If you’ve never owned an overshirt before, you’re missing out. They work both on their own, worn over a plain or printed T-shirt or under a heavier piece of outerwear, like a mac coat or duffle coat. In fact, an overshirt makes for the ultimate layering piece.

What is an overshirt?

Sitting somewhere between a regular shirt and a lightweight summer jacket, overshirts are usually cut from slightly heavier fabrics than regular shirts. They also feature boxier cuts to allow them to be worn over the top of other layers. 

An overshirt will typically have slightly larger collars, and crucially, will feature some form of pockets. Typically, you can expect to find two regular chest pockets, but some overshirts feature more elaborate pocket designs including flap or bellows pockets. 

Given their origins are rooted in military clothing and workwear, overshirts are often cut from sturdy cotton twills or moleskines. Today, the popularity of the style means a range of fabric options are available — from linen to hopsack and wool. 

How to wear an overshirt

1. Workwear style

A classic workwear look never fails. If you’re new to the overshirt, or you just want a versatile look suitable for a range of occasions, go for a cotton overshirt worn with dark denim jeans and white leather sneakers.

2. Luxury sportswear

Overshirts work surprisingly well with luxury sportswear, and certainly aren’t limited to just workwear pieces. Try pairing it with black sweatpants and retro style high top sneakers and you’ve got a solid look.

3. Smart and sophisticated

Overshirts also work in smarter looks, and are more than suitable for some offices. To sharpen things up wear your overshirt with tapered trousers, penny loafers and a dark raincoat for a tonal outfit that’ll never fail. 

Best overshirts for men

Percival Hazel Mini Hound Flannel Workshirt

Made from an Italian wool blend, Percival’s flannel overshirt is based on the brand's classic overshirt but has a slightly longer body. The spacious breast pockets and two neat welt pockets are perfect for carrying all your bits and pieces.

Native North Salt & Pepper Overshirt

Native North produces a range of overshirt styles, featuring differing pocket designs and fabric choices. This beige overshirt is made for living in, crafted from sturdy cotton canvas fabric that will stand the test of time. Pair it with Native North's matching trousers for an effortless summer workwear look.

Artknit Studios Navy Overshirt Jacket

Artknit Studios' overshirt jacket is crafted from luxurious extra fine merino wool for a more lightweight feel than a typical cotton jacket. It's perfect year round as a casual layering piece over a T-shirt or light sweater.

Form & Thread Olive Utility Overshirt

Form & Thread's overshirts have earned the brand a reputation as a go-to for workwear-style essentials. This mid-weight cotton overshirt is a super versatile staple that's perfect for layering over a T-shirt when the summer sun clouds over.

Wax London Grey Big Cord Whiting Shirt

Crafted from a soft and chunky cotton corduroy, this overshirt from Wax London is a trans-seasonal must-have. Its relaxed fit lends it a laidback workwear aesthetic that will look great with selvedge denim jeans and leather boots.

For more menswear essentials, check out our guide to luxury sportswear.