What is the best fabric for a dress shirt?

Dress shirts can come in a variety of fabrics, and this leads to people often asking - what is the best fabric for a dress shirt? There is a wide range of fabric suitable for dress shirts, but here we will focus on the most common.

Broadcloth or Poplin

Broadcloth, sometimes referred to as Poplin, is a popular fabric for dress shirts. This is a fabric which is tightly woven, and it has a very slight sheen to it. Broadcloth shirts are worn often for business, and pleasure, because of the smart professional look they give, and their smooth finish with next to no texture. As a fine and lightweight fabric, broadcloth or poplin for dress shirts is a great choice.


End-on-end is a type of broadcloth that is also used for dress shirts. It has a very subtle texture, which can only really be noticed up close, and is light weight.This fabric can be used for formal shirts, business shirts and other smart shirts.


Twill fabric does have a texture to it, but a very fine texture. Up close you will notice a diagonal weave. This is a lightweight fabric with a very slight sheen to it, again making it a great option for dress shirt fabric. When ironed, this will not appear as sharp and crisp as a broadcloth shirt, it is a bit more drapey as silk can be. Nevertheless, Twill is an option for making formal shirts.

Pinpoint Oxford

Pinpoint, sometimes referred to as Oxford Cloth, or Pinpoint Oxford, is another fabric that can be used for formal shirts. Shirts made in Pinpoint, or Oxford Cloth, are smart and durable, however more favoured for work shirts, rather than formal and occasion shirts. The heavier nature of the fabric makes this a less popular option for a formal shirt.

Royal Oxford

Royal Oxford fabric has a certain shine to it, and so is considered a good fabric for dress shirts. It does have a more prominent weave than other such fabrics, but it is still regarded as a good choice of material for having dress shirts made.

Linen and Cotton

Both linen and cotton are known for their breathable qualities, and their practicality in warmer climates. Linen will tend to be worn more looser and so 100% linen is not used for dress shirts, however linen blended with cotton is often opted for.

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