The super style of off-duty superheroes

When they don their superhero costume to fight the evils of the world, they inspire awe. With body-hugging latex and classic iconography, a good superhero costume can make all the difference.

Spending days vanquishing evil sounds exhausting but there’s no pyjama days or comfy old trousers for these characters.

Here, Laura-Jane Todd showcases the best-dressed superheroes when they are out of costume…

5. Matt Murdock (Daredevil)

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Daredevil Matthew Michael Murdock has a rather rugged style compared to some other superheroes on this list. Similar to superhero style icons Batman and Iron Man, he’s a fan of a three-piece suit when he’s not out fighting the bad guys. But while he is partial to a smart suit, he keeps it simple when it comes to colour and prints.

Costume designer Stephanie Maslansky has explained that this is because, since he cannot see his clothes, he needs to know that whatever he pulls out of the wardrobe will pair well together. She also revealed that the majority of his suits came from designer Paul Smith, as these had the best fit for Daredevil.

Murdock has a few different shirts to switch between. For example, he sports textured Oxford cloth button down shirts, which gives him a more ruffled look compared to billionaire superheroes like Tony Stark, but he also sharpens up with some white slim fit shirts too. His oval sunglasses finish off every look with a touch of style too.

4. Bruce Wayne (Batman)

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Bruce Wayne is the wealthiest man in Gotham and has no reason not the splash his cash on clothing. Wayne adopts more of a reserved style and he isn’t one for flashy suits or garish outfits but there’s no denying that he knows how to dress.

In 2008 film The Dark Knight, Wayne let his rich playboy persona show when he dons a Giorgio Armani suit. The suit designer reveals that by wearing a made-to-measure suit like this, Wayne can demonstrate his status as a ‘discriminating and sophisticated connoisseur of fine fashion, while also showing he has individual taste.’

Naturally, Wayne’s suits echo the colour palette of his Dark Knight alter-ego. These keep him looking suave and stylish when he’s off-duty. Similar to Murdock, Wayne is partial to a pair of mysterious sunglasses. He opts for wayfarer sunglasses instead, which match well with his conservative image.

3. Natasha Romanoff (Black Widow)

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Natasha Romanoff’s look demands attention, whether it’s her Black Widow costume or her civilian threads. When she’s not head-to-toe in low-cut latex, she’s channelling 1950s vibes with feminine frills and sweetheart necklines.

Her usual clothing options are certainly chic. In 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Romanoff opts for a sleek leather blazer to run her off-duty errands. Paired with black pants and knee-high boots she still brings a powerful demeanour even without carrying out any of her complex manoeuvres.

In other scenes, she’s been spotted in pencil skirts, tall stiletto pumps and buttoned blouses, all of which are well-fitted and match her style. She knows how to colour co-ordinate too. Take her Monaco meeting with Captain America and Pepper Potts in Iron Man 2. Romanoff shows up wearing a fitted red dress and red lips — both of which complement her glossy red hair.

2. Tony stark (Iron Man)

Tony Stark

Just like Bruce Wayne, Tony Stark is a man with a fortune to his name. In other words, he has the funds to spare on his wardrobe. Also akin to Wayne, Stark likes to wear the colour of his costume – red. He’s been spotted creating a bold contrast with dark suit jackets and red dress shirt, showing that he’s confident in what he wears and conveying power with the bold tone.

Stark’s no stranger to accessories either. From expensive watches and smart inventions to loud sunglasses he likes to spend his cash on items other than clothing. His sunglasses of choice seem to be low tinted aviators, and he’s been seen wearing red, brown, and violet coloured lenses — not your traditional wayfarer styles!

Of course, the highlight of Stark’s style is his well-groomed and immaculate beard. Take the grey pinstripe suit that he wears before a Senate hearing in Iron Man 2 for example. Of course, Stark pairs it with a chunky yellow tie – he’s not one to be plain!

It’s not all suits though. In blockbuster hit Avengers Assemble, Stark relaxes in an on-trend vintage tee. Of course, it’s a vintage Black Sabbath tee: ‘I am Iron Man!’

1. T’Challa — Black Panther 

Black Panther T'Challa

T’Challa’s style effortlessly blends on-trend looks with beautiful traditional garb, and that’s why he stands out from the crowd. All of the outfits were designed by Ruth E. Carter. She said that she based T’Challa’s look on 18th century designs, complete with embroidered panels which resemble a Nigerian style.

The looks he sports throughout the film are worthy of a king and leader. Take the first time he is spotted on the throne for example, his black and grey embroidered jacket stands out from the rest of his look and sets the tone for his fashion sense throughout the rest of the film. In another scene, he wears a white embroidered tunic, crafted with patterns that represent cultures from around the world — something truly unique!

Then again, there’s no pleasing everyone — his sister Shuri mocks his sandals in the film, but in reality, they were modified Alexander McQueen shoes!

The final scene of the film sees T’Challa in a suave black-on-black suit with a gorgeous printed silk scarf. This scarf was designed by Wale Oyéjidé who named the piece “From Wakanda, With Love’.

Which superhero style would you bring into your wardrobe? Are you a fan of the suited-smart look, or the more casual chic? Let us know in the comments!

Laura-Jane Todd is a copywriter at digital marketing agency, Mediaworks. After graduating with a degree in Marketing from Newcastle University in July 2017, Laura-Jane took on the role as copywriter in August of the same year. She uses her creative skills to write unique content for a range of clients from various industries.
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