First 10 Mens Dress Shirts You Should Buy

First 10 Mens Dress Shirts You Should Buy


Welcome back to the Gentleman’s Gazette! In today’s video, we discuss the 10 first
dress shirts every man should own. Dress shirts are one of the most important
style basics in your wardrobe and most men have dress shirts but often, they don’t quite
work with the rest of their wardrobe and so over the years, I have had
hundreds of dress shirts and I learned a thing or two, so if I would have to do it all over
again, these are the 10 first dress shirts I would start with in a collection. This is based on how timeless something is,
how versatile it is, and how complete it is. While dress shirts form the foundation of
a classic man’s wardrobe, they’re often overlooked in favor of suits, shoes, or accessories,
however, if you get your first dress shirts wrong, it’s much harder to combine them with
other things and you may not get the wear out of them you desire. So with these 10 dress shirts, you’ll basically
be equipped for all classic men’s style outfits yet you really cover just the basics so you
don’t spend more money than you ultimately have to. Basically, there are always three main considerations;
one is the color shirt, then the type of fabric, as well as the shirt details. The very first I would suggest you invest
in is a plain white solid dress shirt in a plain weave. I suggest to go with a medium spread collar
as well as barrel cuffs because it allows you to wear it in more formal and less formal
settings but it’s something you can pair with jeans or denim, as well as with a very formal
business suit. I suggest to go with a medium weight fabric
because it’s something you can wear year-round. If it’s too thin, it’s just appropriate for
summer. If it’s too thick, you can only wear it during
the colder months of the year and overall, you want something that’s as versatile as
possible when you’re just starting out. Personally, I’m a big fan of cufflinks and
for that, you need a double cuff or a French cuff, however, I suggest not to opt for those
in your very first shirt because it’s an additional expense and you’re just starting out, you’re
better off investing money in your first shirt. For a traditional placket, I suggest you get
a French style which means there’s no additional piece of fabric; it is sewn underneath the
buttons, it’s just a clean very neat seam. On top of that, I suggest you skip the pocket
simply because a shirt pocket is really not meant to be used and it will always destroy
the seal of either your shirt or your jacket so there’s really no need to have shirt pockets
in the first place. That being said, a lot of off-the-rack shirts
come with shirt pockets. I have a few shirts in my wardrobe that I
got vintage or used that have the shirt pockets but if I go custom and I have the option,
I always skip the pocket. The second shirt I would invest in would be
a fancy weave white dress shirt with double cuffs or French cuffs. I’m wearing one like that right now. It has a subtle waffle pattern weave which
makes it slightly different than a plain weave in the sense that if you look at it very closely
and the light shines in a certain direction, you can see it has a pattern, however, from
a few feet away or a few meters away, you think it’s a solid shirt with a nice depth
of color. Again, skip the pocket and if you went with
a French placket before, go with a shirt placket around this time simply so you have a range
of different things in your wardrobe. It just creates a more symmetrical look especially
when you wear a bowtie. If you wear a necktie, it doesn’t matter because
your shirt placket is covered up anyways. If you don’t want a waffle weave, a very popular
pattern is a small herringbone pattern weave. Look for a very fine weave because that’s
something that will stand the test of time. Again, for a collar I would go with a classic
medium spread collar because it suits every face shape, it works with tie knots, bow ties,
or as an open collar. The third dress shirt should be a light blue
dress shirt. It should be made of a medium fabric, ideally,
plain weave. Again, barrel cuffs, no pocket and French
placket. If I say light blue, you’ll encounter probably
500 different shades of light blue and what you choose is ultimately up to you and your
taste. I find a lighter shade of light blue that
is more pastel in color is more versatile especially in the beginning. Your fourth dress shirt should again be a
light blue shirt but now, make sure that the color shade is slightly different than the
one you had previously. You can go darker, you can go lighter, just
make sure it’s different. Also, for the fabric itself, I suggest you
get maybe something in a twill weave because it’s a new small weave pattern that you don’t
already have and it’s a very classic thing, it is hard wearing and it’s particularly good
in a slightly heavier fabric maybe for winter because you want to have a variety of shirts
in your wardrobe. Of course, if you live in a place where it’s
always cold, you should get shirts that are heavier with a fabric. If you live in a tropical climate, only get
shirts that are lighter in weight. I’ll suggest you go with double cuffs and
if you want to experiment with a collar here, you can do so. Maybe you get a slightly larger collar, not
a small collar, and make sure overall, it’s just something that works out well for you. If your other light blue shirt has barrel
cuffs or button cuffs, opt for a French cuff here just to give you more versatility. To learn more about dress shirt styles and
how to choose a collar, please check out this video here. The fifth dress shirt I would invest in would
be an ivory color. It should be distinctly different from white
if you hold them next to each other, however, it’s so close to white on its own that most
people would never realize you’re not wearing a plain white dress shirt, however, plain
white works really best with dark colors. It could be a dark green, dark blue, dark
charcoal, or black, however, when you pair it with warmer colors such as brown, all of
