There are few men’s wardrobe staples with the same transportive quality as a freshly laundered linen shirt. Slip one on (and maybe close your eyes too) and picture yourself whisked away to an imaginary world of endless summer holidays: Alain Delon sunbathing on the Côte d’Azur in La Piscine; Sean Connery walking across a Caribbean beach in an early Bond film; Jude Law dancing to jazz on the Amalfi Coast in The Talented Mr. Ripley.

Yet even outside of its aura of cinematic glamour, the linen shirt is also a surprisingly practical piece. When those long summer days begin to roll around, it becomes more than just a classic warm-weather item for men: It’s also a perfect example of the useful items those of any gender can find while browsing the men’s aisle. On your holidays and drying off in a bikini after a swim? A linen shirt can act as the perfect cover-up. Looking for an effortlessly chic piece to pair with jeans and heels on a balmy summer evening? Throw on an oversized men’s linen shirt, tie it up around the waist, and you’re good to go.

So in anticipation of those ever-nearing and much-anticipated summer breaks, we’ve rounded up the best linen shirts for men that cover all bases: from classics styles to more luxurious options, from short-sleeve variations to overshirts, and even a few jazzier, pattern-heavy items for those seeking something more eye-catching. Oh, and most importantly, they’re all pieces that can work just as well on women as men. Dive on in.

Wardrobe Staples

Linen might be a premium fabric, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of options at lower price points too. Brands like Uniqlo, Muji, and Everlane have perfected the art of making comfy light-weight linens at affordable prices, while for something more elevated, you can’t go wrong with styles from well-established European labels like Vilebrequin and Barena Venezia.

- Everlane Linen Standard Fit Shirt

- Mr P. Linen Shirt

- Uniqlo Premium Linen Long-Sleeve Shirt

- Anderson & Sheppard Linen Shirt

- Barena Button-Up Linen Shirt

- Alex Mill Cotton Linen Shirt in Natural Indigo

- H&M Linen Shirt

- Vilebrequin Linen Solid Classic Fit Shirt

- Muji French Linen Washed Stand Collar Shirt

- Sunspel Italian Linen Grandad Collar Shirt

Trading Up

Looking to splash out—quite literally, perhaps, if you’re planning to wear it by the beach—on something a little more luxe for your summer travels? The Italian houses have you covered. There are the artisanal textiles of Loro Piana and Brunello Cucinelli, which are the product of decades perfecting the formula for the ultimate linen shirt. Or, if you’re seeking something a little less traditional, younger labels like De Petrillo and Péro have made their name by blending heritage craftsmanship with cutting-edge technological innovation.

- Loro Piana Andre Micro Check Linen Sport Shirt

- Brioni Graph Check Linen Sport Shirt

- Brunello Cucinelli Striped Linen-Blend Sport Shirt

- Boglioli Slub Linen-Chambray Shirt

- Canali Trim Fit Linen Button-Up Shirt

- Isaia Striped Banded-Collar Linen Sport Shirt

- De Petrillo Striped Linen Shirt

- Péro Collarless Hand-Woven Linen Shirt

- Alanui Western Gingham Linen Shirt

- Giorgio Armani Houndstooth Linen Sport Shirt

Blending In

These days, a linen shirt isn’t just restricted to being a summer vacation item: a linen-blend overshirt can serve as a lightweight jacket for dinners on a temperate Mediterranean evening, or as a layering piece throughout the colder months too. Looking for something with a zesty dose of color? Try Gabriela Hearst’s chartreuse corduroy-blend number, or the trippy linen knit of Missoni’s pocketed shirt jacket.

- Massimo Dutti Cotton and Linen Overshirt With Pockets

- Tom Ford Slim-Fit Button-Down Collar Garment-Dyed Linen and Cotton-Blend Shirt

- Wax London Whiting Linen Regular Fit Button Down Overshirt

- Ermenegildo Zegna Brown Linen Overshirt

- Gabriela Hearst Drew Linen-Blend Corduroy Overshirt

- Missoni Linen-Blend Knitted Overshirt

- Arket Linen Blend Utility Overshirt

- Marané Spread-Collar Linen-Chambray Overshirt

Short Cuts

There’s nothing quite like the breezy, youthful charm of a short-sleeve linen shirt. Along with the range of multicolored staples provided by the likes of 120% Lino and Frescobol Carioca, there are a few jazzier options too. We’re particularly fond of Jacquemus’s charmingly Gallic twist on a classic check, as well as London designer Nicholas Daley’s interpretation in a blue-and-white tie-dye that resembles the rolling clouds of a summer sky.

- 120% Lino Linen Bowling Shirt

- Hartford Camp-Collar Slub Linen Shirt

- Jacquemus Short-Sleeved Checked Linen Shirt

- Another Aspect Striped Linen Short-Sleeved Shirt

- Nanushka Alain Printed Linen-Blend Shirt

- Satta Paseo Enzyme-Washed Crinkled Linen and Cotton-Blend Shirt

- Nicholas Daley Blue Beach Short Sleeve Shirt

- Frescobol Carioca Cuban-Collar Linen Shirt

Running Wild

Yes, the linen shirt may be closely associated with a certain tradition of old-school jet-set holidaying, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with some more fashion-forward interpretations too. For that, you can look to Bode’s long-sleeve shirt embroidered with dragons and wave patterns, or the kaleidoscopic playfulness of a Versace printed shirt featuring seashells encrusted with pearls and precious stones. There’s no time like a vacation, after all, to try a more outré look.

- Bode Off-White & Red Dragon Scene Shirt

- Versace Trésor de la Mer Print Linen Shirt

- Blue Blue Japan Dégradé Linen Shirt

- Andersson Bell Yellow & White Tie-Dyed Embroidery Shirt

- Double Rainbouu Green Linen Embroidered Shirt

- Carne Bollente Beige Hades Summer Orgy Shirt

- Beams Plus Botanical Print Short Sleeve Button-Up Linen Shirt

- Etro Paisley Print Linen Shirt