6 Best Oxford Shirts for Men in 2022: The Smart Style Staple

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by  David Martin | Last Updated: 

A crisp Oxford shirt is a staple of any stylish man’s wardrobe, but to you it may look like any other button-down shirt. To make matters worse, any renowned seller of Oxford shirts usually has about a thousand options to choose from.

In this article I’ll demystify Oxford shirts and how they differ from dress shirts, and unpack our top six recommendations so you can find the right one for your wardrobe.

Best Overall
  • Traditional Oxford shirt designed in Brighton, England, since 1963 that shows the brand’s expertise in shirting
  • Made with 100% organic cotton for optimal breathability and comfort
  • Classic structured fit that manages to stay soft and be appropriate for formal and casual outfits
Most Customizable
  • Complete customizability, from the collar style and cut to the button material and placket
  • Option to have the shirt monogrammed
  • 100% pure cotton construction for comfort and durability
Best Multibuy
  • Price drops to $50 per shirt when you buy four or more
  • Garment-washed to give extra soft feeling
  • Can return any item for up to six months
Most Affordable
  • Considerably cheaper than typical Oxford offerings
  • Wide selection of shirt colors 
  • Great for everyday, casual use due to Flex fabric construction
Best American-Made
  • Made with American-grown Supima cotton for premium feel and comfort
  • Multibuy option to get three shirts for $200
  • Genuine mother-of-pearl buttons come standard, which give an extra sense of classiness
Best Smart Casual
  • Featured in classic and slim fits
  • Wide variety of pastel shirt colors to easily walk the line between formal and casual
  • Split back yoke ensures a comfortable range of motion

If you’re here, you’re a stylish guy (or you want to be). 

And the stylish guy’s wardrobe needs to cover a vast variety of situations. 

You need lounge clothes, gym clothes, casual fits, smart casual fits, formal, semi-formal, business casual, and likely some other subcategories to nail the look for every occasion.

With such a daunting list of situations to cover, your life can get significantly easier with the inclusion of wardrobe staples that function across formalities and situations. The king of these utilitarian wardrobe staples is the Oxford shirt. 

Wear it with jeans and sneakers, tuck it into chinos or slacks, or pair it with a slim sport coat and you’ve already covered three formalities without breaking a sweat.

The only issue is knowing which Oxford shirt to buy. This shirt’s massive number of use cases has inspired hundreds of shirtmakers to try their hand at the Oxford, each with their own styles, price point, and customizability. 

If you’re looking to pick up a few Oxfords to simplify your wardrobe but don’t know where to start, this article covers our top six Oxford picks so you can find the right one for you.

What Is an Oxford Shirt?

KOTN oxford shirt

Before we dig into the best Oxford’s for your buck, let’s get a good idea of what an Oxford is and how it differs from other dress shirts out there. 

While it’s easy to assume that Oxford shirts refer to the city of Oxford, England and the legendary clothiers therein, an Oxford shirt is actually defined only by the type of cloth used to make these shirts. Referred to as Oxford cloth, this material is made from thick, woven cotton that creates a textured finish rather than the smooth, sleek finish so often found in traditional men’s dress shirts.

closeup under 510 oxford dress shirt

The resulting shirt is slightly thick and stiff, but still soft enough to wear on a daily basis. Traditional dress shirts typically have a herringbone weave and a bit more sheen to the shirt, while Oxfords feature a box weave and are more matte. 

Oxfords often feature buttoned collar points, and this signature attribute helped the shirt style to explode in popularity in the early 1900s. However, there are also Oxfords that don’t feature the buttoned collar points. Since they’re made from Oxford cloth, they’re still considered Oxfords.

6 Best Men’s Oxford Shirts in 2022

Best Overall: Ben Sherman Brighton Oxford Shirt

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The Ben Sherman brand has been creating shirts and other men’s clothing staples since 1963. The Brighton Oxford shirt is easily the cornerstone of the brand, featuring 100% organic cotton and exclusively recycled materials. Using 100% organic cotton adds a noticeable softness, but also makes this shirt much easier to recycle than other blended fiber shirts.

