Last week we presented you our favorite looks from the fabulous wardrobe of Magnus Bane. You guys loved this article and asked for more – well, your wish is our command. This week, it’s Alec’s turn.

Alexander Lightwood may be dating the High Warlock of Brooklyn, but his own clothes do certainly not compare to his boyfriend’s vastly diverse wardrobe. Our dear Head of the Institute likes to keep his choice of clothing more… simple. However, Alec has made a lot of progress and upgraded his style over the past two seasons. Some of those changes were quite obvious, others more subtle.

Generally, Alec’s clothes are very practical. Since he’s a Shadowhunter who’s out battling demons a lot, he needs clothes that are comfortable and don’t hinder him in his work. He is always running, fighting and moving his arms, so he needs clothes that will not tear at the slightest strain – which is why we see him in a lot of leather and denim. Both fabrics fit Alec’s job quite well, especially denim clothing has a long history of being worn by people who work hard and need sturdy apparel. Created in the late 1800s, it was typically worn by workers, before the movie industry discovered it and famous actors like James Dean, Marlon Brando and Elvis Presley turned it into an everyday piece of clothing.

Season 1: The Emo phase

Alec’s style in season 1 can be described pretty easily: black.

In the first season, we see Alec mostly in his fighter/soldier mode and respective attire. Hence the dark colors, they make hiding blood and dirt stains a lot simpler.

Alec wears a lot of jackets, both for going hunting and in his everyday life. The hunting jackets are very practical, they have lots of pockets and a little plastic buckle on the shoulder which Alec probably uses to hold his bow or other fighting gear in place. He has two of those – one appears in 1×01 during his very first scene on the show, and the other one in episode 1×05, when Clary sneaks out of the Institute and Alec has to go find her. Alec’s everyday jackets are more fashionable and less functional, and they don’t have any kind of “extras” like the ones he wears for hunting.

When he’s at the Institute, we mostly see him wearing basic black t-shirts and jeans, which get replaced by sweatpants and hoodies when he’s working out. The only occasion we see Alec dressing more formal is when he has to deal with his bosses – his parents or Lydia. That’s when he goes for something more sophisticated and colorful, maybe a dark shirt when he’s feeling rebellious.

Alec likes to keep his style simple, even when he goes to parties (which, let’s be honest, doesn’t happen too often anyway, so why change his attire). In episode 1×04 we see him wearing a denim shirt for the downworld party at Pandemonium, which marks one of the very few times he chooses something out of the grayscale. It’s not until 8 episodes later, in 1×12, that he wears something colorful again: according to an old tradition, Shadowhunters are to wear gold on their wedding day. Matching to Lydia’s gorgeous gown, Alec goes for a gold jacket over a white shirt, black dress pants and a black bow-tie. Those colors are still very subtle and not flashy at all, but considering what Alec usually wears, it is easily the most colorful outfit in all of season 1.

Well, that is if you don’t count AU!Alec from episode 1×10 – which is probably better not to do, since AU!Alec would be downright offended about these plain outfit choices anyway.

Season 2: Alec, meet Color.

In season 2, Alec goes through a lot of character development. He takes on new responsibilities, finally lets himself be happy and opens up to other people, especially Magnus. The Shadowhunters costume department did a great job including all of those changes into his wardrobe. One of the most prominent changes: Alec gets to wear more colors.

We first get to see that in the season premiere, when Alec wears a new bomber jacket and a dark red shirt. Dark red instead of black, everyone – we’re talking serious progress here. But it gets even better. In episode 2×02, when Jace is missing, Alec wears the bomber jacket together with a dark blue shirt and – brace yourselves – pants that are not black. Instead they are a nice army green, which we see Alec wearing a lot this season, mostly in the form of sweaters. We will probably never know if Alec’s preference for this certain shade of green is just a coincidence or has anything to do with the color suiting his eyes perfectly. But we certainly like to think it’s the latter.

However, Alec’s wardrobe is not the only thing that got upgraded due to a new season with bigger budget. Season 2 of also introduced the fans to thigh holsters, where the Shadowhunters now keep their weapons in. The introduction of those made Alec’s modified hunting jackets kinda obsolete, which is why he doesn’t wear them anymore.

Apart from that, season 2 also has a severe lack of “I’m gonna wear black until they invent a darker color” emo Alec. We only get to catch up with him once, when he wears an all black suit, shirt and tie combo for Max’s rune ceremony. Seems like there are some old Shadowhunter customs he can’t shake off that easily, no matter how hard he tries. Good thing it doesn’t really matter in this case, since that suit looked really good anyway.

One of the biggest changes in the second season for Alec is his new job as Head of the Institute. After Jace appoints the position to him in episode 2×13, we see him dressing in a more professional way. For official occasions like the downworld cabinet meetings, he goes for nice shirts and blazers, and generally dresses a bit fancier when he’s around the Institute. It seems he’s really trying to look the part of Head of the Institute and we like to think that AU!Alec would approve of that development. Looking good, Mr Lightwood!

Season 3: Influenced by Magnus Bane

The third season of “Shadowhunters” has been in production for a while now but thanks to Matt being Matt, seemingly hiding away in his trailer whenever there’s a BTS camera around, we’ve gotten very little photos of Alec so far.

From what we have seen, we gathered that Alec is still on the “casual chic” vibe from season 2. He’s slowly adding color to his wardrobe while keeping the comfortable, yet professional look from season 2 upright. Thanks to Harry Shum Jr’s Tuesday takeover (x) we also know that we will see Alec wearing a gorgeous purple shirt with a gray pattern at some point.

Neither purple nor patterns are something Alec has worn very often before, except for his party suit in 2×08, so it seems like Magnus finally took his boyfriend shopping.

AU!Alec certainly approves. Scratch that – he is smiling.