. No doubt the ‘Isiagu’ mens' African wear designs accord one a deserving presence in a social setting.
It is common to find a ‘Dashiki’ made with ‘Isiagu’ fabric; however, gold buttons and chains accessories set the style apart from other African prints.
Doesn't this 'Isiagu' sportswear look imposingly glamorous?
How about a royal blue and gold 'Isiagu' top?
2. Senator styles “Niger Delta outfit”
The senator style traces its origin in the Niger- Delta. The outfit includes a shirt that extends all the way to the knees and pants. Latest designs are made to be tight-fitting, contrary to baggy outfits in the early days. This attire is one of the trendiest Nigerian styles and is currently riding on high recognition. The ordinary fabric material is the most popular choice in the design of this native outfit.
A former Nigerian senator, Anyim Pius Anyim, is claimed to have been spotted countless times wearing the costume. The ‘Senator’ thus became the reference to the style.
Most Senator African wear styles for guys feature either a short or long sleeved shirt dressed in western-style trousers. The fabric comes in a wide variety of colours. Senator styles are best-suited wear for formal events or as African wear for engagement.
What distinguishes the senator style as a unique outfit is the cool tailored embroidery which runs along the midline and downwards over the chest. Also, retrofit of the vertical designs dotting the breast region is possible. To make the designs super stylish, some designers use shiny gold-like buttons. The sleeves can be short or long depending on the wearer’s taste. A long-sleeved shirt is typically styled to have holed cuffs to act as cufflinks.
Go for a matching hat to add more elegance to the style. A casual pair of shoes, sandals, watch or flashy sunglasses is an excellent choice of accessory that leaves you looking so classy.
3. Ankara African print styles for men
Ankara print is one of the most vibrant, sophisticated and adaptable fabric. A designer can incorporate the material in the design of any conceivable garment. So popular is Ankara today that it ranks alongside western fabrics on the fashion scene. In most cases, it’s made up of wholly cotton plus the unique African motifs and patterns. The African print latest African wear for men has become more popular with the younger generation striving to make it an everyday wear.
Modern Native Nigerian designers favour the Ankara style. The fact that Ankara is a very variable style makes it one of the iconic elements in the African fashion and a fashion masterpiece that screams royalty. A wearer can style Ankara with sunglasses or a hat to create a unique look. Men can go for Ankara pants, T-shirts, shirts, blazers, a matching suit, shoes, shorts or hats.
Ankara comes in different colours, patterns, and textures that make it suitable for different occasions. Animated patterns and colours might be appropriate for informal events like cultural ceremonies. Be sure to check on these latest Ankara styles for traditional wedding ideas you borrow to spice up your wardrobe.
Styles for a male like an Ankara jacket layered over classic shirt plus pants give a magnificent sight.
4. Modern styled 'Atiku' wear
The sophisticated ‘Atiku’ fabric is one of the most in-demand Nigerian fashion styles. This fabric makes up a large number of native and traditional attires triggering a huge fashion craze.
‘Atiku’ features a firm lace texture that is thin, hence, eliminating the see-through perforations seen on many materials. Variation in thickness depends on the target brand and quality. The unique aspect, and in some cases the limiting factor to this fabric is the fact that it comes in one colour in one material. You can choose between white, black, cream, navy blue, sky blue, and brown. A preference on multi-coloured fabric goes contrary to the ‘Atiku’ fabric.
The ‘Atiku’ fabric is also instrumental in designing the ‘agbada’ and ‘Buba.’ Embroidery is the prerogative of the designer; however for ‘agbada,’ embroidery is mandatory.
This clothing is an appropriate Nigerian everyday fashion to any occasion regardless of one’s age and social status. Accessorize the ‘Atiku’ styles with wrist watches, shoes, and a matching cap. With such style, a gentleman stands to dash out looking sharp.
5. Nigerian Dashiki fashion styles
We can’t talk of Nigerian men Africa wear without the mention of Dashiki. Dashiki traces its origin to the Yoruba and Hausa people who identified the outfit as “danshiki” or “dan ciki.” The garment made headway into the American society during the civil rights movements in Harlem. After African Americans used Dashiki as a symbol of resistance, the style went global. Since the clothing fell into the hands of designers beyond the African continent, its popularity has grown by leaps and bounds.
Dashiki African designs for men feature a top shirt with a unique V-collar buttonless slit and stitched interlacing. Embroidery is part and parcel of the design process. It has become an essential component of Nigerian fashion. Wear a Dashiki with trousers or a cap and be assured to step out looking dashing.
Sophistication in design varies from minimal to extreme embroidery. Some models feature men’s wear with low-lying pockets on the front; others rock a hood. Cotton-based Angelina print is the standard fabric in Dashiki designs.
Men African wear designs have been pushing hard to modify this outfit to infuse it into the conventional fashion. In this light, a royal blue dashiki is one of the latest trendy styles you can come across; a new twist indeed. This outfit is not only sophisticated but a resourceful outfit to any man.