This shirt is cut in Ben Sherman’s signature Mod fit, which is a bit looser than slim but still shapes to the body nicely. Each Brighton Oxford is treated to a Beatnik wash, which helps to create a softer feel for the fabric. 

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This shirt gets my top pick for best Oxford overall because it checks every box of what a classic Oxford should be while being sustainable, modern, and fairly affordable. It comes in a host of different colors, so if you’re looking to take a bold step away from the classic pastel blue, yellow, and pink, they’ve got you covered.

These shirts are built to last and feel sturdy, but also cool well due to the organic cotton construction.

What I Like

  • The Mod fit cut is the perfect step up from a slim cut shirt.

  • The Beatnik wash gives the shirt a soft handfeel, while still allowing the shirt to remain its classic structure.

  • A large selection of colors and styles allows you to easily blend the line between modern and classic fashion.

  • 100% organic cotton and recycled materials make this Oxford sustainable and extra comfortable.

What I Don’t Like

  • The brand doesn’t offer a multibuy option with discounted shirt prices.

What Other Reviewers Say

The Brighton Oxford doesn’t have a truckload of reviews, but the few it has are all exceedingly positive. Common positive sentiments focused on the shirt’s fit, feel, and solid construction, with many reviewers saying they wouldn’t be buying shirts from anywhere else.

The Verdict

If you’re in the market for a classic Oxford shirt with buttoned collar points, you can’t go wrong with Ben Sherman’s Brighton. The Mod fit makes this a perfect shirt to pair with casual outfits and modern suits alike. Made exclusively with recycled materials and organic cotton, these sustainable shirts feel good to buy and great to wear.

Best Overall
Ben Sherman Brighton Oxford Shirt

Every guy should own a white Oxford shirt for its versatility alone. Ben Sherman's centerpiece, the Brighton Oxford is crafted from soft yet substantial 100% cotton and having given it plenty of wear-tests, we can tell it's built to last.

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Most Customizable: Apposta 100% Pure Cotton Oxford

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The Apposta 100% Pure Cotton Oxford is the king of customization. Whereas some Oxford brands offer only the classic, buttoned collar, Apposta offers a near-nauseating selection of collar styles to choose from, with and without buttons. 

And they don’t stop there. Every feature of their Oxford shirt has several options to choose from, whether it’s the cut, the pocket, the cuffs, the button material, the stitching, or the placket. Apposta also provides an option to have your shirt monogrammed, in the ultimate act of customization. 

Featuring 100% pure cotton construction, Apposta’s Oxford wears lightly but manages to maintain the classic, rigid Oxford cloth feel. It’s priced reasonably, considering all of the included customization options, and won’t break the bank in order to get a quality Oxford.

With such a wide range of customization options, these Oxfords can be designed for more formal situations than your typical buttoned collar Oxford. Take out the buttons on the collar, lengthen the collar points, remove the pocket, and you’ve got yourself a dress Oxford good enough for some of your best suits.

What I Like

  • These shirts feature an impressive amount of customization, especially with more collar styles than I knew existed.

  • 100% pure cotton construction ensures a comfortable fit while still keeping you cool.

  • Apposta provides the option for you to monogram your shirt, adding an even further level of customizability.

What I Don’t Like

What Other Reviewers Say

There are only a few reviews for Apposta’s Oxford, but the ones I could find were enthusiastic about the level of customization and precision that goes into every shirt. Other positive reviews noted that the shirt was durable and held up well through consistent use.

The Verdict

If you’ve been around the block a few times when it comes to men’s shirting, the Apposta 100% Pure Cotton Oxford is an excellent choice. For those who wear dress shirts enough to know the details of what they like when it comes to cuff styles, collar styles, pocket styles, and button materials, you’ll find all you want and more with these Oxfords.

Most Customizable
Apposta White Oxford Cotton Shirt

The king of customization, Apposta offers a near-nauseating selection of options to choose from to build your perfect Oxford. It’s also priced reasonably, considering all of the included customization options, and won’t break the bank in order to get a quality 100% cotton Oxford.

