Renting a tuxedo or buying one can seem like a simple enough exercise. However, that’s about where the easy part stops. From that point forward then it can become a confusing challenge trying to figure out which type of tuxedo makes the most sense. While Hollywood has embellished the classic James Bond tuxedo, seen in hundreds of movies, especially when actors are placed inside a fancy casino scene or an exclusive dinner, there are multiple other styles too. 

For example, the Stroller formal tuxedo is a favorite for weddings, especially for couples looking for a very conservative “old world” look.

Focusing on What Works for a Rental

If looking for a tuxedo rental, then the primary criteria needs to be on how the tuxedo wears and looks, both on the wearer and their partner or where it will be worn. Since the tuxedo isn’t going to be owned for a long duration and is just for a special event, then there’s no need to be worried about durability, growing into or changing styles over time and similar issues. Instead, it’s how the suit works now for the next few days or weeks until the need is over.

Secondly, the type of tuxedo should have some relation to the event. As noted earlier, a Stroller tuxedo makes a lot of sense for a wedding or traditional even, if everyone else is wearing them too.

Types to Consider

The types of tuxedos vary quite a bit. Here are the major categories to consider:

The traditional black tuxedo – As noted above, this is the classic James Bond style. While it’s been around for a number of decades, it still tends to look very modern and works very well for general formal events where there isn’t a clear expectation for dress aside from being in fine attire.

White tuxedo – definitely a style that has been seen in a lot of weddings worn by the wedding party (i.e. groom and best men), the white tuxedo also works very well for entertainers too. It stands out, the coloring tends to be unique, and it draws attention in a crowd.

The mixed white/black tuxedo – This style is seen a lot in tropical locations and Southern Europe. It entails a pair of pitch black slacks, shiny black shoes, a white jacket (or other solid colors) and shirt, accented with a black tie and black handkerchief tucked in the left top pocket. The style also a standout for evening wear and high-rolling casino environments as well as film festivals.

Colored tuxedos – There’s essentially a tuxedo suit in just about every major color, but these are generally worn as a gimmick or for a fun event. Some do wear them for weddings, and that’s usually on special request. Believe it or not, colored tuxedos are more common in Latin and European countries than in North America.

Stroller tuxedos – If you’ve ever seen a formal aristocratic wedding in England or similar, and the wearer is not in uniform, then he is more than likely wearing a Stroller tuxedo. It’s a dark gray style with dark coat and lighter, thin-striped pants. Inside is a matching dark gray vest, a conservative formal tie matching the colors of the suit. The Stroller style is as conservative a look as possible and is a popular choice for traditional weddings.

Single or Double-Breasted tuxedos – The single/double reference has to do with the format of the jacket buttons on the tuxedo jacket. The double-breasted form is an older, conservative look definitely see as late at the early 20th century. The single-breasted suit is more recent and modern.

Vest or Cummerbund – No tuxedo is quite done right without either an inner vest or cummerbund. The vest is self-explanatory, but the cummerbund works like a thick fabric belt around the waist, making the horizontal break more vivid. In some countries the cummerbund is a deep rich red, but in the U.S. it tends to be black, matching the jacket and pants.

Stick With What Works

In short, there are a lot of choices, and the above list is only the most common types available as rentals. Remember, focus on what will look best as well as matches the dress code expected. You don’t want to be the oddball that shows up in a baby blue tuxedo while the rest of the attendees have stepped out of a formal 1950s fine dining event.