Resolutions, Pop Culture & How to Wear an Undershirt

2015 ended with all sorts of “bangs” in the world of pop culture. From Steve Harvey’s Miss Universe flub (Take your walk, Miss Philippines…) to Kitson announcing that they would be closing their doors for good (It’s about time; I was always a Fred Segal guy myself.)… Throw a little Trump in the mix, a sprinkling of Adele, a dash of Amy Schumer… Oh, 1D minus Zayn Malik (and the band’s subsequent “hiatus” #awkward)… Bruce –err, CaitlynCookie LyonLeft Shark (or was it Right?) –take all of these and more, and you have the makings of the year that was.

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With the new year in full swing, all the gyms are packed, the new eating habits have been outlined, and spending is supposed to reach some type of lull –Powerball tickets not included, of course. The gears have been set in motion, and soon enough we’ll be ankle-deep in a new set of pop culture-isms that will be sure to make a mark on the year that is.

With 2016 unraveling before us, let’s hope that we’re starting it off on the right foot –or (under)shirt. (!) Gentlemen, I’m talking to YOU. If there is one thing that I hope you choose to embrace in the new year, it is this: knowing the right way to wear an undershirt. Sounds so trivial, I know. And for the stylistically challenged, it may mean nada… zero… zilch. But believe me, knowing the right way to wear an undershirt can be nothing short of life-changing.

In most parts of the world, the undershirt is almost non-existent. For Americans, however, the shirt most likely came into prominence during the Spanish American War. Back then, it was a garment made to be worn beneath military uniforms. Eventually, the “tee” evolved to become the shirt-de-choix of those working in construction, mines, and farms –most likely to be comfortable in uncomfortably warm weather conditions. Fast forward to the days when Marlon Brando ruled the silver screen, the t-shirt became fashionably cool and not just something to wear underneath a uniform or while pulling off blue-collared lines of work.

While there is no true right or wrong way to sport a tee, one of the things that personally grinds MY gears (from a style-perspective, at least) is when a tee is worn as an undergarment. Nothing is worse than the banded collar of a plain white tee peeking out of an open dress shirt while roaming around the office (Or restaurant, or bar… You get the picture.). OK, maybe there are worse things in the world, but in my world this ranks pretty high. I understand that some may feel the need to have that additional layer between skin and dress shirt, and believe me – I am guilty as charged. And I know there are ways to pull off the look without compromising your comfort.

For starters, you can choose an undershirt that is a little more fitted than your standard tee. This, at least, allows your dress shirt to lay comfortably against the form of your body, thus giving a clean overall look. Secondly, a deep V-neck (or regular V-neck will work in most cases) makes for a great choice as well, especially for those days when you want to go tie-less and open the first (and/or second) buttons. Giving the illusion that you don’t have an undershirt adds to the overall style. And finally, don’t settle for basic white undergarments (This goes for tidy-whiteys, too –thought that is an entirely different blog entry). Go for the neutrals, or grays or lighter colors that won’t necessarily show through certain dress shirt fabrics. Employ one or all of these tactics, and you’ll be well on your way from Frumpy Town.

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Gentleman’s Gazette published a blog entry on this very subject, and I honestly laughed so hard as I read through it – primarily because it spoke to the depths of how much my soul yearns for my fellow man to do the right thing when it comes to choosing and wearing the right type of undershirt. The write-up covers the proper PROs & CONs of wearing an undershirt, as well as how to choose the right type to wear under your dress shirts (among other things). Give it a read, and get yourself “in the know.”

Knowledge, my friends, is power.

2 responses to “Resolutions, Pop Culture & How to Wear an Undershirt

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