15 Cuban Collar Shirts To Keep You Cool All Summer Long (In More Ways Than One)

Here’s the first thing to tick off your summer shopping list: the Cuban-collar shirt. While the silhouette is nothing new, its reputation until recently was more “golf dad sporting a hula-dancer print on the Atlantic City boardwalk” and less “summer wardrobe must-have.” Thankfully the shirt has had a stylish resurgence in recent years, and it’s all I want to wear any time the mercury climbs above 80°F.

Call it what you want (camp shirt, revere collar, bowling shirt, vacation shirt, I could go on…), all roads lead to its spiritual predecessor—the guayabera. (Which, just so you know, is a traditional piece of menswear in Latin America and the Caribbean. According to folklore, it originated when a Cuban man asked his wife to create a shirt with multiple pockets to store his belongings while working. The shirt is distinguished by four front pockets, two vertical stripes of pleating or embroidery, and most notably, an open collar.) Unlike the collar of an oxford shirt, a Cuban collar has almost no structure, and is designed to be worn with at least one button undone so you get maximal airflow. The style made its way stateside in the 1950s, and has been a lightweight, warm-season staple of casual dressing ever since.

Since it’s so summery, the Cuban-collar shirt has previously been lumped in with anything floral or featuring a hula dancer. We’re not hating, but it’s time to move on. This summer, opt instead for big, bold patterns, asymmetrical designs, and lean into embroidery, pockets, and textured fabrics inspired by the OG guayabera. Here are our picks to get your wardrobe one step closer to peak summertime cool.

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Button-Up Shirt

Nordstrom x Cristina Martinez

Artist Cristina Martinez’s signature floral faces pattern turns this simple, affordable shirt into a conversation starter. Plus it’s made of silky viscose, which will keep you cool even when it’s sweltering.

Textured Camp Shirt

This textured shirt is made of a super-light cotton knit, so you’ll get maximal airflow right through the fabric and onto your skin. You’ll look right at home sporting this seaside—the off-white color is just about as coastal as it gets.

Linen Guayabera

Behold the linen guayabera, complete with traditional double-chest and double-hip pockets. It comes in plenty of colorways, and you can’t go wrong with any of them.

Knit Easy Short-Sleeve Camp Shirt

This super-comfortable camp shirt is made of a thick organic cotton jersey, so it has some structure, but is still breezy and smooth to the touch. You’ll forget you aren’t just wearing a T-shirt.

The Linen Camp Shirt

The dual, square-cut chest pockets are a nice touch. The 100 percent linen fabrication, ensuring this shirt is impressively breathable on even the hottest days, is even better.

Riviera Cabana Shirt

This beauty from Bonobos is a classic take on the 1950s American version of the Cuban collar. It’s loose, lightly textured, boxy, and comes in a range of summery colors and patterns.

Airing Easy Camp Collar Shirt

Lululemon has a mastered the art of making casual silhouettes with technical fabrics. At first glance, this looks like your standard relaxed cotton button-down. Upon further inspection, it’s actually made of a moisture-wicking, four-way stretch, and aerated performance fabric. It comes in three cool-toned solid colors but we couldn’t resist the tie dye, which disguises the technical fabrication even more.

Slub Cotton Camp-Collar Shirt

If the thought of a staunch collar makes you sweat but a short-sleeve shirt won’t cut it for the dress code, switch things up with a long-sleeve camp shirt. It’s relaxed but still sophisticated. And a classic stripe certainly doesn’t hurt.

Relaxed-Fit Camp Collar Shirt

COS is known for making anything-but-basic wardrobe basics, and this shirt is no exception. The Tencel fabric feels almost like canvas and has a similar structure, yet it’s far more breathable and lightweight. But the real star of the show here are the little design details—like chunky corozo buttons with horizontal threading and large side-seam pockets.

Herringbone Silk Button-Up Camp Shirt

Tommy Bahama

All of your dad’s favorite vacation shirts (and flip-flops…and beach chairs) are probably from Tommy Bahama. But fear not: a shirt does not make you your old man. This streamlined version features a buttery smooth silk fabric with sleek topstitching that feels absolutely heavenly to wear.

Tropical Cotton Button-Up Camp Shirt

Scotch & Soda

If a bold tropical pattern is your vibe, look no further than Scotch & Soda. It has fun with pattern, but keeps it more low-key than the hula-print shirts you picked up in Florida 10 years ago.

Classic Fit Tie Dye Seersucker Shirt

Polo Ralph Lauren

Seersucker meets tie dye in this marriage of summers past and summers present.

Floral Applique Button-Up Camp Shirt

Ted Baker London

We love a floral motif as much as the next guy, but sometimes clean and modern is the way to go. Enter this stunner from Ted Baker—a crisp white cotton button-down complete with not-too-many embroidered floral appliques.

Colorblock Button-Up Shirt

Priya Ahluwalia’s namesake brand takes inspiration from the designer’s dual Indian-Nigerian heritage and her time spent growing up in London. The colorblocked fabrics and strategic seams accentuate the oversized fit of this investment-worthy piece.

Printed Cotton Poplin Bowling Shirt

Fresh off the Hollywood Walk of Fame, this shirt from the Gucci Love Parade collection is a love letter to Los Angeles. If you want everyone to know you’re on island time, this should do the trick.

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Source : Esquire