A Guide to Buying Men’s Shirts

Men’s shirts can be a very versatile item of clothing, if you choose the right one, however there are many things you should consider before making a purchase.

Firstly, what is the intended purpose of the shirt? Although many retailers sell a whole range of men’s shirts, if you want a shirt for work, or a more formal event, you may want to visit a different retailer than if you are looking for a shirt to wear whilst hiking. The purpose of the shirt will affect the colour, fabric and style you require.

If you need a shirt for a formal event, always choose white, unless the invitation specifies otherwise. A crisp, clean, white shirt is a classically timeless type of men’s shirt, which will always fit in with the colour scheme of a formal event. If you need a shirt is for work, neutral pastel shades or white are advisable. A subtle pin-striped shirt is also an option. You have a far wider choice of colours and patterns available to you if you want to buy a casual shirt. Checked or thick striped shirts are very popular for day-to-day wear.

If you are going to a very formal event, it is advisable to go for a fitting. To find your collar size without visiting a professional, carefully wrap a measuring tape around your neck, being careful not to pull too tightly. Note down the measurement, and then add half an inch to find your collar size. To find sleeve length, stand in a natural, comfortable position with your arms by your sides, wearing a shirt that already fits well. Get a friend to measure from the middle of the upper back, just below the neck, to the stitching located at the shoulder of the shirt, then from the stitching to the bottom of the wrists. Add these two numbers together to determine your sleeve length. American and British-made shirts are usually measured in inches so it is advisable to measure yourself with a tape measure marked in inches rather than centimetres. Casual shirts do not require a fitting, but should not be worn too tightly or too loosely; a badly fitting shirt can make the wearer look uncomfortable and unconfident. Casual shirts are also available with short sleeves.

Fabric is another important consideration. Formal shirts should be made of a lightweight, natural material, with a yarn count over 100. Casual shirts can be made of heavier weight materials such as plaid, which is especially popular during the winter months.