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Which Nike shirts are best?

If you want a comfortable, durable shirt that fits well for exercising or lounging around at home, Nike has a great selection. Known for its athletic apparel, this brand has shirts made for nearly any climate and activity. The Nike Therma-Fit Repel Element Half-Zip Running Top is the best Nike shirt for cooler climates, as it’s lightweight, warm and wicks away moisture.

What to know before you buy a Nike shirt


Nike offers a wide selection of shirts along with Nike shoes, shorts, pants, tank tops and other apparel. Whether you prefer something more casual you can wear at home or something that keeps you active, there’s a shirt for you.

When picking out a Nike shirt, consider when you plan to wear it. Some shirts offer a large range of motion, making them ideal for physical activities. Many are breathable and ventilated to keep the wearer cool and comfortable while working out. Still, others are designed to prevent chafing.

Nike has several lines of shirts, including:

  • Yoga line for those who need to stay flexible and have an unrestricted range of motion
  • Therma-Fit Repel Element line for runners
  • Nike Dri-Fit line for those who spend a lot of time working out, lifting weights or training

Dri-Fit technology

A lot of Nike apparel, including athletic shirts, comes with Dri-Fit technology, which provides moisture-wicking. Moisture-wicking takes sweat from your skin and moves it to the garment’s outer layer. This keeps the wearer dry longer and helps minimize chafing and discomfort. It also cuts down on odor. If you plan to work out or if you have a tendency to sweat, choose a Nike shirt with Dri-Fit technology.


Shirts and other clothes from Nike are often breathable. This is important because it keeps the wearer from overheating, whether working out or lounging around on a hot day. Plus, a shirt with good airflow or breathability can help reduce odors.

What to look for in a quality Nike shirt


Over the past few years, Nike has been trying to become more sustainable with the way they produce their apparel, as well as with the fabrics they use. That’s why more of the company’s shirts consist of recycled polyester or sustainable cotton.

  • Polyester is a synthetic material that can keep you cool and dry for a long time. It’s also lightweight, breathable and long-lasting. Plus, it doesn’t pill or tear easily, nor does it require special care.
  • Spandex is another common synthetic material. It makes clothing more elastic, which is convenient for those who like to keep more mobile.
  • Nike Dri-Fit technology consists of polyester and microfiber and is common in much of their athletic apparel. It’s breathable, wicks away moisture and is durable.
  • French terry material, which is found in Nike’s Therma-Fit apparel, is good for those who need something that keeps them warm and dry in cold or wet environments.


When wearing any athletic wear, make sure you find the right fit for your frame. A shirt that is too tight can restrict movement or cut off circulation. But a shirt that’s too loose will look sloppy. Plus, any excess fabric could get in the way while wearing it.

Regardless of the activity, you should be able to comfortably fit two or three fingers in between the shirt collar and your neck. You should also be able to fit two fingers between the base of the sleeve and your arm.

Shirts that contain elastic materials, such as spandex, tend to be more form-fitting. These are great if you plan to do intense exercise since they won’t get in the way of any movements.


Nike offers a size chart on their website with the following sizes: extra-extra-small, extra-small, small, small tall, medium, medium tall, large, large tall, extra-large, extra-large tall and 2XL up to 4XL tall.

The size chart also indicates the sizes in the following measurements in inches:

  • Chest
  • Waist
  • Hip
  • Height

When in doubt, take your measurements at home before purchasing a shirt, or find a shirt that fits you well and choose based on that.


Nike offers everything from tank tops, which don’t have sleeves, to long-sleeved shirts. It’s up to your preference which you choose. However, there are certain benefits to choosing one style over another.

For example, tank tops are a great choice for lifting weights since they don’t limit mobility around the arms and shoulders. Meanwhile, a shirt with long sleeves is better for those who plan to exercise outdoors in chilly weather.

Some long-sleeved shirts have a three-way mitten system. This lets you take the sleeves and partially cover your hands to keep them warm and protect them from the elements.


Nike shirts come in various designs and colors, including solid colors, patterns and graphic designs or prints. 


Most of this brand’s shirts have a deep U neckline, a crew neckline or a V-neck. The type doesn’t make a big difference when it comes to exercising. However, a deeper neckline is typically considered less formal and most appropriate for casual activities such as lounging around.

How much you can expect to spend on a Nike shirt

Most Nike shirts cost $25-$45, but some cost up to $70.

Nike shirts FAQ

How do I take care of Nike Dri-Fit?

A. Generally, you should wash any Dri-Fit apparel inside out in cold water with a gentle powdered detergent. Let it air dry, if possible. If you do use a dryer, tumble dry on low heat. Avoid using dryer sheets or fabric softener.

What goes well with a Nike shirt?

A. Get a pair of matching Nike pants or shorts, especially if you plan to exercise while wearing the outfit. Also, get a reliable pair of athletic shoes.

What are the best Nike shirts to buy?

Top Nike shirt

Nike Therma-Fit Repel Element Half-Zip Running Top

Nike Therma-Fit Repel Element Half-Zip Running Top

What you need to know: This athletic shirt has Therma-Fit technology, making it great for anyone who wants to exercise in a colder climate without getting chilly.

What you’ll love: This shirt consists of lightweight French terry material designed to repel water. It has a half zipper that lets in more airflow and features a three-way mitten system to keep your hands warm. It’s available in black, blue, green and gray.

What you should consider: It’s not form-fitting.

Where to buy: Sold by Dick’s Sporting Goods

Top Nike shirt for the money

Nike Dri-Fit Legend Training T-Shirt

Nike Dri-Fit Legend Training T-Shirt

What you need to know: This training shirt has Dri-Fit technology that wicks sweat and other light moisture away from the skin to keep you comfortable for a long time.

What you’ll love: Available in 12 colors, this shirt is resistant to odors, breathable and non-restrictive. It consists of durable polyester.

What you should consider: It can collect lint, especially when washed in the dryer.

Where to buy: Sold by Dick’s Sporting Goods and Kohl’s

Worth checking out

Nike Legend Long-Sleeved Tee

Nike Legend Long-Sleeved Tee

What you need to know: This long-sleeved shirt uses Dri-Fit fabric to wick away moisture and keep you warm and dry while exercising or relaxing at home.

What you’ll love: Available in 21 solid colors, including black, blue, red and white, this shirt is durable and holds its shape over time. It’s warm enough to keep out the chill without causing you to overheat.

What you should consider: It’s on the thinner side, so it won’t keep out wind chill.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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