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Do You Have To Wear A Shirt Under A Hoodie Or Not?

December 21, 2022
Do You Have To Wear A Shirt Under A Hoodie Or Not?

Men’s style is filled with choices. Unfortunately, the many unspoken rules out there make those choices a whole lot more difficult. The question is, do you have to wear a shirt under a hoodie? 

It’s generally best to always wear a shirt under a hoodie to protect the hoodie from sweat stains, reducing the need for overwashing and preventing the risk of the fibers getting degraded. Undershirts, T-shirts, polo shirts, and even collared shirts could all be appropriate options. 

Although that’s the short answer, there’s more to it. 

After going through the main reasons why you’ll always want to wear a shirt under a hoodie, I’ll go through some frequently asked questions on the topic to round things up. 

Let’s get to it. 

man in black hoodie
Image From Deposit Photos

4 Reasons To Wear A Shirt Under A Hoodie

These reasons should be enough to convince you. Consider all of them before making your decision. 

1. It’s Less Itchy

Having the lining of a hoodie rub directly against your skin isn’t always the most comfortable sensation. 

Hoodies can be made from many different fabrics, including cotton, wool, poly-blends, and fleece. 

They don’t all feel the same. Some will definitely feel more comfortable than others. 

For example, shetland wool will feel less comfortable than merino wool when the hoodie is worn without a shirt. 

But overall, it’s hard to deny the fact that wearing any type of shirt under your hoodie provides a layer of protection against the itch and irritation that may develop over the course of the day. 

2. You Stain Less

A shirt can also protect your hoodie from stains it may have otherwise gotten from rubbing directly against your body. 

This could be sweat, or residues of other substances like colognes, lotions, and creams. 

It all accumulates, even when you don’t realize it at first. 

It doesn’t just stain the hoodie – it can degrade the fibers over time. 

Hoodies aren’t usually cheap. You’ll want to look after them and one way of doing so is by reducing staining over time. 

Whatever shirt you wear, whether it’s a simple undershirt, a T-shirt, a polo shirt, or anything else – it would provide a barrier to protect the hoodie from these stains. 

3. You Wash It Less

So we’ve established that not wearing a shirt under the hoodie will probably lead to more staining. More staining means more washing. When trying to ensure your hoodie lasts the long haul, this is more important than you might think. 

While washing your hoodie from time to time is essential for hygiene purposes, overwashing a hoodie is a quick way to ruin it. 

The more stains and grime you end up rubbing off on the hoodie, the more you’ll find yourself washing it. 

Unfortunately, the more you wash it, the more it’ll pill, and the quicker its color will fade over time. 

You’ll also usually find that it becomes less comfortable to wear after repeated washes. 

Depending on the specific fabric, some hoodies do need to be hand-washed. This isn’t a fast process. 

Having to repeatedly hand wash a hoodie due to stains that would have been prevented by wearing a shirt under it is definitely a time-consuming process. 

4. Better Layering

Layering your clothes is important at times of the year when the temperature fluctuates.

Wearing any type of shirt under your hoodie gives you the benefits of layering. 

Let’s say it’s pretty cold out there one morning. You pop on your hoodie and head out, only for the sun to come out and the temperature to rise toward the early afternoon. 

You’re uncomfortably hot by this point, but you’re stuck with wearing a hoodie throughout the course of the day. 

The unfortunate truth is that you have no other option. 

If you had a shirt under the hoodie, you could simply pop the hoodie off, keeping it close so you can put it back on when the temperature drops again in the evening. 

This is the benefit of layering. Wearing an additional layer (eg. a light coat) would give you even more flexibility in this respect. 

While layering isn’t as important during months where the temperature stays pretty consistently warm or cold throughout the course of the day, in some months, it can be pretty important. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the answers to a few frequently asked, yet rarely answered questions on the topic to really finish things off in style. 

Do You Wear A Shirt Under A Crop Hoodie?

In general, crop hoodies are not worn with shirts underneath because they are designed to expose the navel. Wearing a shirt under it would prevent this from being possible, but is sometimes done for the sake of keeping warm.

Crop hoodies are notoriously impractical in some ways. 

They’re usually worn when the temperature is cold enough for a hoodie to make sense, but leave you with the conundrum of your navel being left cold and exposed. 

While athletic, stylish, and clearly in trend, the crop hoodie does have this key drawback. 

However, many people do wear a shirt under a crop hoodie and make it work. 

Wearing a long or oversized shirt under a hoodie can look especially good as it makes it clear that it’s an intentional style choice. 

This look is one to consider and often works well with a pair of slim-fitting jeans or sweatpants. 

Do You Wear A Shirt Under A Pullover Hoodie?

A shirt should be worn under a pullover hoodie to protect the hoodie from getting stained by sweat or residual colognes, creams, and lotions. It will also usually feel more comfortable as the pullover hoodie won’t directly rub against the skin. 

A pullover hoodie is essentially just a hooded sweatshirt that has to be put on by pulling it over the head. 

They don’t have a zip. 

Most hoodies these days are pullover hoodies. 

The point here is that the benefits of wearing a shirt under a pullover hoodie are the same as they would be for any type of hoodie. 

It’s more comfortable and will also ensure the longevity of your pullover hoodie by reducing the need for overwashing. 

Do You Wear A Shirt Under A Short Sleeve Hoodie?

In general, it is best to wear a shirt under a short sleeve hoodie to protect the hoodie from sweat stains and to prevent the lining of the hoodie from rubbing directly against the body. To prevent the shirt sleeves from showing under the hoodie, choose an undershirt or T-shirt. 

Avoid wearing long-sleeve shirts under short-sleeve hoodies; the look isn’t as popular as it used to be. 

While the benefits of wearing a shirt under a short sleeve hoodie are the same as they would be for any hoodie, you’ll need to be more careful with your choice of shirt here. 


While it may sound restrictive, wearing a shirt under a hoodie will always be a good idea, no matter what the context or climate is.