6 Best Sweatshirts for Men in 2023: The Casual Comfort King

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by  David Martin | Last Updated: 

You’ve owned a lot of sweatshirts over the years, but most have gotten tattered and aren’t fit for wearing outside the house. However, any casual search for a good sweatshirt reveals that every brand under the sun is pedalling their own version and calling it the best.

In this article, I’ve done the legwork to find the best sweatshirts money can buy, and I’ll unpack my top six recommendations so you can find the perfect fit for your wardrobe.

Best Overall
  • Sophisticated take on the classic hoodie that makes this style more formal than usual
  • Waffle-knit fabric has thermal properties that help keep you warm without being bulky
  • It’s pre-washed to keep it from shrinking and to soften the fabric
Best Athletic Fit
  • Constructed to highlight athletic and muscular body types
  • Made with a blend of cotton and spandex, which makes the fabric super stretchy and helps it retain its shape
  • Slim, sleek cut that’s great for wearing by itself or underneath a jacket
Best for Working Out
  • Fabric is made with a blend of rayon, nylon, and spandex for ultimate stretching and flexibility
  • Wrinkle-resistant and moisture-wicking, which makes it great for the gym
  • Raglan sleeves and curved back hem help improve mobility and keep you covered for dynamic movements
Best Collared
  • Appropriate for more dressy environments while still wearing with the comfort of a sweatshirt
  • Ribbed collar and concealed button placket maintain a neat profile
  • Made with a fabric blend of cotton and polyester, which makes it soft and stretchy
Best Crew Neck
  • Fabric is cut from 83% Pima cotton, which is incredibly soft and makes this sweatshirt feel like a plush beach towel
  • 7% spandex means it doesn’t fit too tight around the waist
  • Great for wearing by itself or layering over casual dress shirts
Best for Travel
  • Merino wool construction is super soft, stretchy, and odor neutralizing so you can smell good no matter how long you’ve been traveling
  • Built like a sweater but with a hoodie profile for maximum comfort at home or running errands
  • The wool is temperature regulating and moisture wicking for all day comfort, especially in transitional weather

Every guy needs a good sweatshirt.

As we get older and our responsibilities increase, it’s important to remember the simple pleasures that keep us grounded and help us unwind. 

One of these simple pleasures, as trivial as it sounds, is wearing a sweatshirt. It’s warm, it’s simple, it makes us feel good about how we look, and it doesn’t require an outfit to be assembled around it.

You can just throw it on with your favorite pair of jeans and be set to walk the dog, run some errands, barbecue at a friend’s house, or watch the game at the bar. 

I’m a big sweatshirt guy. So big, in fact, that I wore the same zip hoodie every day for the first six months of my freshman year of high school. 

Among the many trials of this hormone-riddled time period—new friends, grades, girls, sports—a sweatshirt was one thing that made my life easier and more comfortable.

And today—thankfully my fashion has evolved well past that dark period of my life—there are few things as relaxing as bumming it in a quality sweatshirt for the entire weekend. 

The only issue is finding a good sweatshirt to buy. If you’re like me, the old Walmart-brand hoodies aren’t cutting it anymore. You might want something more refined, formal, or appropriate for working out.

If you know you need a new one but don’t know where to start, I unpack my top six sweatshirt picks in this article so you can find the perfect fit.

6 Best Men’s Sweatshirts in 2023

Best Overall: Public Rec Waffle-Knit Hoodie

Public Rec has made a name for itself through its innovative performance menswear. Their clothes are fantastic for the office, traveling, work happy hours, and game days with friends and family. 

Their Waffle-Knit Hoodie is my top overall pick for men’s sweatshirts. The waffle-knit fabric has a tight weave that stretches well and wears comfortably all day long. This sweatshirt is constructed with raglan shoulder seams, which help maintain your range of motion regardless of the activity.

