Who wears wife-beaters and why?

Saltydog

Super Member
I see a lot of guys in the movies, magazine ads and on TV wearing "wife-beater" or thin rib knit athletic undershirts like the ones my father wore. Does anyone in real life still wear these things? If so--what is the rationale? They don't protect your underarms from sweat or antiperspirant stains. If you are wearing a thin white shirt--especially in higher thread count broadcloth or poplin--they show unattractively through. I, and virtually everyone I've ever seen at the gym changing, wears either crew or V-neck tee shirts...if they wear undershirts. The tissue thin athletic cut flatters few when worn alone or under a shirt. So what--pray tell, is their purpose? If they are your thing, no offense intended, just enlighten me please.
 

Kurt N

Super Member
They're good under lightweight wool sweaters if you don't want to show white at an open collar but want to keep the wool away from your skin. Under regular dress shirts, they're more questionable. But I think a dress shirt worn over bare skin looks underdressed and cheesy, so at least it's better than that. Maybe I'd wear one on a really warm day.
 

scl10

New Member
My problem is that if the object is to stop you from sweating through your overshirt, then wife-beaters don't do a great job.

That said, were I trailer trash, I would accordingly don a wife beater as part of my daily regalia.

I think I used "regalia" wrong.
 

sheermanus

Starting Member
Whe wears wife-beaters and why?

I am happy to tell you I am a "wifebeater" wearer and prefer to call them by their proper name of sleeveless athletic undershirt. I've worn them since I was a very young boy and tried the t-shirt undershirt route but hated how they fit once they were laundered. I didn't like how they shrunk and became too tight in the shoulders and sleeves. I never had to worry about that with my a-shirts. A-shirts in my humber opinion are more comfortable and I like how they look on any man. Since most of us don't wear our undershirts as outer clothing, an a-shirt looks just fine under a dress shirt. I also don't have a problem with significant underarm perspiration so there is also no problem with the lack of sleeves to protect my shirts. A-shirts also do provide perspiration protection since they do cover the rest of your upper torso and in fact you do perspire in more than just under your arms. So hopefully that enlightens you on why I as well as many other men find a-shirts the right type of undershirt for them and that they perform the function we need from them. I guess finally the comments made about a man who wears a-shirts being a redneck are so shallow as the type of undershirt you wear has absolutely nothing to do with ones social skills or standing. Those who make those type of remarks just because they don't tend to like them remind me of the guys who tended to give any of us who realized the comfort of wearing boxer shorts a hard time just because we chose to wear a different kind of undershorts than they wore. So who made them responsible to determine what other guys should wear and if it differed from what they wore, then we were wrong and a target for their ridicule and initimidation.
 

Orsini

Honors Member
My problem is that if the object is to stop you from sweating through your overshirt, then wife-beaters don't do a great job.

That said, were I trailer trash, I would accordingly don a wife beater as part of my daily regalia.

I think I used "regalia" wrong.
No, I think think the usage is correct.
 

chava

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I have never worn them. they just don't feel comfortable. My father wore them all the time.
 

Dhaller

Elite Member
They're useful if you just want a barrier between the skin and an IWB holster and it's too hot (or just unnecessary to wear) a crew or v-neck t-shirt.

DH
 

Mannix

Super Member
I wear a slightly modified wife beater. It's stretchy (cotton and spandex) and it's square cut is what I think they call it. I wear it because I like the feeling of my clothing hugging my body, and this is quite close to skin tight. It's super comfortable, and I need something under my dress shirts otherwise I feel naked. :eek:

I also have the classic ribbed ones, but I wear those only when all of my other ones are in the wash...which rarely happens.
 

dukekook

New Member
I only wear them under short-sleeved shirts (T or polo) during the summer. They are useless under dress shirts, and embarrassing under any kind of white shirt. Growing up in rural central Ohio, I learned that the best way to stay cool when it is hot is to wear something under your shirt to keep it from getting soaked.
 

dwebber18

Super Member
Dhaller, I completely agree, thats the actual reason I started wearing them. Much better under a t-shirt or polo when I lived in Florida and carried.
 

Larsd4

Senior Member
Basically, good for keeping nipples from showing through a white broadcloth shirt in the summer. That's not a good look.
 

PorterSq

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
They're useful if you just want a barrier between the skin and an IWB holster and it's too hot (or just unnecessary to wear) a crew or v-neck t-shirt.

DH

Ah, the ol' inside-the-waistband-handgun-holster-is-chafing-me dilemma. This was a major problem on Ivy League campuses in the 1950s, just as it apparently is now.
 

127.72 MHz

Elite Member
My problem is that if the object is to stop you from sweating through your overshirt, then wife-beaters don't do a great job.

That said, were I trailer trash, I would accordingly don a wife beater as part of my daily regalia.

I think I used "regalia" wrong.


One's underarms are not the only area to contain sweat glands,...:pic12337:


Basically, good for keeping nipples from showing through a white broadcloth shirt in the summer. That's not a good look.

I have to go now I believe someone has stolen the hubcaps off my home while I slept.:icon_smile_big:

Bill Woodward
Portland, Oregon
 

young guy

Senior Member
i wear them because i dont like t-shirts, i dont like t-shirts because they are either too big around the middle or too tight in the shoulders - and i hate the white triangle that shows when wearing a knit polo shirt. as far as looking bad under a white shirt - i dont see that a t-shirt looks any better under a white shirt. maybe i am trailer trash or old school i dont know but my a-shirts come from Brooks - LOL Brooks brothers - outfitting trailer trash for decades ! ! !
 

wnh

Super Member
I wear them regularly, and strongly prefer them to t-shirts. Under a polo, an A-shirt is cooler, and odds are your purpose in wearing a polo is to be cooler. And under a dress shirt, A-shirts are more slim and don't bunch up like a t-shirt, especially at the sleeves. While they may show through a pinpoint shirt, they don't show through oxford cloth, so no worries there. Also, I don't sweat like a pig so the lack of sleeves doesn't really matter to me.
 

Bradford

Senior Member
I wear them under OCBD's when I am not wearing a tie. I do so because I dislike the feel of air conditioning hitting the bare skin of my stomach between the shirt buttons. For some reason, cool air on my stomach makes me cold. The A-shirt covers my chest, but doesn't show at the neckline and I really don't sweat that much, so underarms aren't a concern.

I don't wear them with golf shirts or pullovers because air at my neck or on a 3 or 4 button placket doesn't bother me.

If I am wearing a tie, I wear a regular crew-neck t-shirt.
 
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