17 Modern Ways to Rock the Polo Shirt Sans the 'Dad' Subtext

Ditch the preppy vibes and go for something a little different.
IMAGE Mr. Porter

When it comes to polo shirts, it's not all yacht clubs and school uniforms. A different type of polo—a knit polo, to be exact—swaps out standard cut-and-sew cotton piqué for a looser, sweater-like look and feel. Think: Less country club, more Mad Men California vacation.

These shirts (sometimes ribbed around the waist and sleeve) have a throwback, '70s vibe made modern with slim cuts and breathable fabrics. Here are 17 of the coolest ones.

Dries Van Noten Slim Fit Double Faced Cotton Polo

This Dries Van Noten is everything you could want in an old-school polo. Take note of the burgundy and saffron colors and athletic stripes—everything that's great about retro, done exactly right.

Orley Brooks Striped Merino Wool Polo

Knit polos—sometimes referred to as sweater polos—feel very '70s. This Orley one in olive green and cream really takes you back (without veering into costume territory.)

Prada Slim Fit Jacquard Knit Wool Polo Shirt

Prada's jacquard polo will look sharp paired with a suede jacket, or on its own with your favorite chinos.

Gucci Slim Fit Striped Cotton and Cashmere Polo

If you like the feel of a preppy polo, Gucci's cashmere take is a fresh alternative. Wear it under your navy blazer to give it a little extra personality.

Kent & Curwen Striped Polo Shirt

This jewel-tone striped shirt looks unexpected (in a good way) for summer, and will also mesh easily with your fall wardrobe.

Editions M.R. Ribbed Knit Cotton Polo Shirt

Pretty sure this was the standard in the '70s. We're about it.

Burberry Striped Cotton Blend Polo

You can never go wrong with a navy-and-white striped polo. The linen fabric is great for looking cool in the heat.


Canali Contrast Polo Shirt

Canali's contrast polo manages to be bold without using any over-the-top colors or patterns.

Dsquared Stripe Open Collar Polo

Dsquared2's wide open collar and thick stripe feels vintage, and the thin cotton will keep you cool.

Orlebar Brown Felix Polo 

Pack this lightweight polo for every beach weekend trip.

Maison Margiela Short Sleeved Cotton Weave Polo

Pair it with black trousers and minimal sneakers—the pattern is interesting enough to stand on its own.

Rag & Bone Jason Cotton Polo 

Try it with chinos in a dusty earth tone and a pair of slip-on sneakers

Selected Homme Pink Ribbed Knitted Polo

Pink might not be the first color polo you'd go for, but you should consider it. This rusted shade wears more like a neutral, too.

Thom Browne Boat Patterned Knitted Wool Blend Polo

Nautical, but in a cool way. Pair this polo with bright white sneakers to make the sailboat detailing pop.

Tod's Color Block Knitted Cotton Polo Shirt

The wave finish on this Tod's shirt brings a little something extra to the simple color blocking.

Tomorrowland Contrast Stitch Cotton Polo

The ribbing around the bottom of this polo is a subtle detail that elevates it to a whole new level.

The White Briefs Maier Cotton Polo Shirt

The simplicity and accessible price make for an easy alternative to your favorite T-shirt.

This story originally appeared on

* Minor edits have been made by the editors.

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