This iconic menswear shirt has been a style staple for longer than you probably realize. When thinking about the short-sleeve shirt, certain brands come to mind — Lacoste, Fred Perry, and Ralph Lauren all had a hand in making the modern polo shirt popular, and they’re still making the best ones you’ll want to score this season.
While the polo shirt made it big in everyday menswear back in the ‘80s, the sportsman shirt you know today was really a tennis shirt created by René Lacoste. Using the most popular polo shirt fabric (cotton piqué), Lacoste ditched the button-down tennis whites used back in the ‘20s after being sick of rolling up his sleeves. The Lacoste tennis shirt was short-sleeved and had a “tennis tail” that added a few centimeters to the back, and it quickly became popular with polo players as well. Fred Perry (another tennis player) soon became Lacoste’s competition off the court with his own tennis shirts. Jump a few decades forward to the ‘70s when Ralph Lauren created his polo logo, and his polo shirt became the big seller in the ‘80s to the country club and WASP-set.
All three brands still make stellar options of polo shirts, and they’re far from basic. From interesting fabric choices to playful prints, you’ll want to make the polo shirt a staple of your warm-weather wardrobe every year. Check out the best options from these key polo shirt players and other brands.
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Slim, sleek, and oh so soft, All Saints’ Brace polo is a safe bet for a polo shirt that any man will look great in. The carbon brushed cotton feels seriously soft and comfortable to wear from your 9-to-5 till happy hour, while the hidden-button detail and slim-fit are perfect for looking effortlessly cool.