4 Tips to Wear Graphic Shirts & Still Look Respectable

You probably can’t wear a t-shirt with your favorite comic book character to an office meeting and not look like a goofball. Unfortunately, graphic tees don’t really have the best reputation. 

Graphic tees are often seen as loud and in-your-face. But just because you can’t wear Iron Man to work doesn’t mean you can’t turn some heads with a nice design. After all, a good graphic tee is one of the easiest (and relatively inexpensive) ways to add some flair outside of the typical “meeting attire.” So, how can you wear graphic tees and still look like a (respectable) adult? 

1. Pick a Pop of Color

The number one rule of wearing a graphic tee is to stick to one major pop of color and a few fine details. Wearing a bright t-shirt, especially one that says something, is risky. It’s one thing to sneak a shirt like this under a navy or gray blazer or even a cardigan, but the risk is higher if the shirt is extremely bold. 

Still, you can use your favorite graphic tee to add color to your outfit. Look for a few subtle ways to incorporate the graphic tee into your outfit, like a tie or a boutonniere. If you’re ever unsure, keeping your shirt tucked in might do the trick.

2. Avoid Superheroes

While these are great for kids’ birthday parties, superheroes and their friends are really not the most charming subjects for a grown man. They tend to be a little over the top for typical office attire. 

A Batman shirt with the subtle bat signal is a little more realistic in the office, but a shirt with a skull, some flames, and a baseball bat is probably not going to be considered acceptable.

3. Go Long

Another trick to avoid looking like you’re wearing a graphic tee is to pair your graphic tee with a long sleeve. The longer the sleeves, the more formal the shirt will look. Many graphic tees have long sleeves, too!

4. Stay Classic

If you’re looking for a more conservative look, stay classic. For example, a graphic tee with a band logo will probably be a little more inappropriate for a business meeting than a plain t-shirt. It may seem strange, but the more basic the design, the better. A plain, solid-colored graphic tee with a cool design will look more like a designer shirt than a child’s t-shirt.

In Conclusion

Graphic tees are a lot of fun to wear, but they can also be a little hard to wear. When you’re trying on your graphic tee, it may feel like there’s no way it can be worn in the office. The key is to go for classic or neutral colors or wear a tee with a subdued design or logo. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can wear a plain-colored graphic tee under a solid-colored blazer. It’s important to strike a balance when wearing a tee so you can look like the cool guy in the office.

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