When James Bond (then played by Sean Connery) wore a baby blue Terry cloth shirt — well, technically it was a one-piece romper — in 1964's Goldfinger, no one batted an eye. Surely if Bond was doing it, everyone should.
But, nowadays, men still forget Terry cloth when it comes time to put together their summer wardrobes. Cotton and linen shirts come to mind quick, and while both are lightweight and breathable, neither wicks moisture quite like Terry cloth.
That being said, it's probably the fabric's association to beach towels and bath mats that has kept it off the backs of most men, even though Terry cloth often looks more elevated than the aforementioned materials. It's more swanky than it is sloppy, and the fabric proves perfect for late night (and end-of-summer) dinner and drinks, especially when it's fashioned into well-fitting camp collar and zip up shirts — like the below options from Onia.
Towel Terry Camp Shirt (Deep Navy) Read More
Towel Terry Camp Shirt (Sage) Read More
Towel Terry Camp Shirt (White) Read More
Towel Terry Zip Up (White) Read More
Towel Terry Zip Up (Deep Navy) Read More
Terry cloth, which is just fabric with protruding loops of thread, can be made from 100 percent cotton, but Onia's Terry — a word that derives from the French word "tirer," which means "to pull" or "draw" — shirts are woven from a mix of cotton, rayon and polyester, because this mix makes for a shirt that's both softer and lighter. Their insides are also made with a jersey fabric on the inside, ensuring the fabric is flat, not fuzzy, against your torso.
Both styles — the camp collar and the zip up — work well with dress pants or nicer shorts, and they could even be worn with layers underneath — like an A-shirt (a.k.a. a tank top) or a tonal T-shirt. The Camp Collar iteration features tonal buttons and a shallower neck than most other shirts in the category but that makes it appropriate more often — with a deep neck, your shirt works at the beach, at the pool or at a sweaty al fresco dinner date but few other places.
The Zip Up shirt works with the metal zipper zipped all the way up or worn undone, but be careful with its front pockets, though, because while they're plenty roomy, anything too heavy will prove too much, making the pockets sag. Smaller items like a wallet, AirPods or keys fit quite well and can hang there without weighing them down.