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Best Multibuy: Charles Tyrwhitt Button-Down Collar Washed Oxford Shirt

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Charles Tyrwhitt’s Washed Oxford Shirt is a classic Oxford with buttoned collar points. This legendary brand’s interpretation of the Oxford features a split back yoke, which allows for a greater range of movement and comfort.

As the name implies, Charles Tyrwhitt’s Oxfords have been garment washed to create a softer handfeel and wearing experience. All things considered, this is a pretty standard Oxford shirt, but the true value is in the multibuy offer.

If you’re in the market for four or more Oxfords, Charles Tyrwhitt offers a massive discount on the price of each shirt. Where four shirts would normally cost over $400, a Charles Tyrwhitt multibuy only brings you $200. Not too shabby.

What I Like

  • These Oxfords come in a great selection of colors.

  • The multibuy option is great to take advantage of if you’re looking to stock or restock your wardrobe.

  • The split back yoke construction allows for more freedom of movement, while maintaining a sleek cut.

What I Don’t Like

  • Charles Tyrwhitt doesn’t quite offer the value for money compared to its competitors if you’re buying less than four shirts.

What Other Reviewers Say

Reviews for the Charles Tyrwhitt Washed Oxford are generally positive, with reviewers noting the soft feel, quality construction, and ease of movement in these shirts. The only negative review I could find had to do with inconsistent sizing, but these complaints were few and far between.

The Verdict

While the individual price of a Charles Tyrwhitt shirt is expensive, this is the perfect choice for anyone looking to get four or more Oxfords at once. A wide selection of colors, garment washing for a softer finish, and a split back yoke make this Oxford difficult to pass up, especially at the multibuy price.

Best Multibuy
Charles Tyrwhitt Button-Down Collar Washed Oxford Shirt

Multibuy legend, Charles Tyrwhitt brings the goods with their Button-Down Collar Washed Oxford. They feature a split back yoke, which allows for a greater range of movement and comfort and have been garment washed for a softer handfeel.

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Most Affordable: J. Crew Factory Flex Oxford Casual Shirt

J.Crew Factory Flex Oxford Casual Shirt For Men 1

If you’ve got the Oxford fever but can’t get behind dropping $100 per shirt, J. Crew Factory allows access to the Oxford club at a much friendlier price point. Most shirts run for $50, with the additional option to save 20% if you become a J. Crew card member. Unlike Charles Tyrwhitt, no multibuy is necessary to lock in the affordable price.

Although the J. Crew Factory Flex Oxford isn’t made with organic cotton, each purchase supports the Better Cotton Initiative, which promotes more responsibly grown cotton. 

These Oxfords come in a small variety of pastel colors and styles so you can get the classic Oxford experience. As the name suggests, these shirts are meant for casual and smart casual situations. You could probably get away with throwing a sport coat on top, but there are better Oxfords in this article for more formal environments.

What I Like

  • These Oxfords have a very approachable price point compared to their competition.

  • The Flex fabric construction creates a comfortable fit that isn’t too rigid.

  • The selection of colors hits all the pastel classics and offers a few modern interpretations.

What I Don’t Like

  • They’re not made from 100% organic cotton, but that’s probably to be expected for the lower price point.

What Other Reviewers Say

These Oxfords have overwhelmingly positive reviews, with several reviewers saying the shirts are T-shirt comfortable in a business-ready package. Other common sentiments highlighted the soft texture and easy laundering of the shirt.

The Verdict

If you want to upgrade your wardrobe with classic styles while not breaking the bank, J. Crew Factory’s Flex Oxford is your best bet. High quality, flexible construction, classic colors, and an approachable price point make these Oxfords almost impossible to pass up.

J.Crew Factory Flex Oxford Casual Shirt

Available in a wide range of tasteful colors and styles, the J.Crew Factory Flex is our top budget Oxford pick. While they're not made with organic cotton, each purchase supports the Better Cotton Initiative, which promotes more responsibly grown cotton.

