True Classic Tees Review: The Best Budget Tee?

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by  William Barton | Last Updated: 

Finding the perfect t-shirt is a lot like finding the sword in the stone: some say it’s impossible—others claim they’ve done it, but it can be difficult to trust them.

After several years trying dozens of different brands, we’re narrowing in on which t-shirt is the best of the best. In this True Classic Tees review, you’re going to find out whether this popular brand is right for you.

A forgiving fit
The Adult Man Image/Icon Image source: True Classic Tees

True Classic Tees

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Bottom line: True Classic Tees offer some of the best value and fit you can find in basic t-shirts. If you’re looking to stock your wardrobe with some simple tees that fit well, are flattering in the shoulders and chest, and don’t cost a ton, True Classic is a fantastic brand for you.

Ratings:

The Adult Man Image/Icon  Design The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon
The Adult Man Image/Icon  Quality of Materials The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon
The Adult Man Image/Icon  Value for Money The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon
The Adult Man Image/Icon  Craftsmanship The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon
The Adult Man Image/Icon  Customer Service The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon The Adult Man Image/Icon

Pros:

  • The fit is phenomenal---fitted shoulders and arms make for a flattering look through the chest, but there’s still room in the torso for those of us who aren’t shredded
  • The fabric is soft, has plenty of stretch, and doesn’t fade, wrinkle, or shrink much in the wash
  • True Classic Tees offer a nice variety of basic color options, plus you can find henleys, pocket tees, v-necks, and long sleeves
  • True Classic Tees partners with the Tiny House Project and also does a lot of community giving as part of their company mission

Cons:

  • I’d like to see more variety in fabrics---a 100% cotton option would be nice
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Where do you stand on the great t-shirt debate? 

Are you a believer in the classic white t-shirt? Or are you more of a modern black tee guy?

I’ve always leaned toward white shirts, which can be problematic because I’m also not the neatest eater. 

Well, I decided it was time to try out a black tee and see how I liked it, and in my research, I came across True Classic Tees several times. The price was right, so I picked some up to see if they’d become my new go-to tee. 

So how’d they do? Keep reading and find out. 

What Is True Classic Tees?

trying the True Classic Tees polo

True Classic Tees is a relatively new brand (founded in early 2020) that specializes in basic t-shirts with no branding and simple, solid colors. 

The focus is on fit, rather than logos or patterns. True Classic offers crew-necks, v-necks, polos, long sleeve, and henley shirts. 

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From the very beginning, True Classic Tees made it a point to give back to their Los Angeles community: they partnered with the Tiny House Project to donate a portion of their proceeds to help find housing for veterans. 

In addition to their work with the Tiny House Project, True Classic also donates an average of 15,000+ t-shirts to homeless shelters every month.

Things to Consider Before Buying T-Shirts from True Classic

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I’ll shoot straight with you: True Classic is the best t-shirt I’ve found for guys with a bit of dad-bod going on. I wore these through my whole Christmas vacation and still kept my confidence as my stomach progressively grew after every calorie-laden meal. 

But there is one other brand you should know about before buying True Classic Tees: Fresh Clean Tees

These brands are nearly identical: the fit is flattering through the chest and arms for both. True Classic leaves a tiny bit more room in the torso. But Fresh Clean Tees are about three dollars less expensive per shirt, which can be quite significant when you buy in bundles. 

Fresh Clean Tees chocolate shirt medium
Fresh Clean Tees Chocolate Crew Neck

As for the fabric, I can’t say they’re 100% the same, but they’re both poly/cotton blends and I haven’t noticed any significant difference after dozens of washes for each. 

Check out my full comparison of these two brands if you want the breakdown. But for an abridged version: get Fresh Clean Tees if you’re a slimmer guy and want the best value possible. Get True Classic Tees if you have a belly or if you’re fine spending a bit extra to support True Classic’s awesome community-giving initiatives. 

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True Classic Tees
(Get 20% off your first purchase when you sign up with your email)

True Classic Tees offer some of the best value and fit you can find in basic t-shirts. If you’re looking to stock your wardrobe with some simple tees that fit well, are flattering in the shoulders and chest, and don’t cost a ton, True Classic is a fantastic brand for you.

