Mark Zuckerberg is having quite a month. The Father of Facebook just turned 28, bought out Instagram for $1 billion and is now facing the most lucrative point in his career: Going IPO on Friday. We’d offer him a congratulatory “poke” but sadly, that option’s no longer available. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the IPO acronym, it stands for Initial Public Offering-- meaning that the company will finally be open to stock holders where the likes of Wall Street—-and even you!—- can purchase a part of the social media company.
But with the estimated $100 billion that’s supposedly coming his way, we’re wondering whether the Harvard dropout will invest in a new wardrobe. Will he finally change out of his usual uniform consisting of dowdy college hoodies, sweat-drenched Adidas shower flip flops, and tattered baggy jeans, into something more uh, dapper? Better yet, the question posed is this: Can all the money in the world transform someone from HTML geek to sartorial chic? Fashionistas can only hope!
To give him an extra boost, we’ve enlisted the help of several fashion experts from designers like Carlos Campos, Alan Eckstein from Timo Weiland and Simon Kneen of Banana Republic, to editors from GQ and Esquire, to buyers and the likes to see what kind of advice they’d shed onto Silicon Valley’s hottest star. And regardless of whether he takes our suggestions or not (note to Marky Mark: you really, really should!), happy IPO Day! We’d definitely like to send you a congratulatory poke soon—- this time, live and in-person.
Tyler Thoreson, head of editorial and creative at Gilt MAN and Park & Bond
“Thom Browne oxford: From what I can tell, Zuckerberg appears to stay in pretty decent shape. An oxford cloth button down from Thom Browne would be an unpretentious, low-maintenance way to introduce him to the concept of clothes that actually fit.
Washed twill blazer from Closed: I can't see him getting decked out in a bespoke suit, a la Facebook cofounder Sean Parker, but I can see Zuckerberg trading the hoodie in for a casual, unstructured blazer, like this washed twill version from Closed.
McNairy pocket square: A tie may be pushing it, but is a pocket square too much to ask? Something tells me that the kind of guy who puts 'I'm CEO, Bitch' on his business card may appreciate this version from Mark McNairy.
Patrik Ervell jeans: These are a much classier alternative to jeans, and they look great anywhere you can wear denim.
Vans: An unpretentious, casual pair of Vans should help him hang onto some semblance of real-guy cred in Silicon Valley, despite the newfound 12-figure personal net worth.”
Ken Downing, senior vice president and fashion director at Neiman Marcus
"No one loves a hoodie more than Mark Zuckerberg--or me! They are a wardrobe staple for any cool guy. The hoodie is Zuckerberg's signature. Stick with it and take it to the next level. I love the look of a hoodie under a jacket. He would look super cool in Prada, perfect for his lean frame. Brunello Cucinelli is the sweatshirt I would suggest. Casual yet lux. And while he is in the Brunello Cuccinelli territory, fine gauge knits look polished and still have a casual air. Lean and trim trousers or jeans always look great paired back to a hoodie and jacket. Dolce and Gabbana, Prada, DSquared all fit the bill and his body type. Trade in the dorm shower flip flops for a Gucci Chelsea boot. Comfort and cool with an edge."
Sean Hotchkiss, editor at GQ Eye
"Facebook's founder is silently screaming for Band of Outsiders. Nobody has made nerds look better in recent memory than Scott Sternberg. And as 'berg's, they're practically related--natural marriage."
Lawrence Schlossman, associate editor at Complex and man behind How To Talk To Girls At Parties
"I may be over-thinking Zuckerberg and his iconic slept-in-late, rushing-to-class look, but it seems to me this is a reaction to what he believes to be the stodgy corporate buttoned up look. That or, like every dude in Silicon Valley, he has absolutely zero interest in fashion or any understanding of good taste. It's a shame, too, as he could easily adopt a casual, soft tailored look and feel just as comfortable, while finally looking like the wildly influential and important guy we all know him to be."
John Jannuzzi, style collective editor at Luckymag.com
"The young-tech-start-up-dude-look--the type who doesn't care about his appearance--is fairly played out and doesn't inspire much confidence in business. With billions at his command and a credit to shaping the future of communication, Zuckerberg should look the part. Half of me wants to see him do a complete 180 with some Rick Owens and start shopping at Atelier, but he's best fit to a suit with his responsibilities. Billy Reid would be a good match for him, it's approachable but doesn't read too old or 'captain of industry.' Of course, he just has to make sure it fits."
Ashley Math, men's stylist at J. Crew
“Of all the Google images I’ve found for Mark, two things stick out: his devotion to Adidas flip-flops and one single image that I found where he’s wearing a tie and a button down. The latter is where I’m pulling my inspiration for a new Zuckerberg sartorial direction: Let’s imagine him in the J.Crew 484 Stanton Chino, a well-fitting sport coat, a washed button down shirt paired with a cool, skinny knit tie. Basically, something that says ‘pulled-together’ and totally relaxed all at once. Oh, and a sweet pair of cordovan wing-tips would do the trick."
