Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

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AndroAsc
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Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by AndroAsc »

Being Bogleheads means that most of us are frugal. Does anyone have any recommendations for wrinkle-free/non-iron men dress shirts for under $30?

I don't wear dress shirts that often, at most 2 weeks out of a full year, so I cannot justify spending more than $30 for a dress shirt. I've googled for this topic, and sadly there doesn't appear to be any authoritative source on reviewing the wrinkle-resistance of various shirt brands, and everything just boils down to personal experience.

Here's what I've found that seems to be the consensus from various internet sources:
1) Brooks Brothers, JoshA (spelling?) seems to lead the pack for non-iron shirts, but they cost a bomb. Even with sales and discount they are in the $30-50 range which is too expensive in my opinion.
2) Stafford Performance (previously known as Stafford Super Shirt) from JC Penney seems to perform almost as well as the more expensive shirts I listed earlier. I saw them go on clearance for $13 per shirt during June, but I missed the Father's day clearance season :(

Does anyone knows of any non-iron shirts under $30 besides the Stafford Performance from JCP? I like to shop at Kohls cause they frequently do 80-90% clearance off their items, which can be used with another 15-30% off coupon. However, I've yet to find any good dress shirts from Kohls.


From my personal experience, the best shirt I managed to get so far is the Geoffrey Beene sateen dress shirt from Macys, that was on sale for $28. However, it's still not as good as some dress shirts I have (those were passed down from family, and it was bought when they were on a trip to Thailand). It's quite frustrating that even nice "branded" shirts sold at Macys that retails for over $50 is worse than some random shirt bought from Thailand during vacation.
tonsofthorns
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by tonsofthorns »

Check Costco. They have non-iron dress shirts under their Kirkland brand starting at 17.99. They come in various colors and styles
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Sunny Sarkar »

JC Penny's Stafford performance
I bought a couple following top recommendation in Consumer Reports, and will personally testify.
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jpsfranks
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by jpsfranks »

If you have a nearby Nordstrom Rack you can sometimes pick up Nordstrom Smartcare shirts for around $25. You can't be picky about color/pattern though. You can also find them on sale for $30-$45 or so online at the Nordstrom website. I actually like them a little more than Brooks Brothers non-iron.
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ExcelJunkie
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by ExcelJunkie »

I would agree with the Costco recommendation, and add that Lands End has quality no-iron shirts that regularly go on sale for under $30.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by praxis »

Sunny Sarkar wrote:JC Penny's Stafford performance
.
+1
robocop
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by robocop »

I am a lady Boglehead, but thought I might have an option to check out: Banana Republic.

I have bought several women's non-wrinkle dress shirts there and I really like their material and ability to stay relatively wrinkle-free.

I assume that their men's dress shirts are made out of the same material, so you might want to check them out. I can usually snag them for 40% off (30-40 for the ladies' shirts with the discount) by signing up for their email list temporarily- they run 40% off sales fairly regularly, you just have to keep an eye on the emails they send to you.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by etarini »

I've gotten several of the J.C. Penney Stafford cotton/poly shirts and I really like them. The collar and placket don't get wrinkled. I've had both the Oxford cloth and the Broadcloth. I refuse to iron or pay for pressing, and I think the Stafford shirts are the best compromise between price and no-iron performance. You can sometimes get good deals online, but that's partially offset by the fact that you have to pay shipping - even to the store. I just bought 5 Oxford cloth Stafford shirts for $81 dollars online - but it was an additional $12 for shipping. (I choke when I see the shipping charges; I've been spoiled by AmazonPrime and the free-shipping websites.) Still, $18.60 per shirt is about as good as I expect to get.

I loved the Lands End Hyde Park Oxford Cloth shirts, which were a heavyweight cotton/poly blend, but they've discontinued them. Now they'll only carry "non-iron" cotton. I've tried several of them and they quickly developed noticeable permanent creases in places like the collars or cuffs. I think that all the high-end retailers are convinced that their customers would refuse to wear any fabric other than the richest cotton, except, of course, for all their synthetic workout clothes and fabulously expensive outdoor gear.

Everyone wants you to believe they've found the secret to an all-cotton, no-iron shirt, but every time I finally give in and try one, I discover that, no, it's still a lie - they haven't been able to do it yet. If anything, I think that the cotton/poly shirts I had 20-30 years ago were better at preventing wrinkles. I had a couple of Brooks Brothers no-iron shirts about twenty years ago (they were gifts) and they wore well and looked great, but I couldn't justify the cost.

Eric
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by chaz »

Check WalMart.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by leonard »

Brooks Brothers are relatively expensive. But, watch for sales. they have sales on the shirts regularly and usually you can get a very good discount.

