T-Shirt vs Polo – Key Differences of Two Iconic Basis [2024]

Expert Opinion By Fashion Writer & Doodler
  • T-shirts are usually made of cotton, while polo shirts are typically made of synthetic materials.
  • Polo shirts also have collars and buttons, while T-shirts do not.
  • T-shirts are generally more casual than polo shirts.
  • Polo shirts have a standard design, although t-shirts come in a variety of designs and styles.
  • The most significant distinction between polo shirts and t-shirts is the design.
  • Polo shirts have a collar and placket with two or three buttons beneath the collar, whereas most t-shirts do not have collars.
  • The t-shirt is a more casual piece of clothing whereas the polo shirt is worn for dressier occasions.
  • The t-shirt tends to have more room around the shoulders than a polo shirt does with its tailored fit.
T Shirt Vs Polo Shirt - Infographic

Whether you’re dressing up for a job interview or a day out at the golf course, choosing the right shirt can be tough.

Do you go for a T-Shirt vs Polo?

The most prominent difference between polo and t-shirt is the neckline or finish of the collar.

While the T-shirt usually has a simple round neck, the polo shirt has a stand-up collar with a button placket.

Another major difference is the material.

While both shirts are usually made of cotton, the polo shirt is made of knitted cotton (piqué) and the t-shirts are made of woven cotton (jersey).

Polo shirts, with their classic collared design, lend themselves to a smart casual dress code, offering a touch more formality than t-shirts.

On the other hand, t-shirts, which are generally reserved for casual occasions, are available in a variety of styles such as crew neck, V-neck, and U-neck.

Both of these classics are excellent choices for casual wear for gatherings at work or in your own time.

What’s The Difference Between Polo Shirt And A T-Shirt?

tshirt vs polo

Let’s take a closer look at each option.

What Is A T-Shirt?

The fabric shirt called T-shirt is named after the T shape of its body and sleeves.

It traditionally has short sleeves and a round neckline, commonly called a crew neck, in the absence of a collar.

Most T-shirts are made from a stretchy, lightweight, and easy-to-clean fabric.

T-Shirts - Front And Back

What Is A Polo Shirt?

A polo shirt has a collar, a placket neckline with typically two or three buttons, and an optional pocket.

Polo shirts are usually short-sleeved, but they can also be long-sleeved.

It was originally used by polo players in India in 1859 and in Great Britain during the 1920s.

Polo Shirts - Front And back Image

Pros & Cons Of T-Shirt vs Polo

AspectPolo ShirtsT-Shirts
FormalityAdvantages: – Suitable for smart casual occasions. – Collared appearance gives a more polished look.Disadvantages: – Generally too casual for smart casual events.
VersatilityAdvantages: – Can be dressed up or down. – Often acceptable in business casual environments.Advantages: – Great for layering. – Wide range of suitable casual settings.
DesignDisadvantages: – Standard design with less variety.Advantages: – Comes in a multitude of designs and necklines.
ComfortDisadvantages: – Can be less comfortable in hot weather due to the collar and button placket.Advantages: – Often more relaxed fit, which can be more comfortable.
Ease of WearAdvantages: – Adds a touch of elegance without needing to accessorize much.Advantages: – Easy to throw on without much thought for a casual look.
MaintenanceDisadvantages: – May require ironing to maintain a neat appearance. – Typically made of materials that may wrinkle more.Advantages: – Often made of materials that are easy to care for and don’t wrinkle as much.
DurabilityVaries: – Can be made of sturdy materials, but the collar may lose shape over time.Varies: – Material and build dictate durability; some may stretch or fade quickly.
Set Of Different T-Shirts And Polo Shirts

According to Best Material T-shirt vs Polo Shirt

T-ShirtPolo Shirt
Some prefer cotton, while others believe polyester blends are better.The best material for a polo shirt is 100% cotton.
The answer to this question depends on what you want your shirt to do and how much money you have to spend on itCotton is breathable, so it can keep you cool even on the hottest days.
A cotton shirt will breathe more than any other fabric but may shrink over time, making it less durable than some other materials.It’s also easy to care for just throw your cotton polo in the wash and dryer with other clothes like normal!
Polyester shirts tend not to wrinkle as easily and can be washed in cold water, which saves energy costs if you’re looking for an environmentally friendly option.The only downside of cotton is that if it gets wet, it stays wet and doesn’t dry quickly.
There are pros and cons of both fabrics; the type of fabric will depend largely on what your needs are for your t-shirt.However, this shouldn’t be much of an issue since most polos are not worn when playing sports or doing intense activities where they would get sweaty and then soaked in water.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a polo the same as a T-shirt?

The polo shirt features a stand-up collar with a button placket, whereas the T-shirt normally has a plain round neck. Another significant distinction is the type of material used. While both shirts are typically composed of cotton, the polo shirt is knitted cotton (piqué) while the t-shirt is woven cotton (jersey).

Is a polo shirt a collared shirt?

Polo shirts have a three-button front and a fold-down collar. They are short-sleeved shirts made of a breathable fabric like cotton. Polo shirts are typically worn with shorts, jeans, or dress pants for more casual events.

Why do tennis players wear polos?

While this design prevented the collars from flapping against the players’ necks in the wind, the long-sleeved polo shirts made of Oxford-cloth cotton were cumbersome to wear on the field. As a result, polo players quickly adopted Lacoste’s tennis shirts as their uniforms in the 1930s.

What is meant by Polo T-shirts?

A polo T-shirt is a polo shirt with a T-shirt design. This can include a variety of different designs, but the most common one is a polo shirt with a collar and placket with two or three buttons beneath the collar and a T-shirt-style neckline.

Is a polo T-shirt fashionable?

As fashion trends are always changing. However, polo T-shirts have been popular in recent years, so it is safe to say that they are currently fashionable.

What makes a shirt a polo?

A shirt is a polo if it has a collar and placket with two or three buttons beneath the collar. Polo shirts are typically made of knitted (piqué) cotton and have a stand-up collar.

What is the purpose of a polo shirt?

The purpose of a polo shirt is to provide the wearer with a more sophisticated and professional look than a t-shirt. Polo shirts are often worn in business casual settings, or as part of a uniform.

Are polos cool?

This is a matter of opinion, but many people would say that polo shirts are cool. They are a classic style of shirt that can be worn in a variety of settings, and they have a timeless look.

Are T-shirts unprofessional?

This is also a matter of opinion, but many people would say that T-shirts are not as professional as polo shirts. T-shirts are more casual and relaxed, whereas polo shirts have a more traditional and formal look.

Why do men wear t-shirts?

There are a variety of reasons why men might choose to wear t-shirts. T-shirts are comfortable, they can be stylish, and they are less expensive than other types of shirts.

What is the difference between a polo shirt and a dress shirt?

The main difference between a polo shirt and a dress shirt is the level of formality. Dress shirts are more formal than polo shirts, and they are typically worn in business or formal settings. Polo shirts are more casual and can be worn in a variety of settings.

What is the difference between a polo shirt and a sports shirt?

The main difference between a polo shirt and a sports shirt is the level of formality. Sports shirts are more casual than polo shirts, and they are typically worn during physical activity or in relaxed settings. Polo shirts are more formal and can be worn in a variety of settings.

Priyanshi Otwani
Priyanshi Otwani is a Fashion Writer and Doodler based in Mumbai, India.She has been working in the fashion industry for over ten years and has worked with various magazines like Grazia, Elle, Cosmopolitan among others. She also collaborates with brands on designing their products. Priyanshi loves to doodle when she gets time which she shares on her Instagram.