How To Wear A Button Down Shirt Open: The Professional’s Guide

Expert Opinion By Fashion Writer & Doodler

There are a lot of things that can be considered “trendy.” Wearing a button-down shirt open is one of those trends.

It’s casual, yet stylish; comfortable, but still put-together.

If you’re looking to try out this trend but don’t know where to start, read on for our tips on how to wear a button-down shirt open.

We’ll walk through everything from choosing your shirt length and style to how best to tie it up and accessorize it!

Button-down shirts are versatile.

They can be worn in many ways, and it’s easy to find a look that fits your personal style.

How To Wear A Button Down Shirt Open

There are many ways to wear a button-down shirt unbuttoned and make it look good.

You can wear it with buttons undone, or you can layer it over another shirt or sweater.

The options are limitless!

Layering A Button-Down Shirt Over A T-Shirt

You can layer a button-down shirt over a t-shirt. This is great for when you want to wear your button-down shirt with buttons open, but it’s also convenient if you want to wear it closed with no extra layers.

A Young Man Wearing A Button Down Shirt Over T-Shirt

Layer the top part of your collar over the top of one sleeve of your t-shirt,

then fold down some fabric at its base and pin it in place so that when worn together they form an overlapping triangle shape where two parts meet up against each other.

Wear Under A T-Shirt

If you’re wearing one open, you can wear a t-shirt under it.

This is the most common way to wear a button-down shirt open:

  • The collared shirt should be tucked into your pants and long enough to cover the top of your pants.
  • The shirt should also have buttons on each side so that when it’s tucked into pants, they don’t show through at all.

Continue reading our guide on wearing a shirt over a dress.

Keep Your Top Button Undone And Tie It Around Your Waist

A Young Girl Tying Button Down Shirt Around Her Waist

You can wear the shirt with your top button undone and tie it around your waist to show off another layer underneath.

This is a great way to dress up an otherwise casual outfit, but make sure it looks good!

Choose a tie that matches the color of the shirt, or coordinate with an accessory such as cufflinks or pocket squares.

Tie it in a way that makes you look good, feels comfortable, and shows off your personality—this should be easy at this point!

Read our complete guide on tying button-down shirts.

Wear The Dress Shirt Open And Folded Back On Itself

You can wear the shirt open and folded back on itself, revealing an undershirt and showing some of the buttons at the back of the collar.

If you’re wearing it as-is, just leave it at that—no need to add anything more.

But if you want to show off your outfit, even more, try this trick:

Fold your button-down shirt in half lengthwise, then fold each side over once again so they cross in front of each other (like how a scarf would be folded). This will create a V-shape with two slits along its top edge: one slit for each side seam (or “button”). Now slide one end through each slit until they meet up behind your neckline

Wear The Button-Down Shirt Unbuttoned

A Young Guy Wearing A Button Down Shirt Unbuttoned

You can wear the button-down shirt completely unbuttoned, as an open jacket or vest.

This works well with a tie, but also looks great with no other accessories.

It’s also possible to use this look for business casual situations where you want to add some personality to your outfit by throwing on something offbeat like a t-shirt and jeans underneath it all.

Considerations While Choosing Button-Down Unbuttoned Shirt

How To Choose Button Down Unbuttoned Shirt

When it comes time to pick out your next button-down shirt, consider the following:

  • Which colors work best together? Find out what colors suit you by looking at pictures online or by asking friends who are into fashion. If there’s anything else that matters—like whether or not something is comfortable—ask someone who knows better than yourself!
  • How should I style it? There are tons of ways to wear this classic piece of clothing; however if all else fails then just pick one option straight away because otherwise, things might get messy!

Focus On The Fit And Length.

The fit of a shirt is completely dependent on how you wear it.

If your shirt is too long, it will not only make you look shorter than your friends but also accentuate any bulges in the middle of your body.

On the other hand, if your shirt is too short, it may make you look bigger than you actually are.

