Your Ten Best Polos for Spring

Our favorite knit button up continues its domination into S/S 24. We’ve got 10 great options you’re absolutely going to want…

Sure, it’s still your business casual Friday hero, but as we lean into the warmer days of spring, polos are getting more than their previous fair share of attention. The classic OG version is always King, but lately our editors have embarked on, and found, this season’s fresh takes that play freely with technical fabrics and unexpected materials. All these have come together to create our top 10 list of great polos you should be adding to your wardrobe right now.

But before we get into our list, let’s review some ground rules on what exactly makes a great polo.

First, there’s fabric quality. This one should be self-explanatory, but worth repeating – Look for shirts made from high-quality materials, whatever that material may be, from pima cotton, technical blends, merino wool, etc. etc. The fabric should feel soft, breathable, and durable. Avoid shirts made from cheap, thin materials that are prone to shrinking or losing shape after washing (looking at you, Amazon $7 specials).

Next, let’s talk construction and stitching. High-quality shirts will have evenly spaced, tight stitching with no loose threads. Reinforced seams, especially along the collar and cuffs, indicate better durability. And while it may seem like a small thing (because they kind of are) – Pay attention to the buttons on the polo shirt. High-quality shirts will feature durable buttons that are securely attached. They should be easy to button and unbutton without feeling flimsy or loose.

Also, while¬† technically part of construction, this is important enough to call out on its own. The collar of the polo shirt is a crucial detail. Regardless of whether it’s flat, spread or rolled, the collar should be sturdy and well-constructed in order to maintain its shape over time. Otherwise it really won’t matter how great the rest of the shirt looks. Bad collar = bad polo. Period. Full stop.

Finally, we have fit and cut. Your polo should fit comfortably in the chest and roomy in the stomach (that goes for tailored and slim fits as well). Check for proper proportions in the sleeves, collar, and length. A good polo sleeve should start right at the shoulder bone, and end mid-bicep. For collars, you should be able to button it all the way up and have enough room to slide two fingers in-between your shirt and your neck. The length should fall to right around mid point of your pant/short/trouser zipper.

So now that you have those ground rules in mind, let’s get to our list!

THE NEW CLASSIC

That’s not a contradiction in terms. Perk’s Feel Good Polo is a master class in taking the classic polo look and modernizing it in a way that’s fresh, but not so trendy as to be outdated by the next season. The cut is modern and tapered, but clean (no overt logos or outrageous patterns). The material is top shelf – 60% Peruvian Cotton and 40% polyester, ensuring both comfort and durability. The mid-weight fabric boasts moisture-wicking, anti-pilling and stay true colors that maintain wash after wash. The stay flat collar requires zero ironing (nor does the 4-way stretch material in the rest of the shirt). Comes in seven color options, including this Ink Blue (shown below). All in all, we have zero notes on this fellow other than to say: buy. it. now.

Perk Clothing, Feel Good Polo $71.20

(on Sale NOW from $89)

THE O.G.

This is the polo your Dad wore with wild abandon…and probably with a solid pair of Dickies or J. Crew chinos. The cotton blend Ottoman, ribbed three-button collar and of course, the embroidered green crocodile on the chest all make up the one-and-only Lacoste Classic Sport Polo. Color options are pretty endless, but really, is there any choice more iconic than tennis white?

Lacoste, Classic Sport Polo $79.95

(on Sale NOW from $110)

THE RETRO

If the Lacoste was the OG your Dad was sporting, the retro was all Grandad. Textured, woven knit construction with a bottom that blouses rather than falling straight at the hips. This version by System nails that 70s vibe with its wide, spread collar. This is a shirt that just begs for Bermuda shorts and Tom Collins on the patio.

System, Knitted Cotton Polo Shirt $264

(on Sale NOW from $378)

THE MOD

Digging even deeper into the back of Grandad’s closet, we have the Mod polo. Far Afield’s version gives you all the cultural nostalgia exploitation you’re craving from a 60s inspo polo. Vertical ribbing, horizontal stripes, in a regular fit from 100% cotton, this masterpiece is complete with classic polo touches like a two-button placket and straight hem. This vibe is giving Paul Newman, with a touch of early Steve McQueen.

Far Afield, Leroy Short Sleeve Polo $70

(on Sale NOW from $140)

THE LUXE

Price point no object? There’s a polo for that. Namely Ralph Lauren’s 100% pure, decadent cashmere polo. This navy blue beauty sports a fine-knit weave, so it feels light and luxe. True to brand, the collar and sleeves are done in a ribbed style, but unlike the more famous cotton version, the hem on this is slightly tapered, making it easy to tuck into your dress trousers. Add a sports blazer and some Common Projects and your elevated business casual wardrobe is complete.

Polo Ralph Lauren, Fine-Knit Cashmere Polo Shirt $398

THE NO BUTTON

Not everyone is a fan of the button look. Some guys find the whole button concept less elegant and don’t like how it ‘interrupts the flow’. This straight hem, fine-knit cotton version by Tagliatore is completely buttonless, allowing you to have that open collar look, yet still maintain that elevated air that goes oh-so well with your pleated pants and loafers. We’re digging this warm stone beige version, but there are eight other color options as well to fit your sans-button needs.

Tagliatore, Knitted Polo Shirt $190

THE LONG SLEEVE

As you’re most likely already aware, you don’t have to limit yourself to just a short sleeve option in a polo. A long sleeve polo can easily take the place of your favorite v-neck sweater. This French terry version by Haggar takes a stylish approach with little touches like a self collar (i.e. made from the same material as the garment) as well as non-cuffed sleeve ends to give it a more tailored look. Comes in four color options including this on-trend red, and as the brand is known for, it comes in generous size options including Big and Tall.

Haggar, French Terry Polo Shirt $90

THE TECHNICAL

Technology is a beautiful thing…especially when you demand mobility and moisture-wicking that stands up just as admirably during your golf, tennis or racquetball game as at the club bar afterwards. Made from super breathable, moisture-wicking, technical poly material, the Springer polo by J. McLaughlin will keep you cool and collected in the heat. Comes in nine color and pattern options, but our editors were immediately drawn towards this icy blue choice.

J. McLaughlin, Springer Polo $118

THE PERFORMANCE

Okay, you say you’re an outdoorsy, active guy, but the thought of technical fabrics leaves your skin feeling the itch. If only there was a natural solution that had all the outstanding cool-under-pressure performance and nothing for your chemically sensitive skin to get out of shape about. May we introduce you to Smartwool? Their short sleeve polo is a blend of ZQ-certified merino wool (sourced from responsible farms) and natural hemp. How’s that work? Well, merino wool is lightweight, breathable and naturally temperature regulating. Hemp is naturally odor resistant, flexible and strong. Put those together and you have an organic powerhouse of a shirt that’ll have you hiking in your happy place all day long (even if the “hiking” only involves going from the grill to the cooler).

Smartwool, Merino Hemp Blend Polo Shirt $40

THE GREEN MOTHER

Finally in rounding out our list, we’d be remiss if we didn’t touch on the greener options available out there. If helping the planet is just as important as looking great, then check out The Atlantic polo by Fair Harbor. Made from a mix of 52% organic cotton and 48% recycled polyester (that’s 9 whole recycled plastic bottles worth) this polo is buttery soft and breathable. It features a modern and trim cut, and designed for a casual day on the beach or night out, making it the perfect transitional piece. Comes in seven color options including (wait for it) this cool, blue-green.

Fair Harbor, The Atlantic Polo $64

 

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