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Best American-Made: Brooks Brothers Regent Regular-Fit Oxford

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Any list of the best Oxford shirts would be incomplete without the inclusion of Brooks Brothers, the legendary American clothier. 

Brooks Brothers brings their reputation for excellence in men’s shirting to bear with the Regent Oxford. Made with American grown, Supima cotton and sporting a regular cut, this Oxford is about as close as you can get to the original vision of the Oxford button-down.

Each shirt comes standard with genuine mother-of-pearl buttons, and is made exclusively in the USA. As expected, this attention to detail and construction brings a high price point. At $140 per shirt these can be too lofty for most Oxford novices, but they also offer a solid multibuy option.

If you’re okay with dropping $200, you can pick up three of the Regent Oxfords, which is a suspiciously good discount when considering the price of a single shirt is $140. For a small fee, Brooks Brothers will also monogram your shirts, if desired.

What I Like

  • The use of Supima cotton guarantees that these shirts are top-notch quality.

  • Brooks Brothers offers a great multibuy option on the Regent Oxford if you want three or more shirts.

  • These shirts come standard with genuine mother-of-pearl buttons.

What I Don’t Like

  • The entry price for a single shirt is very steep.

What Other Reviewers Say

There are few reviews for the Regent Oxford, but every one I found gave these Oxfords five stars. Reviewers love the classic interpretation of these Oxfords and seem to notice the difference that Supima cotton construction makes.

The Verdict

The Brooks Brothers Regent Oxford is for those who know exactly what they’re looking for. A fairly steep price point can be prohibitive for many Oxford buyers, but those that know Brooks Brothers’ reputation for quality shirts and are looking for a classic Oxford will be satisfied with these shirts.

Best American-Made
Brooks Brothers Regent Regular-Fit Oxford

Brooks Brothers brings their reputation for excellence in men’s shirting to bear with the Regent Oxford. Made with American grown, Supima cotton and sporting a regular cut, this Oxford is about as close as you can get to the original vision of the Oxford button-down.

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Best Smart Casual: Ralph Lauren The Iconic Oxford Shirt

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Rounding out our top Oxford shirts is another legendary American clothier, Ralph Lauren. The aptly named Iconic Oxford shirt takes all the classic elements of an Oxford button-down and slightly modernizes them to include bold colors and slim fit cuts.

The Iconic Oxford is evenly priced with the majority of top-tier Oxfords, but they stand out with a large selection of pastel colors that aren’t found elsewhere. These shirts are made with 100% cotton and feature a split back yoke to enable greater comfort and range of motion in daily use. 

As with every Ralph Lauren garment, these shirts also boast the classic, multi-colored signature embroidered Pony at the left chest.

The Iconic Oxford is my top pick for smart casual environments. Smart casual walks the line between casual and business casual. For example, picture the Iconic Oxford tucked into chinos, worn with desert boots and featuring a sport coat with a flashy pocket square. 

These Oxfords are perfect for the smart casual job, as they come in both regular and slim cuts and look neat as a pin.

What I Like

  • These shirts come in a great selection of pastel colors, including purple and green.

  • The slim cut is perfect for modern, smart casual outfits.

  • The split back yoke construction guarantees comfortable movement for all-day use.

What I Don’t Like

  • The brand doesn’t offer a multibuy option.

What Other Reviewers Say

Reviewers for the Iconic Oxford are generally very positive and highlight the comfortable daily wear provided by the split back yoke and sharp look for the slim fit cut.

Several reviewers had issues with sizing, as the shirts apparently run slightly small, but these complaints were few and far between.

The Verdict

If you’ve got a sizeable budget and are looking to perfect the smart casual look, Ralph Lauren’s Iconic Oxford is the shirt for you. 100% cotton construction and a split back yoke guarantee a comfortable wear time and time again, and a wide selection of colors provide original outfits for a wide variety of situations.

