May 02, 2023 7 min read

To find the perfectmen’s athletic-fit t-shirts, you may need to ask yourself: What are athletic shirts made of?

If you’re unsure of what exactly an athletic fit t-shirt is, then do some research: what is an athletic fit t-shirt?

If you’re an athlete or like to regularly work out, then you may find it difficult to find a t-shirt that is comfortable, breathable, and makes you look good. 

It can be frustrating when t-shirts are either too baggy, too tight, uncomfortable, or show sweat marks. The fabric they’re created from plays a big role in this, and shirts designed for athletic people should be crafted from the correct material.

There are many different types of fabrics that athletic shirts are made of. Each of these fabrics is designed for a purpose. Sometimes, different fabrics are blended to create a suitable combination for specific purposes. For example, different weather conditions or intensity of workouts.

In this article, we’ll discuss what athletic shirts are made of, as well as some suitable options to accentuate your physique.

What this article covers:

Fabric Athletic Shirts Are Made of


In earlier times it was believed that cotton is not a good option for activewear because it doesn’t absorb sweat. However, nowadays, cotton sportswear is becoming popular as it has better odor management compared to other materials. This is because it’s breathable and doesn’t hold on to the smell. 

what is athletic  shirt made of

Moisture-Wicking Cotton

Moisture-wicking cotton can be worn during regular intensity workouts, every day, and in colder temperatures.

Cotton is the opposite of moisture-wicking. Therefore, fitness professionals and researchers decided to make moisture-wicking cotton which is made out of a cotton blend of synthetic fibers. It helps absorb sweat and doesn’t leave you feeling as hot or restricted as standard material. 

This cotton is perfect for daily activewear if you’re not going to sweat too much. Moderate-intensity workouts in cooler weather are ideal environments for this material.


Spandex, otherwise known as elastane, is a great fabric to wear for workouts with high ranges of motion, such as yoga, weightlifting, or pilates.

Spandex will never go out of style. It also is known by its brand name, Lycra. It has extreme stretch and flexibility which makes it perfect for when you need to move around a lot.

It’s commonly available in skin-tight workout clothing, like leggings, tracksuit shorts, socks, and sports bras. It’s not the best fabric in terms of breathability, but it’s the best for free movement and comfort.

athletic shirt made of


Nylon can be worn during all workouts and weather conditions.

It’s a combination of the best parts of spandex and polyester. It’s a stronger, scratch-resistant, and more durable, material than your standard polyester athletic wear.

It has a low moisture absorbency and quick-drying properties which make it suitable for any type of workout such as running or weightlifting. This material will leave you feeling comfortable in both hot and cold weather.

Bamboo Fiber

Bamboo fiber can also be worn during any workout or weather conditions.

It’s breathable, odor-resistant, moisture-wicking, has a regulated temperature, keeps its shape after stretching, and is very comfortable. 

It’s also environmentally sustainable, compared to polyester garments that are made out of plastic. Not only is it sustainable, but it’s durable, which means you can get a lot of wear out of it.

Bamboo fibers are made out of natural fibers, which makes them naturally hypoallergenic. This means it causes less skin irritation after sweating. This type of fabric is usually more expensive than others.

athletic shirt


MMCFs (Man-Made Cellulosic Fibers) are a "new" type of fabric. It’s made from wood pulp and is a renewable and sustainable resource. This includes a variety of raw sources like eucalyptus, bamboo, beech, etc. 

Natural fibers such as MMCFSs are often used as a replacement for polyester, nylon, and other synthetic fabrics in activewear garments.

They have many of the same properties as synthetic fabrics. This includes being strong, durable, quick-drying, and having moisture-wicking properties.

Other advantages include being biodegradable, recyclable, and produced with much less energy than synthetic fabrics.

One of the most popular MMCFs is TENCEL.


Tencel is a wood-based fiber made from wood pulp. Because of this, it has a good texture with perspiration-wicking properties. It’s completely biodegradable which makes it an environment-friendly choice. This material is wrinkle-free and stays cool.

athletic shirt for guy


This material is great for extreme weather exercising, like sleet, snow, rain, or extreme heat.

It’s a synthetic material made out of a thin, flexible form of plastic. It’s also waterproof, which makes it the best choice when it comes to interval or, even marathon training sessions. This is because it’s equipped to handle any weather.

It also helps evaporate the sweat off of your skin which makes it less likely to irritate and, as well as feel uncomfortable after performing an intense workout.


