Take one look at runway shows, city streets, red carpets and Instagram feeds and you’ll see the familiar faces of the world’s top athletes sporting a different look. Off the court or field, outside of the ring or away from the ice, these sports stars do away with uniforms and team colors and opt for attire more suitable to their varying personalities and tastes. From statement-makers to trendsetters, to classic gentlemen, sneakerheads and the designers building brands, athletes prove that fashion just isn’t about what you wear, it’s also about how you wear it and why you wear it.
As the worlds of sports and style continue to collide, the editors of Sports Illustrated unveil the third annual Fashionable 50 list, honoring the world’s most stylish athletes.
Featured in the July 16, 2018, issue of Sports Illustrated, this year's list was selected by a panel of stylists, fashion editors and executives and other influencers in the industry and includes the most fashionable athlete in sports right now. Subscribe to SI here.
The Most Fashionable Athlete of 2018
Before the thick beard and the blond ’do, before the collage of hundreds of tattoos covered his body, before the Spiderman-like, three-finger snag that broke the Internet, Odell Beckham Jr. had a pink velvet blazer. Even as a teenager getting ready for his middle school dance, the Giants wide receiver always had to find a way to stand out.
“Everybody was getting their suits and I was wondering, What can I do to be different?” he recalls. “That blazer might have been a size too big at the time, but I just had to have it. To me, it was the hottest thing in the world.”
After that Sunday-night snatch against the Cowboys as a rookie in 2014, Beckham soared into stardom, setting league records, grabbing headlines (for both touchdowns and controversies) and earning endorsement deals and invites to A-list events in the seasons that followed. But last October, a fractured ankle in Week 5 knocked him out of the NFL spotlight and slowed his social momentum. So after undergoing surgery, the 25-year-old embarked on a don’t-forget-about-me tour, putting on a fashion show every time he stepped out. First it was weeks spent in a custom Supreme x Louis Vuitton red walking boot, then shirtless workouts in leopard-print shorts. There were nights out with rapper Drake, courtside seats at NBA games and scores of painful ink sessions to complete a pair of full leg sleeves that run hip to ankle. (On his right side he has a “leg of legends” with portraits of Tupac, Martin Luther King Jr., Muhammad Ali, Prince, Jesse Owens, Heath Ledger as the Joker and more; his left is a “jungle theme” with zebras, giraffes and other animals.) It all provided a glimpse into the personality of an enigmatic, unapologetic and eccentric star.
“I’m weird,” he says on a Friday in June in New York City, a collar of layered diamond chains glittering around his neck. “I think I just naturally stand out.”
True, that. While walking to the Saks Fifth Avenue store in downtown Manhattan, Beckham is casually dressed in gray sweat shorts with the hood of a blue Amiri pullover covering up his cockscomb of bleached curls, and it’s clear he no longer needs a flashy jacket to attract attention. He can barely walk a few feet before someone takes notice of him and scurries over to snap a photo. He compares the experience with that of being in a zoo.
“You know how you go there and you look at the lions and tigers and elephants?” he says. “You’re not there to talk to them, you’re just there to stare. That’s how I feel. It is what it is, but there’s no privacy anymore.” More subdued attire might help, but that’s too big a price to pay.
It’s the reason he prefers dark-lensed sunglasses to trendier colored ones—“people be all up in my eyes”—and why, according to his mom, Heather Van Norman, he generally doesn’t talk to people, especially recently. Instead, Beckham fills the void by murmuring song lyrics, mostly to himself but sometimes aloud or in the middle of a conversation. “That’s just O,” says Van Norman, Beckham’s chief adviser and confidante.
Inside the store, Beckham runs precise routes through racks of clothes, avoiding anything in the royal-blue family and gravitating towards red, his favorite color. He also steers clear of long pants; he prefers shorts so he can expose his tattoos. Beckham’s style is bold and distinct, a mix of sport and street with a steady flow of designer labels: Supreme, Gucci and Balenciaga, to name a few. You’ll rarely see him in a suit, but after signing a five-year, $25 million deal with Nike in 2017, he’s almost always spotted with a pair of Swoosh sneakers swaddling his size 11 feet. His looks have even sparked a fan’s Instagram account (@objfits), which makes it hard to repeat an outfit more than once or twice. “It’s all a little bit different to me,” says Beckham, who as a kid growing up in a modest New Orleans home would go out in clashing colors because he was just so eager to play and really didn’t care about what he was wearing.
