We’re not exaggerating when we say that there’s no life event where you cannot and should not be wearing a white shirt. In fact, we’re going to list a few: A job interview, your first and last day of work, boozy brunches, quick errands in Bedok, sunset chilling in Bali, your BFF’s wedding… we could go on but you get our drift. White shirts are just about perfect.
Here are 10 white shirts that are diverse in shapes and styles, and most importantly workable for every budget. Some are billowy and some will take you to the boardroom, but the one thing you will enjoy about them is their comfort and price points. Scroll through for our favourites.
Imagine this: It’s a sunny day at the beach where you’re wearing this oversized linen shirt over your bikini and you’re thanking yourself for booking this much needed holiday after saving money on this shirt that you’re going to be wearing a lot. It’s a shirt meets dress and its decorative coin button is bang on trend with this season’s medallion inspired jewellery.
This is a high-street white shirt that looks like it could be priced high-fashion: It has all the design elements of a designer print—a wrap front that makes it easy to put on and take off (DVF!), balloon sleeves (Cecilie Bahnsen!), and a crisp cotton weave that allows it to be both dressed up and down (as all white shirts should be).
The trifecta of Americana style—prairie, biker and cowgirl have been in style for a while but when it comes to which is the most weather-appropriate that is easy to try out, the latter is our pick. This pretty piece is an upgrade of the silk blouse you might already have in your closet.
On first glance, this white shirt number looks like a run-of-the-mill one albeit with a relaxed fit that’s perfect with dark wash denim, but once you look at it from the back, a contrasting camel panel with a curved hem makes it worth its designer price. If you’re game enough, wear it back to front.
Our homegrown hero has been dressing us in modern pieces (think COS meets Jil Sander) since its launch in 2013 but what do we love the best from In Good Company? Its structural pieces that aren’t stiff but instead, sit relaxed on the body thanks to the crisp but breathable cotton material. We like the dipped hem on this one and that you can also fold up the sleeves.
We can’t stress enough on the merits of an oxford shirt: It’s as dressy as it can be casual cool and the more you wash it, the softer it gets. Local label Ultramarine Studio’s version has a tie-neck collar and extended cuffs that’s more womanly and less matronly.
On first glance, it might seem like your average white shirt but the devil’s in the details with this number: An oversized collar and pocket makes it look like you’ve borrowed it from your man (we’re calling it casual cool) and it has two slits on its bodice at the back that’s subtly sexy.
This Gin Lee Studio white shirt has every design detail that a basic white shirt should have: A moderately sized collar, a length that’s long enough to be appropriate for work and short enough to be tucked in nicely, and the appropriate percentage of spandex for comfort. But what we love is the surprise you get once you roll up its sleeves: It reveals the perfect shade of pastel pink that’s a subtle pop of colour for work outfits.
We can’t guarantee anything on the practicality of this shirt thanks to its billowing sleeves, because 1) you can’t wear it if you’re a klutz or if you seem to attract dirt like a magnet and 2) your dining choices are going to be severely limited. What we can guarantee though is that it’s going to be good for the ‘gram or special occasions where chilli sauce isn’t involved.
Elyn Wong’s aesthetic for Stolen hasn’t wavered since its inception in 2007: Its pieces are minimalist on the front but the back is where it steals the show. Well-placed cuts reveal your back in varying degrees, giving off an elegant allure. And this shirt is her signature style at its best with a slit at its back that’s subtly sensual but can be easily covered up for work with a blazer.
Text: Bryan Goh