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Get Back to Basics With a White Button-Up Shirt

Vogue logo Vogue 3/4/2021 Madeline Fass
Liu Wen wearing a dress © Photographed by Zoe Ghertner, *Vogue*, August 2019

Similar to a great pair of jeans, a classic sneaker, or a basic tee, the white button-up shirt is a wardrobe essential every closet should have. Whether it’s an office-ready oxford dress shirt, a relaxed button-up, or a more inventive take on the poplin blouse, white shirting is a must-have no matter the season (or decade, for that matter). It’s one of those timeless foundation pieces that gets a ton of wear, which makes investing in one you love that much more important.

Take a billowing longer button-up, like Avenue’s version, to the beach and wear it open with a bikini for a crisp cover-up. Pair one—we like this classic from Theory—with a full skirt à la Carolina Herrera for an elegant black-tie look that will always look great. Or wear it with all the other wardrobe staples—jeans, a blazer, and a pair of hoops—and there you have what is essentially a very chic outfit.

Given the garment’s versatility, there is an overwhelming assortment of options—fit, fabric, silhouette, and price are all considerations to bear in mind. Here, we’ve selected the best white button-ups at every price and style. Whether you’re refreshing your wardrobe or simply in the market for a new white shirt (you can never have too many!), get back to basics with these 30 button-ups.

Crisp Classics

These slim-fit poplin oxford work shirts are a no-fuss style staple. Easy to tuck in, they’ll look just as good with jeans and flats as they will under a blazer.

a man in a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Theory fitted shirt in Good Cotton

$255.00, THEORY

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a man wearing a costume © Provided by Vogue

Everlane the Japanese oxford shirt

$68.00, EVERLANE

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a close up of a man © Provided by Vogue

Nili Lotan N.L. shirt

$295.00, NILI LOTAN

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a man wearing a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Alex Mill Bobby shirt in paper cotton

$98.00, ALEX MILL

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a person posing for the camera © Provided by Vogue

J.Crew slim-fit stretch cotton poplin shirt

$80.00, J.CREW

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a man in a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

A.P.C. Gina shirt

$210.00, A.P.C.

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Borrowed From the Boys

For a laid-back look, consider one of these oversized silhouettes. Layer it under a chunky knit come winter, or wear it open over a swimsuit in the summer. With its loose, relaxed fit, the styling opportunities are endless.

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Tibi classic shirting oversized shirt

$295.00, SHOPBOP

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Frame x Mejuri clean collared shirt

$278.00, FRAME

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a man wearing a hat © Provided by Vogue

Gap big shirt in poplin

$55.00, GAP

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a man wearing a hat © Provided by Vogue

Totême oversized cotton poplin shirt

$360.00, MATCHESFASHION.COM

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a man wearing a hat © Provided by Vogue

Entireworld organic cotton giant shirt

$125.00, ENTIREWORLD

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a person in a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Avenue Sienna shirt

$150.00, AVENUE

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All in the Details

The essential white button-up shirt gets a stylish update thanks to the addition of puffed sleeves, ruffled collars, contrast stitching, and more adventurous adornments.

a man wearing a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Veronica Beard Gilan puff-sleeve button-down top

$295.00, BERGDORF GOODMAN

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a person with collar shirt © Provided by Vogue

Christopher Esber cotton poplin button-down shirt

$495.00, MODA OPERANDI

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a man wearing a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Ganni cotton poplin blouse

$185.00, GANNI

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a man that is standing in the snow © Provided by Vogue

Camilla and Marc Cedar relaxed shirt

$300.00, CAMILLA AND MARC

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a person with collar shirt © Provided by Vogue

Helmut Lang tie-detail cotton poplin shirt

$395.00, NET-A-PORTER

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a person posing for the camera © Provided by Vogue

Lafayette 148 Italian stretch cotton Carlson shirt

$299.00, LAFAYETTE 148

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With the Band

No collar? No problem. Consider one of these menswear-inspired band-collar blouses for a more minimal take on the white shirting style.

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Cos bell-sleeve fitted shirt

$89.00, COS

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3.1 Phillip Lim the boyfriend shirt

$175.00, PHILLIP LIM

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a man wearing a hat © Provided by Vogue

Uniqlo oversized long-sleeve shirt

$40.00, UNIQLO

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a person with collar shirt © Provided by Vogue

Equipment Tomassia button-up shirt

$195.00, EQUIPMENT

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a person posing for the camera © Provided by Vogue

Wardrobe.NYC Release 05 band-collar cotton poplin shirt

$450.00, MATCHESFASHION.COM

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a man wearing a suit and tie © Provided by Vogue

Anna Quan Amina gathered button-down shirt

$380.00, INTERMIX

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The Poplin Alternative

Not all white button-ups are created equal. In fact, these breezy soft linens, slick satins, and stretchy jersey options offer year-round alternatives to the classic shirt.

a man in a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Le Sirenuse Positano Sparrow linen shirt

$353.00, MATCHESFASHION.COM

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a man wearing a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Bite Studios organic silk-satin shirt

$500.00, NET-A-PORTER

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a man in a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Leset Dylan stretch-jersey shirt

$160.00, NET-A-PORTER

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a man wearing a suit and tie © Provided by Vogue

Grayson the Hero button-up feathered flannel

$158.00, GRAYSON

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a man wearing a white shirt © Provided by Vogue

Cuyana silk button-down shirt

$145.00, CUYANA

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a person posing for the camera © Provided by Vogue

AYR the Poolside linen shirt

$135.00, AYR

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