Shop True Classic Tees
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True Classic Tees Review

I picked three different pieces from True Classic to try and get an idea of everything they offer: the crew, the henley, and the polo

All of these shirts are pretty much exactly the same, minus the obvious differences (like the collar on the polo shirt). Otherwise, they all have the same fit and feature the same fabric. They also often come in the same color-schemes. 

So I’ll hit all the most important factors on a True Classic Tee first and then dive into the details of each a little later. Note that just about everything I say about the t-shirt applied to the polo, the v-neck, the henley, and the long sleeve shirts, too. 

Fabric

True Classic Tees henley in grey

True Classic Tees make their shirts with a blend of 60% ringspun cotton and 40% polyester. I love this blend as a basic t-shirt because it’s soft, flexible, doesn’t shrink or fade much, and it doesn’t wrinkle a lot out of the dryer. 

This makes it easy to quickly fold them up in your drawer and you don’t have to worry about looking like a wrinkly mess every morning if you’re the kind of guy who doesn’t like to iron or steam your clothes each day (which is pretty much all of us, right?). 

True Classic Tees grey henley on model close up

I’ve put all three of my True Classic Tees through the wash at least five times and I haven’t noticed any fading, pilling, or warping. 

The first thing to go in all of my t-shirts is the neck, and that usually starts stretching at the second or third wash—even in shirts I like a lot. But that’s not the case with True Classic. That high dosage of polyester allows these shirts to keep their shape really well. 

Fit

True Classic Tees model wearing black shirt

Over the past two years, I think I’ve tried over 20 t-shirt brands. True Classic Tees make my top three list, and it’s mainly because of the fit. 

I’m loving the fit of my True Classic Tees. They’re not totally unique, as I’ve found two other brands so far that fit pretty much the same: Fresh Clean Tees and Goodlife

Goodlife’s t-shirts are three times more expensive, but they have some really excellent slub cotton fabrics that have an amazing faded look. We’re talking about $60 a shirt, though, so it’s a little tough to justify buying them for a wardrobe restock. 

model wearing true classic tees fit check

Fresh Clean Tees are a little cheaper, and as far as I can tell, match the quality of True Classic. True Classic leaves a tiny bit more room in the torso, so I’d recommend True Classic over Fresh Clean if you have a bit of a belly. Otherwise, I’d go with Fresh Clean because you save about three dollars per shirt.

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Fresh Clean Tees
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Fresh Clean Tees have a unique, flattering fit that emphasizes your shoulders and doesn't swallow your arms. The cotton-polyester blend holds its color well and doesn't wrinkle easily.

Shop Fresh Clean Tees Read Our Review
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True Classic Tees have a modern athletic fit, which means they have slimmer arm openings and a slimmer chest. But they’re not slim fit—the torso fits more like a standard t-shirt. The end result is something that’s flattering for your arms, chest, and shoulders, but doesn’t hug your stomach or ride up too high. 

True Classic Tees polo neck detail

I’m 6’1 and about 200 lbs, and you can see how the large fits me. The True Classic “Fit Selector” said I should get the XL, but I’m really liking the size L. The XL would’ve given me a roomier fit through the torso, but the arms would stay fairly slim (but I think the shoulders would be a bit too wide for me). 

Are True Classic Tees Good for a Dad Bod?

True Classic Tees are the best t-shirts I’ve found for guys who rock the dad bod. The key is the fit in the shoulders and through the arms: the fit is regular in the torso and more tailored in the areas that make you look masculine. For the most slimming look, order a darker color in your usual size.

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Types

True Classic Tees polo shirt details

Of course I had to try a simple black t-shirt, and I’m happy with that pickup. But I was also intrigued with the polo and henley. Henleys are probably my favorite style of shirt—they’ve got all the effortless cool of a tee, but have a little extra dash of je ne se quoi that I’m a fan of. 

I wouldn’t say the True Classic henley blew me away—it’s a pretty basic, simple henley that fits extremely well and doesn’t cost a lot. It’s a great value for your money. 

My favorite henley comes from a brand HNLY LA, which is a truly unique shirt that fits really well. But it’s over $80 for a t-shirt. So, again, it’s tough to justify buying multiple. True Classic’s henley isn’t as unique or stylish, but it’s about 25% the price, and has a flattering fit that I love. If I had to buy another, I’d go with True Classic all day.

model sitting wearing True Classic Tees t shirt

I’m not a huge polo guy, but they’re an excellent shirt for spring and summer when it’s too hot for a second layer, but you don’t want to go full casual with a t-shirt only. So I picked up the True Classic polo and I’m just as impressed with this piece as I am with the other two shirts I got from the brand. 

