It’s true: we all love a white t-shirt. For decades, the simple cotton basic has perhaps become the most prolific item in our wardrobes and transcends even the quickest of micro trends. But that’s not to say that the silhouette itself doesn’t change.
In 2019, Hailey Bieber was papped wearing an oversized t-shirt as a dress, paired with a leather blazer and knee-grazing boots. Zendaya published a selfie in 2020 also wearing an oversized white t-shirt, but as loungewear (fitting given our time in lockdown). And earlier this year Kendall Jenner paired a boxy white t-shirt under a more chic head-to-toe ensemble by The Row.
According to the founders of American basics label perfectwhitetee, Jen Menchaca and Lisa Hickey, the white t-shirt is constantly evolving even if we don’t notice it ourselves.
“We look at what’s happening in the marketplace and create styles that are within our aesthetic,” the industry creatives told GRAZIA. “We translate trends into our silhouettes which are always seasonless and basic, that you can wear year after year. Certain trends rise to prominence each year – for example, this year has been the year of the boxy, oversized crew neck – it’s a classic, comfortable look which really speaks to the collective focus on dressing for comfort more than ever.”
Menchaca and Hickey says the perfect white t-shirt comes down to “fit and fabric”. They’re talking about a quality fabric that won’t stretch and is comfortable: whatever that means to you. If you don’t know where to start (or restart if your tees need a refresh), they suggest a “classic crew-neck”. And for inspiration?
“Jennifer Aniston,” the founders recall. “She embodies the “girl next door” with a great sense of style and is seen in a basic white tee regularly. Her style is effortless and approachable.”
Shop our favourite white-shirts, below.
If you haven’t skipped our introduction above, then you already know we’re fans. Hailing from the US (and newly available in Australia from the CUT Store), perfectwhitetee is all about offering a range of cuts, fits, styles and colours in their ethically-produced range of t-shirts, tanks and loungewear. To create your ultimate capsule wardrobe.
PerfectWhiteTee Harley Crew-Neck, $110. SHOP NOW
Hailing from Japan, Uniqlo boasts brick-and-mortar stores in pretty much every major city across the globe. Why? Everyone loves the array of basics, namely the t-shirts. At an affordable price and quality that will last you several seasons, Uniqlo offers endless styles, colours and inclusive sizing.
Uniqlo Ribbed Cropped T-Shirt, $15. SHOP NOW
In recent years New Zealand-based designer Maggie Marilyn has amassed a loyal and dedicated following thanks to her whimsical gowns and ethereal style cues. In 2020 the namesake brand launched its “Somewhere” collection which slowly releases quality basics that are made to last. The boxy white t-shirt is also available in hues of bubblegum and cornflower.
Maggie Marilyn Classic White T-Shirt, $91. SHOP NOW
If you’re looking for a truly sustainable option for the perfect white t-shirt, look no further than Nico Underwear. While the brand is known for its organic cotton and hand-dyed intimates, it also offers quality loungewear. You can purchase the t-shirts on their own (in white, black and an array of pastel colours) or in a pack at a discounted rate.
Nico Crew Neck Tee, $74 (or in a pack of 3 for $189). SHOP NOW
Based out of Los Angeles since 2014, RE/DONE reimagined its concept of upcycling denim to offer t-shirts and tanks crafted from recycled material. The likes of Bella Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Selena Gomez are cult followers.
RE/DONE 90s Ribbed Cap Sleeve Tee, $150. SHOP NOW