Men's Undershirts – Undershirt History & Style – Under Shirts Fabrics Crew Neck V-Neck Tank Top

Men's Undershirts – History & Style Hi! I'm Antonio Centeno, the founder of Real MenReal Style.

Today I'm going to be talking with you aboutthe undershirt — yes, the undershirt.

I'm going to be giving you the history ofthe undershirt.

I'm going to be talking about styles of undershirts.

I'm going to be talking about the fabricsthat undershirts are made from, okay? All right.

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Let's go ahead and get into undershirts, thelowly undershirt.

I am wearing one right now made by my friend, Mike, over at RibbedTee.

It's a company he started over in Los Angeles.

The undershirt is something that many of ususe and many of us don't even know the history behind it.

UNDERSHIRT HISTORY Undershirts, as we see them today, basicallythe T-shirt came out of the US Military and it was something that was in the Navy, CoastGuard, other services, they had it underneath as protection.

It provided a bit more warmth and it was greatfor absorbing sweat and protecting the more expensive clothing on the outside, so let'sgo farther back in history.

Now, there's not a lot of documentation onthis, I don't know why, but if you go back to Roman soldiers, if you look at Chinesesoldiers, they wore forms of undershirts.

Oftentimes, they were just fabric draped aroundthe body, but they served as protection and also protecting their expensive garments.

A lot of the times, especially if they werean officer or if they were of a higher rank, it was something that the clothing that theywore was very expensive — you had less clothing, it was all hand-made, so you wanted to protectit from your own body because you didn’t want it to appear soiled.

It was easier to change out that undersheet, I guess, than to change and go and wash all your clothing.

Let's move forward 18th, 19th, 20th Century.

All of a sudden, handmade clothing is disappearing.

Manufacturers are starting to make clothingand they are systemizing in a sense what we normally wear.

If you wanted to go out and wear somethingthat's against society or totally different, you know how hard it is to find somethinglike that because the clothing manufacturers in many ways dictate what we wear.

So in that way, they decided that, “Well, let's go with the undershirt.

” It serves the purpose, like I mentioned, ofprotection.

It serves the purpose of helping keep youa bit warmer.

“Let's go ahead” and they decided that theywere going to make it.

We saw the union suits.

You can do a Google search on it.

A lot of people make fun of it, but it doesserve the purpose of keeping us warm and of protecting the more expensive clothing onthe outside of the body.

We've talked about the history.

Let's talk about the styles.

I've got some examples.

STYLES • Tank top – I don't have an example ofthis one, the wife-beater.

Just do a Google search, tank-top wife-beater.

This is the one without the sleeves.

I'm not a big fan of it because I don't thinkit serves the purpose of protecting my clothing.

Yes, I do sweat and I want to protect my clothing.

I wear an antiperspirant and that kind ofstuff, but I still sweat, so I wear clothing that protects my nice shirts from sweatingin the armpit area.

Those types of shirts I don't think reallydo a good job.

Some men like them and they like it just basicallyhow you can't see your nipples through if you're wearing a really lightweight shirt, so that's why perhaps they wear it.

• V-neck – Let's move on to the next one, which I've got an example.

I'm going to give you the V-neck undershirt.

You can see this one has a V-neck.

I am wearing a V-neck as well, and the reasonI like wearing a V-neck is because I can leave this shirt undone here.

No one is going to see I have an undershirton and I'm safe.

We'll get into this in fabrics.

This one is made from 50% cotton, 50% polyester, and be thinking about why I would approve of something that uses a manmade fiber, butwe'll get into that in a few seconds.

• Crew neck – This is where it's going togo all the way up to the top.

This is probably the most common undershirton the planet.

This is where the modern-day T-shirt camefrom.

So if you go back and look at some of thefilms in the 1950s, the Wild One, these are guys who are wearing their undershirts ina sense with leather jackets over that.

Eventually, they became the T-shirt, whichbelieve it or not, the T-shirt is a fashion item and has really just become popular inthe 1990s in this part of the 21st Century.

