Polo shirts! They used to be your grandpa’s and dad’s favorites and the ultimate uniform for golf courts, but today they’ve become a staple in most guys’ closets.
There’s no denying that this iconic garment is beloved by businessmen, celebrities, and pretty much anyone else.
However, some guys are still unsure about wearing a polo tee as they worry about looking cheesy or like a bellboy at a hotel. Let’s take the mystery away and talk about this classic t-shirt and how to wear it.
What is a polo tee?
Think about polo as an amalgamation of a dress shirt and a t-shirt. Polos have a collar and a placket down the collar bone with a few buttons and a relaxed crewneck tee fit.
Usually, polos are short-sleeved (though there are long-sleeved options too). Some polos come with a breast pocket, but that’s not a must.
The difference from most other tees comes from the fabrics. Polos are mostly made from knotted cotton, making them heavier. Good quality polo t shirt packs are breathable, elastic, and water absorbent – that’s why they’re commonly worn for sports like golf, tennis, and, well, polo. Yes, this sport gave its name to the tee style, but tennis made it famous.
Polo tee fabrics
Most commonly, polos are made from cotton blends with mostly cotton and just a little Spandex for stretchability.
The two differences in the fabric you should know about are the knits which can be “pique” or “jersey.” Pique knit is a textured waffle weave, and the jersey has a flat and smooth surface. Pique knits are sturdier and heavier, and jersey knits are lighter.
However, the majority of polos have a pique knit, so often that some people will call polo tees “pique polos.”
We should mention that some brands offer linen polo shirts, too, which can be an excellent choice for sweltering days or when you want to mix things up. And a cashmere polo is a perfect option for the fall.
Lastly, some companies will use proprietary polyester blends to create a softer and more stretchable material.
How to choose a polo tee
To look good in a polo t-shirt, you first must choose the right one.
Keep in mind that the bottom hem should be no longer than a couple of inches below the belt line and no higher than your hip line. This allows you to wear the tee both tucked and untucked.
The second important thing is the sleeves. Don’t ever go longer than mid your bicep, as that could throw your body out of proportion and make you look weird.
When it comes to the body fit, you want it to be in that perfect golden middle when it hugs your chest and arms nicely, but it’s not too tight around your waste. Avoid oversized polos as you may look like the traveling salesman (in a bad way).
How to style a polo tee
With chinos or straight jeans
This combination is an easy one and never fails! Pair your polo tee with your favorite chinos (don’t be afraid to wear white ones if you’re going to a summer party) or classic straight jeans, add loafers, moccasins, or espadrilles, grab cool sunnies, and you’re good to go!
Polo is the ultimate summer tee, so you should feel free to style it with shorts. Opt for tailored chino shorts or summery linen ones, add Birkenstocks, espadrilles, or boat shoes, and you’ve got the ultimate seaside look! Oh, and how about a nice cap or a classy hat?
With a blazer or sports jacket
If you went to any country club, you’d probably spot many guys wearing a polo and blazer combo. It’s a classic! If you have a cashmere polo, now’s the time to get it out! Choose a neutral color and high-quality polo to create the perfect look for dinner or any other formal night.
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