Do you wear dress shirts on a regular basis? Whether it's for business for leisure, dress shirts offer the perfect combination of style, comfort and formality. And because they are available in so many different colors and styles, you shouldn't have a problem finding a dress shirt to match your outfit. However, you can improve the appearance of your men's dress shirts by following a few simple steps.
#1) Use a Cedar Wood Hanger
Not all clothes hangers are made equal, and it's important that you choose the right type for your dress shirts. Rather than using a cheap plastic or metal wire hanger, consider using a cedar wood hanger. You can expect to pay more for a cedar wood clothes hanger, but it's a smart investment that will pay off in the long run. You see, cedar wood has natural oils that resist mold, mildew and fungi. Additionally, hanging your dress shirts on cedar hangers will leave them smelling nice and fresh.
#2) Eliminate Static Cling With Dryer Sheets
If you discover lint sticking to your dress shirt, try rubbing a dryer sheet or two over the surface of your shirt. In addition to making your shirt smell fresh, dryer sheets will eliminate static cling. It's a quick and easy way to neutralize static cling on a dress shirt. You can even keep a box of dryer sheets in your car or office specifically for this reason.
#3) Avoid Synthetic Fabrics
What's wrong with synthetic fabrics? The problem with synthetic fabrics is that they don't hold up as well as traditional, natural fabrics like cotton and linen. When washed and dried, they may sustain structural damage that distorts their shape. So, the next time you try to wear the shirt, you may discover that it no longer fits right. Not all synthetic fabric shirts suffer from this problem, but many do. If you want to get the most use out of your shirts, it's best to err on the side of caution and avoid or limit the number of synthetic fabric dress shirts that you buy.
#4) Check the Collar
When shopping for a new dress shirt, pay attention to the collar. Most men pay little or no attention to the collar and, instead, focus their attention on the color and overall appearance of the shirt. Nonetheless, the collar will influence the shirt's style and comfort, so you should choose the right type. The three most common types of collars found in men's dress shirts include the spread collar, point collar and button-down collar. The spread collar, also known as the Windsor collar, is characterized by a more revealing area at the top. The point collar is the most common type of shirt collar, which is characterized by a smaller spread at the top. Finally, the button-down collar lives up to its namesake by featuring two buttons -- one on each side -- that attaches to the shirt itself. If your dress shirt collars have a tendency to curl at the tips, consider choosing a shirt with a button-down collar, as it naturally stays in place due to the collar's buttoned design.
#5) Wash With Vinegar
Assuming your dress shirts are safe to clean in the washing machine, try washing them with 1 cup of distilled white vinegar. Vinegar works to clean, deodorize and protect against fading, the latter of which is particularly beneficial. It's not uncommon for dress shirts to fade over time. Even if your dress shirt is a deep navy blue now, it may fade to a lighter teal or sky blue. A simple way to protect your shirt from fading, however, is to wash it with vinegar. Vinegar is an all-natural color guard that helps set the dye and protects fabrics from fading.
#6) Check the Sleeves
One of the most common mistakes men make with their dress shirts is choosing a shirt with short or long sleeves. To determine if your dress shirt has the right sleeve length, place your hands by your side. The sleeves should stop just at your wrists without bunching up. If they stop before your wrists or extend past your wrists, you need a different dress shirt.
#7) Classic Colors
You'll have an easier time getting ready if you choose a dress shirt in a classic color. There's nothing necessarily wrong with bold-colored dress shirts; in fact, they can offer an attractive, unique look. The only problem is that bold colors will limit the garments and accessories with which you can wear your shirt. For this reason, you should consider a classic color for your dress shirt, such as black, white or navy.
You can't expect to create an attractive, stylish outfit if your dress shirt is wrinkled. If your shirt is wrinkled, either press it using an iron or steamer before wearing it. Alternatively, you can take your shirt to the dry cleaners, which will clean and de-wrinkle it.
#9) Contract Dress Shirt With Pants
Whether you choose a classic color or a bold color for your dress shirt, you should pair it with trousers or pants in a contrasting color. In other words, the color of your pants should be on the opposite end of the color spectrum as your shirt. If you are wearing a white dress shirt, for example, consider wearing a pair of black pants or trousers.
#10) Cuff Space
Finally, check the cuff space in your dress shirt. A properly fitted dress shirt should offer just enough cuff space so that you can fit two fingers in it. To test this, try squeezing your index finger and middle finger into the cuffs at the bottom of your shirt sleeves. Keep in mind, however, that you should not be able to fit any more than two fingers. If you can fit three or more fingers in your shirt cuffs, it's too big and needs to be replaced or adjusted.