The Best White Button-Down Shirts
Who loves a white button-down shirt as much as I do?? It tends to be a fan favorite because it is a timeless wardrobe staple you can wear at any age!
If you’re not sure what wardrobe basics you should have in your closet, I do give out free wardrobe basics checklists when you sign up for the newsletter here. Having those basics makes it SO MUCH easier to get dressed, helping you effortlessly create sophisticated, chic outfits every single day.
Keep scrolling to see how versatile white button-down shirts are and to better understand why it’s a closet essential.
Watch this video with 6 VERY unique, edgy ways to wear your white button-down.
Why Own A Button-Down??
- It’s versatile. You can wear a white button-down with almost anything from pants to jeans to skirts, even shorts (pictured above). You can also wear it in so many unexpected ways…which I share in this video.
- The white button-down shirt can be dressed up or down. Want to wear jeans but look polished? Throw on a white button-down. Need to look professional at work? Throw on a white button-down! It’s so easy to style for almost any occasion.
- It’s timeless. The white button-down has been around a long time…and has NEVER gone out of style! This isn’t a trendy piece you’ll throw out. It’s something you can invest in and wear over and over again.
Find my new, favorite over-sized white button-down, plus a few more favorites below…I’m also sharing how to style it, criteria for selecting the perfect white button-down, and what to wear underneath! We are covering it all!
#1) Open Edit White Button Down
This white Open Edit button-down shirt has been a heavy hitter for me so far this summer! This is the perfect example of a basic with a twist. The oversized silhouette is VERY on-trend at the moment. This shirt also has a longer hemline and balloon sleeves. It’s 100% cotton so it’s very cool. And… it’s incredibly versatile. It keeps going in and out of stock so if you see your size, grab it! With any white button-down, there are a few ways you can actually wear the shirt…
Shop more button-down shirts here.
How To Style #1 – Half Tuck
The first way you can wear your white button-down shirt is the half tuck or front tuck. It’s also sometimes called the French tuck. No matter what you call it, it basically just means you tuck your shirt in the front and leave it untucked in the back. This is a great option if you like to keep your booty covered. I tucked mine into a pair of denim shorts and threw on a pair of espadrilles for an elevated casual weekend look.
How To Style #2 – Knot It
This is my favorite way to wear a white button-down. It looks effortlessly cool, and it’s really easy especially with an over-sized shirt. Simply unbutton the bottom 2 buttons of your white button-down and just tie it in a knot. You can knot it twice for a more secure knot too. You can do this with any bottoms, just make sure they’re high rise so you keep your tummy covered. This is a great way to add more shape and waist definition!
How To Style #3 – Coverup
Why not wear your crisp white button-down shirt as a swim cover-up?! It’s SO chic and the over-sized fir of this Open Edit shirt makes it ideal as a coverup. I’m wearing mine mostly buttoned (try it open and unbuttoned too) with denim shorts and an undershirt. But you could wear the same look with just a swimsuit underneath.
If you’re interested in an edgy, modern way to wear this shirt, see one of my all-time favorite outfits in this post.
Go-To Brands For White Button Downs
Rails is an amazing brand for button-down shirts. The Rails Ellis Cotton Shirt (above) is my favorite basic white button-down for summer. It’s 100% gauzy cotton so it’s lightweight and keeps you cool. It definitely has a more casual, relaxed look but is a body skimming fit to give you shape. I like to roll the sleeves up and tuck it into the front of my jeans or tie it in a knot at the waist.
Shop more by Rails here.
Some of my other favorite brands to check out for button-down shirts are Lafayette 148, Frank & Eileen, Bella Dahl, and Frame. Before you buy your button-down, make sure you check out the criteria for finding the perfect white button-down shirt below…
Criteria for the Perfect White Button-Down Shirt
- Consider your fabric choice. A no-iron option will be easier to take care of, but personally I prefer a gauzy cotton.
- Find a shirt that doesn’t gape or stretch around the buttons. If it does, you should try on a different size or different fit.
- Fit is KEY! Make sure it’s not too tight on your arms, shoulder, chest, etc. Try sizing up if anything feels snug.
- Don’t be afraid of tailoring. Tailoring can bring the white button-down shirt up 10 levels, making it look custom.
- Avoid buttons that stand out. For a classic look, go with a shirt that has white or off-white buttons.
- Think about how you’ll wear your shirt. Whether you want to wear it tucked in or untucked, make sure the length works for you and how you want to style it. For example, if you plan to tuck into trousers, I would opt for a shorter hemline shirt or even a bodysuit so you don’t have extra bulk around the tummy.
What To Wear Under the Button Down
You might be able to find a white button-down that doesn’t require wearing anything underneath other than a nude bra. If you do need something underneath, I suggest a white or skin tone, cotton cami or tank. Or try a lace cami for a dressier and sexier look.
What is your holy grail white button-down shirt that you love?? Please share in the comments below!
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11 thoughts on “Why Every Woman Over 40 Should Own A White Button Down Shirt”
Erin , you look beautiful in that gorgeous white button down. I am not a typical button down look girl EXCEPT when it comes down to white ones. Right now I have a Ralph Lauren linen one that is showing it’s age. Penneys had a beautiful one that I tried on in two sizes and both were too big…too oversized ….that never happens, but they were sold out of medium so will check online. I don’t remember the brand, but it was good quality. Have a wonderful time. I am envious.💕
Absolutely perfect info and now look
Forward to PURCHASING a new white shirt, with muLtiple ways to wear
Thank you ????
Where did you find the White shirt that is in the feature picture? I clicked through your mentioned options but did not recognize it. Thank you!
You didnt memtion your 3 layers of jewerly!! Is that Gorjuna Jewelry? Please share or is it Ana Luisa? Very nice lOom With the white button dOWn!!
Those are great options. Another blogger also got me into uniqlo button downs. They drape so beautifully and resist wrinkles.
Love a good looking white shirt
Please dont take this the wrong way but you make a white shirt look very SeXy. Love this post.
Haha thanks, Denise!
Love your blog! I dont see the link of the white shirt button down you have on. It has a big collar and bell sleeves. Can you tell me the brand and where you got it?
Thanks so much❤️
I Love your look – wearing Light distressed jeans with white button down shirt – what brand is the white shirt?
I am wanting the same shirt, and the cami, and Moon cresant necklace your wearing too. Often i do not like white shirts on me they look stiff and lack the laid back vIbe i like. You style everything so well, Erin!!
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