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11 Best Hiking Shirts

If you’ve started to think about planning some hikes for 2024, then your closet will need to be up-to-date and ready to go for whatever adventure you might have planned. Why not add a couple of new hiking shirts to the packing list?

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Whether you’re an avid hiker, or just love being outside in nature, finding the best hiking shirts can be a challenge with so many options to choose from. With our selection of the best hiking shirts, including garments made from merino wool, synthetic materials, and options for hot weather hiking.

Our top pick for women’s hiking shirts was the KÜHL Konstance Short Sleeve, which stood out for its adaptability and flattering fit. For men, the Fjällräven Abisko Trekking Shirt is a great investment piece that can take you from day to night with ease. 

Other great closet additions include the Patagonia Caplene Graphic Shirt and the Ice Breaker Merino Tech Lite, both available for men and women.

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The Best Hiking Shirts at a Glance 

Best Overall Women’s Hiking Shirt – KÜHL Konstance

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Image by KUHL

There are so many good hiking shirts out there to choose from, but the KÜHL Konstance was a standout among them. The comfort and roomy fit of this one makes it a great option for hiking days, with the curved split bottom hem allowing for enhanced mobility. 

The combination of polyester and Tencel fabric makes it an easy piece of clothing to take care of, and lasts well through many washes. It is wrinkle-free and quick-drying which makes a great choice for hiking.

The fabric also features maximum UV sun protection (UPF 50+) so it’s great for hot-weather hiking. 

The silhouette of the t-shirt is very flattering compared to some basic tee shirts, it drapes perfectly and it fits true to size. The black tee is more like a soft charcoal gray, which will go with every outfit on your next hiking trip. 

Best Women’s Sun Shirt – Outdoor Research Women’s Astroman Long Sleeve Sun Shirt 

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Image by Outdoor Research

A button-down shirt for hot weather hiking can be an incredibly useful addition to your closet. Wearing a shirt will protect your arms and shoulders from the sun on long days in direct sunlight. It will also help protect you from bug bites

This shirt by Outdoor Research is super lightweight, feels cool on the skin, and is made from a durable combination of 85% Nylon and 15% Spandex.

The nylon material makes this hiking shirt stretchy and moisture-wicking, which allows for a wide range of movement. It features an attractive crossover back detail which adds to its feminine look.

With UPF 50+ protection and several color options, it’s a staple for your hiking wardrobe. Choose one of the lighter colors for sunny days. This shirt is a useful layering option and can be worn over a tee or tank top.

It fits true to size but offers a loose fit for wider coverage. If you prefer a more fitted shirt then you might want to try sizing down or choosing a more form-fitting option. 

Best Women’s Long Sleeve Shirt – BALEAF Women’s UPF 50+ Sun Shirt Long Sleeve 

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Image by BALEAF

This shirt makes the list because of its great value for money, the variety of colors and sizes available, and its reliable sun protection.

It’s one of the best hiking shirts out there and makes for a versatile addition to your closet. It can be worn for lots of outdoor activities, including running, swimming, hiking, cycling, and watersports. 

The basic crew neck style suits all body types and comes in sizes XS to 3XL. The material is 100% polyester and provides UPF 50 + sun protection.

The top is a breathable, moisture-wicking, and skin-friendly layer to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Although it doesn’t add much warmth, it can also be worn as a base layer for hiking in cooler conditions, too. 

These long-sleeved shirts are great for packing into backpacks and suitcases, and they dry very quickly. 

Best Women’s Long Sleeve Button Shirt – Eddie Bauer Women’s Departure 2.0 Long Sleeve Shirt

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Image by Eddie Bauer

If you are looking for a more fitted option than the Outdoor Research Astroman Women’s Sun Shirt, consider the Eddie Bauer Women’s Departure 2.0 Shirt. It comes in several beautiful colors and offers superior stretch comfort in a flattering style. 

It has convertible roll-up sleeves and is made from a long-lasting material combo of spandex and polyester which washes well. Wear it open with a white tee or on its own. It has a rounded hem at the back and double pockets on the front with buttons.

While this shirt is not a slim fit, it still offers a flattering shape with plenty of space for movement. Sometimes it can be a tough balance between style and practicality, but you don’t want to purchase a super tight shirt for hiking as it’s important to be comfortable. 