I do recognize that the sale price is still fairly high. But, honestly, this is just one of the cases where it is worth it. BB maintains the best wrinkle free performance of any shirt I have tried. Other brands simply don't look as pressed - they don't look as good. If you need to wear a pressed shirt - then presumably you need to look put together. "Almost pressed" doesn't cut it in these cases and the lesser performers just aren't worth the lower price.

So, perhaps buy 1 or 2 less shirts and purchase the more expensive brand. Any other brand in my experience just doesn't work as well.

I have BB shirts I purchased on sale 3 years ago - worn probably 8-9 months a year once a week over those 3 years. Washed often. Still look great and are still completely iron-free. Worth it.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Toons »

chaz wrote:Check WalMart.
+1 right on :happy
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Tigermoose »

Brooks Brothers shirts do last a long time. Right now, though, I go with Costco Kirkland brand shirts. I think they are a better deal. If you are an executive, however, you might want to pay the extra cash for the +1 appearance.
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linuxuser
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by linuxuser »

The Brooks Brother shirts will go on sale around Christmas time.
They did last year.
Get on their mailing list.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by BenBritt »

L.L.Bean:Pinpoint $50. Worth every penny in my humble opinion. I believe the range was $30--$ 50.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by carolinaman »

leonard wrote:Brooks Brothers are relatively expensive. But, watch for sales. they have sales on the shirts regularly and usually you can get a very good discount.

I do recognize that the sale price is still fairly high. But, honestly, this is just one of the cases where it is worth it. BB maintains the best wrinkle free performance of any shirt I have tried. Other brands simply don't look as pressed - they don't look as good. If you need to wear a pressed shirt - then presumably you need to look put together. "Almost pressed" doesn't cut it in these cases and the lesser performers just aren't worth the lower price.

So, perhaps buy 1 or 2 less shirts and purchase the more expensive brand. Any other brand in my experience just doesn't work as well.

I have BB shirts I purchased on sale 3 years ago - worn probably 8-9 months a year once a week over those 3 years. Washed often. Still look great and are still completely iron-free. Worth it.
I agree 100%. I have tried numerous brands and nothing is close to BB. They look great and wear a very long time. i have some that I have worn regularly for 3 to 4 years and they are still good. Sometimes quality is worth paying for.
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AndroAsc
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by AndroAsc »

Does anyone have personal experience of wearing Brooks Brother vs Standard Performance dress shirts? These are amongst the top 2 recommended shirts, and I was wondering how they would fare against each other
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by stan1 »

AndroAsc wrote:Does anyone have personal experience of wearing Brooks Brother vs Standard Performance dress shirts? These are amongst the top 2 recommended shirts, and I was wondering how they would fare against each other
Do you mean JC Penney Stafford Performance vs Brooks Brothers?

Go buy 1 or 2 JC Penney shirts. If you are happy with them, you are set. No point paying for caviar when all you want is a hot dog.

If your wife/gf tells you they make you look too fat/skinny/frumpy -- you might need to try the BB which has a variety of fits.

If your employer has written or unwritten standards to maintain a crisp, professional image (or you think you might have a job interview at such a company), go straight to BB.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by kerrigjl »

Anyone purchase the Stafford Performance shirts recently? Reviews seem to indicate that the construction has changed and perhaps may not be of the quality they were previously.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by joe8d »

FYI to all JC Penny's Stafford dress shirt fans.Big sale this weekend on them. $11.99 + addition 10% discount ( 20% if using JCP credit card ) I bought 3 today.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by DrDoodle »

kerrigjl wrote:Anyone purchase the Stafford Performance shirts recently? Reviews seem to indicate that the construction has changed and perhaps may not be of the quality they were previously.
I purchased quite a few recently in an attempt to find my size; discovered that everything is much slimmer/narrower than you'd expect, and I gather that this is a new thing for Stafford Performance. I'm a pretty narrow guy, anything other than "slim fit" usually fits me like a tent. But the Stafford slim fit shirts where so tight I literally couldn't move my arms freely. The fabric and construction seem pretty good for such an inexpensive shirt ... IF you can get them to fit properly. I never could, unfortunately.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by brainstem »

Watch the sales at J Banks

Have gotten traveler dress shirts at ~$30

Pretty salty deal.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by obgraham »

Though I have few occasions now to require the extra-spiffy look, for the "no iron" feature, to me the fabric is more important than the brand.

