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The 10 Best Men’s Polo Shirts For Summer 2019

Monday, 24th June, 2019

Wearing A Lacoste Polo Shirt

What do you do when you want to wear something smarter than a T-shirt, but you don’t want to wear something like a button up shirt? You wear a polo shirt.

If you’re looking for a new polo shirt, you want a wardrobe refresh or want to add to your collection, I’m going to go into the best men’s polo shirts for Spring and Summer this year.

Most of the polo shirts we know and love today have their roots deeply found in the sport of tennis, it has been credited to great René Lacoste, former tennis player. Back in the day tennis pros would wear their tennis whites, which consisted of a shirt with long sleeves, which would be rolled up. Lacoste knew that what we know now, shirts aren’t great for sport, they’re uncomfortable and the polo shirt was born.

Short sleeves, made from a cotton which was named piqué which was loosely knit, a collar and button placket, this is the polo shirts you know today, which stretch all the way back then.

They were also used in horse sports, including polo, which pre-dates the tennis attire, if you’re wondering where the name cones from.

Polo Shirt Brands

Lacoste

Lacoste Polo Shirt

One of the godfathers of the polo shirts, invented by former tennis player René Lacoste as mentioned above. His nickname was the crocodile, which is where the infamous Lacoste logo comes from.

I own a few Lacoste polos and have owned plenty over the years, and think they’re great. When it comes to a polo shirt, they’re one of the original brands with heritage which you can go for.

With a huge number of colours, there’s plenty of different designs and patterns these days, but I prefer the tradition of the classic polo in a standard colour. The classic polo with small croc now comes in a classic, regular and slim fit, in over 40 colours. There’s even options to customise your own, selecting the colours for that one off personalised polo shirt.

Get yours at Lacoste for £80

Fred Perry

Fred Perry M12 Polo Shirt

Where France has Lacoste, Great Britain has Fred Perry. Once again coming from tennis roots, the triple Wimbledon champion created the brand of his name back in 1952, and the polo shirt has become the staple product. In fact, for many, Fred Perry is the shirt, the brand is so synonymous with this style of shirt (The same way everyone calls all vacuum cleaners, “Hoovers”).

The trademark feature of the original Fred Perry shirt (which they call the M12) is the twin tipped detailing on the sleeve cuffs and collar.

Proudly Made In England, you can pick this up from Fred Perry here for £75

Ralph Lauren

Ralph Lauren Slim Fit Polo

While other brands follow the tennis route, Ralph Lauren is firmly into the heritage of the sport of polo with their POLO line, which includes some great polo shirts. The absolutely clean cut polo looks immaculate in their colours, with just a small logo to the front chest of the infamous Ralph Lauren pony.

It looks so clean in white, and comes in cotton with a tennis tail detail, slim fit and 2-button placket.

Get this at Ralph Lauren here for £80

Sunspel

Sunspel Polo Shirt

When you want a clean-cut polo shirt made from super soft cotton, look no further than Sunspel. Completely blank of any branding or logos, it’s all about the shirt, which is made in Portugal from 100% pima cotton.

The pique polo is available in a range of colours, I’ve picked out green here, and you can get it at Sunspel for £95

GANT

GANT Polo Shirt In Pool Green

The original Polo from GANT comes in numerous colours, some perfect for Summer including this which they’re calling pool green. It’s made from pique jersey cotton, comes in a regular fit and is classic, with small GANT branding to the front.

Get it here at GANT for £70

All Saints

AllSaints Polo Shirt

The reform polo shirt from AllSaints comes in a nice range of dusty marl colours, such as the grey pictured, as well as solid black, blue or white and a contrasting 3 button placket. With the trademark ramskull logo embroidered to the front breast, it’s a clean cotton polo which you could consider.

Get it at AllSaints for £55.

BOSS

Hugo Boss Black Polo Shirt

If you want a designer brand which you know is going to have good quality without shouting about it, Hugo Boss has this polo shirt which fits the bill. First of all the logo to the front is embroidered in black, the same as the shirt, giving it a really premium looking tonal feel. Speaking of the feel, it’s made from pima cotton.

This polo is completely blacked out which is great if you like this style and want to blend in, rather than make a colourful statement. Get it at Hugo Boss for £75.