Beckham is loving every minute of this new life football has created for him, even as he enters a 2018 season shrouded in doubt about his health and his place in the Giants’ offense. Just turn up the speakers and blast the beats and you’ll see Beckham come alive, those melodic mutters transformed into coordinated dance moves for every lyric in the song. “Dancing to music fuels my soul,” says Beckham, who struts with the same assertiveness on the field. “Not everybody can do what I do with the swag that I have. It’s just a confidence thing.”
While his time away from football has unmistakably allowed Beckham to upgrade his style, it’s also given him time to reflect on how he got here. “I remember taking football for granted at times ,” he says. “When it’s stripped away from you, you appreciate it more. I’m just ready to get back on the field, honestly.” Whether he’ll return to New York under the last year of his rookie contract for $8.5 million, or hold out during training camp and demand more is the lingering question.
In Saks, a few shirts from Virgil Abloh’s Off-White collection caught Beckham’s eye. “There’s something about his work—it’s done but it has an unfinished touch to it,” he says. Beckham knows there’s unfinished business to be taken care of. It’s going to be unpredictable, but we say: Start the music, raise the volume and just wait and see what move Odell Beckham Jr. comes up with next.
THEY'VE HOISTED TROPHIES AND EARNED SPORTING HONORS AROUND THE GLOBE, BUT THESE SEVEN STYLE MVPs ARE ALSO DISTINGUISHED FOR THEIR FEATS IN THE FASHION WORLD
You’d think it would be tough to match the thrill of racing a car full throttle at more than 200 mph. But when Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton walked into the Brooklyn Museum in early June to attend the CFDA Fashion Awards, the annual event that honors the best in American design, he experienced a buzz almost as heady (and it wasn’t from the gala’s plentiful flow of tequila).
“There were so many creative people from different walks of life who are constantly doing things that are out of the ordinary,” says the 33-year-old Hamilton, who in 2017 became only the fifth driver in F1 history to win four world titles. “I’ve been racing a long, long time, and every year you want to find ways to raise the bar. And that’s the inspiration for me.”
Hamilton’s love affair with racing began at age eight, when he would spend weekends with his dad racing remote-control cars and then, eventually, go-karts. After breaking into the sport at 21 and roaring to its pinnacle 15 months later, Hamilton says his interest in fashion also began to flourish. At 5'9" and 150 pounds with a cool, courteous demeanor accentuated by his British accent, Hamilton is hardly an imposing figure. But his style speaks loud and clear with a bold palette and an urban chic sensibility.
“When I was younger, I was definitely in my shell, but now I take a lot of risks,” Hamilton says. “Hopefully when people see what I wear, they are encouraged to try something new.”
Beyond inspiring new looks—a capsule collection collaboration with Tommy Hilfiger, Tommy x Lewis, will arrive this fall—Hamilton wants to be a part of the cultural movement that blends the worlds of sports and fashion. “Fashion is an expression of how you feel, and it’s a way for you to establish who you are,” he says. “I think it’s important that athletes are not just seen as entertainers. We are actually quite more than that.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “Off-White. I love what Supreme has been doing. Givenchy. Louis Vuitton is always a go-to. John Varvatos. Gucci."
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “As a kid I was heavily influenced by hip-hop. Tupac is my favorite artist and he had mad style. But if there’s anybody, Pharrel has really been a style icon for me. He’s never shied away from doing something quite bold. He doesn’t really care what other people think—he just goes his own way with it. And I love that."
STYLE MOTTO: “Be you. Feel comfortable. Be bold.”
The five-time Grand Slam champion always aces her modern-chic style by effortlessly mixing classic, casual and elegant pieces.
