Poker Fashion Tips

In November 2008 poker pro Phil Hellmuth became the first poker star to launch his own clothing line. While fashion and poker may seem to be unlikely bedfellows, there’s no doubt that the top players in the world have no compunction when it comes to making fashion statements at live tournaments.

If you wish to impress your opponents with your sophistication and style the next time you participate in a live poker tournament, you’ll want to peruse the following poker fashion tips:


Poker has a long association with hats, stretching back to the cowboy hats worn by the frontiersmen, while playing in their sometimes deadly games of 5-card stud in the Wild West. Some of today’s biggest poker icons continue to regard the cowboy hat as an essential item of poker apparel, with the likes of Doyle Brunson and Chris ‘Jesus’ Ferguson rarely seen at a table without their hats.
An acceptable alternative to the cowboy hat is the black cap popularised by Hellmuth, and often described as the PH cap. Hellmuth uses his cap as part of his game, by pulling the brim down and covering his face with his hands, to avoid providing his opponents with tells during critical hands.

Facial Hair

One of the easiest ways to avoid the provision of tells to opponents via any facial expressions is to cover the face with hair. This approach works well for Chris Ferguson, and has also been subjected to experimentation by the likes of Mike Matusow and Daniel Negreanu. A quick analysis of bearded poker pros indicates that short and clean-cut is the way to go for those players who are intent on morphing into poker fashionistos.

Dark Glasses

A suitable pair of shaded spectacles is the ultimate weapon on the poker table, putting a barrier between opponents and the windows of the soul. Wrap-around, mirrored lens sunglasses are the order of the day, as these provide maximum coverage and leave opponents to ponder their own expressions during crucial plays. WSOP main event winner Greg Raymer has taken the dark glasses concept into the twilight zone, with his pair of glasses featuring two holographic reptilian eyes.
Nutty Costa Rican pro, Humberto Brenes, has taken the idea of concealment using dark glasses to an extreme. Brenes wears two pairs of dark glasses at each tournament, and has been known to also cover these with a visor. His innovations suggest that it’s only a matter of time before a player sits down at a WSOP table wearing a motorcycle helmet.

Card Protectors

Having an interesting and original card protector is an important component of poker cool. Poker legend, Johnny Chan, uses an orange to hold down his cards, claiming that the citrus scent protects him from cigarette smoke at the table, while Greg ‘the fossilman’ Raymer uses a small fossil as a card protector.
Humberto Brenes possesses a card protector that would turn Dr Evil green with envy. Brenes uses a miniature plastic shark with a laser in its head as a cardholder, and routinely puts other players at the table off their games by flashing the laser in their faces. When not using the laser, Brenes simulates conversations between the shark and other players.

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