a sudden, the white just looks wrong. It’s especially true if you pair a white dress
shirt with tweed, the contrast is too stark and it doesn’t work as well. This is when the ivory shirt really shines,
it’s super versatile because you can wear it with a business suit in charcoal or a navy
but you can also wear it with much warmer tones or summer suits and it will always look
more appropriate than the plain white shirt. In terms of details, the choice here is really
up to you. If you wear more cufflinks, go with a French
cuff. If you don’t have cufflinks, go with a barrel
cuff. If you already got the basics covered, the
ivory shirt is just a shirt that I would bring when I travel and because of that, I would
probably get it in a barrel cuff because that would allow me to with more casual outfits
as well as formal business suits. The sixth shirt you should invest in is a
striped shirt with a white background in a blue stripe. The size of the blue stripe is up to you. I’d stay away from extreme fine ones or extreme
bold ones, go with something in the middle down the line because that will work well
with all kinds of solid suits. It adds another pattern and you can then either
go with a solid tie or have a patterned tie as well. Something that works particularly well are
small Macclesfield neats micro patterns and you can learn more about what ties I would
recommend in this video here and we also talk about how to combine your shirt with your
accessories so head over here you want to learn more about that. The seventh shirt is likewise a striped shirt
but this time, I’d suggest you go with a light blue background and a white stripe. Ideally, the stripe should be different from
what you already had so I’d suggest go more with a finer stripe rather than with a bolder
stripe because you want it to be super versatile. Again, a finer stripe will look more like
a solid from afar but it will add a different color depth; it works well from close-up because
even if you have a pattern, let’s say a stripe and a tie, the stripe is so fine that it works
really well together. The eighth shirt I would invest in would be
a checked shirt and can either be a light blue check on a white background or you can
maybe go with a red and blue check on a white background. It just adds an additional color to your shirt
wardrobe and red and blue are staples in a classic man’s wardrobe so you’ll always be
able to wear it, it never looks out of place, it’ll look good with a blazer. If you wear it more casually, again, go with
a button-down collar because it works well with checked shirts. I would also opt for the button cuffs, not
the French cuffs because you will likely be wearing this kind of shirt more in a casual
environment. The ninth shirt I would suggest you invest
in is an Oxford cloth button-down shirt. It’s an American staple, it’s a very hard-wearing
cloth. I’ll get it in a light blue color because
the Oxford fabric has strands of different colors in white and blue so it gives a nice
color effect in the light but you can also wear it with a suit or without a suit when
you work. It’s just a shirt that will stay in your wardrobe
for a long time and to learn more about the Oxford cloth button-down shirt all its details
what to look for what to skip you can check out this in-depth video guide here. Last but not least, the 10th dress shirt I
would invest in, in this day and age, is a soft washed denim dress shirt. 10-15 years ago, it wasn’t really something
that men would actually wear. In recent years, it has become so popular
that men stock loads of them. In general, a soft washed denim dress shirt
really tones down any kind of formal garment you have. So if you are only in a white collar environment,
it may not be the ideal thing for work but it’s definitely something you could wear in
your off time, otherwise, you can always tone down your suits or basically any kind of outfit
with this kind of soft washed denim shirt. I know one could argue that is a fairly recent
invention and it may not stand the test of time and while you were right about that,
with the general casualization of men’s wardrobe, I’m pretty sure it’ll still be around in 10
years, we’ll see. in today’s video I am wearing a classic white
fancy weave shirt with a small waffle pattern it has a shirt placket French cuffs and a
medium spread collar as well as mother of pearl buttons if you want to learn more about
what distinguishes a low end shirt from a high-end shirt please check out this video
here my cufflinks are gold monkey-fist cufflinks from Fort Belvedere which you can find at
our shop here they are very timeless and classic and if you invest in your first 10 dress shirts
this would be the cufflink I would wear with it because you can always wear it if there
was one other pair I would get one in silver because you can really wear it for very formal
evening events or not so formal board meetings or even to the office it’s just a cufflink
that you will never regret having bought my jacket is green and it’s part of a suit it’s
single breasted it’s a slightly heavier fabric with a really nice color depth I combined
it with a dark green madder silk tie from Fort Belvedere which you can find in our shop
there’s enough contrast there especially because of the white shirt and I combined it with
a pocket square that picks up the green tones and just ties it all together my slacks are
also part of a suit they’re kind of brown and off-white houndstooth flannel and they
contrast well the texture of my jacket but because the colors are all so soft and warm
it all works together my shoes are dark green suede tassel loafers that pick up the brown
tones of my pants as well as the green tones of my jacket and tie thus tying it all together
the socks I’m wearing here are brown and green shadow stripe socks from Fort Belvedere picking
up the brown tones and green tones once again thus creating an harmonious outfit now if you enjoyed this video make sure to
check out all of our videos about dress shirts sign up to our channel so stuff like this
comes right to your in box