From incredible goals to impassioned celebrations, there’s no denying that Portugal’s famed forward has style on the field. But he scores outside of the game too, nailing slim-fit suits or casual, distressed denim looks with ease, while serving as the creative mind behind his CR7 clothing line.
After being named NBA MVP in 2017, the self-proclaimed Fashion King showed no signs of slowing down this past season, averaging a triple double for the second straight year while arriving for every one of the Thunder’s 92 preseason, regular season and playoff games in a fresh look. The 29-year-old also continued his surge in the style world, launching his own fashion label called Honor the Gift, a collection of unisex streetwear inspired by the Los Angeles neighborhood of Hawthorne that helped shape him growing up. What’s next for the NBA’s sartorial sovereign? After storming the streets of Paris for Fashion Week in June, Westbrook heads back to training for another season with OKC—and yet another daily display of his unorthodox, unmatched style.
A 14-year NBA vet, the Warriors’ forward is a perennial style leader thanks to his versatile and clean-cut choices.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “Right now, Good Counsel joggers—lightweight, navy blue wool—that I can take with me on or off-court.”
FAVORITE DESIGNER: “Ralph Lauren, because of the iconic, effortless style.”
STYLE MOTTO: “Classic, with a point of view. On any given day, I’m dropping my son off to school, headed to the game, going to an investment meeting—my style has to be ready for everything.”
In 2015, Copeland made history when she became the first African American principal dancer at the American Ballet Theatre. Since then, she’s continued to break down barriers, launching an Under Armour activewear collection and expertly demonstrating how to find pieces that flatter her 5’2” frame.
The coordinating formal attire of King James & Co. went viral during the NBA playoffs, but how did the league’s unlikely fashion trend come to life?
Dwyane Wade and designer Thom Browne were sitting at Cipriani’s in Manhattan last October before the Fashion Group International’s Night of Stars—an award ceremony honoring designers at the top of their games—when Browne had an idea. What if he created custom, matching suits for the Cavaliers to wear during the NBA playoffs in the spring? Browne, who’s been a favorite of LeBron James’s for years, loved the idea of the team presenting a unified front.
“They’re all the most amazing singular individuals, but with the suits, they would put that aside for the playoffs and become this strong unit,” Browne says.
Last fall Browne and his team flew to Cleveland to hold fittings. But a huge roster shake-up in February meant Browne had to start from scratch on several members of the Cavs’ roster when it came time for a second fitting in New York City two weeks before the playoffs rolled around.
James bought the suits (yes, Wade got his, even though he had been traded to the Heat in February), each one costing a little less than $5,000. Browne says designing for basketball players isn’t a challenge since he makes custom clothing so often—“they’re just taller.” The suits were made in Italy but channel a classic American look, so Browne used Super 120s twill and kept the cut clean, with single-breasted, notched lapels. The Cavs—see Jordan Clarkson, Kyle Korver, Jeff Green and Tristan Thompson’s looks below—won every series in which they rocked their matching bespoke outfits. But when James deviated from the script by pairing shorts with his jacket in the Finals, Cleveland was swept by Golden State. Maybe there’s something to be said for dressing for success. — Charlotte Wilder
IT'S ONE THING TO SPARK A TREND, BUT IT'S ANOTHER TO INSPIRE A MOVEMENT. THESE ATHLETES ARE ENCOURAGING CHANGE AND SENDING A MESSAGE WITH THEIR STYLE
The sequined spandex and sparkling bodysuits prove that Rippon is an avid supporter of eye-catching costumes on the ice, but he’s also a risk-taker without skates. As an openly gay Olympic athlete, he’s an authoritative advocate for LGBTQ+ causes. At the Oscars, Rippon demanded attention in a Moschino tuxedo with a leather harness across his chest (pictured above) .
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “My Gucci sweatshirt, with the logo and flowers.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “Alessandro Michele, Jeremy Scott and Kim Jones.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “Rihanna and David Beckham.”
STYLE MOTTO: “Take risks and don’t be afraid. Style is all about self-expression and it's a great way to show the world who you are.”
