The New Essentials

A Classic Shirt
Is Back

Best men's Oxford cloth button-down shirts in 2024
The New Essentials

A Classic Shirt Is Back

The oxford cloth
button-down returns to menswear a hero

Let me tell you something that you already know: All things in fashion come back around eventually—some sooner than others. And while you could argue that the Oxford cloth button-down never went out of fashion, it certainly was pushed to the back of the closet for the last few years. But, with '90s normcore and prep on the rebound for 2024, the OCBD is officially back on the list of “essentials” you want for spring and summer.

Interestingly, this classic shirt and it's origin story is something of a miracle. It shouldn't have become as big as it did. There was not some grand plan. In 1896, John E. Brooks—whose grandfather founded Brooks Brothers—noticed how English polo players pinned their collars down to keep them from flapping up during matches. Inspired, he developed a type of shirt that used buttons to carry out the same task. It was unlike most shirts at the time, which came with detachable collars. That could've backfired spectacularly.

Even the fabric—a sturdy basketweave cotton—came about somewhat haphazardly. There's no real connection to the famed British University. Apparently, the shirt's signature fabric was just one of four named after a group of schools picked by a Scottish mill for their associations with society's moneyed academic upper class. Of course, from that quartet (the others were Harvard, Yale and Cambridge), the Oxford was the only one to achieve icon status. It became part of the midcentury American uniform and an emblem of American prep as a reliable “sport shirt” and then as a casual style staple.

What's great about the OCBD is just how infinitely wearable it is. Collar buttoned or unbuttoned, tucked or untucked, wrinkled out of the dryer or pressed with an iron, it basically always looks good. It can be dressed up with a blazer and proper trousers and some nice shoes. It looks great dressed down with faded jeans or relaxed chinos and your favorite loafers or sneakers. You can wear one to a job interview with a tie just as easily as you can wear one on the weekend over a T-shirt. It's a shirt that requires little from you, and yet it always has you looking put-together. And these days, you can choose from a relaxed, boxier fit or something a little more tailored. To help you choose, we pulled together some of the best ones on the market today.


The Best
Oxford Cloth
for Men in 2024

Banana Republic Oxford shirt

Oxford shirt,
$70 by Banana Republic

Todd Snyder Japanese selvedge Oxford shirt

Japanese selvedge
Oxford shirt,
$228 by Todd Snyder

Buck Mason Perfect Oxford shirt

Perfect Oxford shirt,
$118 by Buck Mason

Made in Japan and inspired by Ivy style shirts from the 1960s, it’s got a shorter three-inch collar and pleated cuffs.

Vintage Ivy Oxford shirt,
$120 by Maker's Shirt Kamakura

Reigning Champ Oxford Windsor shirt

Oxford Windsor shirt,
$150 by Reigning Champ

J.Crew Broken-in Oxford shirt

Broken-in Oxford shirt,
$89.50 / $52.50 by J.Crew

Gap Standard-fit Oxford shirt

Standard-fit Oxford shirt,
$59.95 / $29 by Gap

Gitman Vintage 5 oz Cotton Oxford shirt

Cut from the same fabric that the brand has used since 1978, it’s finished with a sturdy collar, rear box pleat and a tacked, V-stitch chest pocket.

5 oz Cotton Oxford shirt,
$205 by Gitman Vintage

Proper Cloth Oxford shirt

Oxford shirt,
$95 by Proper Cloth


Taylor Stitch Jack Oxford shirt

Jack Oxford shirt,
$98 by Taylor Stitch

L.L. Bean Relaxed stretch Oxford shirt

Relaxed stretch Oxford shirt,
$69.95 by L.L. Bean

Everlane Organic Oxford shirt
Everlane Organic Oxford shirt

Organic Oxford shirt,
$88 by Everlane

Dollar for dollar, the best value for a well-made Oxford shirt. The cut is relaxed, the cotton is smooth and crisp, and it holds up to years of washing.

Oxford shirt,
$29.90 by UNIQLO

Portuguese Flannel Belavista Oxford shirt
Portuguese Flannel Belavista Oxford shirt

Belavista Oxford shirt,
$110 by Portuguese Flannel


Faherty Supima cotton Oxford shirt
Faherty Supima cotton Oxford shirt

Supima cotton Oxford shirt,
$128 by Faherty

Wythe Vintage blue Oxford shirt

Vintage blue Oxford shirt,
$160 by Wythe

Le Alfre Le Stripe shirt

Le Stripe' shirt,
by $125 Le Alfre

Brooks Brothers New Friday Oxford shirt

New Friday Oxford shirt,
$98.50 by Brooks Brothers

Drake's Pinpoint Oxford shirt

Pinpoint Oxford shirt,
$275 by Drake's

An all-American classic, cut from a super-soft washed cotton that feels great from the first wearing. One of the few without a chest pocket.

Classic-fit Oxford shirt,
$125 by Ralph Lauren

Oxford cloth button-down collar roll example
Oxford cloth button-down collar roll example

A Crucial Detail

All great style comes down to the little details. And the make-or-break detail of an OCBD is the “collar roll”. The term refers to the slightly arched bend formed by the collar when the buttons are fastened. The longer the collar, the more rounded a roll will extend out from the shirt. Some (lesser) brands have lost this detail and there isn’t any space between the collar and shirt. That’s not a good thing, because a generous collar roll not only offers space for a tie, but it pairs better with your jacket’s lapel and frames your face nicely.

Want More Style?

Sign up for The Obtainer newsletter. Three times a week you'll get insider intel on what to buy, trusted recommendations and reviews, along with the best deals worth your time and money.