Best Overall Men’s Hiking Shirt –  Fjällräven Abisko Trekking Shirt

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Image by Fjallraven

Perfect for hot weather hiking, this short-sleeved option from Swedish brand Fjällräven is made from 100% polyamide and is a great shirt for all-day hiking. 

The zip pocket on the front of the shirt is large enough to fit a passport or wallet, so it’s perfect to pack for hiking trips or wear while traveling.

With a retail price of $84.95, it’s an investment shirt but its versatility means it can be worn for many activities. A vented back panel provides airflow and is quick-drying. The light but durable fabric feels cool on the skin, making it a great shirt for hot-weather hiking.

After a day in the outdoors, it’s smart enough that you won’t even have to change to go to dinner. 

Best Men’s All Purpose Long Sleeve Shirt – REI Co-Op Sahara Long-Sleeve T-Shirt 

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Image by REI Co-Op

The Sahara shirt is an all-purpose long-sleeve shirt. It makes for a useful base layer in winter and offers solid protection from UV rays in the summer. 

Incredibly soft to the touch, these crewneck tees are made from a mix of poly and spandex, so they do a great job of wicking sweat. The built-in UPF 30 protection is a key feature. 

The shirt comes in tall sizes and the fit is comfortable. It comes in a range of subtle, muted colors for everyday wear. 

At a full price of $34.95, this shirt is good value for money and will be a go-to choice in your closet.

Best Men’s Hiking Sun Shirt – Outdoor Research Way Station Long Sleeve Shirt 

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Image by Outdoor Research

This performance shirt is made from a technical fabric blend of nylon, polyester, and spandex. The material has built-in UPF 50 protection and it’s light and cool to wear in hot temperatures or muggy conditions.

The design is carefully constructed with two chest pockets and a subtle zip, a useful feature in a hiking shirt. There are roll-up tabs for the sleeves. The Movement-mirroring stretch and back pleat allow for great mobility. 

The shirt also comes in a short-sleeved style and there is a version of it for women, as well. 

Best Men’s Short Sleeve T-Shirt – Under Armour Men’s Tech 2.0 Short Sleeve T-Shirt 

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Image by Under Armour

Our pick for a short-sleeved shirt is Under Armour’s Tech 2.0. With its ultra-soft fabric, it’s a polyester shirt that works well in many scenarios, whether you are training in the gym or heading outdoors.

The shirt dries so quickly, you could skip the dryer step and leave it to hang overnight. 

Under Armour has updated the style to feature a more streamlined fit and a shaped hem. The fit is loose enough to stay cool and comfortable while you are on the go, and there is a great selection of colors available at reasonable prices.

The small logo in the corner is subtle and there is a long-sleeved option, too.  

Bear in mind that this tee has no official UPF rating, so you’ll want to make sure you bring extra sunscreen with you. That being said, we still think it’s still a great addition to any workout closet.   

Best Men’s Long Sleeve T-Shirt – Columbia Men’s Tech Trail Long Sleeve Crew II  

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Image by Columbia

You can always count on Columbia for some good quality hiking clothes, and the Men’s Tech Trail Long Sleeve Crew is another great example of their long-lasting quality. 

The fabric is polyester and elastane, and the fit is classic with a soft and lightweight feel. Made with Omni-Wick technology, it quickly removes moisture from the skin into the fabric, where it quickly evaporates.

Another feature to note is the shirt’s Omni Shade UPF 50 protection. The tightly wound fabric construction and modified fibers provide maximum protection from the sun. The shirt has thumb holes to keep sleeves in place and to keep hands warmer in cooler temperatures. 

Best All Merino: Icebreaker Merino Tech Lite II Short Sleeve – Women and Men

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Image by Icebreaker

For anyone who enjoys hiking, a few merino wool t-shirts are super handy to have in the closet. This Icebreaker tee is made from 150g Merino wool jersey fabric, which is lightweight, odor-resistant, and wicks moisture. 

The sustainable fabric is incredible at adapting to different conditions, keeping you cool in warmer weather and warm in cold weather. It works perfectly as a base layer, but you’ll find it to be a very versatile addition to your hiking clothing collection.   