As the first athlete to wear a hijab in the Olympics for the U.S. and the first Muslim-American woman to win a medal (both milestones came in 2016), the fencer is familiar with being a pioneer in sports. She even inspired a hijab-wearing Barbie. But the New Jersey native is also carving a path with her company Louella, which creates modest, moderately priced clothing for women.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “My Alice + Olivia star-studded leather moto jacket.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “I love the Row, Mango, Naeem Khan for evening gowns and of course wearing modest pieces from my own clothing line Louella.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “So many! I admire women who dress however they want and express their beauty through what they wear.”
Russell Wilson looks up from his mixed fruit bowl and past the replica Lombardi Trophy displayed in his corner office high above downtown Seattle. Out the window, a helicopter whirs past CenturyLink Field, where Wilson compiled half of his MVP-caliber 2017 season, his sixth as the Seahawks’ QB. He breaks the silence with a casual “I’ve been flying helicopters.” Because, of course. This is Russell Wilson. During the offseason Wilson has taken batting practice with the Yankees, hired a movement specialist, attended a Formula One race in Canada and learned to fly. Helicopters, anyway. “I’m a little more adventurous than people give me credit for,” he says. “I’ve always been an entrepreneur. I think of [my] brand and being consistent and authentic to the things I love.”
Wilson started his Good Man Brand clothing line two years ago, hoping to fill the untapped space between athletic and formal wear. “Most men don’t have a midrange game,” he says. He started by selling GMB at 15 Nordstrom stores in the greater Seattle area; now the line is in every Nordstrom and more than 150 other clothing stores. Wilson donates $3 from every purchase—matching his jersey number—to his charitable foundation, Why Not You?
Fashion hooked Wilson early on. He would take thousands of screenshots of clothes he wanted to buy or create once his NFL career started. He studied designers such as Tom Ford, Calvin Klein, Riccardo Tisci and Hugo Boss, and he favored a sleek, European fit. His fashion idol? James Bond.
Outsiders might look at the Seahawks players who left the team this spring and see a perennial contender in peril. Not Wilson. He’s not styled that way. James Bond doesn’t rebuild. “I don’t really care what people are thinking,” Wilson says. “I don’t really pay attention to it.” He’s too busy selling hoodies and learning, literally, to fly. —Greg Bishop
Powerful. That’s the adjective that best describes the two-time Olympian’s attitude and personal style. Whether it’s her strong physique or curve-hugging silhouettes, Raisman wears it all with confidence, while acting as an influential voice for females and standing up against sexual abuse and harassment. “I think as women, sometimes we’re taught to be ashamed of our bodies,” she said. “We should be proud of who we are on the inside and the outside.”
UNAFRAID TO TAKE RISKS OR SPARK A FASHION TREND, THESE INFLUENCERS HAVE THE STAR POWER TO TRANSFORM ANY OUTFIT, ACCESSORY OR HAIRSTYLE INTO A HEADLINE-MAKING MOMENT
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “Shoes! They can make or break an outfit. Dress it up or dress it down.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “I don’t have a particular designer that I like the most. I like finding hidden gems at a boutique or going to Giorgio Armani or Gucci in Paris. However, I am partial to Louis Vuitton because I have the same initials.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “Victoria Beckham, Rihanna, Chrissy Teigen and the Hadid sisters. Elegant but edgy. I wish I could dress like Rihanna but she’s the only person that can wear what she wears.”
STYLE MOTTO: “Classy but different, and it has to fit my curvy body type, which can be a challenge.”
Say what you want about this quarterback’s flashy accessories, exuberant suits and made-you-look casual wear, Newton will always bring something unique and unexpected. And don’t be surprised when you see others trying to incorporate some of his noteworthy pieces into their next outfit.
Keeping with the Brazilian’s style of play on the pitch, Neymar’s typical off-duty style is suave, slick and full of flair. He knows how (and when) to crank up the intensity and add a little bit of something extra to an outfit.
