Whether you’re going on a night out with friends or heading to the office, there are plenty of occasions where you’ll need to wear a shirt underneath your jacket. And while t-shirts have become more and more casual in recent years, there are still times when wearing a shirt under your outerwear is essential.  

Wearing a loose-fitting t-shirt beneath your jacket can help you stay cooler in warmer weather and keep warm in colder weather than wearing a jacket without any clothes underneath it. This article covers everything from wearing a sleeve top if you’re starting to how to dress for everything from business casual events to formal dining experiences. 


What is a sleeve top? 

Sleeve tops are loose-fitting shirts worn underneath regular-fitting outerwear, like jackets and coats. They’re a way to keep your jacket’s sleeves out of your pants or keep you warmer when the weather is cooler. Sleeve tops are also a great way to break up the monotony of wearing the same thing every day. 


How to Wear a Sleeve Top 

Depending on your jacket’s fit, you can wear a sleeve top tucked or untucked. Typically, if you wear a shirt untucked, it will be a short-sleeve shirt, and if it’s tucked in, it will be a long-sleeve shirt. When wearing a sleeve top untucked, pairing it with longer-length pants is good. Slit skirts and culottes are a great way to use a sleeve top untucked, as are boot-cut jeans. To wear a sleeve top tucked in, you can either wear your jacket’s cuffs over the shirt or roll up the sleeves to keep the shirt from showing. 


Tips for wearing a sleeve top 

– Experiment with different shirt colors and patterns to keep your look fresh. – Roll up your sleeves if you’re wearing a tucked-in sleeve top so that it doesn’t show through your jacket. – Pair your shirt with pants or a skirt so that your entire outfit matches; don’t just match your shirt with your jacket. – Wear a longer-length shirt if you’re wearing a jacket with short or cropped sleeves.  

– Wear a v-neck or scoop neck shirt if you’re wearing a button-up or blazer jacket.  

– Wear a long-sleeved shirt underneath a long-sleeved jacket if it’s slightly cooler outside.  

– Wear a short-sleeved shirt underneath a short-sleeved jacket if it’s slightly warmer outside.  

– Wear a button-down shirt underneath a blazer if you’re attending a formal event.  

– Wear an untucked shirt underneath a jacket if you don’t want your jacket’s sleeves to show through your pants.  

– Wear a wide-leg or straight-leg pants underneath a straight-leg dress if you’re going to an event that expects you to wear a particular kind of shoe.  

– Wear a belt if you’re wearing a tucked-in shirt.  

– Wear socks if your shoes don’t have fabric or leather details that will get scratched if you walk around barefoot.  

– Wear loafers or dress shoes if you’ll be wearing your jacket outside for a more extended period. – Wear running shoes or sneakers if you’ll be going on a run or doing some other activity where you’ll need your feet to move.  

– Wear leather or fabric shoes if you’ll be attending an event where you’ll be expected to wear a specific kind of shoe.  

– Wear mules or loafers if you have to attend an event where you’ll be expected to wear heels. 


When is it inappropriate to wear a sleeve top? 

Sleeveless tops are never appropriate for formal occasions, like weddings or job interviews. Sleeveless shirts are also inappropriate at many other events, like dinner parties, business meetings, and social gatherings. While sleeveless tops are appropriate for many situations outside of these, it’s essential to know when you can and can’t wear them. You can generally wear them when it’s warm out, when it’s not formal, and when you’re not attending an event where you’ll be expected to wear a jacket or blazer. 


Finding the right fit for a sleeve top 

The right fit for a sleeve top is very similar to the right fit for a t-shirt in that you want the shirt to be slightly baggy. The shirt should fall loosely on your body but not be so baggy that it looks like you’re wearing a tent.  

You should also be able to comfortably wear a belt if you want to pull your shirt in a bit. Sleeve tops are more forgiving than regular-fitting shirts, so that you can go a little looser with them. If you wear a regular-fitting shirt, you’ll have to keep it tightened down so that your midsection isn’t spilling over the sides of your pants. You can loosen your belt and let the top hang loosely if you want to with a sleeve top. 



Wearing a loose-fitting t-shirt beneath your jacket can help keep you more relaxed in warmer weather and warmer when it’s cooler out. They’re also a great way to break up the monotony of wearing the same thing every day. Whether you prefer t-shirts that are more form-fitting or ones that are more relaxed, we’ve got plenty of styles. From classic button-up shirts to patterned graphic tees, you can find a style that suits your fashion sense.