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How to Style a Denim Shirt - Men's Outfit Ideas for Jean Shirts

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Published on Feb 14, 2020 at 09:02 pm

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You might be very surprised to hear us singing the praises of denim shirts today but they've come a long way since they entered the mainstream back in the 1980s.

Like most men's clothing, denim shirts started out as workwear. The heavy rugged material of denim shirts made it really great for miners, laborers, and cowboys. The very first denim shirts were created to last, not just to impress. Like the trench coat which has evolved from combat military attire, the denim shirt has also evolved and entered the mainstream as more of a fashion garment.

Overall, denim shirts are a great addition to any man's wardrobe, even the guy who likes to wear jackets over t-shirts, denim shirts help tone down the formality of overall outfits and add a great deal of texture that you wouldn't normally find with other dress shirts.

Denim shirts are softly structured, easy to care for and are much more wearable than their original counterparts. Fabric finishing has come quite a long way over the years. Now, denim shirts are much less likely to wrinkle, therefore, they don't really need to be ironed. Now, there are quite a few different denim shirt options out there on the market today.

Now, for the most versatility, we suggest getting something more classic, unadorned with a lot of extra embellishments. This kind of shirt can be easily dressed up with a sport coat or dressed down with a pair of chinos and it also won't go out of style in three years.

First will be the mid to light blue denim color. Now this is a uniform color across the shirt without much whiskering or acid washing. If the shirt were too dark, it would be too difficult to discern and if it were too light, the shirt would start to look dated. Make sure that you have simple buttons on your denim shirt, having snaps indicates it looks more Western. A simple barrel cuff is all you need at the edge of your sleeve, nothing too fancy and keeping a medium spread collar or a button-down is best.

Make sure you avoid buying denim shirts with a wide stiff collar, the denim shirt doesn't suit this kind of formality. Also, make sure you're skipping the contrast stitching and pockets on the shirt, these are all casual details which will take away from the formality of what you could use when wearing a denim shirt. Also, consider buying two denim shirts, one that you can wear more casually untucked and one that you can wear tucked in perhaps with a sweater.

Please keep in mind that having an untucked shirt is more of a contemporary and modern approach to style. If you would like something more classic, something tucked in would give you that option.

Let's go over four different ways in which you can wear a denim shirt. Now in general, when wearing denim, you want to make sure that you're contrasting with at least one other item in your outfit. Remember, the mid blue shade of a denim shirt will give you the most versatility compared to it's darker or lighter counterparts.

Also, you probably take note that we're not recommending that you wear multiple denim on top of denim. One per outfit is all you need. When you wear your denim shirt, make sure you don't try to wear it with a full suit. Keeping things within that smart casual level is probably as formal as you're going to want to go.

On the cooler months, you are able to wear your denim shirt with a sport coat similar to how I'm wearing today, perhaps even a tweed sport coat. The soft blue color of the denim shirt will pair beautifully with the muted tones in your tweed sport coat.

Once it starts to get warmer outside and you want to make sure you're also wearing a more elevated outfit, try wearing a linen sport coat on top of your denim shirt. From there, you can also add a pair of chinos and then a pair of loafers. Then to finish everything off, a woven belt and a great knit tie. You could also try wearing your denim shirt under a sweater.

Now, making sure that you have enough contrast between the denim shirt and the sweater choice, you could always try wearing a cardigan, a sweater vest, or even a v-neck sweater. On denim shirts, when cut appropriately, also look great on their own with a pair of great chinos.

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