Since becoming a breakout star as a teenager, the Hawaii-native has elevated her looks on the course and settled into her own lane when it comes to her personal style. From her ever-changing hairstyles and colors to her expertise in rocking sporty, athlesiure fits with the latest sneakers, Wie is one to watch.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “My washed-up 501 Levi’s. My wife thinks they are hideous, but they are so comfortable and with a basic tee, some Vans and a New Era Golden Knights hat, you can’t go wrong.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “I wear a lot of comfortable clothing on flights if that’s FEAR OF GOD track pants, Amiri tees, or Daniel Patrick parachute pants. If we have a really long flight then I’ll be rocking my TB12 sleep gear from Under Armour.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “Howie Kendrick. I’ve been playing with him for the past two years and really enjoy seeing what he brings to the table. He is pretty swagged out for a dad!”
The Canadian rocks her sporty, streetwise style with confidence and she’s never without a statement-making accessory, be it the latest designer bag or sought-after sneakers.
THESE ARTISTIC (AND ATHLETIC) MINDS TAKE THEIR PASSION FOR FASHION TO THE NEXT LEVEL, BUILDING BRANDS AND CREATING CLOTHING AND ACCESSORY LINES THAT ENCAPSULATE THEIR STYLE
The 15-year NBA pro is a longtime style leader and consistent name on best-dressed lists, but he’s also extended his eye for fashion through various collaborations with Li-Ning, Stance and the Tie Bar.
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “I like exploring new designers that everyone isn't wearing. Being featured on 'Who Wore It Best' is not what’s most important. Pyer Moss makes the best T-shirt ever, Fabrice Tardieu makes dope designer trainers and slip-on sneakers and Cotton Citizen has revolutionized the sweatsuit.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “Pharrell Williams. James Bond. Can I say myself?”
STYLE MOTTO: “Be yourself ... Your style is just that, YOUR STYLE.”
When asked, “Who are you wearing tonight?” there aren’t many athletes who can reply, “Myself.” That Venus Williams is a member of that select group is due partially to her sport—tennis players enjoy more creativity and freedom with few uniform requirements—but mostly because she has used her eye for style and business acumen to develop an activewear brand, EleVen by Venus Williams. “It’s a really organic process where I actually sit down and sketch what I’d like to create,” says the 38-year-old Williams, who holds a degree in fashion design from the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale and owns the Florida-based design firm V Starr Interiors. Now in her 24th year on the WTA Tour, the seven-time Grand Slam singles champion says traveling the world to compete in tournaments has helped her discover new colors, prints and patterns, whether it’s at an antiques market in Paris or at an exhibition of emerging street artists in Madrid. “I always find it so interesting to learn the local culture and get inspired for new creations,” Williams says.
In the year since Malcolm Jenkins opened Damari Savile in Philadelphia—his custom-suit store with business partner Jay Amin—the 30-year-old Eagles safety became a Super Bowl champion. “It’s been a fun learning process building our identity,” he says. “The biggest challenge is lack of time.”
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “Hats. I wear a lot of fedoras and things like that, Usually from Goorin Bros. I don’t know if it’s because I’m bald-headed now or I just like hats. I definitely like the look but it gives my head a break as well!”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “I get inspiration from all over. Some of the things that have influenced some of my latest looks are just movies from back in the ‘90s. I was watching New Jack City and Harlem Nights and looking at what the actors are wearing and how I can incorporate some of the small details. I remember seeing a black blazer with really big, broad shoulders and gold buttons on a double-breasted jacket that caught my eye. Or in Harlem Nights, an all-white formal blazer with a shawl collar. You usually don’t see that. That’s how I go about getting inspired.”
WHY DO YOU WEAR WHAT YOU WEAR? “For me, I want what I wear to be an expression of who I am. Your clothes and personal style is just an outward expression of your personality. And when you wear what you are, it looks good.”
A three-time Olympic gold medalist, White’s style (and hairstyle) has evolved since his first breakout performance nearly 12 years ago. The 31-year-old has carried his more refined and sleek looks into his men’s clothing line, WHT Space.
