Fashion Clothing Shirts and Tops The 13 Best Polos for Women of 2023 The polos from Gap are everything we could wish for By Brooke LaMantia Brooke LaMantia Twitter Brooke is a nyc-based freelance writer who has written for InStyle since 2022, where she covers fashion and shopping. As a Gen-Zer, her interest in the internet and what's trending allows her to stay on top of the cultural zeitgeist, which lends itself to her expertise when it comes to shopping. InStyle's editorial guidelines and Amanda Rosenthal Amanda Rosenthal Amanda Rosenthal is a beauty and fashion commerce writer at InStyle. InStyle's editorial guidelines Published on October 24, 2022 @ 05:00PM Pin Share Tweet Email In This Article Expand Jump to a Section Our top picks Reviews What to Keep in Mind Your Questions, Answered Why Shop With Us We independently evaluate all recommended products and services. If you click on links we provide, we may receive compensation. Learn more. ASOS / GAP Polos get a bad reputation for looking like a school uniform first and foremost. But pair the closet staple with a tennis skirt or wide-leg trousers and you have something much more elevated. LA-based stylist Neelo Noory recommends opting for “a different material, like a patch or texture” because it makes the shirt “feel a little bit more thoughtful” and less like a uniform. We know it can be hard to find the right ones, though, so to steer you in the right direction, we spoke with Noory and a few other style experts on which ones to buy and what other ones to look for. We think Gap makes the best overall polos because they’re affordable, easy to wear, and a little bit elevated — they offer lots of textured polos on top of the basic options. And we love them all. Read on to find out which polos also make our list. Our Top Picks Best Overall: Gap Polo at Gap.com Jump to Review Best Budget: Amazon Essentials Polo Shirt at Amazon Jump to Review Best Splurge: Saint Laurent Cropped Polo at Bergdorfgoodman.com Jump to Review Best Plus-Size: Old Navy Uniform Pique Polo Shirt at Gap.com Jump to Review Best Sleeveless: Asos Sleeveless Top at Asos Jump to Review Best Rugby : Rowing Blazers Rugby at Rowingblazers.com Jump to Review Best Knit: Everlane Polo at Everlane.com Jump to Review Best Statement : Ralph Lauren Crop Polo Shirt at Ralphlauren.com Jump to Review Best Polo Dress: Ralph Lauren Polo Midi Dress at Ralphlauren.com Jump to Review Best Cashmere: Alex Mill Cashmere Polo Sweater at Alexmill.com Jump to Review Best Overall Gap Cropped Pique Polo Gap View On Gap.com What We Love: It comes in regular, tall, and petite sizes. What We Don’t Love: We wish it came in more neutral colors. Coming in six (mostly bright) colors, this basic polo from Gap offers a surprising amount of versatility. The oversized, cropped style hits right at the top of the jeans for a flattering fit that will complement a large variety of body shapes. Style blogger Akia Danielle personally appreciates the cut. “I have broad shoulders, so if a polo has those short cap sleeves, they fit funny on my arm,” she says. Plus-size model Tatiana Lewis calls her current style “practical” and loves her Gap polos. “I pair some distressed ripped denim with the polo,” she says. We only wish it came in more neutral colors, like black or navy, too. Price at time of publish: $30 Size: XXS to 2X | Color: 6 | Material: Cotton, spandex Best Budget Amazon Essentials Women's Short-Sleeve Polo Shirt Amazon View On Amazon What We Love: It fits up to a 6X. What We Don’t Love: Reviewers note that it shrinks over time. Anyone searching for a bare-bones polo should look no further than this Amazon Basics one. Sure, it’s nothing super fancy. But sometimes, that doesn’t matter. It comes in 15 colors with sizes up to 6X, adding to its universal appeal. It isn’t cropped like the Gap polo, but it still hits right at the waist. (It can be easily tucked into high-rise jeans, though.) With a basic sleeve length and a more form-fitting style, the shirt can be layered underneath any sweater or jacket for adequate layering. But if you chose to wear it alone, the lightweight material won’t be see-through either. Because it is almost 100 percent cotton, we’d suggest air drying to avoid any shrinking because reviewers say shrinkage does occasionally happen with this shirt. Price at time of publish: $16 Size: XS to 6X | Color: 15 | Material: Cotton, elastane Best Splurge Saint Laurent Logo Embroidered Cropped Polo Bergdorf Goodman View On Bergdorfgoodman.com View On Saks Fifth Avenue View On Ysl.com What We Love: The subtle embroidered detail gives it a luxury feel.What We Don’t Love: It only comes in navy blue. As we’ve already made clear, sometimes it's the little details that make polos exciting. And we think this splurge-worthy cropped version from YSL is just that. It features a monochrome, embroidered logo on the left chest without being too flashy, and feminine cropped cut that doesn’t scream overly pretty. Made from organic cotton, the shirt feels thick (but not stuffy) enough to warrant splurging. It’s a designer item that follows the trends yet is basic enough to wear for years to come. It only comes in navy blue; however, at least it will be sure to match nearly everything. Price at time of publish: $450 Size: XS