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Evening Standard
Evening Standard
Peter Bevan

Best white t-shirts for men you can wear all the time

If one thing’s for sure, it’s that every man needs a good quality white t-shirt in their wardrobe. Trends may come and go, but the timeless white crew neck is here to stay, now and forever.

The style originated as underwear in the medieval era, and morphed into uniform for the armed forces. It was then co-opted to become a fashion statement for teenage rebels in the 50s (looking at you Marlon Brando and James Dean) - solidifying the humble white tee in history.

James Dean in ‘Rebel Without A Cause’ and Marlon Brando in ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ (Getty Images)

Today, it’s easy to see why it’s become a menswear staple: whether you wear it with a pair of classic straight leg jeans or as a casual alternative with a suit in summer (see Jonathan Bailey, below), it goes with absolutely everything.

As someone who owns 22 white t-shirts (trust me, I checked), finding the perfect style takes much trial and error, and it needs to be suited to your taste.

Jonathan Bailey at Milan Fashion Week June 2022 (Getty Images)

As a general rule, I’d suggest mid-weight cotton which tends to look better quality, but if you’re on the muscly side, you may want to try a tighter fit in a lighter weight option. For a looser style, look for a design where the seam falls below the shoulder in a heavier-weight. For one that fits just right, have the seam right on your shoulder.

The upkeep of a white T-shirt can be tricky, too. Whether it’s an accidental red wine spillage or the dreaded discolouration under the pits, you could try The Laundress’ whites detergent or even a simple Vanish whitening booster. Just make sure you follow the instructions on the care label to avoid any shrinkage.

Take a look at our selection below, there’s an option for every taste and budget.

Sunspel Riviera T-shirt

Originally designed for Daniel Craig as James Bond in Casino Royale, Sunspel’s Riviera tee is a midweight slim fit that’s ideal for any season. With the 007 seal of approval, you can have high hopes for this one.

Buy now £75.00, MatchesFashion

Arket Heavyweight T-Shirt

King of the minimal basics game, Scandi brand Arket’s t-shirts live up to their reputation. Cut from the heaviest of the label’s single jersey, this well-made tee has a relaxed fit with a quality feel.

Buy now £25.00, Arket

Mr P. Organic Cotton-Jersey T-Shirt

Mr. Porter’s own brand Mr.P. guarantees quality. Constructed using organic cotton that’s washed for the softest handle, this tee is a classic fit that promises comfort.

Buy now £55.00, Mr Porter

Acne Studios Crew Neck T-Shirt

Cut to a slim fit, Acne Studio’s design is a smart option that would look great with a pair of straight leg trousers. The teeny-tiny pink logo tab in the side seam is the nod to the brand’s signature logo detail that we all like to see.

Buy now £120.00, Acne Studios

Cos Regular-Fit T-Shirt

For those wanting a t-shirt that fits just right, Cos’ regular silhouette is the one for you. Sustainably crafted from organic cotton, it’s a no-nonsense classic shape that would look great worn under a suit.

Buy now £17.00, Cos

Axel Arigato Signature T-Shirt

Axel Arigato’s offering is a heavyweight tee with a slight drop shoulder. Made using organic cotton, it’s a guilt free purchase with subtle embroidery for an added touch.

Buy now £60.00, Axel Arigato

CDLP Midweight T-Shirt

Your favourite t-shirt but better, CDLP’s tee is made using two thirds lyocell, a sustainable fabric which makes the texture silky-smooth. Soft, soft, soft.

Buy now £75.00, CDLP

Weekday Standard T-Shirt

A kinder choice on the bank account, at £12, Weekday’s Standard t-shirt is a great quality everyday option with a ribbed crew neck. You can’t go wrong.

Buy now £12.00, Weekday

Asket The T-Shirt

Transparent brand Asket’s iteration is a classic fit crafted from Egyptian cotton jersey. The label details all the information about the production, including the manufacturing cost, CO2 impact, and traceability.

Buy now £30.00, Asket

Carhartt WIP Standard Crew Neck Tee - 2 Pack

Carhartt, like us, is well aware that one t-shirt just isn’t enough. Made using a lightweight cotton with a subtle logo, this two-pack is perfect for your weekly rotation.

Buy now £39.00, End Clothing

Reiss Crew Neck T-Shirt

Given Reiss’ speciality in formalwear, it’s no wonder their lightweight crew neck t-shirt can take you from work to the weekend with ease. Great for layering under a blazer or jacket.

Buy now £25.00, Reiss

Everlane The Everyone Relaxed Hemp Tee

If you’re in the market for an oversized look, this relaxed tee from Everlane is perfect. In a cotton and hemp blend, it’s a super soft, more eco-friendly option. We love the elbow-length sleeves.

Buy now £54.00, Everlane

Samsøe Samsøe Kronos o-n ss 273

Chanelling its Nordic heritage, Samsøe Samsøe’s white t-shirt offers a masterclass in minimalism. With a classic fit, no logo, and medium-weight cotton, it’s an essential basic style.

Buy now £30.00, Samsøe Samsøe

Gap 100% Organic Cotton Original T-Shirt

Famous for their quality basics, Gap’s offering is a standard fit made using organic cotton. The perfect staple no matter the occasion.

Buy now £17.96, Gap

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