For more than 50 years, American designer Ralph Lauren has made a strong case for denim to be the foundational fabric in men’s wardrobes. His vintage-inspired designs embrace the fabric’s storytelling attributes, while his own style showcases denim in a masculine, yet always sartorial way.
A new HBO documentary premiering Nov. 12, “Very Ralph,” chronicles the designer’s fashion career and how Ralph Lauren—the man—ultimately became the brand synonymous with effortlessly cool Americana style.
The film will be full of inspirational fashion, including some of the unique ways Lauren chooses to style his go-to denim garment—the denim shirt. Over the decades, Lauren has paired classic button-down jean shirts with everything from worn-in jeans and fringe suede jackets, to dapper tuxedos.
Channel your inner Ralph Lauren with one of these 10 men’s denim shirts. Swagger not included.
Scotch & Soda Slim Fit Chambray Button-Up Shirt
Dutch brand Scotch & Soda knows how to elevate the basic jean shirt. The brand takes the garment into dress territory with its slim fitting men’s shirt made with crisp chambray cotton. The multi-blue color adds a sartorial pop to work-appropriate looks.
Buy Scotch & Soda’s Slim Fit Chambray Button Up Shirt, $125, here.
Dickies Men’s Long-Sleeve Denim Work Shirt
From Gigi Hadid sporting denim cargo jeans, to designer labels like Off-White serving uniform-inspired looks on the runway, the ongoing utility fashion trend is shining a spotlight on traditional workwear brands. Dickies, which began in 1922 as a denim overall maker, is one of those stalwarts. While the brand continues to supply workers with durable and functional gear, a classic jean shirt by Dickies offers major sartorial points. This 100 percent cotton denim button-down shirt will add a rugged look to chinos or black jeans all year long.
Buy Dickies Men’s Long-Sleeve Denim Work Shirt, $31.95, here.
Paige Bedford Slim Fit Denim Button-Up Shirt
Jean shirts have rugged cowboy roots, but the modern man wants comfort. Paige taps into this want with its Bedford Slim Fit Denim Button-Up Shirt, a cotton/polyester construction with a super soft hand feel. A cloudy, worn-in light wash enhances the shirt’s pajama-like feel.
Buy Paige Bedford Slim Fit Denim Button-Up Shirt, $179, here.
Mountainside Regular Fit Button-Up Denim Shirt
Dress it up, or dress it down—a dark chambray shirt adds versatility to men’s closets. With its gentle fading and roomy fit, this button-down style by Mountainside feels like you’ve owned it for years.
Buy Mountainside Regular Fit Button-Up Denim Shirt, $149, here.
Madewell Lawnwood Wash Denim Shirt
Lazy weekends call for relaxed button-down jean shirts. Madewell steps up to the plate with its Lawnwood Wash Denim Shirt, a lightweight denim in a medium indigo and simple chest pocket. Expect this to become a favorite, as the versatile mid-tone gracefully ages with wear and over time.
Buy Madewell’s Lawnwood Wash Denim Shirt, $85, here.
Amazon Essentials Men’s Slim-fit Long-Sleeve Denim Shirt
For a modern interpretation of the denim Western shirt, try a slim-fitting snap button shirt in a modern wash like gray, light blue or black. This 100 percent cotton style from Amazon Essentials fits the bill with its low key front yoke details, soft hand feel and minimalistic hardware.
Buy Amazon Essentials Men’s Slim-fit Long-Sleeve Denim Shirt, $25.50, here.
Port & Company Men’s Long-Sleeve Value Denim Shirt
The denim shirt is one of those unique garments that can transverse fashion genres. Port & Company keys into the preppy look with its 100 percent cotton button-down denim shirt. The shirt’s patch pocket and horn-tone buttons serve up an old-school collegiate vibe, while the bright yet faded blue wash smacks of coastal town style. Pair it with chinos in the fall or madras shorts in the summer.
Buy Port & Company Men’s Long-Sleeve Value Denim Shirt, $16.37, here.
Levi’s Men’s Standard Barstow Denim Western Snap-Up Shirt
The denim western shirt is a signature piece in Levi’s vast archive and in men’s wardrobes around the world. The shirt is defined by its snap-button placket, dual snap-flap pockets at the chest and durable 100 percent cotton construction. Bonus: The shirt is offered in a variety of washes—from light to dark—making it an effortless option for head-to-toe denim looks.
Buy Levi’s Men’s Standard Barstow Denim Western Snap-Up Shirt, $43.91, here.
Calvin Klein Men’s Long Sleeve Denim Button-Down Shirt
Calvin Klein is always a reliable choice for contemporary denim staples. The brand’s interpretation of the jean shirt includes this worn indigo wash button-down shirt with two button flap chest pockets. Style it over an autumnal Henley for a day in the outdoors, or pair it with jet black jeans for a city-friendly look.
Buy Calvin Klein Men’s Long Sleeve Denim Button Down Shirt, $48.20, here.
Wrangler Men’s Rugged Wear Basic One-Pocket Denim Shirt
When in doubt, keep it simple with a shirt from a heritage denim brand. Wrangler delivers effortless style with a button-down jean shirt in a timeless light wash and one pocket design. We especially love the pencil slot—a functional detail with nerdy-meets-chic undertones.
Buy Wrangler Men’s Rugged Wear Basic One-Pocket Denim Shirt, $28.00, here.