The 6 Summer Shirts every Man should have
Tuesday 8 December 2020
By Brad Mclennan, Designer
Summer shirts for the new season.
The temperature is rising, the sun is blaring and summer is well and truly here.
It’s time to ditch the coats (for now) and wear as little as possible. Well, almost as little as possible.
It's tempting to throw all ideas of style out the window when the weather heats up, but with this easy summer shirting guide, that’s not going to be a problem. You don’t need to ditch the collar to feel cool.
There are really only six shirt styles you need for summer. They'll be your essential wardrobe for every occasion.
Wearing a shirt in the summer doesn’t automatically mean sticking to chairs. Go for seasonal light-weight and vibrant prints to keep things cool, from scorching beach days to weekend road trips.
In this article, we’re running through the summer shirt styles you need to know and why they deserve a place in your summer wardrobe.
Follow these simple tips and you’ll be feeling good and looking good all the way to March.
Add some sheen to your Short Sleeve
Plain short sleeves are a staple of every guy’s wardrobe, but if you want to make a proper statement, go for a bold, printed version. It’s a great way to channel your inner Miami Vice.
This summer, we’ve paired our exclusive prints onto a low-sheen, lightweight, breathable- cotton fabric. It’s called sateen.
Sateen gives your shirt that really soft shiny finish of the shirt, but don’t worry, you’re not going to look like a Christmas bauble. It’s more of a muted satin gloss, not a blinding mirror shine.
One mistake that you want to avoid is choosing printed short sleeve shirts with dodgy prints.
At POLITIX, we opt for high quality printing, mostly using digital technology, which uses about 90% less water than traditional methods, but it also leaves a sweet photographic quality on the fabric.
So make sure you check the details when going for a printed shirt. It’s the difference between a kid's art show and a summer masterpiece.
One big tip: make sure you finish your outfit with shorts or chino pants that pick up a colour in whatever print you’re wearing. See our example above.
Texture is Key
We all like to keep things simple now and then, and it’s important to have at least one plain short-sleeve shirt in your wardrobe. This is where you get to have fun with colour.
Always go for a textured fabric when choosing a plain short-sleeve. It adds a bit of surface interest and will breathe way better.
Natural fibres are gold here, so try and stick to cotton or linen, and steer clear of anything with polyester. No-one wants to sweat through Christmas lunch.
Our Masi Short-Sleeve Shirt comes in three key summer colours: white, khaki and a two-tone light blue.
Pair this guy with shorts for a simple weekend look, or layer-up with a plain tee and chinos for more of that ‘blue steel’ appeal. Again, these shirts are designed in a relaxed fit for summer. We want to keep things cool and breathable during those flamethrower summer days.
The Lightweight Cuban Collar
It’s been a while, but the Cuban Collar is officially back. We’re pretty pumped about it. This is also known as a Camp Collar, Revere Collar or Safari Collar. Whatever you call it, Cubans are the hot look for summer 20/21.
Cuban Collar short-sleeve shirts are the epitome of relaxed style, with their flat, laydown collar. Some say plain, we say print. These shirts are great to pair on their own with shorts or chino pants, but also work really well with tailored pieces for a summer event. You can wear Cuban Collars on their own, or with a simple tee underneath (just undo the top three buttons).
This summer, we’ve created a collection of five styles in an array of colours and prints. Since can’t go overseas, we thought we’d bring the holiday to you guys. Make sure you check out the fabrics as well. From cotton/linen blends to cotton sateen, these relaxed-fit shirts will keep you breezy all summer long.
The Linen Blend Long Sleeve
There’s not much to say when you look at this picture. Summer print on top, quality chinos down below. This is going to be your go-to summer look.
This season is all about feeling light and bright, but you don’t always need to stick to white pants and gold shoes (actually, you should probably never do this). Sometimes it’s good to darken down the tones with a moody long-sleeve shirt—and the Marro is a great choice here.
All our casual long-sleeve shirts have been made from cotton-linen textured fabrics, with a relaxed fit and loose cut to keep things breathable.
Imagine all the classic POLITIX designs, but lighter, cooler, more summer-friendly. As we’ve done here, you can go for a darker top and pick a colour from the print to match on the bottom. Simple. Just take one of the chino colours you’ve got in your essentials wardrobe. Alternatively, roll up your sleeves and match with some chino shorts for a relaxed, beachside look. Eye-catching prints or simple geos work well on this kind of fabric. You can dress them up with a sports blazer, or wear them on their own. Whatever makes you feel comfortable.
Geometric Short Sleeves
There’s only one style left to round out your summer shirting wardrobe. The geometric short-sleeve shirt.
Our geo short sleeves are basically a plain shirt, but with extra detail. They add an element of surprise to your outfit—from far away it looks like you’re wearing a simple plain shirt, but up close you can see the intricate design and attention to detail. This season, we’ve taken some inspo from Cuban tiles and architecture. Nothing too crazy, but enough to express your personality.
Choose your colours wisely here. Reds work really well with lighter skin tones as they make you look a little more tanned.
Blue is always a go-to for any skin tone, and white bases are a fresh take when paired with darker pants or chino shorts.
Our tip here is always go for the relaxed fit. You don’t want geos to look too tailored. Pair your shirt with a simple white tee for a classic beach look, and don’t forget the loafers if you’re thinking ‘Smart Casual’.
Ditch the collar
It’s not just about short sleeve shirts in summer. They’re great and all, but sometimes you need to go for a sharper look. There is no wrong time of the year for a classic button-down shirt. But of course, you need to make it fresh- enter the Mandarin Collar.
This is a timeless menswear staple. It's great for layering but also perfect for summer. With no collar, it's light and airy but still gives you a sharp look (thanks to the stand).
Mandarin Collars work perfectly with a blazer and chinos, but they can also hold its own with shorts and sneakers for a down-to-earth, everyday vibe.
There are two things you need to bear in mind here: fabric and shape. You need to go for a lighter weight over summer, like our Ponsonby Shirt, which is made from a cotton linen texture exclusively designed by POLITIX. The weave and blend of both yarns make it super soft and breathable and the cut keeps you looking on point.
You also need to make sure you aren’t wearing a super slim shirt in summer, so always opt for a relaxed fit. A wider body and shorter cut means untucked hems and better air flow. Wear this guy open with a few buttons undone, or pair it with a t-shirt for those slightly cooler nights. That’s it, guys. Shirts are done. You’re now ready for summer. Go forth and barbecue something. Read more about shirt styling via THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO MEN'S SHIRTS.
Brad Mclennan, Designer
Bradley Mclennan has been with POLITIX for 5 years as a designer, and has over 11 years' experience across womenswear, everyday brands and streetwear. He has always been fascinated with how a creative outlook affects people's lives. A great song. An inspired building. Brad love's to push the boundaries. He's the guy injecting colour and pushing the team to be bold. Bringing the whole thing together with an insane attention to detail.