Despite their simplicity, basics aren’t always an easy thing to get right. With fewer frills and flash to distract from potentially imperfect silhouettes and proportions, it's all up to the tailoring and quality to deliver. Since we're always on a quest to find which basics reign supreme, today, we’re venturing back to square one with the humble white tee. A wardrobe building block, white t-shirts for the fashion set are very much like opinions for everyone else-every has one. Yet it does takes some trial and error to figure out which works for your styling needs and body. To save you the effort (and money) of test-driving every single white t-shirt out there, we turned to the people most likely qualified to weigh in on the subject: stylists.
Along with safety pins, double-sided fashion tape, and arsenals of lint rollers, every good stylist keeps a white tee or two within their on set prop kit, so it's no surprise that their recommendations are right on the mark. From Insecure's costume designer to Gabrielle Union's stylist and more, I asked 11 of today's top stylists to give me their unfiltered opinions on the best white tees around. Whether you're shopping on a budget or looking for something luxe, there are plenty of great options ahead.
"Jean Colonna’s sheer, ribbed tank tops changed the tank top game for me. I discovered them while working for Carine Roitfeld and nothing has compared to them since - complete perfection. I come across them from time to time on eBay or vintage shopping so I have a few in my kit. My favorite t-shirt of all time is a very soft, worn-in one I stole from another stylist's kit, Kathryn Typaldos. I wear it all the time! But other than that, its less about the brand and more about how well it fits a particular client. Acne, Dries and Uniqlo t-shirts have never steered me wrong in fit, shape or colors."–Shiona
Right now though my go-to-tank is from K.ngsley. I love how the brand has reinvented and elevated the tank top with interesting cut-outs and colors, and the quality is superb."– Shiona
"This Rosetta Getty t-shirt is a favorite for shoots and my clients. The not too short, not too long sleeve length is incredibly flattering and feels really modern."– Thomas
"To me, the ideal white t-shirt is soft, yet not too clingy, and without a super short sleeve. Overall I typically prefer a more relaxed silhouette. For shoots, layering, and just all-around greatness, I stock up on packs of Hanes Tagless tees for men. After washing they tend to develop a more lived-in look that I love." –Rebecca
"I've also been wearing Entireworld's Easy T, a roomier tee that is slightly cropped which looks so good with mid-to-high rise pants. Another plus–it's made with soft recycled cotton."
"My favorite white t-shirt is one from The Row. My mentor and friend, Matt Henson, gifted me a white short sleeve t-shirt years ago and it’s perfect. At the time I was going through a James Dean phase, wearing only white tees and denim. They’re so simple but so special (the label is made of metal instead of your typical woven)." –Corey
"Jungmaven tees fit and drape like they're vintage– the best kind of compliment in my book–but they're actually made of low impact hemp and organic cotton." –Rachael
"I love this t-shirt because of its versatility– it's the perfect piece coordinate with many fashionable looks. However, most importantly, as a costume designer for curvy women, all body types can wear this style." –Timothy
"It can seem pretty unusual but all my white tank tops and t-shirts are vintage from the 80s-90s! They belonged to my uncle when he was a kid, so I still have tons of them. They're from the classic French brand Petit Bateau in girls' size 12, and really are the best ones ever! They're the perfect fit–not too large, and not too tight. But also kind of sexy...? Well, at least I feel sexy in them! Even after all these years, they're still available."–Emma
“The white tee is not only just a staple, it’s almost like a badge of honor–you really can’t have enough! When I’m on set I want to be comfortable and feel like I’m in my own skin. This tee from The Front General Store in Dumbo is a special secret of mine for their cotton tees from Japan and vintage band tees.” –Ian
"My go-to tank is the Hanes boys ribbed tank. Truly classic and economical! I wear one every day and have used them on countless shoots." –Karolyn
"I love a weighted tee from Buck Mason and Everlane. I love the structure of a weighted tee because it feels way more elevated; like I’m wearing an actual shirt and not a flimsy undergarment." –Douglas
For my prop kit I love the t-shirts from Re/done. The fit and the fabric never fails and works for everybody type. My former boss at Glamour loved these and she sort of passed it down to me."
"This is my favorite little white tank by Orseund Iris. I love the cut and the logo! I have a tendency to wear white tanks with everything and this piece is perfect for layering. Definitely a wardrobe staple for me!" –Mel'Reneé