We really take the verb, “to wear” for granted and you never realize how much until you try to say the same thing in Japanese. 「着る」（きる） is the verb meaning “to wear” in Japanese and is pretty simple to use as you can see by the examples below.
シャツを着る。- Wear shirt.
ジャケットを着ています。- Wearing jacket.
Awesome. So we’re done right?
If things were that simple, I wouldn’t be writing this. You will appreciate how flexible and awesome the English verb “to wear” is compared to 「着る」. It’s like Superman vs Steve Erkel (forget that one episode where Steve Erkel was Superman). We can wear hats, pants, gloves, scarves, shoes, accessories, just about anything that sticks to your body. Unfortunately, you cannot use 「着る」 with any of these items. The only thing you can use with 「着る」 are things that cover your upper-body such as shirts and jackets. Things that extend from your upper-body down past your waist such as overcoats and dresses also use this verb as well. So what about everything else? Well, I prepared a wonderful list for you to study. 「など」 means “etc”. Have fun!
Things you wear and their respective verbs
- 着る 【き・る】- to wear
Clothes that cover your-upper body and more (シャツ、ブラウス、ジャケット、ドレスなど)
- 履く 【は・く】- to wear
Clothes for your lower-body and feet （ずぼん、ジーンズ、靴下、ブーツ、靴など）
- 被る 【かぶ・る】 – to cover
Items that go over such as hats （帽子など）
- かける – to hang
Items that hang such as glasses and sunglasses （メガネ、サングラス）
- 巻く 【ま・く】 – to wrap
Items that wrap around such as scarves （スカーフ、マフラーなど）
- 締める 【し・める】 – to tie
Items that fasten such as neckties and belts （ネクタイ、ベルト、帯など）
- 着ける 【つけ・る】
Items that attach such as wigs and earrings （かつら、イヤリング、ピアスなど）
- はめる – to insert
Items you stick your finger into such as rings （指輪）
- する – to do
A generic term for things like gloves, earrings, necklaces （手袋、イヤリング、ネックレス）
And don’t forget that these verbs are just for the actually act of donning the item. You must use the 「～ている」 progressive tense for when somebody is in the state of wearing them. I’m tired so I won’t even go into the words for taking things off. You can go with just 脱ぐ（ぬぐ） for clothing and 外す（はず・す） for accessories.
I have to confess that I’m not exactly a fashion guru so do feel free to add types of apparel I missed in the comments.