What Are Button Up Shirts Called?

What Are Button Up Shirts Called?

Button-up shirts, also known as button-down shirts, are a staple in professional attire. These versatile garments combine style and sophistication, making them a must-have in any professional wardrobe. Did you know that button-up shirts were first introduced in the early 19th century as a practical solution to keeping collars neatly in place? Today, they are worn by both men and women for a polished, put-together look.

The history of button-up shirts dates back centuries. The concept of fastening a shirt with buttons originated in ancient Rome, but the modern button-up shirt as we know it today gained popularity in the early 1900s. Since then, this classic style has evolved and become a symbol of professionalism and elegance. In fact, studies have shown that wearing a button-up shirt can significantly impact how others perceive you, with the majority associating it with trustworthiness and competence. Whether it's for a job interview, a business meeting, or even a formal event, button-up shirts are the go-to choice for those seeking a polished, formal look.



What Are Button Up Shirts Called?

Button-Up Shirts: A Style Staple With Different Names

Button-up shirts, also known as button-down shirts, dress shirts, or formal shirts, are a classic and versatile clothing item that has stood the test of time. These shirts are characterized by a buttoned front closure, typically down the center of the shirt, which allows the wearer to fasten or unfasten the buttons as desired. While the term "button-up" is commonly used, it's interesting to explore the various names by which these shirts are known. Let's delve into the different terminologies used to refer to this timeless wardrobe essential.

Button-Up Shirts vs. Button-Down Shirts

The terms "button-up" and "button-down" are often used interchangeably to describe this type of shirt. However, there is a subtle difference between these two terms. A button-up shirt refers to any shirt that has buttons running up the front, while a button-down shirt specifically refers to shirts with buttoned-down collar points. The button-down collar style, made popular by Brooks Brothers in the late 19th century, features small buttons on the collar points to hold them in place.

Hence, when someone refers to a button-down shirt, they are describing a shirt with buttoned-down collar points, which is often considered more casual compared to a button-up shirt with a standard collar. Both styles of shirts can be worn in various settings, from formal occasions to casual outings, depending on the fabric, design, and overall styling.

So whether you prefer to call it a button-up shirt or a button-down shirt, both terms are widely accepted and understood in the fashion industry.

Dress Shirts: The Epitome of Elegance

In formal settings, button-up shirts are often referred to as dress shirts. Dress shirts are traditionally designed to be worn with suits or formal attire, creating a polished and sophisticated look. These shirts are typically made from high-quality fabrics, such as cotton or linen, and feature specific details like French cuffs, spread collars, and a more tailored fit.

The term "dress shirt" implies that the shirt is intended for formal or dressy occasions, such as weddings, business meetings, or other formal events. Dress shirts are available in a variety of colors, patterns, and styles, allowing individuals to express their personal style while maintaining a professional and refined appearance.

When searching for a shirt to wear with a suit or for a formal occasion, look for the term "dress shirt" to ensure you find the appropriate style for your needs.

Formal Shirts: Elevating Style for Special Occasions

Button-up shirts are also commonly referred to as formal shirts due to their association with formal or black-tie events. These shirts are designed to exude elegance and sophistication, often featuring specific details like pleated fronts, tuxedo collars, and studs in place of buttons. Formal shirts are meant to be worn with tuxedos or formal suits to elevate the overall style and achieve a more polished look.

Formal shirts are usually made from high-quality fabrics like cotton or silk, and they often require special care due to their intricate designs and delicate materials. The term "formal shirt" is commonly used in the context of weddings, galas, and other upscale events where dressing to impress is the norm.

When you're searching for a shirt for a formal affair, keep an eye out for the term "formal shirt" to ensure you select a shirt that aligns with the event's dress code.

Other Terminologies

While the aforementioned terms are the most common ones used to refer to button-up shirts, there are a few other terms and variations worth noting:

  • Oxford shirts: Oxford shirts are a type of button-up shirt made from Oxford cloth, which is a durable and slightly textured fabric. These shirts are often associated with a preppy or Ivy League style.
  • Button-front shirts: This is a straightforward and descriptive term that is sometimes used to refer to button-up shirts. It simply emphasizes the fact that the shirt has buttons running down the front.
  • Button-through shirts: Similar to button-front shirts, this term highlights that the buttons go through the fabric, securing the front panel of the shirt.

