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Best Flannel Shirts
There’s no better shirt that exudes a certain manly ruggedness while being extremely comfortable than the one and only flannel shirt. If you were under the assumption that flannel shirts don't have a place in today's fashion, think again. Today, men's fashion brands have found creative ways to update the flannel shirt look for the contemporary man.
Layer a flannel over a shirt for the winter, or flaunt it on its own any time of year. Either way, this extremely versatile shirt will have a place in your wardrobe. In this guide, we’ll help you navigate through picking the best flannel shirt that will suit you.
Types of Flannel Shirts
Not to be mistaken with plaid shirts, flannel is a type of soft fabric which people have originally used to work in colder weather. Plaid, however, is only the pattern of the fabric, and has been used a lot for flannel shirts which is the reason why people put one and one together.
Now, let’s see the types of flannel shirts that you can get. There is more than you think out there which can make for a versatile closet.
Flannel Shirts Styles
First, let’s take a look at the different ways flannel shirts are now offered as. It’s not only a shirt anymore. Brands now offer them in different styles where you can dress it up or dress down according to the look you’re going for.
The classic plaid flannel shirt
As mentioned before, this is the classic flannel that you must have in your wardrobe. There are many types of plaid flannels around along with different colors available. Some fashion brands market them for the grunge look, but you can also wear it to rock the smart casual look.
Lined flannel shirt to wear in the winter
Lined flannel shirts are meant to wear as an outer layer, like a jacket. They have interior wool padding to keep you warm as you wear it over a thicker sweater. This gives you an idea of how much larger it is than your classic flannel shirt. With lining comes additional pockets. This flannel shirt is a great option if you have nowhere to put your phone or your wallet.
The flannel shirt jacket for the cold season
If you want something truly meant for colder temperatures, then the flannel shirt jacket is the way to go. They will provide you the warmth you need for the winter time, and could even serve as an additional layer under a thicker coat. It’s a good idea to always keep one in your closet in case you want to style up your winter look.
Hooded flannel shirt if you want something functional
The best part of the hooded flannel shirt is, as you guessed, the hood. Unlike the other shirts, this one serves to show off your style but also protect your head from the cold and rainy days. To look the part, look for oversized options which tend to be the most comfortable.
Flannel Shirts Material
While the flannel fabric used to be referred exclusively as one material, there are different types of flannels these days that are made in multiple ways.
Cotton: Popular for its softness and often used on both sides
Wool: Flannel shirts were originally made from wool until cotton took over
Synthetic: Today, you find flannels made from all sorts of materials. Polyester and nylon are used and cheaper to produce which is why you find it a lot on the market.
Ceylon: Ceylon flannel is 50 percent wool and 50 percent cotton. The name Ceylon comes from Sri Lanka’s old name.
Best Flannel Shirts
Flannel shirts can look and feel both comfortable and stylish. There isn’t only one type of flannel shirt. Like everything, it’s difficult to find the ideal flannel shirt that fits you and your personality, and the event you’re preparing for.
No flannel shirt is made equal, so we’re here to help you by compiling a list of flannel shirts that can serve you for different purposes.
Versatility and style is at the forefront of the Nimble Made flannel shirt. Whether it’s for a picnic or a family dinner, the Nimble Made flannel shirts will have you covered. They feature roll up sleeves so you have the option of adding a touch of style to your outfit. Pair it easily with any jeans and shoes and you’re good to go.
The Nimble Made range of flannel shirts will have you covered for different settings and preferences. Go for the Blue & White Flannel for a more classic flannel look. If you prefer a more interesting flannel look, try the Navy and Blue Button Down Shirt with its vibrant contrast of dark blue and bright red. Another style worth highlighting is the Burgundy and White Flannel Button Down Shirt with its refreshing blend of colors.
Whichever flannel design you pick, you won’t be let down by the sheer comfort and quality you’ll get.
Patagonia: Sustainability and Durability
Patagonia is and has always been a strong advocate for sustainability and using production methods that do not harm the earth. Their goal is to make their clothes last longer, so it’s not like your typical fast fashion shirt that’s meant to be thrown out after five washes. Patagonia even goes as far as offering a repair service to make sure that you can make the most out of your flannel shirt.
Especially as an outdoor brand, their clothes are meant to be able to survive outdoor and rougher conditions.
