While it’s nice to soak up the sun on occasion, a study in March of 2020 revealed that on average, Americans would be willing to shell out up to $4.60 a day to avoid hot weather. Of course, money can’t buy cooler temperatures, but beating the heat can begin with your wardrobe in the form of a crisp linen shirt. Lightweight and breezy, the best linen shirts are designed with comfort in mind — whether it’s a polished button-down or a laid-back Henley. Plus, many linen shirts are blended with cotton for a softer texture that doesn’t wrinkle as easily.
Linen shirts come in several different cuts and styles for a variety of occasions. A linen dress shirt with a slim, tailored fit can be worn underneath a blazer for an outdoor wedding or to the office during the warmer months, whereas more casual summer linen shirts — the kind you might take on a beach vacation — tend to have a looser fit around the arms and torso, allowing for more ventilation and ease of movement. Besides button-down shirts, you can also opt for a Henley neckline, or a lace-up V-neck that’s ideal for activities such as yoga or pilates.
Derived from the flax plant, linen is one of the oldest textile fibers used by humans, and while it is possible for a shirt to be made from a 100% linen material, most are constructed from a linen-cotton blend. Not only does this make the shirt softer to the touch, but it’ll also be more wrinkle-resistant — which is helpful since linen is known to wrinkle quite easily.
Last, linen shirts are often thought of as being that classic off-white color, but there are plenty of black linen shirts as well as options that come in rich colors and unique patterns, ranging from subtle stripes to tropical prints. With all that, here are the best linen shirts to suit a wide variety of personal tastes.
1. This basic shirt in a wide range of shades
Made from a blend of 70% cotton and 30% linen, this linen shirt is lightweight and breathable, with a slightly relaxed fit and sleeves that can be rolled up to the elbows. A subtle turned-down collar completes the look, resulting in a casual take on a dress shirt that can be worn to the beach, an al-fresco dinner, or even an outdoor wedding. Available in both short- and long-sleeve versions in a wide range of shades — as well as pinstripes — this shirt is a hit that’s earned more than 3,500 perfect five-star ratings on Amazon.
According to a reviewer: “I live in Florida, and this my go-to Swiss Army knife shirt. I can take it to the beach or pool, run errands, or go out to eat, and feel cool and comfortable the entire time. The material is soft and lightweight, dries quickly, and looks great in just about anything. The fit is a little loose, which is perfect for what it’s intended for. Highly recommended.”
- Available sizes: Medium — 3X-Large
- Available colors and styles: 38
2. A long-sleeve shirt with a relaxed fit
Designed with an easy fit throughout the chest and a tapered cut down by the waist, this men’s long-sleeve linen shirt is perfect for those who don’t want a tailored shirt. Made from a blend of 56% linen and 44% cotton, the shirt has a durable yet lightweight feel. Besides subtle solid shades, this button-down shirt is also available in a few unique patterns that can add a new texture to your outfit. It has a thin, spread collar, two button-through chest pockets, and long sleeves that can roll up to your elbows. Not to mention, there are tall-specific sizes available, so you can get the perfect fit.
According to a reviewer: “These shirts are really fantastic feeling, and the style and colors look great. Extremely high quality construction. The linen blend is lightweight and comfortable, and has a very luxurious feel to it.”
- Available sizes: X-Small — 3X-Large (select tall options)
- Available colors and styles: 6
3. The shirt with a Henley neckline
Featuring a Henley neckline, this lightweight shirt buttons down to just below the chest, and has a banded collar and three-quarter-length sleeves. (For those who want even less fabric on their arms, there are short-sleeve options available as well.) The fabric is 70% cotton and 30% linen and, in addition to neutral tones, this shirt comes in several cool blues, earthy greens, and subtle striped prints.
According to a reviewer: “I bought this shirt specifically for our beach trip and it was a life saver! Light and breathable but well made. The perfect shirt for the pool, beach or get together. Didn't hurt to get complimented on it more than once, either!”
- Available sizes: Medium — 3X-Large
- Available colors and styles: 16
4. A slim-fit shirt with short sleeves
If you’re seeking a short-sleeve linen-blend shirt with a slim fit, look no further. Made from 55% linen and 45% cotton, the shirt has a spread collar, front chest pocket, and round barrel cuffs for a classic, put-together look. The tailored fit allows you to tuck this shirt into jeans or dress pants without any excess fabric hanging over the sides. Choose from several sharp-looking patterns, including gingham and stripes.
According to a reviewer: “I bought this shirt in two colors. I am extremely happy with them. I've only had them for a few weeks, but the construction seems very sturdy. The linen/cotton blend fabric has a great weight and drape. It breathes very well, but smooths easier and wrinkles less than a pure linen. It is also the BEST fit (for me) of any off-the-rack slim-fit shirt I've purchased. I am extremely happy with the length and width of the sleeves and torso.”
