Clothing and Fashion of Ancient Rome

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What materials did they use?

Wool made up the majority of the attire worn in ancient Rome. In much of the Roman Empire, including Italy, wool was produced both domestically and commercially. Rare materials like linen from Egypt, cotton from India, and silk from China were occasionally used to make clothing.

Did they use bright colors?

Men typically wore off-white or white attire. There were specific hues or markings that indicated a man’s position. Before getting married, women wore all white. Once they were married, they dressed in a range of hues.

Garments for Men

The tunic was the most typical article of clothing for men. It resembled a long shirt; the tunic. It ranged from just above the knees to the ankles in length. To keep it snug, a belt was worn around the waist.

Toga – Upper class men wore togas outside the home or to formal occasions. The toga was a huge garment that measured about 18 feet long by 6 feet wide. It was worn around the person in the newest fashion, wrapped and draped. The togas were cumbersome and heavy.

Cloaks – To be warm during cold weather, Roman men also wore a variety of cloaks. Cloaks include items like the lacerna, paenula, birrus, and pallium.

Roman men also wore undergarments, like a loincloth or a thin undertunic.

Ladies’ Clothing

The tunic was the most popular style of apparel for ladies. Peasants and single ladies wore it as their main piece of clothing. Typically, the women’s tunic was longer than the men’s.

Stola – Married Roman ladies typically wore the stola as their mode of dress. The stola was a lengthy, belted dress with pleats. It might be embellished with colored ribbons and ribbons.

Cloaks – In cold or inclement weather, ladies, like men, donned cloaks over their clothing. Over the stola, the palla was a common cloak that was secured with broaches.

Undergarments – A woman typically wore a light tunic that was tightly fitting.


The majority of Romans wore leather open-toed sandals. Other footwear included open shoes known as crepida and closed boots known as calcei, which were a cross between a shoe and a sandal.


Throughout Ancient Rome’s history, hairstyles evolved. Men are typically depicted with clean shaved faces and somewhat short hair in middle to late Roman Republic paintings. When beards and curly hair became fashionable throughout the Roman Empire, this changed a little bit.

Hairstyles for women were very diverse. Rich ladies often had their hair curled, styled with pins, plaited behind the ears, or pulled back into a bun. At the height of the Roman Empire, hairstyles grew significantly more ornate.


Women wore jewelry more frequently. Rich women wore a wide range of jewelry, such as bracelets, tiaras, necklaces, and earrings. Men typically wear simply rings.

Interesting Information Regarding Ancient Roman Clothing

Working men wore a particular style of tunic called the exomis, which only covered one shoulder.

Children frequently wore a bulla amulet to ward off evil spirits.

Additionally, ancient Romans used makeup to accentuate their cheekbones, eyes, and skin imperfections.

A thick purple border surrounded the “toga praetexta”. Only senators and magistrates were permitted to wear it. The stripes’ width represented the official’s rank.

During mourning, people wore dark attire.

A unique type of pure white toga known as a “toga candida” was worn by political candidates.

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