NN07 for a contemporary style
Swedish brand NN07 mostly produces casual clothing with the twist of contemporary style. You’ll find more than checked flannels such as simple plain designs or grandad collars. NN07 uses premium material and produces fashionable shirts which you can pair with Oxford shoes.
Uniqlo for a minimalistic look
Uniqlo is known for its simplistic and minimalistic style. The high-street retailer offers different lines of shirts for every season and consistently updates its collection so you never run out of new options.
In fact, Uniqlo is known for its affordable prices yet good quality shirts. You’ll be able to find super-soft brushed cotton flannels which will make you want to try more.
Fjallraven sells more than just backpacks
Swedish brand Fjallraven was all the rage with their backpacks in North America. Students carried them left and rights, but that’s not all there is to the brand. Fjallraven is an outdoors brand that strives to bring back timeless pieces with their 90s looks. You’ll find flannel shirts perfect to rock the retro vibe which are equally good for the countryside or the city.
Gitman Vintage: Contemporary Prints
Gitman Vintage offers contemporary prints fit for modern fashion. If you value american made clothing, then you’ll be happy to know that Gitman Bros. production line is exclusively based in the United States.
You’ll be able to find a variety of flannel shirts, including its most popular piece: the oxford-button down. It’s simple, classy, and fashionable. It’s a brand you definitely need to check out if you’re aiming to rock the contemporary american style.
Like Gitman Bros, Filson is also an american born brand. However, what makes it unique is its heavy flannel shirts which are based on 1897 American woodland culture in the Gold Rush era. Filson is great if your goal is to stay warm and stylish at the same time.
Mr. P is definitely up there in pricing, but you might deem it worth the investment for its premium material. The brand is all about luxury in their wardrobe essentials, including your everyday flannel shirt.
Portugal is the top exporter of flannel fabric in Europe. You’ll be able to feel and see what flannel is really about, so if you’re on the lookout for authenticity, Portuguese Flannel is a great option.
Dress to impress with A.P.C and embody the french style with the right fit. Their flannel shirts are meant to be timeless pieces which you can reach for every season. If you strive for that additional french twist, then it will be worth your money.
Guide for Choosing a Flannel Shirt
Now that you saw the kind of flannel shirts that are out there, you need to choose which one is the right fit for you. Check out this quick guide on how to choose one and get the best out of your purchase.
Focus on your comfort
As you can probably tell by now, flannel shirts are mostly known for their comfort. Flannel shirts aren’t supposed to fit you as would a dress shirt because they’re meant for movement and activity.
You can wear a flannel shirt for work, for hiking, or a simple hangout with friends which is why you don’t want your shirt to feel too tight or make you look visibly uncomfortable. Just make sure that your shirt doesn't go over your front pocket and that it doesn’t feel too big.
What about the material?
Flannel shirts now come in different material, but it’s best to focus on 100 percent cotton, especially if you want to wear them for the winter time. Brands now usually use a mix of material such as 50 percent cotton and 50 percent polyester, but it won’t last as long, nor will it feel as comfortable.
Try to avoid polyester because it will most likely make you sweat and smell. Cotton keeps the shirt light, breathable, and cozy.
Heavy or light?
Depending on the purpose of your flannel shirt, you can find a lighter one which you can wear without a jacket, or a heavier one meant to be a jacket. As you saw, flannel shirts come in all shapes or sizes, so it’s up to you to choose which one you prefer based on the season, the event you’re planning on wearing it to, and the style you’re going for.
Get a flannel shirt that has a double purpose
If you’re staying overnight, you can use a single flannel shirt for both days. If you want one that works for laidback occasions and for a workday, then look for a flannel shirt that fits you better than would your typical flannel. That way, you can style it for a night out and for work the next day.
Branding also matters
Some brands have invested in making the perfect flannel shirt for their audience. From fit to warmth, they ensure that the quality is premium through strict quality control. If you’re going to invest in an expensive flannel shirt, you need to make sure the brand’s mission is to create long lasting products.
Flannel shirts are amazingly versatile because they can be worn for many occasions. They are a firm part of any man’s closet essentials. While we strongly recommend you have at least one flannel shirt with you, you should also think about all the types of flannels and styles that we’ve mentioned. Whichever season it is, or whatever style you’re going after, there’s nothing like a trusty flannel shirt to carry you through and help you get the look you want.