Best Smart Casual
Ralph Lauren The Iconic Oxford Shirt

Ralph Lauren's aptly named Iconic Oxford shirt is a smart casual darling and takes all the classic elements of an Oxford button-down and slightly modernizes them to include bold colors and slim fit cuts. It's made with 100% cotton and featuring a split back yoke to enable greater comfort and range of motion in daily use.

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How to Wear an Oxford Shirt for Different Dress Codes

Figuring out how to style an Oxford for different dress codes can be a bit nuanced, so I’ve covered four basic formalities below and laid out an example outfit for each.

Formal

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Formal environments call for white Oxfords, no exceptions. I recommend the Apposta Oxford in this case, which you can purchase without the buttoned collar to give a more formal look while maintaining the rigid feel of an Oxford. 

Pair this Oxford with a black or blue suit, and finish the outfit with a dark tie and appropriate formal footwear for the suit you choose. 

Business Casual

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The business casual dress code is a good place to break out your pastel pink and sky blue Oxfords, especially if you’re tired of wearing white.

Match your Oxford with a pair of khakis, brown derby shoes, and a navy sport coat on top. Business casual gives you the option to wear a tie or go without it. If you opt for a tie you should keep the style reserved to match the formality of business casual.

Smart Casual

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As I mentioned above, smart casual bridges the gap between casual and business casual outfits. This formality accommodates any color and style of Oxford, which can be paired with jeans or chinos. 

I recommend tucking your Oxford in, and choosing a casual boot such as Chelsea or desert boots for footwear. You can leave this outfit as is and nail the smart casual look, or top it off with a sport coat or sweater. The choice is yours, which makes this a great formality for all seasons.

Casual

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Oxfords are perfect for casual outfits as well. Any color or style of Oxford goes in casual settings, and I recommend wearing your Oxford untucked. Complete this outfit with a pair of dark jeans or chinos and nice sneakers, and you’re good to go.

Join the Oxford Club

L Estrange blue oxford close up on model

Between these six Oxfords selections you should be able to find the perfect choice for you, whether you’re looking for a classic shirt with formal applications or a modern interpretation.

If you’re looking for a classic Oxford with the signature rigid construction and soft handfeel, my top pick is Ben Sherman’s Brighton Oxford shirt. 

Our Top Pick
Ben Sherman Brighton Oxford Shirt

Every guy should own a white Oxford shirt for its versatility alone. Ben Sherman's centerpiece, the Brighton Oxford is crafted from soft yet substantial 100% cotton and having given it plenty of wear-tests, we can tell it's built to last.

Check Best Price Read Our Review
If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

Apposta’s 100% Pure Cotton Oxford gets my pick for most customizable, with more choices for collars and shirt construction than you knew existed.

Charles Tyrwhitt’s gets the pick for best multibuy, while J. Crew’s Flex Oxford takes the spot for most affordable. 

Best Value Multibuy
Charles Tyrwhitt Button-Down Collar Washed Oxford Shirt

Multibuy legend, Charles Tyrwhitt brings the goods with their Button-Down Collar Washed Oxford. They feature a split back yoke, which allows for a greater range of movement and comfort and have been garment washed for a softer handfeel.

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Rounding out our top picks, Brooks Brothers’ Regent Oxford is our top American-made Oxford, and Ralph Lauren’s Iconic Oxford takes the cake for the best smart casual option.

If you know a friend who’s been looking to simplify their wardrobe and would benefit from the utility of Oxford button-downs, send them this article! They’ll thank you later when they’re wearing an Oxford on a daily basis.

FAQs

What’s the difference between a dress shirt and an Oxford?

An Oxford button-down is made with a specific cotton cloth that tends to be more rigid, called Oxford cloth. Oxfords are known for their signature buttoned collar points as well. A typical dress shirt is made from lighter material with more sheen and a herringbone pattern, while an Oxford has a boxed pattern and is quite matte.

How long do Oxford shirts last?

According to the Dry Cleaning and Laundry Institute, a good dress shirt should last for 35-50 washings, which is 1-2 years, depending on frequency of use. Oxfords tend to last slightly longer due to the thick cloth, so an Oxford shirt should last anywhere from 2-3 years.