In contrast to its full-length counterpart, the short-sleeved button-down is often compromised by dorky, unfashionable associations, with the likes of Steve Erkel and Dwight Schrute unfairly tarnishing its reputation. But we’re here to set the record straight: though their shirts were, admittedly, pretty questionable affairs, it’s more down to how the characters were wearing them rather than any innate issues with the style itself. In fact, with the right design and proper outfit choice, a short-sleeved button-down can give your look some added smoothness and sophistication. All it takes is an eye for detail and a little discretion (rarely tucked, and don’t even think about going below two buttons unless you’re wearing an undershirt), and you can be reaping the silhouette’s benefits for yourself.
However, the market for short-sleeved collared shirts is rife with some pretty sub-par styles, so it’s critical that you exercise some care when considering one for your wardrobe. For instance, you want to be sure that it actually fits your frame, roomy enough around the torso without being too baggy at the sleeves. What’s more, the shirt needs to be of an appropriate length, cut with a bit extra material but not so much that you’re swimming in a sea of fabric. Oh, and finally, be honest with yourself about the pattern; there’s a reason certain prints have fallen out of fashion, so it’s best to let them lie. Keeping these points in mind, we’re confident that you can find a winner. Lucky for you, though, we’ve put together this handy roundup to save you the trouble of having to look on your own time. Read on to find out what we’ve picked for the best short-sleeved collared shirts for men.
Everlane The Linen Short-Sleeve Standard Fit Shirt
If you’re after a shirt that’s budget-friendly, breathable, and stylish as can be, this option from Everlane is sure to serve you well. Crafted from a lightweight linen material, it comes with a classic fit and a texture that looks great whether it’s fresh and pressed or worn and wrinkled. We’d opt for the white or midnight colorways for the summer months; however, as things continue to get cooler, the black is a pick that’s bound to please.
Dickies Short Sleeve Work Shirt
Workwear is de rigueur within men’s style at the moment, and it’s easy to why when you consider this short-sleeved shirt from Dickies. Durable in construction and boxy in cut, it offers a simple, utilitarian look that can be matched with almost anything. Left up to us, we’d rock it unbuttoned, untucked, and paired with a white tee and some jeans. That being said, this is one option with which there are really no wrong moves.
Howler Brothers San Gabriel Short Sleeve
While Hawaiian shirts are typically a bit of a fashion faux pas, this pick from Howler Brothers is one button-down that breaks from the trend. Available in both desert tan and aqua blue chambray hues, it features a featherweight cotton fabric and a low-key flap pocket at the chest. As an added bonus, Howler Brothers has built it with eco-friendly coconut buttons and an integrated microfiber cleaning cloth for your sunglasses at the hem.
Flint And Tinder Ripstop Stretch Utility Shirt
In a list otherwise dominated by lightweight cotton and linen materials, this safari-inspired shirt makes for an ideal adventure-ready option. As rugged as it is refined, Flint And Tinder’s offering comes crafted from a hard-wearing ripstop that’s airy, comfortable, and incredibly motion-friendly thanks to its added stretch fabric. In other words, when you need a shirt that’s classy enough for your 9-5, yet casual enough for grabbing drinks, this is one option that can’t be beaten.
Roark Bless Up Mechanical Stretch Shirt
Equal parts travel blog and indie fashion brand, Roark is an outfit that knows its way around a solid button-down. This Mechanical Stretch Shirt is a case in point, built using a perforated Tactel fabric construction and woven with some added four-way stretch. With its superb quick-dry finish and excellent moisture-wicking properties, it’s no wonder that Roark developed the Bless Up shirt specifically for the tropical heat of Jamaica.
Outerknown Beachcomber Shirt
Ever the authority when it comes to sustainable style, Outerknown proves once again just how eco-friendly fashion can be. With this Beachcomber shirt, you’re getting a blend of 55% hemp and 45% eucalyptus-sourced TENCEL, a combination that’s soft, airy, and exceptionally durable. As if that wasn’t enough, though, Outerknown even used a set of natural, tagua palm nut corozo buttons in order to cut down on plastic usage. Personally, we’re partial to the Redrock Fade Stripe colorway, but any one of the options is a win in our book.
