All shirt collars might look the same to you, but there will be times your clothing choice will communicate what kind of man you are more than your muscles or your ink. Also, like beards, all the different shirt collars complement specific face shapes, too. Having a little bit of knowledge on the difference between a point collar dress shirt and a club collar shirt couldn't hurt (and might prove useful, especially when you're trying to look marginally more handsome). Here’s a simple guide on shirt collars so you can figure out what looks best on you.
A straight point collar possesses the narrowest spread of all the collars. Due to the narrower points of this type of collar, it gives off a slimming effect, which counterbalances round faces or wider necks. Note that small to medium tie knots suit this collar best.
You’ll know you’re wearing a spread collar dress shirt when you see how wide the distance is between the two collar points. Because of the wide horizontal space of the spread collar, it serves as the perfect foil for thin faces.
The semi-spread collar flatters every face shape, as its points balance a round face while the spread between the collar points works well with long and thin faces. This quality makes semi-spread collar dress shirts a versatile clothing piece, and one you need in your closet.
You can tell you’re wearing a tab collar dress shirt when its collar features a button tab or a snap which raises and frames the knot of your tie. This kind of collar is indistinguishable from a point collar but a man who wears one appreciates the finer details of sartorial style.
When you see a shirt with a button on each collar point, you know it has a button-down collar. This particular collar style hails from the Brooks Brothers, who tailored shirts for the American market. Aside from its American heritage, button-down collars have been historically associated with sports activities.
The cutaway collar gained its name because it looks like the collar has been cut away. It's a look that's a bit challenging to pull off, as it's more well-suited for formal occasions. This collar is also called the Windsor collar because it provides a perfect fit for this specific knot.
You can differentiate a club collar from any other type as its collar points are rounded off instead of the traditionally pointed tips. The beginnings of the club collar can be traced to the students of Eton College who rounded off their collars to separate themselves from the rest. Due to this exclusive origin, people referred to this collar as the club collar because it originated from a specific “club.”
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People can identify banded collar shirts because of their distinct lack of collars -- there are just bands near the neck. Band collar shirts give an airy, casual appeal, which is why men prefer them for summer and travel occasions.
Much like the tab collar, a pin collar also lifts the tie from underneath and holds it in place. But instead of a tab of fabric, the pin collar uses a bar. The pin collar is a mark of the more sartorially-inclined man.
Here’s Gent’s Lounge to show you 4 Collars Every Guy Should Know:
Now you know how to tell the types of collars apart, you’re better equipped to buy the right dress shirts that’ll flatter your face shape or accentuate your style. Now, surprise everyone at the next formal shindig you’re attending by rocking the hell out of your dress shirt.
Is there a piece of clothing you’re particularly stumped about in terms of how to wear it? Give us your answer in the comments section below and we’ll feature it next time.