Polo Shirt Material Primer


November 19, 2019 2 min read

Polo Shirt Material for Custom Logo Polo Shirts

The polo shirt is by far the most popular style of clothing used for embroidered logo apparel because it's easy to wear for uniforms, at events or on the golf course.  With so many kinds of material used today to make polo shirts, I felt it was important to define the advantages and disadvantages of the material so you can make the best possible choice for your embroidered polo shirts. 

Cotton Fabric for Polo Shirts

By far the most popular material for polo shirts today, much of the material used to make cotton polo shirts is pre-washed in some way thereby preshrinking the material before the shirt is constructed. Years ago, it was commonplace to buy shirts a size or two bigger to account for shrinkage.  Today, that is no longer necessary.

Advantages of Cotton:

  • Softness
  • Breath-ability
  • Natural fiber
  • Comfort

Disadvantages of Cotton:

  • Cost can be higher 
  • Moisture absorbent
  • Dark colors like black and navy will fade after repeated washings (usually after a couple of years)

An example of a popular custom cotton polo shirt that our customers really like in both men's and women's styles is the Clique Addison Polo

Polyester Polo Shirt Fabric

Sometimes it is hard to change a perception or bad reputation.  Twenty to thirty years ago, many people thought polyester was “scratchy” and uncomfortable.  While that was certainly true, the polyester fibers of today are made very differently and are much more comfortable to wear.

In fact, moisture management or rapid dry polo shirts are worn for athletics are made from 100% polyester.  Compression t-shirts have popularized this material for those situations.

Advantages of polyester:

  • Polyester is less expensive than cotton to produce
  • Color retention-dark colors will not fade after a number of washings
  • Durability
  • Low moisture absorbency allows the fabric to dry quickly
  • Wrinkle resistant

Disadvantages of polyester:

  • Polyester still suffers from a perception of a “scratchy” feel
  • 100% polyester material will snag at times
  • It does not have a natural look or feel

An example of a popular polyester cotton polo shirt in men's and women's styles is the Clique Spin Pique Polo

Cotton/Poly Blends

The solution to finding a happy medium between natural fabrics and polyester fabrics has often been to blend the two together. By making a fabric from both natural fibers such as cotton and polyester fibers, a blended fabric is created that melds the best characteristics of both to create a material that will serve many customers of logo embroidered apparel well. 

A great example of a popular custom embroidered cotton/poly blend polo is the Port Authority Jersey Knit Polo.  

Now you have some helpful information to make an educated decision. The next time you are shopping for Polo Shirts on Thread Logic, be sure to filter by material type if you are looking for a specific fabric or call us at 1-800-347-1612 to talk to a helpful customer service representative.


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