6. Nigerian 'Agbada' attires
‘Agbada’ means “Voluminous attire”. The sheer size of this ankle length garment makes it comfortable for the wearer
'Agbada' falls among the most popular and appreciated Nigerian styles. Among the features that make this garment unique are the overflowing flaps that demand the wearer to keep them steady on the shoulders. Some techniques make use of decorations with traditional beads and identical accessories. Design of these styles is majorly on the three-piece approach with embroidery on selected sections.
Step out with an ‘Agbada’ paired with a pair of pants and slim-fit inner shirt and be sure to earn some admirers. A formal event is a suitable venue to wear the outfit. No restrictions whatsoever; one can wear it to a semi-formal occasion or informal event. Without a doubt, this style commands affluence and authority. Accessorize the look with a hat (or ‘Fila’).
For the attire to look astounding, have the trousers narrowed at the bottom. Embroidery in most cases is found at the uppermost part of the attire.
Adoption of several common design variations is intended to appeal to different clientele and personal preference. Check below for pictures of African wear for men wearing different ‘Agbada’ design styles:
- Matching outer gown, trousers, and inner shirt- There is uniformity on the fabric's colour on the pants, robe, and inner shirt. Embroidery depends on an individual's liking. Style the look with matching footwear and cap as accessories.
- Two-piece ‘Agbada’ designs- Although conventionally, the ‘Agbada’ is designed as a three-piece, you can do away with the fitting inner shirt and stick to an inner vest instead. Sounds cool? Yes!
- Short-Sleeve outfit –The design goal for this style is to cut down the big costume by trimming the size of the gown to a limited knee-length, unlike the traditional ankle-length gown.
Mismatched ‘Agbada’ design-Playing around with different colours can be cool. Pick different coloured fabrics to rock matching inner shirt and trousers and a different shade on the gown. All manner of mismatch is possible; no limitation exists.
7. Kaftan style 'Aso Ebo'
Nothing has garnered a fashion craze than ‘Aso Ebo’. The style is specially crafted for special occasions like funerals, family reunions, marriage, and birthdays and many others.
The style comes from the Yoruba community who through the years have refined the ‘Aso Ebo’ design. Today, the outfit has become synonymous in the Nigerian fashion scene with many fashion savvy men haggling to get a piece of the attire. The garment has reached far and wide, becoming a favourite in the West African nations.
Generally, an ‘Aso Ebo’ compromises long narrow trousers and straight tunic extending down to the middle of the thigh or further down the knee. The ordinary Kaftan comes in a variety of shades of colours- black, beige, pink, brown, blue, white, ivory, grey, burgundy, lilac, and orange, to mention just a few.
The Kaftan is an undoubtedly comfy and stylish wear characterized by embroidery and native ornaments. Typically, the attire is worn in weddings and related social events. Its minimalized design affords one a chance to stand out among equals.
Note: It is critical to understand that the ‘Aso Ebo’ can either be designed into a Kaftan or ‘Agbada’ style outfits.
8. 'Sokoto' with matching 'Buba'
The ‘Buba’ is a native shirt that is generally long. You can go for a short-sleeved or long-sleeved ‘Buba.’ The ‘Sokoto’ is a trouser intended to be tight-fitting and extend to the ankles.
Also, the pants narrow at the bottom. The ‘Sokoto’ was initially a native wear of the Yoruba people. Other Variations of the ‘Sokoto’ include the ‘Sooro’ and ‘Kembe.’ ‘Kembe’ breaks away from the set standard for being wide at the bottom and limited to knee-length.
The versatility of the ‘Sokoto’ allows one to wear it with other outfits like the ‘Agbada.’ You can have a ‘Sokoto’ tailored to be shorter for a chic look. The pants will feature a drawstring to hold it in the right position.
A ‘Buba’ features a loose fitting top shirt with a V-shaped neckline and extends below the waist. This style is appropriate to an informal event. Grab a cap or hat and step out ready to impress. The simplicity of this wear makes it one of the best outfits to wear when you have less time on your hands.
9. Hausa-inspired 'Babban Riga'
The ‘Babban Riga’ is a cultural wear of the Hausa people. Although the attire is a reflection of the Islamic way of life of the Hausaland, designers have adopted the style into the mainstream fashion. The outfit shares similarities with the ‘Agbada.’ Just like the ‘Agbada,’ ‘Babban Riga’ makes heads turn at formal events. Be sure to attract attention by accessorizing the style with a hat and a pair of shoes.
Intricate design that project the culture are made of materials that look glamorous and expensive.
10. Nigerian Kaftan
A kaftan is a top shirt that can go as long as reaching to the knees. The shirt is not only simple but also irresistible. The outfit features elaborate designs with impressive embroidery. Without a doubt, a perfect choice for a formal or an informal event. Fabrics making up the gear can vary with African print like Ankara being the most used. The Kaftan is today, a favourite wear among the old and the young.
Different Kaftan Nigerian clothing for men styles and colours can be selected to bring out a stunning outfit that compliments distinctive personal taste and looks. A kaftan is suited to any event or occasion. The fact that the Kaftan shirts provide unrestricted movements makes them very comfy as outdoor wear. Accessorize the style with casual or formal shoes for an outstanding look. Also sporting sunglasses, bracelet, and watches makes one look fashionable.