to XL | Color: 1 | Material: Cotton Consider These 14 White Button Downs the Foundation of Your Wardrobe Best Plus-Size Old Navy Uniform Pique Polo Shirt Old Navy View On Gap.com What We Love: Its universally flattering fit.What We Don’t Love: The buttons may gap on larger bust sizes. Yes, another bare-bones polo shirt that is labeled as a uniform-basic. But hear us out: these polo shirts are just another worthwhile basic to keep in your closet. With sizes up to 4X, it fits a wide variety of sizes, and the form-fitting cut will hug curves in the right way. The buttons fall a bit lower on the chest than many others on this list, which could cause gapping on anyone with a larger bust. But we suggest unbuttoning them a bit — that gives this shirt a bit more sex appeal anyways. Price at time of publish: $17 Size: XS to 4X | Color: 6 | Material: Cotton, spandex Best Sleeveless Asos Dr Denim Lila Sleeveless Top Asos View On Asos What We Love: It comes in plus sizes as well. What We Don’t Love: The label is stitched on the outside of the shirt. When it’s too hot to wear anything with sleeves, a sleeveless polo can be a good way to wear more than just a tank top. “I love to show a little skin, especially in the summer. This top leans both chic and trendy,” says Digital Creator Nikki Apostoulou. She pairs it with jeans, shorts, or a tennis skirt. “Add some gold delicate jewelry and you’re good for a trip to Target or even a casual brunch.” ASOS offers this top in two size ranges: one ranging from XS-XL and a plus-size version going up to a size 22. Even in colder weather, you can layer this top with jackets for easy layering. We don’t love that there’s a white tag stitched on the outside of the shirt, but luckily, a jacket will cover it. Price at time of publish: $52 Size: XS-XL, 14-22 | Color: 1 | Material: Cotton, spandex. Best Rugby Rowing Blazers Ametora Dad Rugby ROWING BLAZERS View On Rowingblazers.com What We Love: The classic fit this unisex top offers. What We Don’t Love: It’s very thick, so it’s not ideal for layering. Add this high-quality rugby to your closet for a bit of vintage inspiration. Stylist Neelo Noory actually prefers long sleeves when it comes to polos because it looks more fashionable when paired with a skirt or trousers, rather than a uniform. “Sometimes, especially when you're wearing a more oversize top, you have to be careful with the bottom silhouette, but with a long sleeve, everything works really well.” Because this is a unisex piece, keep in mind it might run large when you pick your size. It also happens to be heavy-weight cotton, so it might not fit well underneath a sweater — not ideal for fall layering. We suggest wearing it as a statement piece on its own. Price at time of publish: $145 Size: XS to 3X | Color: 7 | Material: Cotton Best Knit Everlane The Crochet Knit Polo Everlane View On Everlane.com What We Love: How lightweight and breathable it is. What We Don’t Love: It only goes up to an XL. Add some texture to your outfit with this crochet knit polo from Everlane. The thick crochet can work as a bathing suit coverup for vacation, or as a breathable layer underneath a blazer for work. It only goes up to an XL — we hope they add more sizes soon — and comes in two colors, but because it’s a more special piece, the lack of colors doesn’t bother us. Just make sure you take care of it properly by machine washing it on cold and laying it flat to dry. Price at time of publish: $88 Size: XXS to XL | Color: 4 | Material: Cotton. Best Statement Ralph Lauren Sequined Crop Mesh Polo Shirt Ralph Lauren View On Ralphlauren.com What We Love: It turns a casual garment into something a bit more special. What We Don’t Love: The sequins may come off after some wear and tear. This glitzy polo gives us a fun twist on the classic Ralph Lauren polo. The cropped fit and feminine shimmer stand out just enough underneath a blazer for an elevated look. But feel free to save it for warm weather, when you can let it shine (literally) on its own. The slim fit hits perfectly at the waist, making you appear longer. We suggest taking it a step further, too, by pairing it with high-waisted trousers to dress it up or your favorite pair of jeans for a more casual look. Be sure to take extra care when cleaning as the sequins may come off if not properly cared for. Price at time of publish: $268 Size: XXS to XXL | Color: 1 | Material: Sequins, Cotton Best Polo Dress Ralph Lauren Stretch Cotton Polo Midi Dress Ralph Lauren View On Ralphlauren.com What We Love: This dress hugs your curves in all the right places. What We Don’t Love: It might be too long on shorter folks. This form-fitting blue polo dress with buttons down to the hem takes the guesswork out of getting dressed in the morning. Even though it hugs the body, it has just enough give in order to complement your figure without clinging to the wrong areas. Plus, it doesn’t bunch at the buttons around your bust. We appreciate the mid-length, but it might be a touch long for anyone on the shorter side. Price at time of publish: $198 Size: XXS to XXL | Color: 1 | Material: Cotton Best Cashmere Alex Mill Cashmere Alice Polo Sweater Alex Mill View On Alexmill.com View On Mohawkgeneralstore.com What We Love: The cozy cashmere will keep you warm in winter.What