Minimalism isn’t necessarily a term I’d use to describe my style, however, for all my love of dramatic trends I can never turn down quality basics. A steady arsenal of reliable wardrobe staples just makes getting dressed that much easier, and once I find ones that I love I make sure to stock up in multiples. Easily the basic I sartorially lean on the most is a simple white t-shirt. It’s a big part of my daily spring uniform of jeans and a blazer, but of course, it’s also handy for layering underneath the multitude of sweater vests and cardigans I own.
I get so many questions asking which white t-shirts rise above the others, and today, I’m laying out the brands and styles that have carved out a permanent place in my closet. While there are so many shapes and necklines to choose from–boxy to form-fitting, and v-neck to scoop neck–I’m a fan of all of them, and have narrowed down the best brands and styles for each category. Despite my more budget-conscious approach to shopping this season, I’m making an exception for my collection of white t-shirts–below, all of my holy-grail styles I’m sure you’ll love too.
While any white tee will serve you well, a crew-neck t-shirt is exceptionally versatile. Whether layered underneath a knit or denim jacket, or a slip dress for a casual take, you can’t go wrong with this silhouette. A few of my favorites: Hanes Nano tee which is a no-frills option that’s easy on the wallet, and H&M’s redesigned collection of basic tees that feel so luxurious it’s hard to believe they’re less than $10.
Sooner than later hot temperatures will be our regular reality, so yup, it’s time to break out a trusty white tank top. I love how a plain tank can make a pair of party pants look so effortlessly cool, like as seen on Camille Charriere. From trendy high neck to scoop neck, below are plenty of options to fit your fancy.
For a fresh spin on the classic white tee, try a cropped length. With the low-rise pants trend in full swing, pairing them with a midriff-baring tee adds a casual 90’s inspired twist.
Ideal for displaying a layer of necklaces, this neckline helps to create a lengthening effect. Kotn’s version features an oversize fit for a modern take, while Madewell’s airy v-neck includes the fun addition of a pocket.
For added drama, consider an oversized white t-shirt. Styled with skinny jeans or slim high-waist trousers, a big billowy shirt creates a cool contrasting silhouette that looks sartorially on point. Cotton Citizen’s Tokyo Tee is an editor favorite, while I love to lounge in Entireworld’s Big Pocket T during a chill weekend.
The ultimate layering piece, I own about five different white long sleeve tees and they’re easily a star basic. Wear them underneath your favorite sweaters for extra warmth during the winter, or under a trendy sweater vest for a layered look. It’s also perfectly chic when worn alone.
Sometimes you want a little spice in your basics, and these white tees are just it. Exaggerated shoulder t-shirts are a huge trend making the rounds this season as done by The Frankie Shop and Good American, along with interesting lace-up details like on Helmut Lang’s cut-out t-shirt.
For a more polished look, try a figure-hugging white tee. If you tend to favor formal separates like pinstripe pants or silky slip skirts, a slim-cut t-shirt feels appropriately elevated and put together.