Sometimes cotton is still king
You don’t always want Space Age tech. Don’t get me wrong—a wicking performance layer with antimicrobial properties comes in handy when you’re slogging away on the trail or sending a cliff. But sometimes cotton is king. Like when you’re lounging or just taking a walk to get a cup of coffee. Sometimes you just want to be comfortable. We picked five inexpensive cotton shirts that look great and feel even better.
Arc’teryx Glades ($27)
Arc’teryx makes incredibly good technical clothing, but it also makes incredibly comfortable T-shirts, thanks to organic cotton that’s prewashed to maintain the shirt’s fit and feel. Also, who doesn’t love happy trees?
Patagonia Porch Concert ($25)
Patagonia goes above and beyond (as always), sourcing organic cotton but also using PVC- and phthalate-free ink in the screen printing and Fair Trade–certified sewing to create a truly eco-friendly T-shirt. We dig the design by surfer/artist Trevor Gordon, too.
Faherty Brand Indigo Pocket ($55)
This 100 percent cotton shirt is indigo-dyed and washed so it feels like your favorite T-shirt the first time you put it on. And just looking at this shirt’s horizontal rugby stripes makes me think of the movie Endless Summer.
Mollusk Olde Whale ($27)
Let the preppies have their alligator pockets. We’ll take this big-ass whale over here. Mollusk (a surf shop out of San Francisco) preshrinks its 100 percent cotton tee so it stays true to size. Buyer’s note: order a size down if you don’t like a baggy fit.
Howler Bros El Capitan ($23)
OK, we’re fudging things here a little—this T-shirt is actually a cotton/poly blend. It’s still plenty soft, but to be honest, this shirt is on the list because of that monkey. What’s your spirit animal? ’Cause we just found ours.