We all do our best to stay active, develop healthy eating habits, and keep gravity at bay. But… life. Whether we like it or not, it just keeps on life-ing. Which means that sometimes—we’ll call it “between primes”—you may or may not find yourself with a dad bod.
You know the dad bod. That fabled physique that’s not without its muscle tone but also not without its love handles and subtly round belly. Of course, you don’t have to be a dad to have one. But you do need to have a trusty stockpile of the best fitting t-shirts for dad bods in order to properly weather this storm.
So here are 12 of them. Budget shirts. Luxury shirts. V-necks. We’ll go deep so you can get your basics caught up to that blooming torso of yours in the most comfortable and stylish way possible.
The best fitting t-shirts for dad bods have a few key characteristics you should look for when comparing options. For starters, there should be plenty of room in the midsection without being boxy.
The sleeves should also have a tailored look to accentuate your arms. Buck Mason’s Slub Curved Hem Tee is my top pick for these features and more, and Uniqlo’s budget-friendly Dry Crew Neck comes in a close second.
Buck Mason makes some of the most comfortable, durable, and stylish basics out there. The Slub Curved Hem Tee is made of 100% pre-shrunk cotton with a clean, textured look and Buck Mason’s signature curved hem.
You’ll want to size this one up due to its slightly tailored fit, but the hem will help distract from any unwanted curvature. Another reason this is my pick for the best t-shirt for dad bods is a key design characteristic of any shirt of its ilk—sleeves that fall at the perfect length. These do, and they also feature deep-cut armholes that contour to your body and help accentuate whatever you’re working with in the bicep and tricep department.
Material: 100% Cotton | Colors: 12 | Sizes: XS-2XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
You know Dickie’s for its functional workwear that stands the test of time. Following through on that reputation is this t-shirt made of polyester and 100% heavyweight cotton for a sturdy feel and maximum durability.
But what makes it one of the best fitting t-shirts for dad bods? It’s pre-shrunk, so you don’t have to worry about unintentional bod exposure, and it comes in sizes up to 6XL in certain colors. Outside of that, it’s got a traditional chest pocket with a pencil divider if you’re actually planning on doing some manual labor in it. It’s all in the details.
Material: 50% Cotton, 50% Polyester | Colors: 40 | Sizes: S-6XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
“Luxury” and “t-shirt” aren’t words typically associated with each other. But if you appreciate the finer things in life and you’ve got it in the budget, why the hell not? When you’re ready, Wahts Lavin is ready to step in with this elevated cashmere basic with a ribbed collar and hem.
It’s what you wear to evening cocktails by the water. It can be dressed up with a nice pair of pants or dressed down with linen shorts or a pair of jeans. And if you’re working with some extra bulk above the belt, that ribbed hem provides a bit of lift around the midsection to help keep things in check.
Material: 95% Cotton, 5% Cashmere | Colors: 5 | Sizes: S-2XL | Care: Hand Wash Cold
Most of the best fitting t-shirts for dad bods share the characteristic feature of having plenty of room in the belly region. Plenty of room, but not too much room. A glaring exception, if that’s what you’re into, would be the Tony Boxy tee from The Frankie Shop.
Planting its 100% cotton frame firmly in the streetwear niche, it’s oversized throughout and would pair nicely with wide-leg chinos or a stylish pair of sweatpants. The bottom left of the shirt is embossed with “TFS,” adding a nice touch to this elevated take on the dad bod tee.
Material: 100% Cotton | Colors: 1 | Sizes: S-2XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
Another pricey option that could be worth it for you,
It’s a modern t-shirt that deserves to be your outer layer as opposed to an undershirt. And like that Frankie Shop shirt up there, this one too features embossed logos that help define it as a cut above in terms of construction and materials.
Material: 50% Recycled Cotton, 50% Organic Cotton | Colors: 3 | Sizes: XS-2XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
Another elevated option, this colorful striped tee from NYC’s Corridor is for the fashion-conscious dad whose body just so happens to contain a bit of heft. It’s pre-shrunk, features a chest pocket, and made of 100% cotton for a cozy feel.
Between its slimming red and blue stripes and the fact that it’s available in sizes up to XXL, they’ll never suspect said heft is tucked peacefully away behind the stylish, breathable confines of this standout t-shirt.
Material: 100% Cotton | Colors: 1 | Sizes: XS-2XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
My top pick, the Slub Curved Hem from Buck Mason, is not cheap as far as t-shirts go. That said, it’s worth every penny, not only in terms of comfort but in longevity. On the opposite end of the price tag spectrum lies Uniqlo’s Dry Crew Neck. It’s a budget option, and you’re likely only going to get a budget lifespan out of it.
But for a garment at this price point, Uniqlo goes the extra mile in terms of details and the shirt’s construction. The cotton-poly blend keeps things feeling smooth against your skin, and it also features moisture-wicking properties for the warmer months. The sleeves have a tailored look that hugs your arms, but it features a wider, straight drape around the midsection. It comes in 11 colors, but I’d opt for figure-flattering black in this one.