Buck Mason Palm Cotton Vintage Camp Shirt
When it comes to timeless, heritage-inspired menswear, Los Angeles-based Buck Mason is a brand beyond compare. Their Vintage Camp shirt, for instance, pairs a peached cotton herringbone fabric with a single needle knit to deliver an option that’s virtually weightless, naturally ergonomic, and oozing with old-school cool. And here’s the thing: despite its airy construction, it hangs with the elegant drape of a much heavier material.
Onia Seersucker Camp Shirt
This Seersucker Camp shirt from Onia is pretty much purpose-built for dressing the part and staying comfortable in sunnier climes. That’s because, in addition to a casual, relaxed fit, it also features a Turkish Seersucker fabric that adds just a touch of spandex stretch for extra warm-weather versatility. No matter if you go for something more muted like khaki or something brighter like blue sand (pictured here), the pointed collar and pair of chest pockets offer a look that’ll have you making impressions wherever you go.
Taylor Stitch Short Sleeve California
Though most button-downs are a bit of a compromise — either dressy or durable, stylish or performance-inspired — The California from Taylor Stitch is one shirt that allows you to have it all. Equally at home on the trail or out for dinner, it comes with a balanced length that works both tucked and untucked. When it comes to this red option pictured here, you’re getting a summer-ready pique construction with a finish that’s as classic as they come. Assuming you want something else, however, Taylor Stitch also offers a variety of other patterns and materials such as stripes, sketch, and even corduroy.
Deus Manilla Shirt
Sure, Deus Ex Machina may be best-known for its eye-catching custom motorcycles, but the brand also happens to make a host of wardrobe essentials. For instance, this Manilla shirt is an ideal option for achieving that oversized look, cut with a boxy fit and adorned with just a bit of chest embroidery. And because it’s made using 54% hemp, 44% recycled polyester, and 3% spandex, you can take comfort in knowing that you can look your best whilst still being kind to the planet.
Faherty The Cabana Shirt
Just because you’re looking for a casual fit for weekend wear doesn’t mean that you have to let your style slip in the process. On the contrary, with this vintage loungewear-inspired Cabana shirt from Faherty, it’s entirely possible to dress for comfort whilst still looking clean-cut. Made from a sustainable organic cotton and recycled polyester blend, it comes with a soft, textured terry finish and some classic camp features like an open collar and a turn-back placket.
Saturdays NYC Colorblocked York Camp Collar
Admittedly, this camp collar shirt from Saturdays NYC isn’t for the faint of heart; its bright, patchworked appearance is sure to stand out amongst the crowd. However, if primary colors and blocked patterns happen to be your thing, this is one option that’s too good to pass up. Between the hidden-button closure and the airy side vent details, the York is a shirt that’s a true cut above the rest.
Ralph Lauren Oxford Short Sleeve
Okay, let’s face it: you can’t have a list of button-downs without an Oxford, and there’s no better brand to represent the style than with Ralph Lauren. In the case of the short-sleeved option pictured here, you’re getting a 1940s-inspired surplus design, a cotton fabric construction, and some elegant mother-of-pearl buttons. Top it off with a washed finish and you have a shirt that’s great for casual and formal occasions alike.
Todd Snyder Italian Seersucker Shirt
Were you to pair some suave South American style with old-school East Coast prep, the result would be this seersucker shirt from Todd Snyder. An ideal warm-weather alternative to sport coats and heavier jackets, it’s made from breathable cotton at Italy’s iconic Albini Mill. And, while it’s cut with a slightly slimmer fit, it nevertheless comes with a set of four handy pockets to keep your smaller essentials in check.
Sunspel Ecru Selvedge Cotton Chambray Shirt
As any keen Bond fan will know, this option comes from the same brand that 007 himself wears. And makes sense when you consider everything Sunspel has to offer. With this Ecru button-down, you’re working with some Japanese-sourced selvedge chambray fabric, a laid-back loose fit, as well as a classic, low-profile collar. Of course, such features are handsome enough on their own; however, when they’re rolled into one complete package, you’re left with a shirt that’ll have you looking fit for Her Majesty’s secret service.
The 18 Best Summer Pants For Men
If you’re looking to complement one of these shirts with some cool warm-weather bottoms, we’ve got just the roundup for you. Head on over to our guide to the best summer pants for men, where you’ll find an assortment of offerings that are ideal for beating the heat.