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The Texture

A loose weave that's smooth to the touch, linen gets softer with each wash. But it's not very elastic—meaning it won't easily bounce back into shape. This explains the wrinkles.

How to Wash It

Because it can be delicate, wash in the gentle cycle with cool to warm water. Tumble dry and don't sweat the wrinkles. But if you want wrinkle-free linen, iron while it's still damp.

  • Linen can absorb up to 20% of its weight in moisture before feeling damp, releasing it back into the air to remain cool and dry to touch.

There's the classic relaxed, white linen shirt. And then there are today's variations of more tailored pieces, like trim trousers or a bold red unlined blazer.

Band of Outsiders bow tie, $105; J.Press unlined jacket, $296

60-Second Guide



Linen, it's believed, is one of the oldest fabrics in the world. Woven from the fibers of the flax plant, it's value comes from the ability to keep you cool and fresh in hot weather. While the fabric is produced in many countries today, the best is still made in Ireland, Italy and Belgium.

Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair pants, $196


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With nearly every airline imposing a baggage fee nowadays, if you can get away with flying with just a carry-on, do it.

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