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How to choose the right shirt collar

May 12, 2015 - Calibre

When shopping for shirts most enter a store looking for the Holy Grail, one that ticks three boxes: colour, cut, and fabric. But what if there is one more checkpoint to search for?

To the everyday man, the size and shape of a shirt collar is often overlooked. But more often than not, that problem you can’t quite put your finger on when looking into the mirror is the way the shirt’s collar sits with the rest of your outfit.

Just like choosing the right tie knot, proportion is key to choosing the right collar. Factoring in your facial features, the dress code of the event, or your choice of tie can sway your eye from one collar to a more suited one.

Which one will you choose?



The point collar is the most traditional of all the choices, meaning they appear on the majority of shirts on the market. The collar is elongated so the points appear close together, meaning you should probably leave the big European tie knots out of the outfit. Those with skinny faces should be cautious – pointed collars can stretch out your features even more.




Channel your inner Harvey Spector and work a cutaway collar for the ultimate ‘power look’. Perfect with a well-tailored suit and a neat, wide knotted tie, the cutaway is great as it draws attention up toward the face. Stick to more traditional prints to keep that crisp assertive look.




As a bolder take on the regular cutaway collar, the deep cutaway has a very obvious spread, and requires a little bit of confidence. Avoid skinny ties or slim knots at all costs – the exaggerated cut calls for a proportioned tie. Pull the look together by choosing a fuller tie and knotting with a wider knot.




While the button-down collar is an old school look, it will never cease to be cool. The buttons on the points brings a shirt down to a more casual dress code, but can still be worn with a tie for those smart-casual events. A word of caution – leaving the point buttons unbuttoned will be seen as a fashion faux-pas.


Need a bit of sartorial guidance when it comes to finding the perfectly fitting shirt? Check out our guide to the Perfect Shirt Fit.

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