Kurt Soller, style and grooming editor at Esquire.com
“As I’ve said before, I think that Mark Zuckerberg’s style choices, from the pajamas worn to see investors to his custom hoodie chosen for Wall Street, have all been completely deliberate. So, clearly, he should shock everyone by going full-tilt twenty-something corporate for his IPO day, a huge moment for his career. Seeing Zuck in a suit would be excellent... especially one in a novel material, like hemp, with tech specs and a lightweight feel the nerd in all of us would appreciate. The shirt should be custom, because who knows what sort of frame is hiding under his baggy wardrobe. And this tie is perfect: Facebook blue, made in America and featuring a sly reference to all the attention he’s receiving. On his feet: Ferragamo loafers. To show he’s part of the club, sure, and to say f--k you to the rest of ‘em."
Daniel Silver and Steven Cox, co-designers at Duckie Brown and Florsheim by Duckie Brown
"Mark looks good in something simple and classic. He's not the guy who will wear something exaggerated or something that doesn't suit his traditional style. He would look great in a black peacoat, narrow cotton trouser in grey, plaid button down, and a pair of the Florsheim by Duckie Brown suede boots from Spring 2012. It should all be very basic, but beautiful."
Bumsuk Choi, designer at General Idea
"Mark's casual look would work well with simple fitted chinos and a colorful short sleeve shirt to accent the chinos. For spring, he could wear it with a linen blazer with sleeves rolled up."
Alejandro Ingelmo, designer
"Since I love hoodies myself, I would just suggest to Mark Zuckerberg that he step it up with a Rick Owens hoodie. He could also take his casual look in a new direction with our Tron shoe from Spring."
Carlos Campos, designer
"I applaud Mark Zuckerberg's successful career and how he proves that you don't have to conform to the standard Wall St. look to be on top of your game. That said, he should change the hoodie and jeans combo for an outfit that is more polished and edgy. I'd style him in a pair of clean chinos and oxford shoes, no socks of course. As for the top, I would add a bright orange camo shirt layered with a green leather jacket that exudes a cool factor and portrays his 'I don't care what you think of me' attitude."
Simon Kneen, creative director and EVP design at Banana Republic
“Neutral Sweater - A soft, lightweight sweater with great details adds a finishing touch to Mark’s more casual look while respecting his laid-back California style. Head to toe neutrals is a trend we saw all over the runways this Spring-- a neutral colored sweater paired back to chinos or shorts adds cool sophistication. Directional item blazer- No wardrobe is complete without an item blazer. Throwing a blazer on is the easiest way to add polish to any look. A modern cut is also slimming and nods to the tailoring trend without a complicated approach – effortless panache at its best. Check Shirts- Our soft-wash shirts are a chic and comfortable alternative to Mark’s standard gray t-shirt. They’ll add color and style to his wardrobe. Banana Republic also teamed up with Taylor Stitch to offer a bespoke collection of custom and ready to wear shirting– a great way for Mark to invest in a shirt that is truly original.”
Alan Eckstein, co-founder/designer director at Timo Weiland
“Mark's current style is all about being relaxed on the surface. A jeans/sweatshirt/sandals kind of look. It’s kind of the ‘I dont give a fuck about what you think of me’ look. I think Mark should stick with the relaxed feel (because he’s been so successful with it already) and maybe add in some fun. Casual but structured pants like these would be great with our navy and white polka dot button down would be a nice touch complete with this Lanvin lightweight forrest green V-neck sweater. Our Nikolai Windbreaker would be very handsome on Mark.”
Joe Mimran, creative director at Joe Fresh
“If it’s a Wall Street look he’s after, Mark should try a sleek stretch cotton blazer and pant teamed up with a pigment dyed v-neck tee, giving him a modern, sleek and irreverent look.”
Blazer: $129 Slim Pant: $59 Pigment Dyed Tee: $16
Eddy Chai and Paul Birardi of Den and Odin
"For everyday wear, I would put him in Our Legacy. It's modern and classic with a multitude of styles that I think he would still be comfortable wearing. As for suiting, I would put him Bespoken, which has a sharp silhouette but enough playful details (like contrast stitching button cuffs and under the lapel) to temper being too serious. And for a power suit, I would put him in a Todd Snyder and Southwick collaboration suit, so he can maximize the value of his IPO."
Richard Chai, designer
"I like the fact that Mark Zuckerberg is casual. I wouldn't want to change that aspect about him, because it's who he is. I would definitely like to edge him up a bit by adding a play on plaids and patterns layered up. Make him more of a rockstar that he is for being the founder of Facebook."
Billy Reid, designer
"I think he has got his casual vibe nailed. It would be fun to get him in a summer cotton suit and provide various options to pair with it from sneakers to a shirt and tie."
Danny Guez, founder/CEO at Dylan George and Abbot + Main
"I would like to see Mark incorporate more layering into his look, which is a great way to elevate a casual look without looking too formal. Layering a rich Tom Ford cardigan over any basic Abbot + Main V-Neck or Burnout Tee is a great example. In addition to a great t-shirt and pair of jeans, Mark—and every man—should own a few timeless accessories. I personally love a rose gold Rolex and a fresh pair of Adidas shell toe sneakers."