Picking what shirts to wear with jeans can sometimes be a little tricky. To save you the trouble of trial and error, we’ve put together a full run-down of every style. You’ll be an expert in no time.
- 1 Shirt and Jeans
- 2 Smart
- 3 How to Wear Jeans
- 4 Denim
- 5 Casual
- 6 Shirts to Wear with Jeans
- 7 On That Note
Shirt and Jeans
Shirts and jeans are two crucial cornerstones to any man’s wardrobe and, when combined properly, offer a failsafe partnership that will stand the test of time. Whether you’re on a first date, heading to the pub, or it’s casual Friday at work, shirts and jeans offer a put together look that’s perfect for casual and smart-casual occasions.
It’s easy to think that there are only a few options for you to play around with but you’d be wrong. With the huge range of styles on offer for jeans and shirts, there’s a load of possible outfits for you. No matter what your style or the occasion is, there’s a match made to suit you.
A well-ironed shirt is a staple in any formal situation. You can’t complete a tuxedo without it. Shirts are so important that there are hundreds of rules on how they should fit around your gut, what length they should be, and what colours you should wear when paired with your tailored suit. However we’re not talking suits here, and it can be a little harder to achieve a smart look with a pair of jeans. However it is achievable, and it just requires the right combination of colours and textures.
White Shirt and Jeans
The blue jeans – white shirt combination is a classic in the realms of both smart and casual. For that reason, it’ll never ever go out of fashion. If you’re having one of those days where you simply don’t know what to wear, wearing a white shirt with a pair of jeans will surely put an end to your style crisis induced panicking.
White Shirt – Black Jeans
Same rules apply to the white shirt and black jeans combo. Sometimes the easiest and simplest solutions are also the most reliable and we often forget that they’re always in front of our eyes. Your favourite black jeans and slim fit white shirt are an example of that.
Now, checked shirts can often to be associated with more casual outfits, and you might see the super informal lumberjack look sported from time to time. However, if you pick the right colours and pattern, a checked shirt can actually bring an interesting dimension to a formal look.
Pick a darker colour like navy or a muted green, and avoid anything too bright with too many colour combinations, to give your outfit a less intense and more simplified look. Pick a print that’s not too busy to ensure the finished look is as polished as possible.
How to Wear Jeans
Jeans are also important in achieving a formal look. Even if you’ve got a neutral checked shirt, if you pair it with a bright blue denim the outfit is automatically going to appear more casual. When choosing your jeans, like with the shirt, try and pick a darker colour, so as to ground the outfit and give it a sleeker overall appearance.
Black or navy is an obvious choice. If the outfit is looking a little drab you can always mix up the look by turning up your jeans, or going ultra smart with your footwear. A pair of Desert boots can do wonders.
What to Wear With Jeans
Double-denim is a term that’s been brought up more and more often in the last few years, as everyone has their own view about if this trend should be attempted or not, due to the ridicule it received. Although the bolder double-denim look is far from formal, you can try a subtle approach and achieve something that’s both on trend and looks classic and put together.
For the shirts pick ones that are well fitted and try buttoning them up to your neck for a less relaxed look. There might be some temptation to throw on a tie, but resist! Just because a tie is indeed formal, it doesn’t mean that it’s going to work with the rest of the outfit. Try and pick a lightweight denim, as anything too heavy is going to look more like a denim jacket and won’t give the clean, fitted look you’re after. It’ll also be easier to tuck it into your jeans, which will give you more options when it comes to dressing it up.
Denim Shirt and Black Jeans
For the jeans stick to a black pair. You want to have the comfort of jeans, without necessarily looking like you’re wearing them so keeping them black will help give a formal, muted look. You can also go for grey, as it’ll compliment the blue tone of the denim, but don’t go too light as it will start to look too relaxed and like the cliché double-denim style.
If flashing images of Justin Timberlake in double-denim still causes you nightmares, you can always wear a navy shirt with your black jeans. Forget everything anyone has ever said about wearing navy and black together because it’s absolutely possible and it looks stylish as hell. It’s about time we take down this Berlin Wall of ancient fashion rules.
Shirt and Skinny Jeans
Skinnies are generally for informal occasions, so they’re best avoided, and anything too relaxed is going to look, well, too relaxed. We suggest you stick to slim fit, which will give you the perfect combination of comfort, along with a slightly tailored look. That said, skinny jeans can be paired with a shirt to create different volumes and symmetries in your outfit. You can wear a baggy white shirt with a pair of skinny black jeans, which will even out your silhouette. Furthermore, it will give you a more urban yet polished look.
Blue Shirt and Jeans
For a formal look, it’s best to keep to simple colours, so light blue and white are classics that will go with almost anything. You can never go wrong with pastel colours and a blue shirt, in particular, can provide a smart appearance without resulting with excessive formality.