This all-day comfort is helped by the cotton and polyester fabric blend used in the waffle-knit, which is stretchy and soft. Public Rec pre-washes these sweatshirts as well, which helps to prevent shrinkage and makes the fabric soft from the first time you wear it.

The waffle-knit fabric has thermal properties, which help keep you warm and cozy without having to wear a bulky sweatshirt.

What I Like

  • The collar and covered button placket make this sweatshirt appropriate for more dressy environments.
  • The cotton and polyester fabric blend ensures a comfortable, flexible wearing experience.
  • It’s garment-washed, which means I don’t have to order a size up to account for potential shrinkage.

What I Don’t Like

  • There are only three colors to choose from, but they’re neutral, which makes them easy to pair with any outfit.

What Other Reviewers Say

While the Waffle-Knit Hoodie doesn’t have many reviews (which isn’t all that surprising given Public Rec only released it in September 2022), the reviews it has are overwhelmingly positive. Satisfied customers reported loving the weight and feel of the fabric, and how warm the sweatshirt was without being bulky.

Many of these positive reviewers said they bought a second sweatshirt in a different color because they loved it so much.

The Verdict

If you’re looking for a solid sweatshirt that’s warm, neat, not bulky, and great for a variety of situations, Public Rec’s Waffle-Knit Hoodie checks all the boxes with ease. The relaxed, athletic fit makes this perfect for layering beneath a jacket or wearing it by itself, and the waffle-knit fabric has thermal properties that will keep you warmer than you’d expect.

Best Overall
Public Rec Waffle-Knit Hoodie

If you’re looking for a solid sweatshirt that’s warm, neat, not bulky, and great for a variety of situations, Public Rec’s Waffle Knit Hoodie checks all the boxes with ease. The relaxed, athletic fit makes this perfect for layering beneath a jacket or wearing it by itself, and the waffle-knit fabric has thermal properties that will keep you warmer than you’d expect.

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Best Athletic Fit: State & Liberty Solid Black Hoodie

State & Liberty markets its clothing to athletes and bodybuilders, but that doesn’t mean their clothing won’t work for a slim guy like me. Their apparel is cut to fit muscular and athletic body types, and their Solid Black Hoodie is no exception. 

Featuring a slim, athletic fit, this is a great sweatshirt to wear if you want to be warm and comfortable, but also want to show off what you did during your most recent chest day. 

If you’re like me and don’t look like you constantly have small pillows strapped to your chest, the Solid Black Hoodie is still a solid choice. I don’t love my hoodies to be form-fitting, so the athletic cuts in my case fit more slim and relaxed. 

These hoodies are made with a cotton and spandex fabric blend, which makes them super stretchy and soft for all day comfort. 

Due to the athletic, form-fitting cut, the Solid Black Hoodie doesn’t have a kangaroo pouch pocket like typical hoodies have, but that’s probably for the best given how tight this sweatshirt can fit.

What I Like

  • The collar and covered button placket make this sweatshirt appropriate for more dressy environments.
  • The cotton and polyester fabric blend ensures a comfortable, flexible wearing experience.
  • It’s garment-washed, which means I don’t have to order a size up to account for potential shrinkage.

What I Don’t Like

  • The price may not be for the budget conscious.

What Other Reviewers Say

While State & Liberty’s hoodies don’t have any reviews themselves, the brand is well known for their athletic-cut dress shirts. Reviewers that have struggled to find well-fitting dress shirts for muscular frames were satisfied with State & Liberty’s shirts, and I’m sure the same could be said for their hoodies.

The Verdict

If you’re looking for a form-fitting, light hoodie to show off your gains, State & Liberty’s Solid Black Hoodie is a sure bet. The cotton and spandex fabric blend keeps this hoodie soft and stretchy, which gives it a close fit without restricting your movement. This is also a great hoodie for slimmer guys who want a relaxed, slim cut hoodie.

