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When to Wear an Undershirt: 10 Reasons

Some of our favorite garments aren’t flashy or fashion-forward. They are the pieces that do the heavy lifting behind the scenes and make our lives so much easier.

Undershirts are the perfect example of clothing that gives us support and assurance. These are the unsung heroes of our wardrobes, and an outfit really is incomplete without one.

Today we’re talking all about undershirts and why you need some of these quality garments to fill your dresser drawers.

What Is an Undershirt?

Rustle through your wardrobe, and you’ll find that each garment serves a unique purpose. Every piece plays a role in assembling the perfect outfit, and undershirts are just the beginning.

An undershirt is an article of clothing that covers the torso – often with short sleeves or no sleeves – and is meant to be worn underneath other shirts, jackets, and outerwear.

Just like socks, boxers, briefs, and compression shorts, these are items that form the base foundation of your outfit. They aren’t meant to be worn out and about, unless you want to get some sideways looks or have a conversation with the authorities!

Undershirts were once a key part of every wardrobe, but recently, they’ve taken more of a backseat in the casual 21st century. We think they should make a comeback, and here’s why.

What Is the Purpose of an Undershirt?

If you’re wondering why you should add yet another step to your daily routine or laundry list, we understand.

However, undershirts deserve a place in your wardrobe, and they provide you with a lot of great benefits. Consider the following factors and see what undershirts can do for you.

Makes Dress Shirts Less Transparent

When you’re at the office or out on a business trip, you want to show off your finest threads and make sure those dress shirts are perfectly pressed and pristine.

The downside of dress shirts is that they are often semi-transparent, meaning that you might be showing a bit more skin than you intended. That’s not a good look, and undershirts can prevent that extra exposure from happening.

Reduces Sweat Absorption

Speaking of embarrassment, you don’t want to be sweating through your dress shirts when the pressure is on at work at a crowded bar with friends.

We all start to sweat now and then, and an undershirt helps you manage that moisture from the inside out. You stay clean, cool, and totally in control.

Extra Warmth

Do temperatures drop below freezing in your region? We could all use an extra layer of warmth when winter rolls around, especially if you commute by foot or on public transportation.

A quality undershirt is like wearing a second layer of skin underneath your outfit, giving you that cozy effect without causing you to overheat at inopportune times.

Reduces Fabric Wear

You want your clothes to last as long as possible, but without an undershirt, your garments may wear and tear sooner rather than later.

Skin-on-fabric contact might not seem like a big deal at first, but that friction adds up over time and can leave your shirts wearing thin. An undershirt helps your clothes last longer.

Protection from Stiff or Itchy Fabric

Some of your dress shirts might look good in the mirror, but maybe they are irritating on the skin and cause you discomfort throughout the day.

That nagging feeling can put a damper on your mood and productivity, so get a nice, soft undershirt to protect the skin on your shoulders, chest, back, and belly.

When Should I Wear an Undershirt?

You might feel comfortable walking around the house in an undershirt on your day off, but when you go out into public, you should have the right layers to look appropriate and make the right impression.

Here are some places where undershirts are a good idea, if not a necessity.

At the Office

We mentioned the office earlier, and it’s truly the top place to wear an undershirt. If you’re working that eight or nine-hour day, the comfort and protection will serve you well.


Golf should be relaxing and fun, with a little competition thrown in for good measure. An undershirt beneath your golf polo or quarter-zip will give you an athletic edge and keep you feeling calm and cool throughout the round.


You remember traveling don’t you? Getting all packed up in a car for a long drive or getting your suitcase filled for your flight. It might seem like forever ago since this was a thing, but once  we get back to those times you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible, and an undershirt can help make that happen.

These garments will reduce friction between your shirt, your seat, and other uncomfortable scenarios you might face on the road.


Nobody is ever thrilled about commuting, but it’s just part of the deal. Wearing a soft and sleek undershirt can make your commute just a bit easier and keep you focused on the road.

What Is the Difference Between a T-Shirt and an Undershirt?

The benefits of undershirts are many, but why not just wear a t-shirt, you might ask? For starters, t-shirts are generally bigger, bulkier, and less form-fitting than undershirts. They might look strange underneath a dress shirt or even cause you to overheat.

Some t-shirts might be marketed as undershirts and they can absolutely work that way, but it all depends on the features and other factors that come into play – such as fit and fabric.

Modern t-shirt undergarments are fantastic modern updates to that classic style. Find your favorites, stock up with plenty of different styles, and stick with them for life.

What Should I Look for in an Undershirt?

Ready to start shopping for undershirts? Here are some key criteria to keep in mind.


The undershirt only plays a supporting role in your outfit – it’s not the main event. Therefore, it should be made from lightweight materials and be barely noticeable as you wear it.

Look for an optimal blend of bamboo viscose and organic cotton so that you can move freely and confidently in any situation.

Wicks Moisture

Whether you’re on your grind at the office or enjoying a round of golf with buddies on the weekend, you want your undershirts to wick moisture and keep you dry as a bone.

Many undershirts claim to feature moisture-wicking technology, but few actually live up to the standards we expect from activewear blends. Be sure that your undershirt collection is up to the challenge, just like you are.


You might look fantastic in your daily business casual wear, but how do you smell? Deodorant and cologne can only take you so far, and an undershirt can help you fight those odors to a greater effect.

Anti-odor undershirts can come in handy during long workdays, especially during the summer!

UPF Sun Protection

When the sun is out and temps are hot, you might want to enjoy a casual stroll in your undershirt or wear one to the beach. However, most undershirts offer zero protection from the sun, leaving you burned in all the wrong places.

Look for undershirts with certified UPF 50+ sun protection so you can avoid burns and safely enjoy those rays all day.


Don’t wear undershirts that make you feel stuffy or restricted. The fabric should be fully breathable and provide total ventilation from top to bottom.

That extra airflow will keep you in a good mood and perform at your peak no matter what.

Make undershirts a daily part of your outfit assembly to enjoy all these advantages and more.


Why You Should Wear An Undershirt Under A Dress Shirt & What Color | Undershirt Guy

A Man's Guide to Undershirts: History, Styles, and Which to Wear | Art of Manliness

Undershirts For Men – To Wear or Not to Wear an Undershirt | Gentleman's Gazette

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