After seeing that headline, you’re probably thinking to yourself ‘how many types of shirts can there possibly be?’ You’re wondering: A shirt is a shirt, and that’s that! Well, we can’t tell you how wrong you are. A shirt is pretty important in a man’s wardrobe (much like a few things left). So, it must be bought and styled with some deliberation and thought. Whether your priority is to sport a corporate look or style it for college, you must know the different shirts for every occasion.
Shirts are a versatile piece when it styled differently. It’s an outfit that can be worn on shorts for a breezy brunch or paired with jeans for a date (the not-tried-too-hard look). You can even style one with a formal pair of trousers when you’re walking into a boardroom. Today, shirts are available in so many different materials as well. From plain cotton to khadi, silk and woolen (not a pick for this season for sure), you can never have too many. Believe us when we say this, having a good shirt collection is extremely important. Yes we’re asking you to own a large collection, one that’s enough to mix and match differently. That said, we’re not talking about an overwhelming number of shirts that’ll confuse you when it comes to choosing.
In the following few paragraphs, we’ll be talking about the different styles of shirts there are, and how it can be styled. Take a look at these 3 shirts every man must own and we’ll show you how to style them too.
The Dress Shirt
Let’s start on familiar territory. We bet most of you have, sometime or the other, purchased a dress shirt. This type of shirt, like the name suggests, is one that can be worn to formal events and is paired with a formal pant. While we know teenagers today are sporting the formal shirt on a grungy pair of shorts too, we think this shirt is best worn to a formal event. A structured piece, the dress shirt is long enough to be tucked into your trousers neatly. It is usually slimmer and well-fitting than other shirts and should always be worn once ironed thoroughly. Dress shirt collars can come in a variety; spread (or Windsor) collars, point (or straight or small) collars or detachable collars.
WM Tip: Choose your dress shirts in pastel colours that can be easily paired with suits and dark-hued blazers.
The Polo Shirt
A polo shirt can make for a very cool addition to your wardrobe. In fact, the polo shirt is apt for the summer because of its breezy look. If bought in the right size, this style can flatter any body type. The one thing to keep in mind though would be the buttons, collar and logo (if there is one); they must be all aligned and should also suit you well. If any of these are centered-off, this shirt can make you look quite shabby. Style your polo shirt for a casual day at work with a pair of cotton pants and stylish brogues. You can also team it up with a pair of khaki shorts and loafers when you’re off to a lunch date. Going for a vacay? Pair it with your chinos to be comfy on an airplane ride. We’d suggest you go for a looser and relaxed fit with a slightly longer arm and tail length just in case it needs some tucking in.
WM Tip: Try avoiding wearing a polo shirt to a formal event. Wear it specifically for a casual or smart-casual look.
The Oxford Shirt
For those who aren’t familiar with the Oxford shirt and don’t understand the difference between a dress shirt and an Oxford shirt, worry not! We’ll break it down for you. The Oxford shirt has always been a classic shirt in a man’s wardrobe, you just can’t do without one. Available in a number of colours and fabrics, the Oxford shirt is a great alternative to a dress shirt when you’re having you’re ‘dress up’ days. The Oxford shirt with its button-up collar can be made to look formal when it’s buttoned up all the way and teamed with a blazer. Go casual when you decide to open up a few buttons (the girls dig that, and you already know it). You can style the Oxford shirt with a formal trousers and even with your joggers and trainers like the ‘millennials’ for a uber-cool look.
WM Tip: This shirt looks great when un-tucked and with sleeves folded.