At Dry Clean Only, we believe that a thorough fashion education is essential to developing your own personal style. At the most basic level, in order to understand where menswear trends and the industry in general is moving, you must realize where and how it started. More conceptually, though, a working knowledge of the marquee designers, landmark moments and hallmark collections that shifted menswear provides much needed context for everything from the latest Supreme drop to the appointment of a new creative director. As the saying goes, fashion is indeed cyclical, and there is no better way to understand the current cycle than researching those that preceded it. The best way to learn? Read.

Whether coffee table tome or novel, a number of fashion and fashion adjacent books are essential for those looking to brush up on their menswear history. Now, whether you are already a committed Dry Clean Only reader or are just starting your fashion education, below is a list that applies to everyone, even if you’re an expert (it never hurts to brush up on the basics).

Though we have published a list of our favorite fashion books before, below we break down the essential titles to understand our specific segment of the men’s fashion space. For Grailed—at intersection between streetwear, sneakers, vintage pieces and current season runway collections—there is a specific viewpoint and aesthetic, one that embodies our community and its collective point of view.

To understand the Grailed universe and where we see fashion headed, it’s important to realize how it all started. Read on to discover what are, in our opinion, the best fashion books to buy right now.

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