How to Wear a Cuban Collar Shirt: The Perfect Piece for Summer

Forget about t-shirts

Cuban collar shirts have been a popular summer item for a few years now. As the weather starts to heat up again, the trend is showing no signs of abating. And it’s no surprise, they look great and their light material means they are super comfortable in warm climates.

But the challenge of what to wear these shirts with remains. These items aren’t as versatile as t-shirts or polo-shirts. You can’t just throw one on top of whatever you’re wearing and assume your outfit is going to look good. But the other side to this is that when you do it get it right, you’ll have a fit that is sure to get you noticed.

In this article article, we’ll explore how to wear a Cuban collar shirt and look at some of my favorite outfits.

See Also: These are the Stylish Men’s Shirts Trends I’ll be Wearing This Year

What is a Cuban Collar Shirt?

A Cuban collar shirt is a shirt with an open collar. They are typically short-sleeved and made from light material, making them perfect for wearing in summer. Cuban collar shirts tend to be quite casual, but you can dress them up with slacks or even wear them under a suit. These shirts are also known as camp collar shirts or open collar shirts.

Check our list of the best Cuban collar shirts

How to Wear a Cuban Collar Shirt: 6 Men’s Outfits

Keep it Simple with Jeans

Camp collar shirt jeans
The Brdwlk

Wearing a Cuban collar shirt with dark blue jeans is a simple way to stay (and look) cool in summer. It’s an easy look to throw together yet you’re gonna stand out among all the t-shirt wearers. In this outfit I love how the oversized fit of the shirt contrasts with the skinny jeans.

Wear Open Over a T-Shirt

Camp collar shirt over t-shirt
The Brdwlk

I don’t tend to like the t-shirt under a shirt look, but there’s something about doing it with Cuban collar shirts that I think is ok. Maybe it’s just that this type of shirt—especially those with patterns like the ones in the image above—aren’t as smart as regular shirts. This means the contrast between the t-shirt and the shirt isn’t as strong as if you did it with an Oxford, for example. Here are some types of t-shirts you could consider pairing your Cuban collar with.

Choose Loud Colors

Flower cuban collar shirt light blue jeans
The Brdwlk

There are many types of Cuban collar shirts. While many of them are at the edge of style and sophistication, you’ll also find plenty of loud designs full of patterns and colors. It’s not that these look bad, it’s just that you need to know when to wear them. And I think it can be a great way to make a statement with what you’re wearing. In the outfit above, I toned the shirt down by pairing it with some super plain, light blue jeans.

Go Smart With Slacks

The Brdwlk

Take your outfit up a notch by wearing your camp collar shirt with slacks and then tucking it in. This is a harder look to pull off than the above, and you’ll have to choose the right time to wear it. But if you do you’ve got an outfit that is sure to turn heads. For extra points, choose a pair of slacks with a heavy pleat. This is an item that’s definitely on my to-buy list.

Or Try Chinos

Camp collar shirt chinos
The Brdwlk

Wearing chinos with your Cuban collar shirt is a good way to get an outfit that fits somewhere between the above two. This type of pants is smarter than jeans, but you can still wear the shirt untucked for a casual aesthetic. I like to wear beige chinos and finish the outfit off with either a minimal pair of sneakers or some loafers/boat shoes.

Wear With Shorts

Cuban collar shirt shorts
Cuban collar shirt shorts

Cuban shirts are designed for hot weather, so it’s only natural that you’ll end up wearing them shorts. I like to wear mine with smarter pairs. For example, the fitted chino shorts in the image above.

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Duncan Elder

Duncan is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Boardwalk. He's a menswear writer who has spent the last 15 years developing his own sense of style, which lies at the cross-section of mid-noughties indie and Uniqlo-inspired minimalism.

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