- Available sizes: X-Small — XX-Large
- Available colors and styles: 22
5. A slim-fit shirt with long sleeves
This is another slim-fit shirt that’s similar to the previous pick, except it features long sleeves rather than short ones. Made with 55% linen and 45% cotton, it offers a close but not constricting fit, and has a front chest pocket, a spread collar, and button-down closure. The cuffed sleeves can easily be rolled up your forearm and secured in place. Ideal for layering underneath a blazer for formal events, this shirt comes in so many different plaid and striped patterns.
According to a reviewer: “For someone who usually runs a little warmer than most people, these shirts are a blessing. Very breathable fabric, quality stitching and manufacturing, at a very affordable price. The fit of these shirts is also spot on every single time.”
- Available sizes: X-Small — XX-Large
- Available colors and styles: 23
6. A rolled-sleeve shirt from a classic brand
This Perry Ellis linen-cotton shirt has a slightly slim cut that’s fitted throughout the chest and torso, and it features a narrow spread collar and long sleeves that roll up to your elbows. An especially versatile piece that could transition from the office to happy hour, this shirt looks great tucked into chinos or worn loose over jeans. While the exact fabric breakdown isn’t listed, customers reported that the linen-cotton blend is soft and comfy. Pick from light, warm-weather shades such as ‘aqua sea’ and ‘Himalayan pink.’
According to a reviewer: “I'm very pleased with this stylish shirt by Perry Ellis. [...] I like that the shirt is tapered for a slim fit: if you have an athletic build, you'll appreciate that there's less excess material around the waist compared with most other shirts. Yet the material is cool and comfortable - perfect for the office as well as after hours.”
- Available sizes: Small — XX-Large
- Available colors: 5
7. This tunic with a lace-up neck
An alternative to button-down designs, this cotton-linen shirt features a lace-up V-neckline. Constructed with long sleeves and a front chest pocket, the loose-fitting tunic allows for plenty of ventilation. Available in several earth tones, this shirt is a great option if you’re in the market for something that’s casual but unique. Although the manufacturer doesn’t list the exact ratio of cotton to linen, several customers have reported the fabric is lightweight and cool.
According to a reviewer: “I love it. I walked around with it on in 90-degree weather with high humidity. The loose fit and light-weight material allow air to infiltrate the clothing and cool my body. I'd even be bold enough to say I feel cooler in this shirt than I would in a plain T-shirt. Honestly, it is that comfortable.”
- Available sizes: Small — 4X-Large
- Available colors and styles: 11
8. A 100% linen guayabera shirt
This button-down guayabera-style shirt from Cubavera is made from 100% linen and designed with four button-through pockets — two on the chest and two on the sides. With a spread collar and long sleeves that roll up to your forearms, this dressy garment features Latin American-inspired paneling along the front and back to give the shirt an extra bit of structure. Due to the pure quality of the fabric, this shirt is more of a financial investment, but if you’re looking for a long-lasting wardrobe staple you can wear for years, it’s worth the extra money. As another plus, this shirt is also available in specific big and tall sizing options.
According to a reviewer: “These are very nice shirts. They are substantial, not the type of linen that gets wrinkled just by looking at them, but roomy and airy enough to keep you cool on warm, humid days. Excellent quality.”
- Available sizes: Small — 5X-Large (select big and big/tall options)
- Available colors: 14
9. A relaxed shirt in tropical prints & bright colors
This cotton-linen shirt from Isle Bay has a standard fit that’s roomier throughout the sleeves and torso and slightly tailored toward the bottom. While the manufacturer doesn’t share the fabric breakdown, several Amazon shoppers stated that the shirt is soft and lightweight — perfect for a beachy vibe — and it’s available in several different tropical prints as well as solid shades. Featuring a spread collar, a chest pocket, and cuffed short sleeves, this shirt can be worn unbuttoned over swim trunks or buttoned up with jeans.
According to a reviewer: “Shirt fits great, the sleeves hit slightly above the elbow and have a nice v cut-out detail on the side which gives the shirt a little extra style. The body of the shirt is slightly tailored but is still comfortable for those men who like to wear their shirts loose.”
- Available sizes: X-Small — 3X-Large
- Available colors and styles: 21
10. The Henley shirt with tortoise buttons
This Henley shirt is made from a soft cotton-linen blend (although the manufacturer doesn’t list the exact fabric breakdown), and it has four tortoise buttons that can be worn fastened or open. The long sleeves can be rolled up to the elbows and secured into place, making this a versatile pick. Besides neutrals like beige, gray, and black, this shirt is also available in rich shades like burgundy, green, and navy.
According to a reviewer: “The fabric is fairly lightweight and very breathable, which was expected. It's perfect for the summer heat. It can be dressed down or up, which is impressive. I feel like I can wear this at work or at play and look great while doing it.”
- Available sizes: Small — XX-Large
- Available colors: 11