Say what you may, but it’s the details that make or break your perfectly planned outfit! The design and appeal come much, much later – but first, it’s the little things like the sleeves, the fit, the shape, the cut and the silhouette. Almost every woman realises this, thanks to the endless focus on the genre. But when it comes to men, a lot of us choose to slip into the first pair of clothing we can find in the morning. It’s time to change that habit for the better!
Today, we’re going to be covering one of the most crucial elements of an outfit – the sleeves. They may seem like the most basic thing in the world, but they really aren’t. They’re functional first, creative later. Without the addition of sleeves, you’d just be wearing a piece of fabric! Moreover, knowing the various types there are helps you switch up your style from time to time, and we hear change is essential.
So before we move on to the 5 types of sleeves every man should know, let’s take a look at how to CHOOSE the right ones for you, and save yourself from a wardrobe malfunction.
Dos & Don’ts of picking the right sleeve length!
If a shopping spree at an online store is on the cards for you, then these things should be on your checklist.
Do: Measure your shoulders correctly.
It isn’t just about your hands being able to go through an armhole, but also about your t-shirt allowing them to flail around and have room for movement. A wrong shoulder measurement can put you at the risk of a tight tee without you even realising it – until you hear the fabric tear the moment you lift your arms.
Don’t: Let the occasion slip your mind!
When it comes to picking shirts t-shirts for men, a lot of us can get carried away and not think about WHERE we’ll be seen in our chosen outfit. For example, sporting a half-sleeved t-shirt at work is hardly acceptable but a shirt will definitely get you in the good books of your boss.
Do: Consider your body type.
Body type isn’t a rule in the womenswear rule book only – men also need to be mindful of it! Baggy isn’t the best choice of sleeves for men on the curvier side, and ‘skin-tight’ isn’t the right choice for skinny peeps. Find something that is flattering and helps you achieve that dream look, not vice versa.
Don't: Forget the seasons!
Seasons play a bigger role in choosing apt sleeves than anything else on our list! It’s obvious but definitely needs to be pointed out. Generally speaking, you wouldn’t be caught dead in a sleeveless tee on the colder days, but it’s okay to don one if you’re layering it with a very warm coat or a shirt. Similarly, full sleeves aren’t the best of things for the summer and especially if you live in a humid area or city. We suggest segregation of your t-shirts, shirts and basically your entire wardrobe according to changing temperatures.
Now, moving on to the different types of sleeves, silhouettes, and how you can style them up!
1) Full Sleeves T-shirts
Cozy, comfy and cool – this is how we best describe full sleeve tees. Just make sure they don’t cover half of your hands though!
- For days when you don’t know if the dress code is ‘formal’ or ‘informal’, there’s always a mix of both! Pair one of the black long sleeve t shirts for men with narrow-bottomed dress pants, a pair of black sneakers and sleek sunnies!
- The workplace is where acing your outfit is not just an expectation but a necessity. You want to look your best while you’re turning tables or waiting for that promotion. Make a statement with a full-sleeved t-shirt worn over a crisp shirt, wool pants and white (clean) sneakers. If you’re going for a nerdy look, nothing better than a pair of non-optical frames.
- We’ve got another workplace look idea for you, one that leans more towards the ‘dressy’ side than the casual. Get your hands on one of the turtleneck full sleeves t-shirts and pair it up with pinstriped or checked dress pants. Finish with formal shoes, and don’t forget to groom your beard and hair for max effect!
- If you’re feeling adventurous and experimental, there’s a fashion-forward look we’d love for you to try out. Take a t-shirt with full sleeves, in a neutral shade. Then, pair it with black, clean-washed skinny jeans and dress shoes. Now, get a hat for yourself, also in black and a statement leather bag. Accessorize with a sleek bracelet.
- For a fun yet classy brunch date with your girl, you can count on an all-neutral outfit, starting with one of long sleeve t shirts for men, a blazer, straight leg trousers and white sneakers. Trust us, she won’t stop complimenting you all afternoon!
2) Half Sleeves T-shirts
These are as classic as it gets, and you own a ton of them already. Now, the question is how you can wear them in different ways. Well, we’re here to answer it.
- If you’re the one who settles for monotones and basic colors for your wardrobe and especially for your tees, we think it’s time to move on. Give color-blocking a go, and pick half sleeves t-shirts that have already done the work for you. Pair it with beaded bracelets and jeans! You can sport this combination for a casual meet-up with the gang.
- Even if you’re just ‘chilling’ in your building premises or meeting someone just ‘round the block, nothing should stop you from being dressed well without overdoing it. For this, we suggest a half sleeves t-shirt in a light palette and a pair of drawstring joggers, printed or solid.
- Always a winner, the classic white tee is a must-have for every man’s wardrobe. It allows you to transition from dusk to dawn effortlessly, and we love it all the more for this. If you’re looking to make a similar transition for the weekend, pair it up with grunge-y denims and accessorise with a chain (the one that goes from your pocket to the belt loop.) For footwear, sneakers should be great!