I always get those century things mixed up.

• Long sleeve – The other style I want totalk about is the long sleeve.

Do I have a long sleeve example? I do, and this is more closer to what we wouldsee in the union, the union suit, and this is for thermal purposes.

I live here in Wisconsin.

It gets cold and I do have some thermal underwear.

I've also got a full body suit because itkeeps you a little bit warmer, but this is the long sleeve.

Oftentimes, you just see thermal underwear.

Go ahead and do a Google search and it'llhave a picture pop up, I'm sure.

• Athletic – Now beyond that, we also haveathletic.

Now Under Armour has really done a great jobcoming in and almost cornering the market on this, but before Under Armour came out, Patagonia, North Face, a lot of these backpacking companies, they were actually putting outsome great undergarments.

They did a good job of wicking away moistureand protecting you.

I remember I picked this one up back in 1997, I believe, and I still have it.

It is made from Capilene, Patagonia.

I don't even know if they make this stuffanymore, but this was an awesome undershirt.

Actually, I use it just as regular wear whenI was down in Ecuador.

I went down there with an entomologist, andyou can do a Google search on what that means.

We were down at the rainforest and it waspretty cool.

We were actually studying all types of insectsin the rainforest.

I have a biology background, by the way.

• Compression – We've talked about thatcompression.

I'm not going to get into compression undergarmentstoo much.

It's come out of the women's.

Spanx was the big company over there, butif you somehow want to shape your body, go ahead and look into that.

I'm not a big advocate of it, but that stuffis out there.

• Specialty Undershirts – There are alsospecialty undershirts that are made to help wick away moisture to absorb sweat.

And if you sweat a lot, go check out the UndershirtGuy.

Just do a Google search, “undershirt guy”, Tug.

He's put out tons of great information onthis.

Now, undershirts also come in a variety ofcolors.

I just showed you a number of whites, butthey also come in gray and black.

Black, you want to make sure your shirt'sdark; otherwise, it's going to show through.

Gray is nice.

I like gray because you can get a little bitdirtier and stain it.

I think they're going to last longer thanthe whites simply because they're going to hide stains and it works perfectly fine undera white shirt.

I've never had them show through, but thenagain, I don't wear really, really lightweight white shirts.

Now let's get into fabric.

FABRIC Cotton is going to be the most common — durable, proven, good to go.

See something that's 100% cotton, you're probablysafe.

Now, there are different levels of qualityof cotton, so that's why something that's made from a super pima cotton is going topossibly be more expensive than just made from a normal cotton coming out of West Texas.

I'm from West Texas, but honestly, we don'tmake the highest quality cotton there.

So having said that, I'm sure I insulted someguys at Texas Tech University because they're all about their cotton, but in any case guys, face the reality, super pima cotton and other things like that are where it's at.

Now wools, there's a company called Icebreakerthat's really making some great undershirts out of wool.

So if you're into that and you want somethingthat will really absorb sweat, go check them out.

BLENDS Now, I alluded to this and let's talk quicklyabout blends.

Now, 20 years ago, undershirts that are madefrom polyester, I would say absolutely not, but they may come a long way especially witheverything that we've seen in the athletic type of garments.

This one, I brought it up earlier, it's madeby RibbedTee and this one is 50% polyester, 50% cotton, and I love it.

What separates this and why it works is becauseof the weave, so you can't see it here, but this is a gauze weave.

I can almost see through this, very, verylightweight.

If you're in a hot area, you're in Arizona, you're down in Florida, this is the undershirt that you're going to want to check out ifyou wear undershirts, okay, guys? The best undershirt, what is the right one? Well, the right one is the one that servesyou for what you need.

I own a variety.

I advice you own a variety.

I advice buying less, buying higher quality.

With that, guys, if you want to learn moreabout men's style, make sure to go check us out over at realmenrealstyle.


This entire video right here was in supportof my article over at The Art of Manliness.

I'm going to link to that great article rightdown below, so go check it out.

Okay, guys, I'll see you later.