Best Athletic Fit
State & Liberty Solid Black Hoodie

If you’re looking for a form-fitting, light hoodie to show off your gains, State and Liberty’s Solid Black Hoodie is a sure bet. The cotton and spandex fabric blend keeps this hoodie soft and stretchy, which gives it a close fit without restricting your movement. This is also a great hoodie for slimmer guys who want a relaxed, slim cut hoodie.

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Best for Working Out: Mizzen+Main ProFlex Hoodie

Mizzen+Main is another big player in the performance menswear realm, and many of their products are perfect for smart casual outfits.

Their ProFlex Hoodie is a gym-enthusiast’s dream. I’ve been to the gym plenty of times in the colder months and wished I had a sweatshirt like this to help me warm up. 

Made with a fabric blend of rayon, nylon, and spandex, this sweatshirt can be stretched every which way and still maintain its shape. This blend of fabric also keeps the sweatshirt wrinkle-resistant and helps to wick moisture away.

A curved back hem offers a little extra length for overhead movements that would typically bring your sweatshirt up too high, and raglan sleeves help with unhindered arm and shoulder movements.

What I Like

  • The collar and covered button placket make this sweatshirt appropriate for more dressy environments.
  • The cotton and polyester fabric blend ensures a comfortable, flexible wearing experience.
  • It’s garment-washed, which means I don’t have to order a size up to account for potential shrinkage.

What I Don’t Like

  • While I think the pricing is justified for the quality on offer, this hoodie also may be out of reach for guys on a budget.

What Other Reviewers Say

The ProFlex Hoodie doesn’t have many reviews, but the reviews I could find were glowing. Happy customers said they bought the same sweatshirt in another color, and every review talked positively about how soft and stretchy the sweatshirt was.

The Verdict

If you’re in the market for a quality, 4-way stretch sweatshirt for the gym or for everyday use, I recommend Mizzen+Main’s ProFlex Hoodie. The fabric blend makes this sweatshirt perfect for workouts because it won’t wrinkle, is moisture-wicking, and has unmatched stretch recovery.

Best for Working Out
Mizzen+Main ProFlex Hoodie

If you’re in the market for a quality, 4-way stretch sweatshirt for the gym or for everyday use, I recommend Mizzen+Main’s ProFlex Hoodie. The fabric blend makes this sweatshirt perfect for workouts because it won’t wrinkle, is moisture-wicking, and has unmatched stretch recovery.

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Best Collared Sweatshirt: Charles Tyrwhitt Long Sleeve Polo Collar Sweatshirt

Charles Tyrwhitt is a well-known shirt supplier that’s based in London, and their products extend to quarter zips, sweaters, and in this case, sweatshirts.

Featuring the ribbed hem and sleeve cuffs or a typical sweatshirt, this version adds in a polo collar to slightly increase the formality. 

I love sweatshirts like this. They’re perfect for dinner and drinks but keep you in the comfort of a sweatshirt rather than a stiff dress shirt or tight sweater.

It’s made with a fabric blend of cotton and polyester, which gives it a smooth finish and stretchy, comfortable wearing experience. Charles Tyrwhitt also garment-washes these sweatshirts before selling them so they don’t shrink and are soft from day one.

What I Like

  • The collar and covered button placket make this sweatshirt appropriate for more dressy environments.
  • The cotton and polyester fabric blend ensures a comfortable, flexible wearing experience.
  • It’s garment-washed, which means I don’t have to order a size up to account for potential shrinkage.

What I Don’t Like

  • This sweatshirt only comes in three colors, but they’re neutrals that can be paired with almost any outfit.

What Other Reviewers Say

The reviews for the Long Sleeve Polo Collar Sweatshirt are overall positive. A few customers were dissatisfied with the fabric quality, but the large majority had no issue in this regard. Satisfied reviewers loved the soft, smooth fabric and how stretchy the sweatshirt was.

