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Trends come and go, but t-shirts are forever. Baggy or tight, oversized or cropped, solid or striped, graphic or patterned… you see where I’m going here. This time-tested basic goes just as well with a silk maxi skirt as it does your favorite pair of old, ripped jeans. Every wardrobe deserves at least one great t-shirt, but I fully support a whole drawer dedicated to them.
What makes for the perfect t-shirt? That part is subjective. Find a fit you feel great in, a fabric that feels great on, a color or pattern you love, and you are good to go. If you haven’t found a t-shirt you really love, or are just looking for more staples to stock up on, I’ve got you covered. I’m not quite sure what makes one a t-shirt connoisseur, but as someone who wears t-shirts about 95% of the time, I’d like to think I’m getting pretty close. I’ve spent extensive time researching them, trying them on, and wearing them, on a mission to find the best tees out there. Trust me, these are the pieces that you’ll want to build the foundation of your wardrobe. Here’s to many chic, comfy outfits to come! Read on for the best t-shirts the internet has to offer.
Fast facts: 100% cotton, crew neck, relaxed fit
On lazy days, there’s nothing I love more than an outfit that’s equal parts comfy and put-together. This t-shirt fits that bill. The relaxed, cropped fit looks great with whatever you pair it with, from sweats to skirts. Drop shoulders and rich, pigment-dyed shades give these tees a worn-in, well-loved feel. If you don’t love the look of this fit, don’t sweat. Richer Poorer has a roster of different silhouettes, fabrics, and colorways that are sure to please.
Fast facts: 48% Peruvian cotton/ 48% modal/ 4% elastane, stovepipe sleeves, curved hem, crew neck
Finding a t-shirt that tucks into your jeans seamlessly can be a serious struggle, so when I found Universal Standard’s Tee Rex you can bet I held on tight. The curved hem at the bottom is longer in the front and back, but shorter on the sides, so it tucks into your bottoms without any bunching. And did I mention the fabric? It’s dreamy: buttery-soft, stretchy, and drapey. One of the best parts about this shirt, though, is the size range. With options ranging from 00 to 40, Universal Standard makes it easier for even more people to find their perfect fit.
Fast facts: 100% organic cotton, relaxed fit, crew neck
Everlane is all about delivering timeless wardrobe essentials, and this one is on point. The crew neckline, short sleeves, and slightly cropped, relaxed fit are just *chef’s kiss*. As mentioned before, I have a lot of t-shirts and this one is a top runner in my rotation. It’s the kind of soft that just gets better with each wash. The style comes with or without a pocket, in multiple colors and different stripe combos. I’m a sucker for a striped tee, but enough about me, back to this shirt… it’s only $18. If you really love it, you can buy 3 for $45, bringing it down to just $15 apiece.
Fast facts: 100% supima cotton jersey, classic fit
You know when you see someone walking on the street and they look effortlessly put together in something as basic as sweats? Well, LA-based loungewear brand Cotton Citizen has pretty much nailed that formula with its laid-back, chic basics. This t-shirt has all the makings of an “oh this? I literally just threw this on” sort of piece. The classic fit is loose enough that it’s spacious without being too oversized. The fabric is truly divine; it is next-level silky-smooth. Warning, it is pretty thin though, so you’ll want to be careful when you wash it so as to not cause any tears. I like to throw mine in a delicates bag so it doesn’t get caught on any zippers. The vintage wash and little ripped accents at the hems make for a shirt that feels perfectly worn-in from the moment you put it on.
Fast facts: 100% organic cotton jersey, crew neck, relaxed fit
When it comes to shopping sustainably, MATE the Label really takes everything into consideration. Organic fabrics, non-toxic dyes, and seasonless styles you’ll wear again and again (we’re talking fewer, better here) are what you’ll find when you peruse the brand’s site. The Cotton Classic Tee is just that, a simple crew you can count on when you want to look and feel great. It comes in a handful of basic neutral colors, as well as a slew of limited-edition brights and tie-dyes. On the product page you can find a cost per wear diagram which is super cool. Rewearing the items you already have is obviously more sustainable than buying new pieces all the time, so I love that the brand encourages this. It’s also great to know that you’re getting your money’s worth of wear.
Fast facts: 100% recycled cotton, lightweight, crew neck, loose fit
A loose, lightweight t-shirt is just what your summer wardrobe needs. Throw it on with a pair of jean shorts and you have your season’s uniform set. It’s that easy. Entireworld’s aptly-named Easy T is just that, a throw-it-on-whenever, everyday essential you’ll reach for again and again. I love that it’s made from 100% recycled cotton, which Entireworld gets from odd cotton scraps spun into fresh yarn. Shopping a bit more sustainably feels good, doesn’t it?
Fast facts: 55% hemp/ 45% tencel lyocell, v-neck
You can’t go wrong with a v-neck tee, especially a slightly slouchy one like this. The Outerknown Neptune V-Neck Tee comes in three simple neutral colors and drapes beautifully on your figure. Even better, Outerknown is committed to proving you don’t have to compromise on style or sustainability. 90% of the fabrics sourced are organic, recycled, or regenerated, and the brand is committed to getting that number to 100. This tee is made from hemp and tencel, two innovative, sustainable fabrics. Not only are they better for the planet, but they make for a super-soft textured feel.
Fast facts: 100% organic cotton, heavyweight, relaxed fit
I love a good graphic tee. This one from Madhappy has been on my radar for a while now. I mean, how could you not smile at those bright colors and sweet slogan? Since its inception, Madhappy has gotten a lot of press, with famous fans like Cardi B, Gigi Hadid, and Steph Curry. Madhappy is on a mission to create a conversation around mental health. While many brands make these sorts of claims, Madhappy is taking action. The brand offers mental health resources, including The Local Optimist Hotline which you can text when you need an empathetic ear, among other programming to broaden the conversation. This tee is a manifestation of that mission, and it looks dang cute too.
Fast facts: 50% pima cotton/ 50% modal, fitted, crewneck
I love a fitted crewneck. While still casual enough to throw on with jeans or leggings, the silhouette is easy to dress up too. Mott & Bow’s Fitted Crew is preshrunk, so you don’t have to worry about it shrinking in the wash. For all my fellow low-maintenance laundry friends, this is great news. Beyond being easy to care for, this shirt has a silky soft fabric blend that feels lucious on your skin. If you’re looking for a tee that’s fitted without being too tight, look no further.
Fast facts: 50% recycled polyester/ 38% organic cotton/ 12% rayon, crewneck, boxy fit
Hanes has been bringing America comfortable classics for over a century now, so you can be sure this collab will deliver. Re/Done went into the archives and recreated some of Hanes’ vintage styles, with new, recycled fabrics fit for the new age. The boxy fit feels simultaneously retro and fresh.