Cowboy style has officially taken over the big city. Western shirts—a staple of rugged ranch hand types since, well, forever—are replacing your trusty OCBDs, bootcut jeans are staging their grand comeback, yeehaw-ready boots are clomping down the halls of the office. And we’re not mad at it in the slightest. What’s not to like about a collared shirt that’s built to last (peep those reinforced yokes) but also features fancy details like pearl snaps and handy chest pockets?
The Best Western Shirts Hit List
But if you’re reading this, you’re probably not an actual cowboy. (If you are: howdy!) So if you wanna avoid looking like you got lost en route to the rodeo, try subbing in western shirts for any of your other go-to button-ups, and then style them accordingly. And when you’re feeling extra laid-back, go ahead and toss one on over a vintage tee—and then ride the western wave in a very-2024 pair of shorts and happy-go-lucky mules. These are 11 of our favorites to help you harness (heh) your inner Bronco Henry all season long.
The Authentic Pick
Buckle up, folks: This is the affordable, no-frills option actual cowboys swear by. Wrangler offers no shortage of denim button-up shirts that tickle our western bone, but we especially dig this slim-fit embroidered shirt, which promises to look killer with jeans and boots, naturally, but cleans up just as nicely with pleated khakis and loafers.
The Budget Pick
Surprise, surprise: The first name in jeans makes a pitch-perfect chambray button-down. But if you’re looking for a shirt with a little more panache that won’t feel wildly out of place in the big city, the Barstow is our perennial favorite. It’s cut with a loose fit, accented with a pointed yoke, and decked out with snap buttons along the placket and curved hem, small details that pay big dividends by imbuing a cowboy stalwart with just the right amount of edge.
The 9-to-5 Pick
Are you a cowboy with an office job to hold down during the week? J.Crew’s long-sleeve plaid shirt boasts western swagger in spades thanks to a pointed yoke and snap-closure pockets across the chest, but it’s also plenty happy to groove with the chino-wearing masses thanks to a fine poplin blend with an elegant drape.
The Rough-and-Tough Pick
So your day-to-day gig doesn’t exactly involve herding cattle. Big whoop: You’ll still need a rugged shirt that can stand up to tasks that require a little more manpower, no matter how few and far between. Thanks to its beefy moleskin blend and excellent collar, Wythe’s GQ All-Star-winning riff is our pick in the category time and time again.
The Deceptively Elegant Pick
Plenty of men’s western shirts take the source material a bit too literally. So Todd Snyder decided to turn to Europe for inspiration, yielding a wildly refined version of the style made from a micro-cord that looks like velvet and feels as luscious. It’s an elegant spin on hard-wearing Americana that’ll look just at home under a cable-knit sweater or a fraying jean trucker.
The Upgrade Pick
Ralph Lauren is so damn committed to the western aesthetic he named an entire sub-label after his Colorado cattle ranch; suffice to say, his take on the genre is authentic. RRL’s retro work shirt is cut with a slim fit from dark-wash Japanese denim—all the better to tuck into your most rigid jeans—and features triple-needle chain stitching along the seams for added reinforcement.
The Fashion Guy Pick
Few brands layer with more pizzazz than the Swedish menswear whizzes at Our Legacy. All you need is a short-sleeve button-up—like, say, this western-inspired version—a long-sleeve thermal in a contrasting color, and an attitude that puts the yee in yee-haw.
The Boogie-Ready Pick
Gearing up for long, boozy night out? Ditch the T-shirt for a sultry button-up, like this one from The Letters, a small-batch Japanese label that specializes in imbuing the hallmarks of Americana with a jolt of swaggering sex appeal. Add dark jeans, a leather jacket, and kicky boots then wash, rinse, repeat.
The California-Dreaming Pick
Plaid shirt are a fall staple for a reason—their no-frills design looks burly and sophisticated at the same time and hides all of life’s little mysteries (read: commuter grime and stains, source unknown). Cherry LA’s western-leaning pure linen take is a little looser and edgier, which makes a world of difference when you’re worried about fielding nonstop comparisons to the Brawny guy.
The Upstart Cowboy Pick
Tecovas makes the perfect entry-level cowboy boots. But the upstart Austin-based label giving DTC brands a good name doesn’t limit itself to shoes—its dusty-hued pearl snap shirt might be the fastest way to land a cameo in Yellowstone without stepping foot in an audition room. Wear it with crisp white denim and brown boots for a riff on the Canadian tuxedo you don’t have to be a Canuck (or a Texan) to appreciate.
The All-American Pick
Huckberry’s reliably rugged in-house line doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel, and that’s A-okay in our book. You know that old chestnut “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”? This shirt, we have to imagine, is exactly what whoever coined it was talking about. It hits all the right notes—sturdy jean fabric, just-right fit—and boasts a made-in-the-USA pedigree that feels like a flex every time you glance at the tag.