We Don’t Love: You have to hand wash it. Alex Mill captured our hearts with its jumpsuits and quality basics. Now, we have our eye on this cashmere polo sweater. The delicate knit lends itself to layering, whether you wear this under a jacket or over a T-shirt. Because it is 100 percent cashmere, you do have to hand wash it, which might be a pain for how much you’ll want to wear this. But sometimes the best things are worth a little patience. Price at time of publish: $285 Size: XS to XL | Color: 4 | Material: Cashmere Best Long Sleeve Reformation Otto Regenerative Wool Polo Sweater Reformation View On Reformation What We Love: The wool is made from a regenerative farm. What We Don’t Love: It’s dry clean only. Whether the polo trend ends next season or a few years from now, this sweater from Reformation will be in your closet forever. It can be worn with just about anything from a dress as the weather gets crisper or layered over a black turtleneck. The side slits and relaxed fit makes this sweater essential in our eyes. It does have an oversized fit, though, so it might be a bit too large for anyone looking for a snugger fit. Just be aware, this sweater is dry-clean only. Price at time of publish: $198 Size: XS to XL | Color: 3 | Material: Wool Best Henley Alo Yoga Henley Polo Pullover Revolve View On Nordstrom View On Aloyoga.com View On Bergdorfgoodman.com What We Love: It comes in six different colors. What We Don’t: It will pill if you don’t dry it on a gentle cycle. This incredibly comfy, casual henley pullover is the ideal crossover between sporty and preppy. Perfect for a walk on a chillier day or layered under a coat while running errands, this relaxed pullover can be worn for all sorts of activities. Because of its thick fleece material, the pullover will keep you warm on cold days (or freezing offices, as we’ve all experienced.) It comes in six different colors, but we love their new cinnamon brown color for fall. Price at time of publish: $98 Size: XS to L | Color: 6 | Material: Fleece Best Slim-Fit Banana Republic Ella Sweater Polo Banana Republic View On Gap.com What We Love: The extended button placket front gives this shirt a bit more sex appeal than most polos.What We Don’t: It is slightly sheer, so be wary of which undergarments you wear. If oversized styles aren’t your jam, this Banana Republic polo will appeal to you more. Made of a merino wool blend, this sweater feels luxurious on the skin. Plus, wool is known to last longer, so this piece will be in your closet for years. The modern-looking button placket extends past your bust, giving the sweater a more alluring look than your typical polo. We would pair this with high-waisted trousers for a great date night outfit. Price at time of publish: $100 Size: XXS to XXL | Color: 2 | Material: Wool What to Keep in Mind Fit We found polos in lots of different fits — oversized, slim, cropped, and more — giving you enough options to find something that flatters your body type. Just be aware of the sizing before you buy. If you’d rather not have something cling to your body, buy one more oversized. And for those who always wear high-waisted pants, perhaps a cropped fit will suit your style the most. Care Since polos are often made from cotton, be sure to check care instructions to avoid unwanted shrinkage. If your polo is a perfect fit from when you receive it, we’d suggest washing and letting air dry to maintain its size. Material Polos no longer just come in cotton — and that’s it. Now, you can find all sorts of other materials used, such as wool, like the Banana Republic polo, to add more texture to your outfit while also elevating it. Of course, we see no problems with a classic cotton polo, but for those interested in something with a bit more pizazz, opt for a new material. Your Questions, Answered What bottoms look good with polo shirts? To make the polo feel a little more current and modern, Noory suggests pairing it with a wide-leg bottom. “Oversized polos pair really well with more of a wide-leg silhouette, like wide-leg trousers or a wide-leg denim,” she says. “A tennis skirt is really cute if you just want to go for the preppy look.” What can I wear over a polo shirt? When it comes to layering over a polo, Model Alexis Ren says, “I always wear oversized boyfriend jackets with them because it gives a nostalgic after-school look.” Similarly, Danielle loves keeping a polo look classic, so she suggests a denim jacket, an oversized sweater, or even a set of pearls. If you want to tuck the collar into a sweatshirt, that is also a chance to add some layers, which designer Cass DiMiccio loves to do. “It’s a great way to have a pop of a different color in your look,” she says. When it comes to how a polo should fit to make sure you can layer, Danielle says to aim for a close fit. “You don't want anything to lose because it looks really bulky,” she says. Why Shop With Us Amanda Rosenthal and Brooke LaMantia are writers for InStyle who have experience researching and reviewing the best fashion picks. With additional guidance from a professional stylist, a digital creator, and first-hand experience wearing polos, we rounded up the best polos. Keeping in mind, silhouette, style, fabric, and texture, we found the top picks for this story.