100 Replies to “First 10 Mens Dress Shirts You Should Buy”

  1. I must say, I really enjoy your 'First' series! It helps many professional and style-conscious young men like myself have a starting point. I followed your advice regarding the three first dress shoes and I couldn't be happier! Keep up the good work!

  2. That last shirt gave me a great idea for a future video. 10 common fashion trends that might make the jump to classic style in 50 years.

  3. Great video Raphael! Ive been on the hunt for an ivory shirt as per your recommendation but theyre rather hard to come across! Also, i love your green suit at 6:49 – really great style and fit on you!

  4. Once again, great video! Please do the first 5 color trousers or chinos we should buy. Gentleman's Gazette is the best classic style video on YouTube!

  5. I needed this video, thank you. I do hate the fact I always have to take them to the taylor. Nothing fits me off the rack

  6. Again a truly helpful and informative video some excellent suggestions on building a solid shirt foundation just one question and perhaps it's an oversight on my part however I don't think there was any mention of contrasting collars or club collars as part of that building shirt foundation thanks for the video!

  7. Great advice! I'm just thinking of getting some new shirts. For this kind of lists I think some sort of round up at the end of the video would be nice.

  8. I recently discovered your channel, and I can describe it as very well documented. Your way of speaking of this subject is clear, even if I miss certain "technical terms" (all the types of collars, cuffs… Being French doesn't help either ,I think).
    I try to make my way to a more "adult-looking" style but it is rather hard, being 17 years old and unable to purchase high-end clothes (studies cost a lot ), but I try to do my best to stay out of the teenager style. I recently found some nice looking sport suit on sales with something I only recently noticed : one or two big pockets on the sides, without a "cover" to open them, opened on the top. Could you please explain me what type of suit this is, and your opinion on those ?

  9. Well as an 18-year-old fresh out of high school I found this guide very helpful! I've been watching your videos and reading your articles and they have all been so informative! Thanks!

  10. YES! Requested this video months ago. So glad this happened! How many ounces would you consider a "medium weight" dress shirt? I always look forward to your weekly videos.

  11. I would like a suggestion: i have a dark gray shirt that fits me very well, how could i combine it to look more stylish? I would hate to eliminate it from my wardrobe as it's hard for me to find proper fitting garments, so please share your thoughts.