MEET THE SEASONED STARS WHO KNOW HOW TO CRANK UP THE COOLNESS AND CONVERT CORNERS INTO CATWALKS
In a league full of flashy stars, Anthony has stuck with his cool and straight-forward style, highlighted by his affinity for slim-fit suits, hats and crew neck sweaters.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “Newsboy hats and Calvin Klein underwear.”
FAVORITE DESIGNER: “Rick Owens, because all of his clothes are made with incredible quality and everything is long and beyond comfy. I also love FEAR OF GOD. And I think Mike Amiri makes the best jeans on this planet. Saint Laurent is another one of my favorites.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “I love David Beckham, everyone in Peaky Blinders and my boy Sun Jin Park. He’s a Korean model who I think has the best style.”
STYLE MOTTO: “My motto is #CreateALegacyNotAMoment. But I always say wear whatever you want, however you want, wherever you want. That's my motto always. Take risks baby."
The veteran NFL tight end takes hints from sporty, trendy and old school to nail the sought-after street style vibe.
A style leader in the WNBA, the 27-year-old steals the show in sophisticated red carpet styles and in her self-described “tomboy chic” off-duty looks.
While he spent some time on the sidelines due to injury this season, the Timberwolves forward gave the world a lesson in Jimmy Buckets style— a fun mix of prints and textures from both casual and more elegant pieces.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “There are a few go-to items in my wardrobe that I wear no matter where I’m going: jerseys, vintage tees and sweatpants.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “Stella McCartney, Alexander Wang, Daniel Patrick, Phillip Lim and Calvin Klein. I just love what they do and I gravitate toward their aesthetic.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “I don’t really have one idol, it’s a mix of cultures and genres that influence my style. From '90s R&B and rap to country music, there are certain style elements like cowboy boots and sports jerseys that have had an impact on my style.”
The veteran guard is a co-founder of the image consulting firm 4Season Style Management, where Pondexter lends her eye for style to other athletes and celebrities. But she also keeps it fresh with her fun and funky off-court style, helping to call attention to the WNBA’s arena tunnels and fashionable athletes.
AS MUCH AS AN AUDACIOUS OUTFIT IS AN ATTENTION-GRABBING DISPLAY OF AN ATHLETE'S STYLE SKILLS, STICKING TO SMART AND SUBTLE LOOKS IS JUST AS IMPRESSIVE OF A FEAT—ONE THAT THESE MEN HAVE MASTERED TO A T
One of the first to introduce fashion to the NHL, Lundqvist has continued to bring his suave European style throughout his years in the league.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “It would have to be denim, specifically any of my Saint Laurent jeans. They are most definitely an investment but I really love the fit and the way I feel when I put them on. Immediately I know it’s going to be a great day!”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “At the moment, it would have to be a toss-up between Jerry Lorenzo and Virgil Abloh. I love what both guys have done for the culture of luxury streetwear and their unique style perspectives. With Jerry I love how he incorporates his faith and his upbringing in his collections, which is something I can connect to. Virgil is really amazing because of his aesthetic, you can literally see just a portion of something he designed and can immediately identify it is his. Also the fact that he is now Louis Vuitton’s artistic director is a huge win!”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “This is not an actual person but Ghost from the show Power has a really clean style. I love how subtle but effective his suits are and how when people see him he is immediately taken seriously as his character.”
When it comes to fashion, P.K. Subban means business. He tries to, anyway. Dressed in a striking forest-green plaid, double-breasted suit, the Predators’ defenseman connects with the camera, giving what he calls his “best Denzel” as he tries to channel the serious side of the actor’s demeanor. But it doesn’t last long—Subban stays stern for only a few minutes before unleashing a loud laugh and that famous, beaming smile.
“Your personality and how you wear the clothes is a determining factor in how people see you,” he says. “I’ve always been taught to leave my house a certain way because you always represent yourself and your family, or your company or team.”