The Verdict

If you’re looking for a sweatshirt that’s appropriate for work, happy hour, and a first date, Charles Tyrwhitt’s Long Sleeve Polo Collar Sweatshirt is a solid choice. It’s soft, stretchy, and has ribbed cuffs and a hem like a normal sweatshirt, but the collar and button placket elevate this to be a dressier garment.

Best Collared Sweatshirt
Charles Tyrwhitt Long Sleeve Polo Collar Sweatshirt

If you’re looking for a sweatshirt that’s appropriate for work, happy hour, and a first date, Charles Tyrwhitt’s Long Sleeve Polo Collar Sweatshirt is the perfect choice. It’s soft, stretchy, and has ribbed cuffs and a hem like a normal sweatshirt, but the collar and button placket elevate this to be a dressier garment.

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Best Crew Neck Sweatshirt: Public Rec Weekend Crew

We believe that every guy needs a crew neck sweatshirt in his closet, and Public Rec’s Weekend Crew steps it up quite a few notches from the old Champion sweatshirt that’s hanging limp in your closet.

This sweatshirt is cut from 83% Pima cotton, which gives it the feel of a plush beach towel. It’s rounded out by 10% Polyester and 7% Spandex blend which means it doesn’t fit too tight around the waistband.

The comfortable everyday construction makes this the perfect choice for warming up after a long surfing session, and the details like the raglan should sleeves and bonded seamless front collar makes it stand out as a layer over a dress shirt for dinner and drinks.

What I Like

  • The 83% Pima cotton is super comfortable, cozy, and warm.
  • Appealing spread of color and fit choices
  • 7% spandex means it doesn’t strangle your waist

What I Don’t Like

  • It may be prohibitively expensive if you’re trying to stick to a budget.

What Other Reviewers Say

The Weekend Crew boasts mostly positive reviews online. Happy customers love the fit and feel, and frequently mention the construction as being of high quality. Other reviewers loved the color selection and how well the sweatshirt fit from the first wear. However, one mentioned that the XXL fit a little tight for him through his chest with his weight listed at 221-240 pounds.

The Verdict

If you’re in need of a quality, basic crew neck sweatshirt to add to your wardrobe, I recommend Public Rec’s Weekend Crew. The 83% Pima cotton construction and soft lining interior make this sweatshirt incredibly soft and plush, and you’re sure to find a color to suit you.

Best Crew Neck Sweatshirt
Public Rec Weekend Crew

If you’re in need of a quality, basic crew neck sweatshirt to add to your wardrobe, I recommend Public Rec's Weekend Crew. The 83% Pima cotton construction and soft lining interior make this sweatshirt incredibly soft and plush, and you're sure to find a color to suit you.

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Best For Travel: Western Rise StrongCore Merino Hoodie Sweater

Western Rise is well-known for making versatile clothing, and their StrongCore Merino Hoodie Sweater is no exception. 

Merino wool is typically used in sweaters, but using this fabric for a hoodie makes for a great travel sweatshirt. This wool is naturally odor-neutralizing and temperature regulating, which makes it perfect for temperature fluctuations you often find in the airport, airplane, or during transitional weather.

Also, I never smell like a field of daisies after a long day of travel, so having a sweatshirt to automatically neutralize any foul odors is a huge plus in my book.

What I Like

  • The merino wool and polyamide fiber fabric blend keeps this hoodie stretchy and comfortable.
  • It’s naturally temperature-regulating, which makes it perfect to wear by itself or layered under a jacket or fleece.
  • The odor-neutralization makes this the perfect sweatshirt for a long day of travel.

What I Don’t Like

  • Since merino wool is more delicate, it’s not recommended that you machine wash this sweatshirt. Western Rise recommends hand-washing or getting it dry-cleaned.

What Other Reviewers Say

The reviewers love this sweatshirt. Every review I came across raved about the construction quality, the soft fabric, and the temperature-regulation. Several reviewers even bought multiple pairs in different colors.