The length of the sleeve should end at wrist level and not fall past that point like most button-down shirts do today.

Know How To Button It Up.

  • Don’t button the top button.
  • Don’t button the bottom button.* Don’t even think about touching any of them.
  • You’re supposed to be wearing this shirt open at all times, so don’t bother leaving yourself open for an embarrassing moment of indecision—just stick with what works best for your body type and personality type!

Don’t Be Afraid Of Color And Pattern.

You can wear a button-down shirt open in all sorts of ways.

The key is to think about how each look will work with your personal style and the kind of work you do.

  • If you already have a patterned blazer or shirt on, consider adding another patterned tie for the day. This way, it’ll feel like part of an outfit rather than just an accessory (which would be more likely if there was no tie). Just be careful not to mix patterns too much; one solid color might be enough!
  • If wearing your jacket open is too much trouble, try wearing it closed under an unbuttoned shirt so that everything stays together as one cohesive ensemble—but keep in mind that this might make getting dressed up for work seem too complicated or formal!

Start With A Crisp White Shirt, Then Branch Out Into Solids And Patterns.

Start with a crisp white shirt, then branch out into solids and patterns.

White is a great starting point because it’s versatile and easy to match.

It’s also the most common color for button-down shirts, so if you’re looking for something simple but still professional-looking, this is your best bet.

Read our guide on latest shirt color trends to style according to trend.

Be Prepared For Summer.

If you want to wear a button-down shirt open, but aren’t sure how to do it effectively and in style, consider these tips:

  • Wear a t-shirt underneath—this way you can still show off your shoulders and chest without exposing too much of your torso. If this isn’t an option for you (or if the weather is hot), consider wearing an undershirt instead!
  • Fold back one side of the collar at its widest point so that it hangs just below your earlobe—this will keep things from getting too tight around your neckline. You can also fold back other parts of the collar if they’re too tight or constricting; this will allow room for shirts or jackets that may be worn underneath later on in case they get cooler than expected during summer months when sweaters aren’t always available everywhere else!

Find The Perfect Fit For Your Body

The most important thing is to find a shirt that fits your body well.

The first step in finding the right size for your body is knowing what kind of shape it has.

If you’re not sure, look at yourself in the mirror and try on some shirts with similar styles and cuts to see if they fit or not.

Take note of where on your torso each one sits.

Does it sit high on one shoulder, low across both shoulders?

Is one side tighter than another?

These details can help narrow down which style might work best for you,

but don’t get too hung up on them—just pick out something that feels comfortable when worn over pants or jeans.


If you want to wear a button-down dress shirt open, then there are many ways in which you can do it.

You can wear the shirt with your top button undone, as an open jacket or vest; you can layer a button-down shirt over another one;

or you can wear the shirt open and folded back on itself, revealing an undershirt underneath and showing some of the buttons at the back of the collar.

The possibilities are endless!

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it OK to wear a button-down shirt unbuttoned?

The answer to this question is yes and no. It really depends on the situation and how you style the shirt. If you’re wearing the shirt to a casual event, then it’s perfectly fine to leave it unbuttoned. However, if you’re trying to achieve a more polished look, then we recommend buttoning up the shirt. It’s all about finding what works best for you and your personal style.

How do you style a button-down shirt open?

There are a few different ways that you can style a button-down shirt open. One way is to pair it with a blazer or jacket. This will help to create a put-together look that is still stylish and modern. Another way to style a button-down shirt open is to wear it with a pair of jeans. This is a great option for a more casual look. Finally, you can also wear a button-down shirt open with a skirt.

Related Posts:

Button-up vs button-down shirts
How to wear a plus-size button-down shirt

Tasha Juli
Tasha Juli Korman is a fashion and lifestyle blogger. She has been blogging for over five years now and found her niche in the world of style! Whether it's taking you on a personal journey through her wardrobe or sharing outfits that match your own personal style, you enjoy following along.