Made for men and women, the wool is not itchy to wear and it washes well, so it could also work well as a go-to everyday tee. 

The shoulder seams are offset, so you will not feel any discomfort when wearing a backpack.   

Buy Women’s

Buy Men’s

Best Quick Drying Tee – Patagonia Caplene Cool Daily Graphic T-Shirt – Women and Men

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Image by Patagonia

Patagonia is a safe bet for anyone looking for sturdy and durable outdoor clothing. Their Caplene t-shirt is a lightweight, active shirt that is ideal for hiking. 

The designs are eye-catching and fun, and the material is soft and made from recycled polyester jersey. It has odor-resistant technology which makes it a great option for long multi-day hikes.

The quality of the fabric is long-lasting and is substantial enough to support all types of adventurous hiking and rock climbing. A looser fit, these tees are excellent hot weather shirts and comfortable for long days out in the wild.

Buy Women’s

Buy Men’s

What to Look For in a Hiking Shirt

You’ll find there are endless options available when it comes to most hiking shirts. For any clothing purchase, it’s important to consider your specific needs first and think about what gaps you might have in your closet. 

You can start with basics and layering pieces, such as polyester shirts with long sleeves, before moving on to button-up hiking shirts.

Consider adding a few pieces that are specifically for sun protection if you spend a lot of time exposed to the sun. Always shop for lightweight and breathable materials that are easy to wash and take care of.

It’s easy to be tempted by cheaper brands, but in most cases, reputable outdoor retailers are a safe bet for long-lasting outdoor clothing. Look out for these features when you are browsing for your new hiking shirt.

UPF protection 

You will notice several hiking shirts feature a UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) rating. This gauges how effective the fabric is at protecting your skin from the sun.

One of the contributing factors is the construction of the garment, if it is made with tightly woven fibers, this will avoid the sun hitting your skin. Sometimes, chemicals and dyes are used to absorb UV light and enhance protection. 

Don’t forget to always apply sunscreen to exposed areas of skin, particularly the face and neck. 

Materials and Fabrics 

For hiking, look out for shirts made from fabrics such as polyester, nylon, spandex, and merino wool. These fabric combinations are moisture-wicking, designed to keep you dry by moving sweat away from your skin.

These fabrics also wash and dry quickly, making them very useful additions to your everyday life. A quick-drying shirt is so useful if you encounter rain or perspire heavily on your hike. They will pack easily into a backpack because they are so lightweight.

Some clothing brands will add antimicrobial treatments to help reduce odors. This is a useful feature for multi-day hot weather hikes, though it is not necessary.

It’s always worth considering the durability of the fabric, especially if you’ll be navigating rough terrain. Look for abrasion-resistant materials that will not damage easily. If environmental impact is important to you, consider shirts from brands with a focus on sustainability and eco-friendly fabrics.

Sizing and Fit  

For hiking, it’s best to opt for a shirt that won’t restrict your movement. It’s wise to check size guides before you order one and compare the measurements with your own. Size up if you feel you are between sizes. 

Colors 

Your personal preference will guide you best when it comes to choosing colors for your new shirts, but it’s worth keeping a couple of things in mind.

As a basic rule, choose shirt colors that suit your skin and hair color combination. Or, you can’t go wrong with basic shades like black, white, or gray. You might also consider a couple of bolder colors for more remote hikes, so you can be seen from afar.    

Useful Features 

Keep an eye out for useful features like roll-up sleeves, thumb holes, and zip pockets. Pockets can be handy for storing small items such as a map or trail snacks. Shirts with mesh panels and vents will enhance airflow, preventing overheating in hot weather.

Budget 

You will find that there are good hiking shirts available at all price points. The shirts we looked at in this guide were in a price range of $20 – $95. 

Wrapping Up

A good collection of shirts is essential in any closet, but there are some specifics to consider if you will be primarily wearing it for hiking and exercise. When you’re shopping for a new hiking shirt, it is always a good idea to read the customer reviews for information about wearability, sizing, and fit.

Yes, there is a lot of choice out there. If you find yourself in doubt, stick to reputable outdoor brands that specialize in hiking gear. 

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