That pride is why the 29-year-old prefers a timeless look—his closet is filled with more than 150 suits. But he’ll always add in a bit of flair like a hat or a patterned lining. “I try for a perfect match between flashy and fashion forward,” he says.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “My hats. And my leather jackets. Hats and jackets are probably the most important things.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “Dior. Saint Laurent. Ralph Lauren. Tom Ford. But I don’t really shop at designer stores, only for certain things. A lot of times I go to boutique stores to grab different types of clothing. Anyone can go into a designer label store and they think if they spend $5,000 on a jacket it's good. And that’s not always the case. I try to get stuff that no one else has.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “You have to put David Beckham on that list. I mean, did you see what he was wearing at the Royal Wedding? How do you not give that guy his props. He’s been doing it for a long time.”
He may no longer be with Nike after signing a deal with UNIQLO, but the 20-time Grand Slam champion is still a man of style. While some athletes make a mark with bold choices, Federer’s timeless and always expertly tailored looks are equally effective.
The 29-year-old is as much model as he is athlete—he knows how to dress his 6’10” frame with elegant menswear pieces and relaxed basics. Every man should have a few of Love’s well-tailored and versatile go-to’s in his closet.
Whether he’s flanked by his supermodel wife on the red carpet or stepping off a plane en route to a game, the 40-year-old quarterback has kept up his easygoing style during his 18 years in the NFL.
FLASHY COLORS, FEARLESS FITS AND FAMOUS FACIAL HAIR—IT'S ALL PART OF THE STATEMENT-MAKING STYLE WE LOVE TO HATE BUT CAN'T GET ENOUGH OF
A former Esquire fashion intern and CFDA ambassador, the 22-year-old has quickly established himself on the fashion scene with his unconventional but savvy sense of style. For Oubre Jr., it’s all about creating a vibe.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “I just like wearing anything checkered. And my girlfriend made me this dope jacket for my birthday with safety pins on it and a skull in the back with some crazy eyes and cheetah print lining on the inside. It’s just very abstract and very grungy. And it’s especially my favorite because it came from the most important person in my life.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “I don’t really have a favorite, I just like showing love to all of the dope stores around the world. I like thrifting. I show love to people like Ovadia & Sons, Raf Simons and Mike Amiri.
WHY DO YOU WEAR WHAT YOU WEAR? “I just want people to know it's OK to be yourself. You don’t have to appeal to the masses. If you think something is cool, do that passionately. You can do whatever you want to do as long as you’re confident in it. That’s pretty much what the swagger is. I didn’t start off with all the money in the world. I used to find ways to make it look good. I used to go to Marshalls and Ross and find some things that I like and make them look wavy. And now that I’m in the NBA and I’m making a little bit of money it’s a blessing that I can get some of the nicer things, but I always sprinkle in some of the things that don’t cost a lot. Because it’s not about that. Making the clothes that you wear look good, it’s not about the cost or the brand.”
If you thought the Notorious fights with an excessive amount of swagger, just take a look at his style out of the octagon. McGregor is fearless with fashion.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “Nothing can beat a good suit. I like to look sharp and my suits are a big part of my wardrobe for several occasions.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “I admire several designers, particularly Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana and Louis Vuitton. I really admire my friend Donatella Versace. I think it is truly astounding what that woman has done for the prestigious Versace name and for her family's legacy. Her and the entire Versace team keep getting stronger each launch. It is great to see. Another one of my favorite designers is my personal tailor and now business partner, David August. David and I have been working together for a long time and we look forward to launching our August McGregor brand later this year, so that my fans and the fashion world can share in my style and look good themselves.”
WHY DO YOU WEAR WHAT YOU WEAR? “There's two things I really like to do, and that's whoop ass and look good. I truly enjoy wearing nice clothes. I am passionate about the fashion game just like I am passionate about the fight game, which is why I am dedicated to both. I am a multiple weight MMA world champion and owner of the August McGregor fashion brand, which is ready to take over the world just like my fighting did, and I can't wait to continue the journey.”
At last month’s NBA Awards show, the Rockets guard made a double statement. He accepted the league’s MVP award, an honor he’d been steadily climbing toward since arriving in Houston in 2012—and did so while decked out in an impossible-to-miss, beige-and-black floral belted coat with matching pants. As Harden has established himself as one of the NBA’s marquee players, his style has become increasingly daring, punctuated by that signature beard, a built-in accessory that seems to go with everything.
