You Can Make Great Dress Shirt Decisions

Image by: Robert Sheie

By Phillip K. Issa

Today, we are discussing some of the things you should look for in a dress shirt, the absolute workhorse of the successful man’s wardrobe. Dress shirts pull double-duty, to some degree, as they can go from anchoring a custom-tailored suit full in a big business situation to half-unbuttoned card-game casual pretty quick.

No matter – a great dress shirt can look sharp in both scenarios.

The best dress shirts are almost invisible, as the eye and brain focuses on the person that just walked into the room instead of the shirt that they are wearing. The amazing fine details of a great dress shirt should only be noticed by another person if they get close and really give it a good looking over.

Amazing garment fans can spot the difference and might even try to guess where you got your dress shirt from.

Yes, That Subtle

A great dress shirt looks sharp, but doesn’t try to over-define you or shape you into something that you’re not. It should never be in your face, but it should also evoke a feeling of power. It says “I’ve chosen the finest things” instead of shouting it.

A great dress shirt knows it is awesome and has the class to not make a big deal about it.

You can start by choosing solid white or one of the many variations of white available, just stay away from the new blinding whites – they are actually a little too distracting. A light blue version is also in order. There, now you’ve got the two basics.

Measure Up & Fly Right

Unless that shirt is fitted to your exact sleeve length, collar, and shoulders sizes, you are going to look sloppy. You should know your measurements. Your secretary should know your measurements.


For business applications, you are, for the most part, going to want to stick with straight-collared shirts made with finest finished cotton. These shirts can last a long, long time if cared for properly.

If you are a dispose-of-it-quickly kind of guy, then some of the shiny happy blends may be more your thing.