Burberry

Burberry Polo Shirt

Looking for something a little bit more luxurious? Burberry offer a classic pique polo shirt with it’s own trademark twist – Their infamous Burberry check pattern in the placket of the shirt. If you want a polo from a luxury fashion house, this one is to be considered.

Pick it up at Burberry for £180.

H&M Edition

H&M Edition Polo Shirt

So going from the super expensive to the cheaper polo shirt options, I’ve picked out this navy one from H&M. This, however, is from the Edition line of H&M, which is known to be a little bit more expensive than their regular line, but also a little bit better in terms of quality.

This cotton polo is completely clean, has no branding and is available in the staple colours of black, navy, grey and white, and is made of 100% cotton.

Get it at H&M for £25.

Uniqlo

Uniqlo Polo Shirt

Last up is another one from the lesser-expensive option, from another great brand I love for basics. The Uniqlo polo is made from Supima cotton, and has a two button placket with soft collar. You can get it in a range of colours, I’ve picked it out here in dark grey.

Get it at Uniqlo for £25.

Further Reading

What Is A Polo Shirt

It’s probably best to get into what a polo shirt is, just to make sure we’re all on the right page. As mentioned above, they are usually made from cotton, in a loose knit which is known as pique. Other materials can be used, and one of the more popular is merino knit, which is a very light wool. These are usually worn more in the Spring and Autumn rather than Summer, as cotton is a better material for dealing with heat and sweat.

Another feature is the length of the sleeves. Although they are available in long sleeve, this guide is for Spring and Summer, and short sleeve will be featured more heavily here. Short sleeve polos have become the de facto style, but long sleeves are increasingly popular in the cooler months as a casual substitute to a shirt.

When it comes to the features of the shirt, there’s a couple of characteristics which sets the polo apart from other shirts. The sleeves are also almost always cuffed, keeping the fit of the sleeves well. The front comes with a placket which has a few buttons, the number varies on design, but is usually between 2 and 4. Finally the shirt comes with a collar, some reasonably stiff, others fairly soft.

A polo shirt can be seen as an in-between top, which fits between a casual or formal shirt, and a casual T-shirt. They can be worn to summer events such as a BBQ, or you can also wear it while travelling if you’re going on holiday, to give you a smarter edge at the airport.

Polo Shirt Colours

Possibly the single biggest great thing about wearing a polo shirt is the colours. Not only do they come in a huge array of different colours, shades and hues, it’s also perfectly acceptable and stylish to wear something which pops.

For almost all other clothing, the advice is to start with a staple colour and build from there. When it comes to polos, it’s almost the opposite. You can go for grey and navy, but as for black and white, you may want to skip those, especially if you’re only getting 1 or 2 polos.

Instead you can swap this out for bold and bright colours, a vivid blue or a pop of red, green, yellow or sky blue. When it comes to picking out a colour, there’s almost no wrong answer, providing it matches up well with the rest of your outfit.

Polo Shirt Designs & Patterns

Not all polo shirts are created equally, and that comes with the designs too. While I love the solid colours of polo shirts because of their heritage and history, there’s other options out there too.

You can check out a colour block option, which splits the shirt into sections of colour. There’s also stripes, both vertical and horizontal, with clean lines giving off a nice look. There’s plenty of other pattern designs which you can get too, perfect if you’re looking for a polo but want to stand out from the crowd.

Conclusion

That’s the best polo shirts for this Spring and Summer. A polo shirt is one of those items every man should have in their wardrobe. They’re the perfect go-between when you want to dress up more than wearing a tee, but don’t want the formality of a shirt. The polo shirt is your answer. It’s a timeless piece of clothing which you can buy knowing it’s not going to go out of style.

If you’re looking for something more casual, check out what the best T-shirts to wear has to offer. You can also find more fashion tips if you’re wondering what to pair with a polo shirt. As always, let me know what you think of a polo shirt, and if it’s something you have in your wardrobe for the summer season.


Michael Adams

About Michael

Michael Adams is the founder and editor of Michael 84, blogger and T-shirt designer from Newcastle, UK. Sharing men's fashion tips, style advice and lifestyle information for all guys.

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