Material: 66% Cotton, 34% Polyester | Colors: 11 | Sizes: 2XS-3XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
You’ve probably seen the ads for True Classic floating around social media. Guy wears boxy, oversized t-shirt. Guy has the realization that “there’s got to be a better way.” Guy procures a True Classic t-shirt and gets a new lease on life. It’s a tired trope, but these really are some of the best t-shirts out there for men of a certain shape.
The focus is exactly where it should be—providing room around the midsection and keeping things tight and tailored around the arms and chest. Sizes go up to 2XL, and there’s a whopping 48 colors to choose from for the crew neck alone. If you’re looking to beef up your stable of everyday shirts, this is a good place to turn.
Material: 60% Cotton, 40% Polyester | Colors: 48 | Sizes: S-2XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
The cheesy t-shirt. There’s just no escaping it. I’m talking the kind of corny that spills out of tacky gift shops in every tourist town in America. The kind that’s all too rampant on cruise ships and probably Dollywood. And you know what? They’re glorious.
Gloriously bad, but you still can’t help but laugh at some of them. And since dad bod territory is ripe for puns, enter this, “It’s not a dad bod, it’s a father figure” tee on Amazon. It’s got a classic fit, so no bod-specific bells and whistles here. But this one’s all about the cheese, and it’s got plenty to offer.
Material: 100% Cotton | Colors: 10 | Sizes: S-3XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
Since 1851, Fruit of the Loom has been making affordable, reliable, unfussy basics. You know them. You love them. And here they are with a t-shirt made specifically for larger men. As you’ve come to expect by now, it’s got ample room above the belt, and its sleeves are just the right size for bulkier guys.
The price is reasonable, making this a shirt you’ll want to stock up on. It’ll do just fine on its own as a main layer, but these also make for super comfortable undershirts during chillier months.
Material: 100% Cotton | Colors: 4 | Sizes: 2XB-4XB | Care: Machine Wash Cold
Fresh Clean Threads (formerly Fresh Clean Tees) is another t-shirt brand that puts special emphasis on working with, not against, the dad bod. The v-neck helps elongate the torso, and the extra few inches added to the midsection keep things looking seamless from top to bottom.
The tall option adds an inch to the sleeves and two inches to the length, providing some strong customization opportunities. Meanwhile, its cotton-poly blend makes for a super soft and comfortable fit that resists shrinkage. Fresh Clean Threads also has a handful of henleys and long-sleeve t-shirts with many of the same features and qualities, so go nuts.
Material: 60% Cotton, 40% Polyester | Colors: 9 | Sizes: M-3XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
Heavyweight Collections makes their shirts in Southern California with an emphasis on strong, classic construction. They run large by design, with plenty of room around the torso. The sleeves aren’t fitted and also offer a bit more room, so if showing off the guns is a priority for you, you’re better off with something from True Classic or Fresh Clean Threads, for example.
But if you have large biceps that don’t need the extra boost of a tailored fit, or you just want a bulkier shirt, this is a solid option. All 14 colors have pockets for carrying sunglasses, pencils, snacks, pet finches, whatever. Pet finches. So underrated.
Material: 100% Cotton | Colors: 14 | Sizes: S-2XL | Care: Machine Wash Cold
What To Look For In The Best Fitting T-shirts For Dad Bods
Fit & Style
It could be argued that the fit and style of the best men’s t-shirts for dad bods are the whole point. This is a specific breed of basic that should be roomier around the midsection and more tailored around the arms and chest. These features help accentuate the best parts of your physique while concealing the… well, dad bod parts.
This one might seem inconsequential, but if you’re trying to look your best when your body may or may not be cooperating, you’ll want to choose a flattering color. There are tons of excellent white t-shirts out there, plenty of which are on this list. But if you really want to maximize the aesthetic benefits of the dad bod shirt, look for darker colors like black and navy blue.
The best fitting t-shirts for dad bods should already be true to size, but that’s not always the case. Since fit and the way these t-shirts need to look are two of the most important considerations, always check the fine print to see if they run true to size. If not, size up to achieve the look you’re going for.
The options available to you are basically endless, but the best fitting t-shirts for dad bods are loose around the torso and fitted around the chest and arms. Buck Mason’s Slub Curved Hem Tee embodies all of those attributes and, bonus, also happens to be super comfortable and tough as nails.
What should I wear if I have a dad bod?
As long as you’re doing what you can to live a healthy lifestyle, given your circumstances, it’s perfectly okay to just own it. You’ll get there. But in the meantime, look for t-shirts and shirts with extra room in the torso and a narrower cut around the chest and arms. Dark colors also tend to be more flattering, but choose your colors wisely depending on what you’re doing and where you’re going. Slim t-shirts are great, but it’s probably best to avoid those for now.
Plenty of people think dad bods are attractive—to which I say, to each their own. It’s very much subjective, but some common reasons for the attraction include the presence of self-confidence and a good sense of humor about the ups and downs of both life and body.