What Makes a Quality Tie?

1) The outer shell

Your 100% silk, cotton, wool or whatever tie isn't actually entirely made of that material; but it is however the outer shell material. Depending on your lifestyle, different materials work better for different people. I'll begin by speaking on the two primary material types: natural & synthetic.


The primary natural materials include wool, silk, cotton, and linen. Natural materials such as these provide increased breathability. Because of this, these fabrics are preferred by individuals who wear a necktie for extended periods of time. If a tie made with natural materials sounds like something for you, all ties made at Nice Menswear are made with 100% natural materials; inside and out. 


The primary synthetic fabric is polyester. This fabric is typically cheaper than all natural materials, and is also stain-resistant, but comes at the cost of comfortability. Synthetic materials cannot breathe the same way as natural materials, so they become rapidly less comfortable throughout the day. These ties are perfectly suitable for one-off occasions such as a party, as apposed to a regular all day workplace tie. 


2) The interior lining

The interior lining material isn't labeled anywhere on the tie, so this factor is often overlooked by novice tie wearers. With that said, it is also important to note that the interior lining is arguably the most important factor in determining the quality of a tie. 

Common interior linings

The most common interior lining material is polyester, significantly reducing the comfortability of your "100% cotton" or "100% silk" tie. 

Quality interior linings

Less commonly, the interior lining of a necktie or bow tie will be made of a natural material. For example, the interior linings used at Nice Menswear are made of wool. Wool allows for maximum breathability, durability and comfort throughout the entire day. In addition, while the interior lining is not visible from the outside of the tie, a quality interior lining will provide the tie an excellent hand-feel. 

No interior lining

Certain brands will actually use no interior lining at all. This is an uncommon practice because without a lining, the tie will have little to no structure. I would only recommend purchasing a tie with no interior lining to someone who's very comfortable with their current wardrobe, and would be okay with a very situational tie. 

3) Tipping: tipped, self-tipped and untipped


The standard for ties is regular "tipped" tipping. This is the black, questionable, and regularly polyester triangle shaped patch at the bottom of your tie. Why is this piece almost always the same? Simply put, to save cost. The natural, woven material that the base of the tie is made of is much more expensive to make, so to cut costs manufacturers will substitute this piece with the plain black swatch.


An alternative to this is "self-tipped" tipping. This is where instead of the black piece of fabric, the tie will be tipped with the same fabric that the tie is made of. This is a staple of quality, and a demonstration of "detail oriented construction". This kind of thing can be seen on all ties made by Nice Menswear.


Lastly, ties will occasionally have no tip whatsoever. This allows you to see the interior of the tie, proving the boldness of the tie-maker. Because of this, an untipped tie will almost always be comprised of quality materials and craftsmanship. 

4) Hand-made is better than machine made

With automation taking over the world, its no surprised that tie manufacturing has been automated over the recent years as well. However, its important to note that machine made ties are simply not as good as hand-made ties. This is because machines knot ties too tightly. If you take one of your ties and look at the back closely, you'll see that there is a single, loosely-tied thread connecting the entire tie. This thread is intentionally loose to prevent breakage while tying the tie. This loose threading can only be properly achieved by hand, while the machine made ties will not provide the same slack, increasing the odds of breakage. If you're looking for a quality hand-made tie, you can find them at Nice Menswear.

April 23, 2017 by Joseph Fraser

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