How To Style a Flannel for Men

How To Style a Flannel for Men

Flannel Shirt Styling Guide

Flannel shirts offer a blend of casual style, breathability, and lightweight warmth that make them an easy wardrobe essential. See below for tips on how to wear a flannel shirt that matches your own style.

What To Wear Under a Flannel

The original surf staple, a flannel shirt is a great layering piece.

Layering with Graphic T-Shirts

graphic tee and flannel

Wearing a classic t-shirt under your flannel is the most common choice for styling plaid shirts, and layering a flannel with your favorite graphic or band tee brings texture and depth to your fit while still keeping things simple. Choose between leaving your flannel unbuttoned, buttoning it part way, or rolling the sleeves to switch up the effect.


Undershirts for Added Warmth

graphic tee and long sleeve

Wearing your flannel with an undershirt that offers a blend of warmth and breathability makes it easy to adapt to changing temps. Keep a lightweight flannel on hand for warm summer afternoons that transition into chilly evenings, or layer a long-sleeve thermal under a wool flannel overshirt when winter rolls around.


Pairing Flannels with Bottoms

Flannel outfits work with almost any kind of shorts or pants, but each offers a slightly different vibe.

Flannel and Jeans

Whether you’re headed out for breakfast, a show, or relaxing at home, flannels and jeans are easy-to-style staples. Switch things up by changing the wash of your jeans – a standard blue wash is a good choice for a classic look, while black or distressed washes add more edge.


flannel outfits

Flannel and Chinos

Chino pants go with almost anything, and when worked with a flannel shirt, you get a look that will go anywhere. The most common way to wear a flannel is untucked and when you’re out in warm weather, go for some chino shorts to keep you feeling cool and comfortable.


Flannel and Cargo Pants

If you’re looking for an off-duty style, a flannel shirt and cargo pants are your go-to. The loose fit of cargo pants paired with a flannel shirt creates a casual everyday look that’s as laid back as it feels.


What To Wear Over a Flannel

Just like layering flannels over t-shirts, layering flannels under a jacket or coat will get you through different seasons.

Puffer Jackets

flannel and puffer jacket

The puffer jacket is a favorite for its insulation properties and boxier fit, and adding a flannel to the mix as a middle layer boosts warmth and style that’s ready for the city or local trails. If you need to stay dry, pair your flannel with a technical jacket with DWR or waterproof treatment – some of them come with insulation if you want the best of both worlds.

Canvas Jackets

flannel and canvas jacket

Canvas jackets come in a variety of styles and material blends, and layering a lightweight jacket over your flannel shirt is an easy way to transition your outfit for cooler days. Many canvas and chore jackets feature a relaxed fit and a military-inspired design that adds a utilitarian look to your outfit. Live in a wet climate? Search for a canvas jacket with a wax coating to protect you against rainy conditions.


Accessorizing Men’s Flannels

Flannels often benefit from contrasting textures and tones, and accessories are a great way to add more depth to your look.


Simply changing up your footwear can have a big impact on your overall flannel look. Choose from any of the following footwear options:

  • Low-top sneakers – Whether you go for your favorite collector pair, all-white sneakers, or minimalist slip-ons, sneakers and flannels are a classic pairing that never goes out of style.
  • High-top sneakers – Elevate a flannel outfit with a pair of high-top skate shoes that add a retro vibe and are practical for everyday wear.
  • Chukka boot – Boots are the perfect combo of functional and elevated as you move from summer to winter.
  • Flip flops – Flannels’ laidback nature means they can be paired with a host of shoe styles, including sandals and slides.


flannels styling


Hats are great for adding more layers to your look as temps drop, but they can also make a plain outfit more interesting. Here are a few options:

  • Beanies – Beanies are a super casual option that works in warm or cold temperatures to cover your bed-head and add texture to your plaid shirt outfit.
  • Baseball hats – When paired with a trusty flannel, baseball caps are a solid choice for days when you want to be casual and keep the sun out of your eyes.
  • Five-panel hats – Five-panel hats are a skate-inspired style that’s available in a range of designs so you can mix and match with your favorite flannels.
  • Bucket hats – From off-trail hiking to lazy days on the beach, bucket hats are a streetwear-influenced option that works well with a lightweight or heavy-duty flannel.


Is Flannel Business Casual?

While flannel shirts were made for workwear and casual looks, a few styling swaps can make your plaid shirts more business casual. It often comes down to the fit and accessories – keep it buttoned up, and wear a belt with straight-fit pants if you work in an office with a dress code.

what is flannel material

What Is a Flannel Shirt?

A flannel shirt technically refers to the weave and texture of the fabric, but there are a few other qualities that people have come to associate with flannel shirts. Flannel shirts are often made from a blend of cotton and wool, as well as being associated with a variety of plaid prints – including checks, tartan, argyle, and grid prints. Flannels generally have a button-up front and a collared silhouette and come in a range of fitted to loose styles.

The most important thing to keep in mind when styling a flannel shirt is your personal preference. From layering over graphic tees with high-tops to pairing your flannel with chinos, it’s easy to find a flannel style that works for you.