  12. I really don't like normal plackets. They don't look very good without a necktie or bowtie i.e unbuttoned and when you wear a necktie you can't see the placket anyway so what's the point of them? I always get french plackets and no chest pockets on my shirts; it makes them a lot more versatile and elegant in my opinion.

  13. I thought you didnt wear a button down collar shirt with a suit? Hmm im confused. I watched your other video first before this one. You said no suits which is more professional.

  14. I would argue that nobody really needs 10 Shirts at all. That kind of goes against my initial reason to start dressing more classic, which is to buy fewer, but higher quality pieces of clothing. 10 Shirts just seem quite a lot to be honest.

  15. Hey Raphael I love your videos, they are very useful to me and as a 19 yo, I hope to look as stylish and elegant like you in the future. Keep it up man!

  16. As a soon to be college grad, these videos are extremely helpful. They really help me focus my purchases and get the most versatile use for my money. Thanks Sven!!

  17. Class as usual! I liked the focus on fabric and weave as well as colour and style. Though I buy off the rack I'm always looking out for unusual shirts – unusual designs, patterns and colours

  18. I dont have denim `dress` shirt but it would go very well with a burgundy wool tie.
    How about pink shirts?

    Are yu planning to make a video about the Winchester shirts? Its history and how to wear it.

  19. Just a bit awkward you don't mention to consider the wearer's own skin color. I don't think white is as versatile at all for a very light skinned person, compared to a light blue. White looks very out of place with any non-formal wear…

  20. Raphael: No one has done a video discussing classic belt buckle options, specifically the classic plaque or engine turned sterling buckles. I’d love to buy one, but before shelling out the funds for a Tiffany buckle I’d like to know when and how to wear it. Thank you!

  21. I demand a video about Aran sweaters! I know you've discussed sweaters in the past but Aran sweaters/cable knit sweaters are my favorite things to wear wherever I go be it fall, winter, or spring. They go perfectly with pretty much anything and I can't wait to wear my sweater with my new Cole Haan oxfords :D.

  22. best item on the list: Ivory Shirt (good luck finding them). worst item on the list: denim shirt (very much over rated.

  23. For shirt pockets, if you a seam ripper and enough confidence in your skills, you can take them off. It’s what I’ve done for all my shirts that had one

  24. Sir i own Lavender, Baby Pink, Light Green, Pale Yellow Shirts and some Flannel Shirts too in addition to this video 🙂

  25. Hey Sven, off topic – i know you dislike backpacks, and i agree, but what do you think of the fancy leather tech backpacks from Allen Edmonds? Btw I found your channel recently, binge watched about 35 vids and I really appreciate your time and effort. Also your attention to people who don't have Patrick Bateman's physique… Thank you

  26. Your shirts seem tight. Is there a reason for that? I prefer to wear a t-shirt under my shirts, it makes them seem to fit properly.

  27. How can you match and mix fabrics in formal and casual wear? Because my father didn’t teach me how to wear properly, I always desire to dress like a gentleman.

  28. This may have been covered elsewhere, but it would be helpful to know what brands these shirts shown in the video are. I’d like to order the same styles.

  29. You won't believe how many times I watched this video . So thank you so much . It's so helpful
    would you be nice and make a video about first 10 pants ?

  30. For the coming fall and winter you should do a guide on leather jackets. Classic styles, different leathers (cow hide, lambskin, goatskin), some history of the leather jacket and their usage in everyday life, as well as where and how to wear them. Love all of your videos.

  31. Dress shirts (what a silly name to begin with) are horrible pieces of clothing. Difficult to iron, sometimes overpriced, restrain your movements and have such a weird looking and feeling in my opinion. Walking around in one of those things at any temperature above 25 C is a nightmare. People only wear them because they expect other people would do so in so called "formal" situations. The thing I hate the most about them is the pointless set of buttons all the way across the torso. I would redesign it completely closed at the front and replace the blazer by a sweater when the weather is appropriate.

  32. I've always thought denim looked bad on any model and in any situation when compared with something else. I totally disagree with that being one of the shirts to buy.

