How to Wear a Polo Shirt for All Occasions – An Essential Guide for Men
Smarter than a standard t-shirt and that little bit more casual than a fully-buttoned-up number, the trusty polo shirt is a linchpin of any stylish man’s wardrobe.
Versatile, breathable, comfortable and, we’re pleased to report, fashionable, this summer wear staple should be at the very top of your clothing shopping list right now.
Whether you’re heading to work, down the local or to the golf course, our experts are here to explain how you can wear your favourite polo with a little more panache.
Should you tuck in a polo shirt?
First things first, let’s talk about etiquette.
If you’re out on the golf course, then yes you should tuck in your shirt.
We recently talked about some of the strictest golfing dress codes in the UK and it’s safe to say that on the majority of courses you’ll be expected to have your polo neatly tucked in.
Why is this style of shirt worn so routinely at golfing venues across the globe (you could say it’s par for the course!)? As stated, golf polos are dressier than a collarless t-shirt, but they offer far more manoeuvrability than a more formal shirt.
In a game that relies so heavily on finely honed technique and marginal gains, being able to swing your arms and shoulders completely unrestricted is key.
While materials can vary, many brands now use innovative fabrics to ensure maximum breathability and flexibility for wearers – this Performance Panel Polo Shirt from ProQuip being a great example.
Can you wear a polo shirt to the office?
While we’re still loitering at the smarter end of the smart-casual dress code scale, it’s worth pointing out that polos are becoming increasingly acceptable in the professional working environment.
Research undertaken by Travelodge (and cited in The Independent here) showed that as few as one in 10 Brits now wear a suit to work. The same study also found that seven out of 10 people dress casually for work as they feel it makes them feel more comfortable (and probably more productive as a result).
The polo shirt is perfect if your employer has adopted a new-fangled “business causal” dress code.
Rather than the stretchy, elastane-based fabrics that you find in a lot of golf polo shirts, you’ll be better served with a 100% cotton polo for the office.
PG Field makes some fantastically stylish garments for men, including a number of work-friendly polo shirts such as this classic design, which you can quite easily team with a smart blazer to ensure you’ve got the business casual look down to a tee.
Other ways to wear your polo shirt
If you spend the bulk of your time wearing jeans, chinos or shorts, you can rest assured that the ever-adaptable polo shirt works seamlessly with pretty much everything.
If you’re packing for your summer holiday, make sure you’ve got a variety of polo designs to choose from.
Whether you’ve gone for a striped style or a more understated pastel shade, you simply cannot go wrong when you pair your polo up with a smart pair of shorts. Add some boat shoes or a nice pair of trainers into the mix and you’ve got the perfect summer outfit.
For those cooler evenings, you can switch out the shorts in favour of a pair of jeans or chinos. Also, it’s worth having a think about your accessories, as a short-sleeved polo really gives you ample opportunity to put the spotlight on your best watch.
Essential tips to help you maximise your polo shirt game
When spring rolls around, it’s customary to give your home a good clean from top to bottom. The same should apply for your wardrobe.
Here are some things to consider…
- Get the right fit
You don’t want your new shirt to be hugging your figure and you definitely don’t want it to be overly baggy. When buying polo shirts online, make sure you’ve got the right measurements by checking out our Size Guide first.
- Follow the instructions
If you’ve got a polo that fits perfectly, the last thing you want to do is shrink it! Always check out the garment care guidelines when you update your collection.
- Button(s) up & collar down!
We’re not here to tell you what to do by any means: everyone has their own style. However, it’s worth pointing out that there’s an unwritten rule of etiquette for wearing a polo shirt. All we’re saying is having your collar down and at least one button fastened is a good look!
- Iron it!
Without wanting to point out the glaringly obvious, it’s imperative that you iron your polo properly before wearing it. That smart casual look you’re aiming for can be completely scuppered if you’ve got unsightly creases everywhere.