- Is attending a concert on your to-do list this season? If you answered yes, then we’ve got your #OOTD covered. Slip into a pair of distressed jeans, a graphic tee, high-top sneakers and a baseball cap! Accessorise with a thin chain around your neck.
- An impromptu plan with your squad is always highly likely, especially during the holiday season. Choose to be at your casual best for this by wearing a comfy half sleeves t-shirt, shorts (with pockets) and sneakers.
3) Sleeveless T-shirts
Don’t shy away from showing some skin! Sleeveless t-shirts are here to aid you with it.
- Us men are fitness freaks at some point in our lives (or every?) It’s only fair if we made it ‘fashion’! Sleeveless t-shirts are an extremely functional yet stylish choice of clothing for the gym, and you might want to buy one that makes your workouts ogle-worthy. Pair it with shorts + a beanie and you’ve got a winner.
- Now, you’re definitely gonna wanna show off those bulging biceps if you’ve been working so hard at them. So get into a casual sleeveless t-shirt and rock those ripped jeans! Throw some shade with sunglasses and a pair of sneakers.
- Going to the mall or going to a flea market doesn’t have to be dressy, just head-turning enough! To achieve that, pair your sleeveless t-shirt with a hat and stylish flip flops. Finish with a beaming smile!
- Come December, vacay is on everyone’s mind! From exotic beaches to snowy mountaintops, almost all of us have something planned. Get your beachwear game on point with tropical prints, either on your shorts or on your chosen sleeveless tee. Keep the sunscreen handy!
- If you’re extremely ripped, thanks to hours in the gym and eating tons of protein, then these t-shirts for men will help you flaunt your wonderful physique! That, along with slimming trousers and loafers will make you an instant hit among your friends. If you’re one to take fashion risks, then why not also give a statement faux leather messenger bag a shot?
4) Half Sleeves Shirt
Shirt sleeves aren’t just meant to be rolled up, but they can be cropped too! Proving us right is the half sleeves shirt; it’s always a chart-topping pick.
- We’re always pro-prints and we just can’t get enough of them. Hence, by default, we’re gonna suggest them to you too but this time in combination with a half-sleeved shirts for men. You can leave the top buttons open and wear a bunch of necklaces, along with loafers for footwear and sleek trousers for bottom wear.
- This time, we suggest you go all out with prints! Pick a half-sleeved shirt with artsy motifs and bold colors for a very fashion-forward appeal. Then, pair it with shorts in a neutral shade to balance out all that is happening at the top! For work, vests for men are saviors with this combination.
- Layering isn’t rocket science, and it is much easier when we take shirts into consideration. For a cute-casual look, there is nothing better than wearing a half-sleeve shirt over a half-sleeve tee, but leave all the buttons open. Choose a pair of denims (preferably distressed) for the bottom and slip into your favourite pair of sneakers.
- Casual Fridays at work are just ‘round the corner (again) so why not decide your outfit well in advance? This is when wearing a short sleeves shirt is acceptable but ONLY if it’s crisp and well-fitted. Combine it with dress pants or straight leg trousers and go with either sneakers or brogues.
- Did you think we were already done with printed short sleeves shirts? No; far from it. We love tropical prints and you should too since they aid us in creating that ‘too-cool-for-you’ vibe. We also love pairing them with black skinny jeans and of course, boots!
5) 3/4th Sleeves
When choosing between full sleeves and half sleeves is nothing but a dilemma, go for ¾ sleeves instead which reach the elbow or are a little past it.
- There are days when all you want to do is to take it easy – like relax in a park on a breezy afternoon, sit for hours in your favorite cafe or just take a walk around the block. On these days, let ¾ t-shirts for men or shirts keep you company. Make sure the shade of your chosen shirt or tee is as muted and calming as your mood though; nothing loud!
- Want to look smart yet super cool on campus? Don a printed ¾ sleeve t-shirt. There is nothing better than a pair of denims to go along with this, and sneakers are all-time winners too. Maybe add some funky sunglasses to the mix!
- ¾ sleeves shirts rock for 2 reasons; they’re extremely versatile and very appealing even to the ladies. Choose to wear one with white pants and matching loafers. This will make for a great staycation or vacation look, especially when exploring the city is on your agenda.
- Add some ‘hipness’ to your style! Get into a ¾ sleeves printed tee and a pair of shorts. Now, finish with colorful socks and canvas sneakers along with a baseball cap.
- Another winning combination is the cap + ¾ types of sleeves shirt and shorts outfit! You can wear this if you’re going to watch a football game, or also for a game night with your friends. Trust us, it won’t disappoint.
- That brings us to the end of our list, but it should just be the start of yours! It’s time to figure out what makes you look your best, and then experiment the hell out of it. Now’s a good time as any, so get going.