I've yet to find a 100% cotton shirt that really is wrinkle free, even if I'm standing by the dryer when it is done. I'll take cotton/dacron blend any day.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Cyclone »

This weekend Joseph A Bank is having a sale at their website. Almost everything is 70 percent off, with free shipping if you buy over $50. The Signature wrinkle-free shirts are $40.50. I bought my father's Christmas present, and something for myself.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by tim1999 »

It is easy to be "penny wise and pound foolish" with these shirts. I've bought the cheap ones (Stafford, etc.) and I've bought the expensive ones (Brooks Bros.) The Brooks Bros are cheaper to me in the long run because they maintain their "iron free" qualities far longer than the cheap ones, and I think they look crisper in general. After about 30-40 wearings, I've found that the cheaper ones tend to degrade and look sloppy.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by MnD »

Charlie Munger and William Gates II are on record for wearing the Costco no-iron dress shirts. I saw Warren Buffett on TV the other day and I'm 99% sure it was a Costco dress shirt - I've been buying them for 10 years and can usually pick them out on sight.

http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/educate/ ... news18.htm
Munger, partner to the world's second-richest man, according to Forbes' most recent ranking, shops at Costco for prescriptions, golf balls, meats, fine wines, even clothes. William Gates II, father of Bill, the world's richest man according to Forbes, didn't shop at Costco much before he became a Costco board member. But sitting in his Seattle office last week he noted that he was, in fact, wearing a Costco-bought shirt and socks. Does his son shop at Costco? "He doesn't shop," Gates says. "But his wife does."
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by JCom »

Charles Tyrwhitt. When they have a sale you can get their shirts for around $30-35. They're the best shirt under $50 in my opinion.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by HelenaJustina »

I wish I'd caught this thread earlier. I've been buying my husband Stafford Performance shirts for the last ten years in the same size. I replenished his supply this past Columbus Day only to find the sleeves were more than an inch shorter, the armholes reduced to the point of immobility, and no extra fabric in the torso at all. Very disappointing.

Does anyone know of another shirt brand that puts the collar button on a bit of elastic?
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by neurosphere »

HelenaJustina wrote: Does anyone know of another shirt brand that puts the collar button on a bit of elastic?
I have a Van Heusen shirt which has that elastic. But it's about 10 years old, so don't know if they have any models like that any more.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Vize »

+1 on the Brooks non-iron shirts. Sales around Fathers' Day and after Christmas, it seems. Also, one can get a (15%) corporate discount through various means (members of the Ask Andy Forums with 100+ posts, Phi Kappa Phi, other random places).

http://www.askandyaboutclothes.com/foru ... count+card
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by lightheir »

I was a stafford guy for years.

Recently bought a few much more expensive brooks bros shirts.

Nothing wrong with stafford but at least for the ones i used the bb shirts are an order of mahnitude better in material? Weight, workmanship. Still id consider it a premium shirt so if your tight on cash stafford is perfectly serviceable.

I always got comments on why i was dressed extra sharp when i wore bb in lieu of stafford. Its a subtle difference but people did notice.

The bb shirts were over 75 whereas the stafford shirts were under 30- might be closer a gap if picking more premium stafford shirts.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Rodc »

You might think of the cost-benefit a little differently.

Given how little wear these shirts will get they will last for many years, so this is not a high recurring cost regardless of the cost of each shirt.

You might as well buy a really good shirt so you look your best, and that includes shirts that really fit well. For example for me I'm really a 32 inch sleeve, not the very common 32-33. Can I wear a 32-33? Sure. They just don't fit very well. I used to wear them, but now that I know better, I really prefer a sleeve that is just right. I also need a fitted shirt as I am not very big around. Many of the lesser expensive shirts on me just have sleeves a tad too long and are too tent like. They may look great on someone else. Get something that has good fabric and really fits.

You are only going to buy a couple of shirts every 10 years or so.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by leonard »

Brooks Brothers. They are not cheap but they are worth the price really no matter what your budget. I would take 2-3 Brooks Brothers wrinkle free shirts over a closet full of the runner up brand.

They have sales a couple times of year. Wait for one of those if you can.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by SiddFinch1 »

I wear the Van Heusen wrinkle free ones

Mediocre. But then again i am a wrinkled look kind of guy usually 8-)
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by leonard »

SiddFinch1 wrote:I wear the Van Heusen wrinkle free ones

Mediocre. But then again i am a wrinkled look kind of guy usually 8-)
I use Van Heusen for short sleeve during the summer - BB doesn't make short sleeve or at least didn't last time I looked.

They work fine but not as good as BB.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Rodc »

leonard wrote:
SiddFinch1 wrote:I wear the Van Heusen wrinkle free ones

Mediocre. But then again i am a wrinkled look kind of guy usually 8-)
I use Van Heusen for short sleeve during the summer - BB doesn't make short sleeve or at least didn't last time I looked.