The risk of pairing a navy shirt with jeans is that the final result could come across as quite flat and monotone. That said, there are easy ways to go around such issue. Avoid matching your navy blue shirt with an overly dark pair of denim. With navy being a deep shade of blue, it’ll inevitably absorb most of the light and so will your jeans. Opt for a pair of mid-wash jeans, or white even, to break free from all that darkness.
For jeans keep them on the skinny side of slim fit, making sure that there’s enough room to tuck your shirt in without it bunching up. Again, stay on the dark side, or go for a clean indigo. You can also try cuffing your jeans for an interesting twist and unlike with the denim shirts, you can add a tie – just throw a good blazer over the top to complete the look.
Jeans compliment a casual outfit, so when it comes to combining them with shirts it’s an easy task to achieve a relaxed feel. Additions like caps, denim jackets and jewellery can help elevate your outfit and keep it on a relaxed level, especially if you’re working with more smart looking shirts like dress shirts.
Jeans’ versatility is pretty evident and you can go for a range of colours and fits to achieve different looks. If you’re in doubt about what to wear with light blue skinnies, pair them with a busy check print. This will keep things interesting and a bit unconventional. However, if you’re after a clean, summery outfit you can pair your light blue jeans with a light and simple checked shirt for a preppier attire.
What Goes With Grey Jeans
Grey jeans are a perfect chance for you to expand your range of denim. They’re an excellent alternative to your usual blue or black jeans and can give a touch of light to your outfit without going as far as wearing white jeans. Grey jeans are just as versatile as other denim and when paired with a black shirt, you can create a nice contrast but with complementary colours. Top the whole look off with a black peacoat or bomber jacket and a pair of leather boots.
It’s time to take a closer at the (sometimes dreaded) double-denim look. It’s not for everyone, but if done correctly can create an interesting and alternative look. This is great for times when you want to stand out a little. For the shirts, you can really pick whatever denim you want, but if you want a more uniformed look then choose one that’s lighter than your jeans, as overall a light top half with a darker bottom looks more balanced.
What to Wear With Light Blue Jeans
For jeans, it really depends on what top you go for. For a jean that will match most tops, go for jeans that are a straight leg and relaxed fit. Go for a design that’s boldly cuffed to add another element of interest to your look. We love to dress a pair of jeans up with the addition of a blazer. Add some chunky boots to the mix and you’ll have yourself a modern look on a vintage classic which is the perfect look for a date.
Chambray Shirt – White Jeans
All things considered, there’s one more way through which you can tame the wild beast that is the double-denim. You can pair a chambray denim shirt with a pair of white jeans. Throw a pair of All-Stars in the mix which can easily break the two-dimensionality of an all-denim look. The white in the outfit will make you stand out for sure and it will bring out the light tones of the chambray. For the perfect, elevated beach look, why not wear them with a pair of loafers or boat shoes?
Probably one of the most well-known shirt designs, and therefore the most versatile. Although its appearance may first appear a little too formal to create a casual look, it’s easy to tone it down with the right fit and colour. Go for a plain white shirt if you want to keep things simple, then accessorise with a simple chain, or throw on a casual jacket to tone it down a notch. You could also try out the less formal looking short sleeved Oxfords. Try layering a T-shirt underneath a long sleeved design to keep the look relaxed.
With jeans, you’re free to experiment with fits and colours. Although, as a general rule, lighter tops go better with darker jeans, you can try out various colour combinations.
Now we have to tackle the most formal looking shirt and make it work in a casual outfit. It’s not the easiest task, but it is do-able and can create an interesting, trim look. As the dress shirt is usually quite a fitted design, it’s good to go for what suits your body best. If you’re on the hefty side it’s best to avoid white as it’ll just accentuate your bulk, resulting in an unflattering look. For something darker like a navy, black or grey instead, and make sure that your sleeves and overall length are long enough.
As the dress shirt is so slim, you could pair it with skinny fit jeans to create a tailored look. Try experimenting with different tones. Go for grey if you want a darker look or light blue if you’re going for a more laid back vibe. For a unique contrast try out a pair of distressed or ripped jeans with your sharper looking dress shirt.
Shirts to Wear with Jeans
- For a smart casual look, match a classic white Oxford shirt with a pair of slim fit jeans.
- For an easy, relaxed style team a checked shirt with a pair of skinny or tapered jeans. Go for a grey check to keep it smart-casual.
- Try a double denim look for a striking, alternative finish.
- A short sleeved shirt and jeans are perfect for summer days, especially if you choose one in a light colour.
On That Note
So now you know the various ways you can dress up (or down) your jeans. Next time you’re reaching out for a T-shirt you might change your mind and grab a shirt instead. Whether it’s a checked, Oxford or denim shirt, you’ll definitely find a way to dress it up and make your own. Why not add your own twist to the look? Remember to keep a variety of shoes to help finish off the look, as it’s always best to have options.