How do you find the best white T-shirt? It might seem like a simple question, but tracking one down that checks all the boxes—from fit to comfort—is quite a feat. After all, the more minimal a clothing item is, the more its flaws become glaringly clear. No one likes the feeling of slipping on a boxy, ill-fitted white tee that is as stiff as cardboard against their skin. Finally, however, the search is over.
Throughout the history of pop culture, from Marlon Brando to Kendall Jenner, the white T-shirt has been ingrained in both our lives and our wardrobes. “Everybody needs it. Every culture and subculture has used the white T-shirt. That’s where the genius is,” says Karla Welch, a stylist who committed herself to developing the perfect white tee. For us at Vogue, the shirt has become a unifying closet staple. As we return to the office, travel, and make social plans, there’s something comforting about wearing a crisp, classic white T-shirt in the morning—fresh and dewy-faced. Perhaps we’ll add a touch of jewelry, whether that’s a pair of gold hoops or a minimalist chain necklace. But the best white tees can be paired with just about everything, from comfortable at-home yoga pants to dressy skirts for the office and beyond. And what’s more iconic and representative of our daily lives than a white T-shirt and a classic pair of blue jeans? Two editors weighed in on this divisive topic, and the verdict is in: Yes, jeans can be comfortable at home too.
Below, 35 Vogue editors share the best white T-shirts for women and men to wear now and forever.Taking notes from the FW22 runways, a plain white tee paired with an elevated bottom has increasingly become my go-to uniform. Whether with tailored trousers, a flowy skirt, or classic straight-leg jeans, a cotton tee never fails to add that crisp finishing touch to a classic look.
What challenges have women in your country, in particular, faced as Russia invaded?
I want all the people in the world to understand that Ukrainian women lived a peaceful, modern life, the way Vogue’s readers in every country live. Actually, they were your readers, because there is Vogue Ukraine. They were not preparing bomb shelters for missile attacks. But from the first days, after Russian missiles began hitting residential buildings in different cities, it became clear that the Russia does not have mercy for peaceful lives. All Ukrainians stopped feeling safe. We had to learn how to quickly gather loved ones at the sound of the siren and go down to the subway or the nearest basement.
By the third day of the war, a Ukrainian child had been born in a bomb shelter. And after that thousands of women have had to give birth in bomb shelters, because we’ve seen what can happen to maternity hospitals like the one in Mariupol, which the Russians bombed. There is a problem treating children as well, especially those with serious diseases. Mothers and grandmothers have been living in hospitals with such children for months. And now we all must take them abroad for treatment.
Women had to leave occupied cities—such as Bucha and Gostomel, risking their lives under fire—with children and the elderly, often on foot, often without men, because men would not be released by the occupiers. The world saw this in early March as people crossed an exploded bridge from the city of Irpin.
And now as these cities are de-occupied, we know more about what Ukrainian women have faced: complete insecurity, the threat of violence. An international investigation must have a say here.
And how many women remain in the still-occupied cities of Kherson, Melitopol, Berdyansk? They can’t even tell their relatives what is happening to them, because there is no connection, or any contact they make would be traced.
There are tens of thousands of women with children in the ruins of Mariupol. And one can only imagine what a nightmare they are going through, searching for food under fire for a month now, because humanitarian aid is not allowed in.
Some four million women and children have migrated and are now in other countries. And being a migrant is hard both mentally and physically. Because you must start all over again.
What is it like to live when you can’t even wear your personal clothes? How to explain to a child why she is not sleeping in her bed? This is a test you would not wish on anyone.
Was there a specific woman’s story–among so many–that you might tell?
I can tell dozens of such stories. For example, after the de-occupation of the Kyiv region, we heard the story of a doctor, Iryna Yazova, who had remained in Bucha. She rescued neighbors and strangers, who were seeking shelter and treatment from Russian gunshot wounds. She anesthetized and bandaged them. She even helped to deliver a baby—without light, water, and gas, in a house under fire. The story of her daily acts of bravery have now been told by neighbors who owe her their lives.
There is also the story of a mother in Kyiv—Olga, who covered her 2-month-old daughter when a rocket hit her apartment building. Or the story of the Chernihiv orphanage teacher, Natalia, who lived with 30 children (one of whom was her own) in a basement. She fed and cared for them, and then found a vehicle and, under fire (because Chernihiv has been under fire from the very beginning), took them to a safe place.
There are almost as many such stories as there are Ukrainians. I launched a Telegram channel inviting Ukrainians to share their war experiences. Every personal story is the history of our country.