The 6’6” tight end is unafraid to mix patterns and take risks with his fashion—his perfectly manicured beard only adds to his statement-making style.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “Nike Air MAG ‘Marty McFly’ from the movie Back to the Future. I’m a huge sneaker collector and when I got drafted in the NFL the 'self-lacing' shoes were my first purchase! Back to the Future was one of my favorite movies as a kid and they raised funds for a great cause, The Michael J Fox Foundation.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “Mike Amiri and Virgil Abloh of Off-White. I really appreciate the American designers and the bar that they have set for the future of fashion. Amiri has made jeans that are slim fitting but stretchy and comfortable, unlike the past. Plus they make a 38” waist so I can actually fit in them, where as most top designers stop at a 36”. Off-White and Virgil Abloh have put together something special and it seems like every piece they put out is something you haven’t seen before. Similar to Mike Amiri, Off-White accommodates for the big fellas too and has made a stamp in being oversized but still looking great and not awkward.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “Deion 'Prime Time' Sanders and Ric Flair. Both had the fun personality to go with infamous style, which attracted me at a young age. ‘You look good, you play good’ (Sanders) and ‘Stylin’ and profilin’ (Flair) really resonate with me when I think of why I dress the way I do.”
SIGNATURE SNEAKERS HAVE TAKEN OVER NBA GAMES, BUT THESE BALLERS LACE UP OFF THE COURT TOO, FLAUNTING KILLER KICKS ON THE REGULAR, NO MATTER THE ENSEMBLE
After missing the Eastern Conference Finals due to a knee injury, the Celtics guard took tunnel style to a new level by bringing his swag to the sidelines. Irving might not be the flashiest dresser, but his looks are approachable and effortlessly cool, and he always perfectly pairs them with a fresh pair of kicks. You should definitely be taking notes.
STYLE MOTTO: “Stay true to your personal style. Just because it’s “of the moment” now does not mean it works for you. I wear what I love and what fits well! In my business, I wear a lot of suits. Fit is key. Know a good tailor. I have figured out the fit and brands that work for me: Paul Smith, Ovadia and Sons, Club Monaco, John Elliott and Five Four. That has been successful.”
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “My Jordans! Ha! No seriously, I think this season I’ve found cool ways to incorporate Jordans into my dressier outfits. Although I would probably instinctually throw on a warm-up every day, there’s nothing like putting on a well-tailored tuxedo with all the fixings. ... the bow tie, the pocket-square, the lapel pin—it’s always nice to dress up.”
STYLE IDOLS AND INSPIRATIONS: “I’m not sure I have someone I look to for reference. I think I’m impressed by that guy who can be a chameleon—if you can master sweats and a suit, you’re icon status.”
Typically flanked by teammate and fellow Fashionable 50 honoree James Harden on his way into the locker room, Tucker stepped up his fashion game during the 2018 season. During the NBA playoffs, the 6’6” forward’s sneaker collection was unmatched—he said he spent close to $200,000 on new kicks during the season—but he also pulled off bold ensembles, sporting bright colors, patterns and put-together layered looks.
FROM ROOKIES JUST JUMPING INTO THE GAME TO BREAKOUT PERFORMANCES FROM THE MORE EXPERIENCE, WATCH OUT FOR THE NEXT WAVE OF TASTEMAKERS ON THE STYLE SCENE
The Sixers rookie may have just entered the league, but he’s already surpassed some NBA vets when it comes to fashion. This past season, Simmons demonstrated he can pull of both laid-back styles and more daring looks.
FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING: “Jackets, I love how they have the ability to dress up or down an outfit.”
FAVORITE DESIGNERS: “Mike Amiri is one of my favorite designers because of his story on how the clothing line came to be and his ability to set industry trends. He's always pushing the envelope and creating fashion forward pieces.”
WHY DO YOU WEAR WHAT YOU WEAR? “I wear what I wear because clothing is a representation of me that precedes me—a conversation with no words. I dress for myself and try to be as original as possible, so I really strive for my clothing to project that.”