Durable, lightweight, and breathable, Polyester is a common material used in activewear. Many running jackets, sweatpants, and activewear shirts are made from polyester blends. Polyester tends to be fast-drying, making it an ideal material for high-intensity workouts.

All these materials, in different blends and ratios, are commonly found in activewear. Remember to consider what activity you are planning to engage in so you can decide on the type of activewear that best fits your needs.

athletic shirts for guy


Gore-Tex is a hybrid material that’s used to make sportswear garments such as jackets, and running shoes. It’s a film of fabric that is usually coated over sportswear to make it air and waterproof. 

It’s a breathable material that’s perfect for high-intensity sports. It keeps wind and water outside but allows the sweat to evaporate.


This material is made of fine tiny thread fibers with a linear density of not more than one denier. This means that microfiber has threads that are one hundred times finer than a human hair. It’s not naturally occurring, it’s man-made. Microfiber is an expensive material and is commonly used in branded activewear.


This fabric is made of metal. The fibers have silver particles infused in them. Silver is a metal that has anti-bacterial properties which prevent the accumulation of bacteria and fungus. This sportswear is, therefore, clean and odor-free, even after excessive use.


Poly-Dri can be worn during any workout, regardless of the weather.

It’s better than polyester as polyester traps bacteria and isn’t very odor resistant, whereas poly-dri is. It’s durable, wicks more moisture, and doesn’t wrinkle as quickly as other fabrics. However, you still should regularly wash sweaty clothing.

what is athletic shirt made of for guys


This is a synthetic fabric and is a thick material. It has a foam-like texture that acts as a water resistor and an insulator. Neoprene is, therefore, commonly used for making sportswear like diving suits.

Merino Wool

This is used during outdoor, cool-weather workouts.

Merino wool is a bit thinner than standard warm wool clothing. The finer fibers also make merino wool great for sweat-wicking, comfortable activewear. It’s great as a base layer for sports like skiing or jogging in cold weather.


TAILORED ATLETE Muscle Fit T-Shirts are perfect for athletes and fitness-goers who are looking for a well-fitting comfortable shirt. They’re exceptionally comfortable and crafted in luxurious Stretch Fabrics. Their 'True Muscle Fit' accentuates your physique.

Look for different types of athletic shirts for an athletic physique.

Essential V-Neck And Muscle Fit T-Shirt

They’re constructed from super-soft stretch cotton and have a 'True Muscle Fit' and raglan-cut sleeves. What are muscle shirts? They’re purposely designed to accentuate your physique. They have exceptional consideration for comfort and minimal design, which makes them essential for your wardrobe.

They’re perfect as a versatile base layer or as a smart, signature T-Shirt. They’re machine washable and made from a combination of 95% cotton, and 5% elastane.

You also get different types of muscle shirts.

athletic muscule shirt for guy

Everyday Henley T-shirt

This is a classic Henley style t-shirt, reimagined with super-soft stretch cotton, and the 'True Muscle Fit' and raglan cut sleeves. 

It’s also purposely designed to accentuate your physique. This is perfect for everyday wear. It has a modern minimalist design which is designed to be versatile enough for any casual occasion.

This t-shirt is also machine washable and made from 95% cotton and 5% elastane.

Mercerised Tipped T-Shirt

This t-shirt is crafted from micro-structured premium cotton with a mercerized finish for elevated softness. It has the 'True Muscle Fit' and raglan sleeves which are specifically designed to accentuate your muscular physique. 

The Mercerised Tipped T-shirt is an essential item for casual styling. You can pair this with shorts for a fresh take on your Spring looks.

This is lightweight and made from stretch fabric. It’s also machine washable and made from 100% Cotton.

What Are Athletic Shirts Made of? (FAQs)

What Is Stretchy Shirt Material Called?

The stretchy shirt material is called elastane. This is also known as Spandex or Lycra. 

Is 100% Cotton Shirts Stretchy?

Cotton is soft, but it's not commonly known for being stretchy. 

Is Lycra The Same As Spandex?

Yes. LYCRA fiber is the trademarked brand name of a class of spandex in the U.S., and elastane in the rest of the world. Spandex and elastane are interchangeable terms that mean the same thing. The LYCRA Company produces authentic LYCRA brand spandex fibers.

What Is The Difference Between Sportswear And Athletic Wear?

Athletic wear refers to garments or clothes that provide style along with comfort and function. They’re often made up of sustainable materials. Sportswear is clothes, shoes, and accessories that are specifically designed for sports purposes.

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