My biggest concern was with the collar after a wash, but the collar stays in shape really well and doesn’t require any ironing or steaming. Just like the t-shirt, it’s a fantastic piece you can just pull out of your drawer and throw on. 

What do Other Reviewers Say About True Classic Tees?

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After reading through several dozen Trustpilot reviews (True Classic nets an “excellent” rating with over 500 reviews), I noticed a few comments pop up multiple times. 

First, the customer service seems to be excellent. One reviewer mentioned they’ve owned three shirts for a year, and when they started having an issue with one of them, True Classic sent them a new tee—after one year of wear. 

Second, some people felt these shirts run a little small. It’s true that they’re more tailored in the shoulders, chest, and arms. If you’re not comfortable with a more form-fit in those areas, you may want to size up, but most guys are happy with their regular size. 

My Thoughts Overall On True Classic Tees

What I Like

  • The fit is incredible, especially for a relatively inexpensive shirt—it’s flattering in the chest, shoulders, and arms, with room left over for those who might sport a bit of dad bod. 

  • The cotton/poly blend is soft, has stretch, doesn’t fade, wrinkle, or shrink much throughout your shirt’s lifetime. 

  • True Classic carries all the basic colors and a few other neutral tones that pretty much work with anything. They also have henleys, pocket-tees, v-necks, long sleeves, polos, and more. 

  • The brand does an excellent job giving back to the community through donations to the Tiny House Project and over 15,000+ shirts given away each month. 

What I Don’t Like

  • I’d like to see more variety in fabrics—a 100% slub cotton option would be nice, even if it cost a bit more. 

Who is True Classic Tees for?

True Classic Tees is a fantastic t-shirt if you’re looking to stock your wardrobe with a set of basic tees you can wear day in and day out. These t-shirts aren’t designer or super unique—they’re solid, comfortable, and don’t require much care to keep from wrinkling, so they’re fantastic everyday shirts.

The Verdict

I’m a big fan of True Classic Tees. They’re one of my top three t-shirt brands, and I’ve tried at least 20 different brands over the past two years. 

Why?

Well, the fit is incredible. If you’re used to buying three-pack shirts from Target or just getting whatever is the cheapest option, you’ll be surprised at how much difference a more tailored tee can make. 

True Classic Tees accentuate the chest, shoulders, and arms. That’s good news for all guys—regardless of your body type. But they’re not slim fit shirts. They still have room in the torso if you’re rocking a dad bod and want to avoid something stretching tight over your stomach. 

Usually, if you want a tee that fits this well, you can expect to pay $50-$60. But with True Classic, you’re just above $20, so that allows you to pick up several so you can wear one every day. 

However, I also need to note Fresh Clean Tees: basically every positive I’ve said about True Classic Tees is true for Fresh Clean Tees. But Fresh Clean is about $3 less expensive per shirt. They also fit slightly more snug through the torso. 

So the verdict is this: if you have some dad bod going on, you’ll love True Classic Tees. They’re one of the best value-for-money picks I know of. If you’re pretty slim, then save the extra $3 per shirt and pick up a set of Fresh Clean Tees.

$3 might not seem like a lot, but it adds up when you’re buying a bulk pack.

Discount Available
True Classic Tees
(Get 20% off your first purchase when you sign up with your email)

True Classic Tees offer some of the best value and fit you can find in basic t-shirts. If you’re looking to stock your wardrobe with some simple tees that fit well, are flattering in the shoulders and chest, and don’t cost a ton, True Classic is a fantastic brand for you.

Shop True Classic Tees
If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

FAQs

Are True Classic Tees slim fit?

True Classic Tees are more tailored through the chest and shoulders, but the torso is a standard fit. It may seem like a “slim fit” at first because True Classic Tees are much more fitted than regular t-shirts.

Where is True Classic Tees based out of?

True Classic Tees are based in Los Angeles, California.

What are True Classic Tees made from?

True Classic Tees are made from a blend of 60% ring-spun cotton and 40% polyester.

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