They work fine but not as good as BB.
When the BB get a little shabby around the cuffs or elbos you just cut the sleeves short and hem the edge.

:)
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by leonard »

Rodc wrote:
leonard wrote:
SiddFinch1 wrote:I wear the Van Heusen wrinkle free ones

Mediocre. But then again i am a wrinkled look kind of guy usually 8-)
I use Van Heusen for short sleeve during the summer - BB doesn't make short sleeve or at least didn't last time I looked.

They work fine but not as good as BB.
When the BB get a little shabby around the cuffs or elbos you just cut the sleeves short and hem the edge.

:)
Exactly what I did when the first round of BB's finally started wearing in the sleeve!
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by BW1985 »

I have 4-5 Banana Republic non-iron dress shirts that I've been wearing for the last few years. After seeing all the positive remarks on BB shirts though I'll be looking for sales after Christmas!!
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by jlawrence01 »

If I was going to pay $80-100 for a dress shirt, why not find a tailor to make your own custom made shirt.

I was so disappointed with the first two Brooks Brothers golf shirts that I got rid of them.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Coffee »

jlawrence01 wrote:If I was going to pay $80-100 for a dress shirt, why not find a tailor to make your own custom made shirt.

I was so disappointed with the first two Brooks Brothers golf shirts that I got rid of them.
I'm with ya.

I'm buying the Hanes heavy weight polos (can't remember what they're actually called) off Amazon for about $9 a shirt. They seem to retain their qualities better than the BB polos. In fact, as well as any polo I've had.

I've bought the Costco dress shirts but haven't found them to hold up particularly well. I have to take them to the cleaner. YMMV.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by island »

Brooks Brothers wrinkle free worth every penny.
Husband wears them. Always buy on sale at an outlet store nearby. They're first quality so cost probably same as if purchased online. Wash, toss in the dryer, and comes out wrinkle free over and over.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Khanmots »

I have one dress shirt from Jos A Bank. Got it on sale ($40ish?) and was well worth the premium.

That said, I wear it less than you... maybe a couple days a year. But when I do have the need for more than a polo it's cause I'm in a rather formal environment and a shabby shirt isn't going to cut it.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by stan1 »

For those interested in low cost wrinkle-free/non-iron shirts:
Jos. A. Bank has their traveller no-iron dress shirts on sale at $124 for 4 shirts (using the code GIFT for $25 off).
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by rixer »

I just picked up a couple of Dakota Grizzly shirts at Costco for $15 each. These are great shirts for being out in the sun and traveling. They are light weight, won't wrinkle if you hang them out of the drier, they have vents in the sides and back, a fold up collar to keep the sun off the neck, a secure zip up pocket big enough to put a passport in, long sleeves with upper button on arms to roll sleeves up and secure them and even a small open strap above a pocket to slip your reading glasses on.
I don't know how long they will have these.
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by Ruprecht »

I'll add this to the database:
- I have several wrinkle-free Stafford shirts that are still wrinkle-free and wearing well after years of heavy use
- I made the mistake of buying several Club Room (Macy's) "wrinkle resistant" shirts on sale. Washed them and took them back the next day for a refund. False advertising -- not even close to wrinkle resistant. All three came out like wadded-up flannel shirts. Worse, actually. In fact my jeans were less wrinkled than these shirts coming out of the dryer.
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heartwood
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Re: Cheap & Good Wrinkle-Free/Non-Iron Dress Shirts

Post by heartwood »

Brooks Brothers until they changed to multiple fits. I recently ordered some on sale and found they no longer offer half sleeve sizes like 34/35, nor two cuff buttons in their first line shirts. So if I get a 35 I can't adjust the cuff to stay up; a 34, its too short. I returned them to the store and was told they offered 34/35 and two buttons at the outlets but not the main stores, different merchandise. So I tried an outlet and they had the size, but since they now have 3 or is it 4 fits, they had nothing in patterns I would wear.

As a result of recommendations here I tried Charles Tyrwhitt after getting a sale flyer in the mail. I got 3 shirts for under $100 including shipping. They're much higher priced when not on sale. I liked them enough that I bought another 3 during the next sale. Fast forward to a year or so later and they have not stood up well, especially the lay of the collars. T Hey seem to have shrunk a bit too. They have not been worn what I would judge to be "frequently", maybe a few dozen times per shirt.

My current go-to is Costco, either in store or online. They're similar to the old style Brooks Bros, but are $17 a shirt. Available in 34/35 and two cuff buttons, in several patterns. And its Costco, any problems, take it back.
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