The Verdict

If you’re shopping for a cozy sweatshirt that wears like a sweater, or could really use a good travel piece, Western Rise’s StrongCore Merino Hoodie Sweater is the way to go. The merino wool fabric blend is naturally odor-neutralizing and temperature-regulating, and is super soft for all-day comfort.

Best For Travel
Western Rise StrongCore Merino Hoodie Sweater

If you’re shopping for a cozy sweatshirt that wears like a sweater, or could really use a good travel piece, Western Rise’s StrongCore Merino Hoodie Sweater is the way to go. The merino wool fabric blend is naturally odor-neutralizing and temperature-regulating, and is super soft for all-day comfort.

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Key Things to Consider When Buying a Sweatshirt

  • Hoodie or crew neck? Hoodies can offer more warmth and have a more relaxed vibe, while crewnecks are great for lounging but can also be dressed up slightly and layered with dress shirts
  • What’s your use case? If you want a sweatshirt you can wear during your next gym session, make sure you get a piece that’s made with polyester or nylon, not just cotton. Cotton is heavy and doesn’t breathe well, and synthetic fabrics like rayon, spandex, polyester, and nylon will be lighter, more flexible, and moisture-wicking.
  • What’s your budget? If you’re not trying to spend an arm and a leg, look for generic sweatshirts from more mainstream brands. However, if you have a stack of cash to drop, look for premium fabrics and construction details that will make your sweatshirt stand out.

Get Your Sweats

As you can see, the world of sweatshirts is vast. Whether it be hoodies, crewnecks, collars, or merino wool sweatshirts, there’s a good choice for every guy in a host of different situations.

Between these six sweatshirts you should be able to find an optimal sweatshirt for you, or maybe more than one. 

If you’re looking for a solid, all-around sweatshirt that’s warm and sleek, I recommend Public Rec’s Waffle Knit Hoodie.

Best Overall
Public Rec Waffle-Knit Hoodie

If you’re looking for a solid sweatshirt that’s warm, neat, not bulky, and great for a variety of situations, Public Rec’s Waffle Knit Hoodie checks all the boxes with ease. The relaxed, athletic fit makes this perfect for layering beneath a jacket or wearing it by itself, and the waffle-knit fabric has thermal properties that will keep you warmer than you’d expect.

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

State and Liberty’s Solid Black Hoodie gets my pick for best athletic fit hoodie, while Mizzen+Main’s ProFlex Hoodie is my top choice for the gym. 

For something more formal, I’m a big fan of Charles Tyrwhitt’s Long Sleeve Polo Collar Sweatshirt.

If you just want a cozy crew neck, you can’t go wrong with Public Rec’s Weekend Crew.

Best Crew Neck Sweater
Public Rec Weekend Crew

If you’re in need of a quality, basic crew neck sweatshirt to add to your wardrobe, I recommend Public Rec's Weekend Crew. The 83% Pima cotton construction and soft lining interior make this sweatshirt incredibly soft and plush, and you're sure to find a color to suit you.

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

And finally, if you’re looking for a new travel companion, Western Rise’s StrongCore Merino Hoodie is perfect for long treks in the mountains or hours on the plane.

If you know a friend who needs to ditch their Walmart-brand, tattered sweatshirts, share this article with them! They’ll thank you later when they’re constantly comfortable.

FAQs

Which is best, hoodie or sweatshirt?

Neither a hoodie or sweatshirt is better, it just depends on what you’re looking for. If you want a relaxed, casual sweatshirt that can be super warm, go with a hoodie. If you want something just as cozy, but appropriate for dressing up sometimes, go with a crewneck sweatshirt.

Where can I get cool sweatshirts?

You can get cool sweatshirts from Public Rec, which has a wide selection of styles and colors.

What was the brand name of those cool sweatshirts and sweatpants from Mexico back in the 80s?

Those cool sweatshirts and sweatpants from Mexico back in the 80s are called Baja Hoodies.

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