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What’s more comfortable and timeless than a classic polo? These short-sleeved collared shirts usually have a two- or three-button placket at the neck and are most commonly made from soft knit fabrics or synthetic blends. Athletes — particularly golfers and tennis players — love the polo for its ease of movement and breathable material. But they’re extremely popular daywear as well, both for your casual weekend wardrobe and for the office.
When shopping for a polo shirt, look for materials that are light and comfortable but still durable (if the fabric looks super thin, the shirt probably isn’t very good quality). Be sure to check the manufacturer’s sizing guide so you purchase the right fit. Polo shirts should be looser than a tailored dress shirt, but they should not be so big that they look baggy.
There are lots of polos available in eye-popping colors and playful patterns. These are fine for the weekend or an afternoon on the green, but if you’re shopping for a shirt for the office, it’s best to gravitate towards more professional color palettes — those are the shirts that never go out of style. We’ve done some digging and came up with the best polo styles on the market for 2018. Here are eight different options that will keep you comfortable and looking sharp.
Best Overall: Nautica Classic Short Sleeve Stripe Polo Shirt
This classic polo shirt comes from a classic polo company: Nautica. It gets our top pick because of its timeless style and durable, high-quality materials, all at a mid-range price point. Made from poly-cotton blend material (60% cotton and 40% polyester) this Classic Short Sleeve Stripe Polo has a comfortable and stylish fit and comes in a wide variety of striped color options for both workdays and the weekend.
It has a classic two-button placket with signature taping underneath and a vented side seam. The fabric is moisture-wicking to keep you dry and comfortable, even in summer weather. Additionally, it's available in sizes XS to 3XL with some limitations in color options.
Runner-Up, Best Overall: Cubavera Herringbone Performance Polo Shirt
For those who want something a little sleeker, this polo shirt from Cubavera is an extremely versatile shirt that pairs well with both jeans and trousers — and it's an amazing value for the price. Made from 100% polyester, this shirt has a super-subtle herringbone pattern that makes it easy to style into a professional outfit. The sleeves are a bit longer than the Nautica style, and the three-button placket has wooden buttons instead of plastic (a stylish detail that adds some summer flair). That means you can tuck it into dress pants for a day at the office, or pair it with linen pants and sandals for an afternoon at the beach.
The Cubavera Herringbone Polo Shirt features a comfortable ribbed collar and moisture-wicking fabric to keep you cool and dry. Reviewers love the look and comfort of this polo and say the shirt remains wrinkle-free without ironing. It comes in office-friendly colors like white and navy blue, as well as some more playful options like coral pink and sea green.
Best Budget: Jerzees SpotShield Pocket Polo
If you're looking for a comfortable, basic polo with a budget price tag, this Jerzees SpotShield Polo is an extremely practical option that's cheap enough to buy in multiple colors. Plus it has a pocket, which is a convenient feature that's missing from the other shirts on this list.
Made from a soft jersey blend, these polos feature a SpotShield stain-resistant treatment that keeps your shirts looking new for longer. Whether you work a job that tends to ruin your clothes, or you're just tired of mid-commute coffee spills, these Jerzees shirts are built to last. Reviewers love the pocket and say the materials are comfortable and surprisingly substantial for the (very low) price point. Choose from 14 different colors, from classic black, white, and navy to more industry-specific colors like safety orange. They are available in sizes small to 5XL.
Runner-Up, Best Budget: Dockers Performance Polo Short Sleeve Shirt
The Dockers brand is well-known for durability and this Performance Polo Short Sleeve Shirt is no exception — if you're the kind of guy who doesn't like to re-buy clothes because they've worn out, this may be the choice for you. Made from a blend of cotton, polyester, and elastane, this shirt is moisture-wicking and quick-drying, so you can stay cool and comfortable in any conditions. Pair it with khakis for a classic, cleaned-up office look, or wear it with jeans for a more casual style.
Reviewers say that this shirt looks and fits great and holds up well through multiple washings. Plus, it's on the budget end of the price spectrum so you can buy a few in different colors (the options are black, light blue, red striped and blue striped). It is available in sizes small to 2XL. Note that some reviewers claim these shirts run large.
Best for Big and Tall: IZOD Advantage Performance Polo
This polo shirt from IZOD is designed with big and tall body types in mind. It's made from a poly-cotton blend (60% cotton and 40% polyester) and features UPF-15 UV protection and pre-shrinking for a lasting and reliable fit. The shirt won't lose its shape with machine washing, and the roll-resistant collar also helps to keep this polo looking new even after multiple wears. Side vents and moisture-wicking materials keep you cool and dry.
This shirt is available in 21 different colors, so you're sure to find one (or many) to fit your wardrobe. Sizes range from large to 5XL Big, and large to 5XL Tall, with some limitations in color options.
Best for Dress Wear: Calvin Klein Liquid Cotton Polo
If you need a polo that instantly dresses up any outfit, check out this option from Calvin Klein. The "Liquid Cotton" material is spun from 100% super-fine cotton yarn, so it's extremely soft and comfortable to wear with an almost silky feeling to the fabric. The design includes a three-button placket, HD Calvin Klein chest logo, vented hem, and collar and cuffs with interlock trim. It's classically stylish and has a fit that's slim but not tight — if you prefer a slightly bulkier or more relaxed polo, note that some reviewers found this material to be thinner than most and the fit a bit narrower than what they're used to.
This shirt is perfect for professional or business-casual settings, but can also be dressed down for the weekend. It's machine washable and comes in an incredibly wide variety of colors (almost 30 different options) so you're sure to find something for your wardrobe.
Best for Athletes: Under Armour Men’s Performance
If you're looking for a polo shirt for your sport of choice, this option from Under Armour is the way to go. This stylish shirt is made from 95% polyester and 5% elastane for extra stretch and comfort and has UPF 30+ sun protection. Plus it's snag-resistant, so it'll stay looking new no matter how many times you pull it out of your gym bag. This polo easily stretches in any direction and has built-in anti-odor technology to keep you fresh and dry even when you're playing hard.
The shirt is available in 25 different colors so you don't show up in the same shirt every time you hit the green or the court. It comes in sizes small to 4XL with "tall" sizing options.
Best for Versatility: Lacoste Men’s Short Sleeve Pique Ultra Dry
If you're heading from the office to the outdoors (perhaps to an after-work golf or tennis game), this Lacoste polo can go with you. It has all the style of a work-appropriate polo shirt — and the little crocodile logo of the most iconic polo brand around — plus the ultra-dry wicking properties of an athletic shirt. It is made from 100% polyester and comes in two different navy-and-white windowpane check patterns, both with a contrasting orange zipper for a little pop of color. It's a little on the sporty side but is certainly stylish enough to wear off the green, too.
Once you leave the office and head to your game, you know you’ll be dry and comfortable in this Lacoste shirt. The ultra-dry pique wicks away sweat and the polyester fabric is durable and machine-washable so you can wear it again and again without it looking worn out. This shirt is available in sizes small to 4XL.