Button-Up Shirts: Reflecting Style and Versatility

Button-up shirts have many different names, but they all serve one common purpose: to provide style, elegance, and versatility to the wearer. Whether you refer to them as button-up shirts, button-down shirts, dress shirts, or formal shirts, these timeless garments have cemented their place in the world of fashion. They can be dressed up or down, worn in various settings, and paired with different bottoms and accessories to create a wide range of looks.


What Are Button Up Shirts Called?

What Are Button Up Shirts Called?

In the world of fashion, button up shirts go by many names depending on their specific style and design. These shirts are known for their button closure on the front, allowing them to be easily opened and closed. The term "button up shirt" is a common and widely used term, but within the fashion industry, there are several specific names for this type of shirt.

One popular name for button up shirts is "dress shirts." Dress shirts are typically more formal and are often worn with suits or dress pants. They are designed with a structured collar and cuffs, and are often made from higher quality fabrics. Another common name for button up shirts is "button-down shirts." These shirts have buttons on the collar to hold it in place. They are generally more casual in style and can be worn in both formal and casual settings. The term "button-front shirts" is also frequently used to describe this type of shirt, highlighting the fact that they fasten at the front with buttons.


Key Takeaways: What Are Button Up Shirts Called?

  • Button up shirts are often called dress shirts or button-down shirts.
  • These shirts feature buttons along the front and a collar.
  • Dress shirts are typically made of more formal materials like cotton or linen.
  • Button-up shirts are versatile and can be worn for both formal and casual occasions.
  • Button-down shirts have an additional button on the collar to hold it in place.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some common questions about button-up shirts:

1. What is the term for button-up shirts?

Button-up shirts are commonly referred to as dress shirts, button-down shirts, or simply button-up shirts.

These shirts are characterized by a button-down collar, a full button placket on the front, and long sleeves that can be rolled up or down.

2. Are button-up shirts only worn in formal settings?

No, button-up shirts can be worn in various settings, ranging from formal to casual. They are a versatile clothing item that can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion.

In formal settings, such as business meetings or professional events, button-up shirts are usually paired with suits or dress pants. In casual settings, they can be worn untucked with jeans or chinos for a more relaxed look.

3. Can women wear button-up shirts?

Absolutely! Button-up shirts are not limited to men's fashion. Women can also wear button-up shirts and incorporate them into their wardrobe.

There are button-up shirts specifically designed for women, with features such as fitted cuts, darts for shaping, and different sleeve lengths. These shirts can be styled in various ways to create feminine and chic outfits.

4. What are some popular materials used for button-up shirts?

Button-up shirts can be made from a variety of materials, but some popular choices include:

  • Cotton: Provides breathability and comfort.
  • Linen: Known for its lightweight and breathable properties, perfect for warm weather.
  • Silk: Adds a luxurious feel and a smooth, shiny appearance.
  • Polyester: Offers durability and wrinkle resistance.

These materials each have their own unique qualities and are chosen based on personal preference, climate, and desired look.

5. How should button-up shirts be cared for?

To prolong the lifespan of button-up shirts, it is important to follow proper care instructions:

  • Read the care label: Different materials may require different care methods.
  • Machine wash or hand wash: Follow the recommended washing method.
  • Avoid using bleach: Unless indicated on the care label.
  • Iron or steam: Use a low to medium heat setting to remove wrinkles.
  • Store properly: Hang or fold the shirts neatly to prevent wrinkles.

By taking proper care of button-up shirts, they can maintain their appearance and quality for a longer period of time.



In summary, button-up shirts are commonly known as dress shirts or button-down shirts. These shirts are distinguished by their front buttons that go all the way from the collar to the hem.

Button-up shirts are a classic and versatile wardrobe staple that can be worn for both formal and casual occasions. They are typically made of woven fabric and come in various colors, patterns, and styles.


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