  33. Thank You so much for this Video Raphael!! Personally, I feel like this is the most useful "Men's Classic Wardrobe" video I have seen to date, and I've watched quite a few. For some reason, I have found Dress Shirts the most challenging item to understand in a Men's Classic Wardrobe, thus far.

    While I have seen several resources on where to emphasize quality and $$, I have taken note of those videos, and generally taken the inside-out approach to building a classic wardrobe: beginning with items I get dressed into first (eg: body layer items), and addressing things like accessories and jackets/outerwear last. This made the most sense to me for my line of work (Engineering), where the exact nature of the work can vary from more hands-on, to more office oriented. Thus, suits are necessary for important meetings, but not on a daily basis. Impressions are important in my community, but function is King in that world.

    While my challenges with both understanding, and seeing color (I have some colorblindness) probably played a significant roll in my effort to understand Dress Shirt characteristics, the overall color challenge feels extra challenging for the 2% of the population that has red hair (Low Contrast that will likely change to Medium Contrast as I age and my Hair turns from Red to White). Furthermore, I can not afford/justify custom shirts at this juncture.

    The "White Dress Shirt" expectation in particular, feels like a catch 22!! If I do not wear one, I'm "breaking the formality rules", but if I wear one, it lends itself to a High Contrast look, as the most formal suits are dark (eg Charcoal Grey and Navy). Would it be appropriate to wear an "off-white" (Ivory, Cream, Ecru, etc?) Dress Shirt in a Formal Business situation (eg an Interview) with a Charcoal or Navy suit? If not, what would you suggest, and why?

    Lastly, it seems like there are so many more physical details that require attention in Dress Shirts. The Dress Shirt feels like the "busiest" piece of clothing in the entire outfit, regardless of formality level. The Dress Shirt appears to interface with nearly every other piece of clothing, in addition to the face. It requires in-depth knowledge in the areas of: History/Culture, Etiquette/Formality, Fit, Function, Fabric Properties & Construction Methods, Colors & Patterns, and how each of the former attributes apply to every other item in the outfit. In short, it felt like I needed to learn nearly everything else about a classic wardrobe before I could understand the Dress Shirt's role.

    That said, this video created an excellent framework to guide my first Dress Shirt purchases (very practical). More importantly, it illustrated the critical elements that required my attention, and guided me to other in-depth resources. Hopefully, this detailed comment expresses the context of my struggles, what I learned, and my gratitude.

    Kind Regards,
    ~Eran Shileikis

  34. Good Lord! I just bought two good shirts and I'm broke for two months. Where do I get the money for all that? How to justify the investment?

  35. My preferred dress shirt collars are the following. Banded cutaway spread Windsor spread Varsity spread. Tab collar with a snap tab. Pin collar shirt AKA Eyelet collar and hidden button down.

  36. Dear Mr. Schneider, would you advice a young man who is just starting to invest in his "Gentlemanly" wardrobe to purchase these "fundamental" 10 shirts (like the ones you suggest) all at once, or is it better to take one's time and build up an arsenal of dress shirts over many months?
    Some bespokeMTM outfitters offer discounts if you order more shirts at once, and I'm curious to know what you would do if you were in my shoes.
    Thank you for the great video, as always! I never miss them!

  37. Pursuing my bachelors currently in a field that requires showing up to a lot of events and first impressions are essential. I’m come from a very middle class back ground this site has been amazingly helpful

  38. I would think you wouldn't go wrong with 10 white Oxford cloth shirts. No one would notice anything amiss especially if they are clean and pressed

  39. Very informative Mr Raphael !! May I request you to make a video for "What should be the collection a Dark/Short Men should have in his wardrobe"
    This will also help a major chunk of dark skinned Asian men !!
    Regards,
    Dr Kiran

  40. Are there companion videos for jackets and pants that go well with these shirts apart from your standard suit?

  41. I agree with 1-4. I'm not so sure about the checked shirts. They go out of fashion. Stripes also can depend on how you want to use the shirt. For a suit I personally prefer plain color shirts.

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