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Shirt Collar

Largely due to the mens shirt collar, mens dress shirts (along with neckties) are the most versatile elements of a gentleman's informal or casual attire. They allow a gentleman to express many facets of style, personal preference and even allow him to use different collar shapes to complement or supplement the structure of his face and upper body.

There are countless options available to the gentleman with regard to dress shirts. They range from fabrics to patterns and colors to styles. This article will focus on collar styles.

Whether it's retail or custom made, mens dress shirts will be found in various collar options. It is a good idea to have some understanding of the effects of certain collar styles. Some are more appropriate than others for business suits while others may be more flattering to your facial structure than others.

Traditional Button Down

Unlike the rest of the mens shirt collars we will discuss, when it comes to business suits we like to suggest avoiding the traditional button down collar. This shirt is a little less formal and most appropriate for business casual and other casual dress wear.


Classic Straight Collar with Eylets

The classic straight collar pictured left has eyelets which allow the wearer to use a tie-bar which clasps the collar points together with a decorate bar that runs under the tie. This style has lost some of it’s popularity in the past couple decades.


English Wide Spread Collar

The english wide spread collar on the other had has become extremely popular as of late but is a collar that should not be worn by everyone. This shirt collar is most appropriate for facial structures that are more sculpted with U or V shaped jaw-lines. Gentlemen with fuller or rounded facial features will cause this type of collar style to look as if his face and neck are causing the spread rather than the style of the shirt…not good


Classic Spread Collar

Like the english wide spread, another good spread collar for the chiseled face is the classic spread collar. Again, probably not a good idea for the more rounded faced gentleman
European Narrow Collar

For those gentlemen that do have rounded features, the European narrow collar should do better to flatter his facial silhouette.


Classic Tab Collar


Another good collar type for fuller facial features is the tab collar. Like the collar with eyelets, this collar provides for the collar points to be fastened together with a sewn in tab. Obviously a necktie will be a necessary compliment to this collar type


Classic Straight Collar

These last two collars should be the most popular as they will not detract from a mans appearance and in some cases will flatter nearly any facial structure. Traditional Spread Collar






With the exception of the button down, tab collar and eyelets, the remaining collars are best stiffened with collar stays. Most shirts will come with removable plastic stays already in the collar. m-f-a recommends a minor investment of brass or nickel plated collars stays to ensure a nice crisp collar as most plastic stays over time will lose their shape.

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