Golf, like any other sport out there, can be fun and exciting, but there are rules to be followed even when it comes to the dress code.
Beginners trying out this sport at a local golf course might get away with wearing sneakers, jeans, and branded shirts about beer or cartoons, but pro golfers have to adhere to certain rules.
Even as a new golfer who is just getting started, it’s better to dress properly and avoid any unpleasantries.
You don’t want to get to the golf club for the first time only to be met with: “You cannot play here wearing that clothing, sorry.”
Luckily, here’s all the info on the dress codes you need to know before you hit golf clubs.
Why do golf courses have a dress code?
Golf is a noble sport, and the dress code is an important part of its etiquette. It is deeply rooted in the traditions of the game.
However, you may not be able to find information about the dress code explicitly stated. The unspoken rules are almost always there, though.
So, if you aren’t sure about the particular dress code in a golf club where you want to play, you can always ask someone from the management for help.
However, the guidelines above should be a good starting point.
What should you not wear when golfing?
This is in no way an exhaustive list of what you should not wear when playing golf in each and every club, but it’s one of the most extensive ones you’ll find. Just bear in mind that many different occasions will allow for different clothes. Also, a certain golf club can require a special list for members of their club.
Jeans. They are frowned upon because they make the players look casual, and yet, they are supposed to be presentable and professional.
As much as sweatpants are comfortable, they are not in line with golf regulations.
Tank tops and tube tops are also not permitted on the course or anywhere where there is a golf event because golfers should look presentable. Aside from the tank top (or crop top), the T-shirt is also never a good idea.
Many kinds of shorts (including basketball shorts and cargo shorts or cargo pants) are not a part of the dress code.
Sneakers and running shoes are not permitted on the course, as they do not give the player the required appearance and professionalism.
Dress codes for professionals & beginners
Of course, the dress code for professional golfers will be much restrictive than for beginners. Rules for any tour (e.g., PGA Tour) will always be more strict.
But still, there are rules that people must follow when playing in clubs and attending golf courses.
When it comes to shirts, no plunging necklines and no turtle necks are allowed. A Collared shirt is the best solution.
More rules? Yes!
The collar has to be a mock or regular collar for it to be accepted.
The shirt can have small logos of the sponsor, but large brands covering the whole shirt are a definite no-no.
The material for the golf shirts must be polyester, cotton, or any breathable microfibers.
Pro hint: White is always a good choice for golf.
When it comes to the pants, certain guidelines must be followed, as well.
The pants for your golf attire may be made of cotton or polyester. They must cover the knees. Gym tights can be worn while you’re playing, but only underneath the pants, as they are not supposed to be visible.
Tailored slacks in neutral colors and Capri pants are also acceptable. Women can also wear golf skirts (more on the regulations a bit later).
Some kinds of shorts are also acceptable when you play golf. The golden rule for shorts is not to be too short or tight.
The popular model of golf shorts is tailored and reminds of trousers because it has belt loops and interior or flat pockets. Bear in mind that some private luxury clubs can have a no-shorts policy. While white is a great option for tops, the best choice for shorts is beige, cream, or khaki.
Golf footwear is also very specific, and you have to be aware of what is allowed on the golf course.
There are three types of accepted golf shoes: steel spike, soft spike, and spikeless.
Most old-fashioned golf shoes have steel spikes for a better grip on the ground. Nowadays, soft spikes are favored instead of steel or hard ones. This is because golfers have more comfort when swinging. Also, the soft spikes do not damage the course as much as the steel ones.
The spikeless version is usually only used by people that feel discomfort when wearing the spiked counterpart.
Popular accessories many people use when playing golf are long socks and hats (the flat brim ones are preferred).
Some people may also like wearing a watch, though many avoid it for practical reasons.
Sunglasses are also allowed, and you can use them if they don’t interfere with your play.
What is the appropriate golf attire for ladies?
To recapitulate, here’s what women’s typical golf clothing may consist of:
- Golf hat, cap, or visor
- Polo shirts or blouses with collars
- Slacks or golf skirts
- Spiked shoes
Are there any specific rules that women who want to attend golf courses should pay attention to?
Here are some tips & tricks on what women should adhere to:
- Appropriate haircut. It’s advisable to wear your hair up. How you will do this is up to your style – you can use clips, a rubber band, or make a central braid. Also, the best bet is to have a natural hair color. In the case that it is dyed, it should never be an eccentric shade or something like that.
- Golf skirt. Another women-specific criterion is a skirt. It should be the appropriate length, approximately above your knees. That said, in case you were wondering – usually there are no strict numerical regulations on the length of the skirt.
What is the appropriate golf attire for men?
Here is what men usually wear to golf courses:
- Baseball-style hat, a cap, or a visor
- Collared shirts
- Long pants or slacks
- Golf shoes
The one thing to get out of the way: Players must look presentable all the time. So, you should consider the following:
- Facial hair. Personal grooming has to be done constantly. You want a short-trimmed and stylish beard or smooth face with no facial hair. No long or scruffy beards will be allowed.
- Haircut. Funky hair with eccentric colors will certainly not be tolerated, either. Furthermore, your hair has to be well-trimmed and tucked away behind the ears. This is also done for practical reasons – to avoid it flying across a player’s face.
Final Words: Proper Golf Clothing
Now you know the dress code you need to follow to play golf.
Some golf courses may require a different set of rules, but they won’t vary significantly from the ones here.
All that is left is to find your own style – and honestly, that part is the most fun. Maybe it’s time for a new collared shirt and golf slacks? In any case, everyone will admire the knowledge you’ve acquired here and how prepared you came to play golf.