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12 denim shirts to embrace the double denim look

Double denim is going nowhere, so snap up a denim shirt to try out one of fashion's divisive trends


best denim shirts
Carla Challis
Commerce Partnerships Editor
Updated: April 26, 2024
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From influencers to celebrities, double denim is the underground hit of fashion girlies the world over. Skipping ages and trends, there's nothing cooler than wearing double denim for a laidback yet luxe look. We're not talking a denim suit here, but jeans and a denim shirt in matching washes or clashing denim. 

Colloquially known as the Canadian tuxedo, it's a look that, let's be clear, is pretty cool. Forget your fears of accidently emulating an early 00s Justin and Britney, and instead look at is a cooler co-ord than prints or brights. I for one wear double denim more these days than ever, with a trench coat thrown over the top and a pair of Mary Janes on my feet and the key part of this duo? A trusty denim shirt.

The best denim shirts - at a glance

From Pamela Anderson wearing a denim shirt in her 90s inspired Re/Done collaboration to Zoe Kravitz and Hailey Bieber, follow in their footsteps and find a denim shirt to wear with your trusted jeans; honestly, you won't regret it. This year, it's oversized boyfriend denim shirts, denim shirts with scalloped collars and pie crust detailing and those in clashing washes that are being snapped up.

Royals wearing denim shirts

A denim shirt isn't a royal staple for most, but Meghan Markle is an exception to that rule - she has been spotted wearing a J Crew Chambray Shirt to cheer on Prince Harry at the polo, during lockdown to read Archie a story (Is Your Mama A Llama, for those wanting to know) and pre-royal days, she often wore a denim shirt off-duty from playing her character Rachel in Suits.

Meghan Markle reading a bedtime story to Archie
Meghan wore a chambray shirt for a video back in 2020

Another royal loving a denim shirt? Princess Kate, who's light denim frill collar shirt from Really Wild sold out within hours after she wore it to a Scouts event last year. 

Princess Kate at a scout event in May 2023
Princess Kate's Really Wild denim shirt caused a stampede after wearing to a royal engagement in 2023

How I chose the best denim shirts

  • Price: I've considered a range of price points, from affordable high street denim shirts for £15 to the designer denim shirt, retailing for over £400. If you want to splash out, there's plenty of pricier denim shirts, or it's a pre payday pick me up, check out some of the more affordable shirts.
  • Inclusivity:  I've found plenty of denim shirts available in sizes 6-22.
  • Colour: A classic blue denim shirt is what we've focused on. You'll find the high street has other wash versions, including black, white and pastel hues. We've found blue denim shirts in a variety of blue washes, including stonewash, acid wash and true blue, plus a few with a twist like embellishment scalloped collars and puff sleeves.

Shop the best denim shirts for women

  1. 1/12

    H&M Oversized Denim Shirt

    H&M denim shirt

    H&M denim shirt

    Sizes: XXS - XL

    Colours: Three available; dark blue, grey wash and black

    Shipping: Free delivery with a £20 spend

    Returns: Within 30 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "This is the one I own, and for such an incredible price, it's a steal. It's thick denim, it's oversized and the wash is a brilliant mid-blue. I wear mine tucked into jeans, but you could easily layer over a white tee or polo neck."

  2. 2/12

    M&S Lyocell™ Denim Collared Relaxed Shirt

    M&S Denim Shirt

    Marks & Spencer Denim Shirt

    Sizes: 6-24

    Colours: Denim blue

    Delivery: Free on orders over £50

    Returns: Free within 30 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "Fits true to size say M&S customers of this Lyocell blend denim shirt, which can be grabbed from size 6-24. The blue hue is a mid wash, which looks amazing with black jeans or dark denim."

  3. 3/12

    New Look Blue Denim Long Sleeve Shirt

    New Look Denim Shirt

    New Look Denim Shirt

    Sizes: 6-22

    Colours: Blue

    Delivery: Free delivery on orders over £50

    Returns: Within 28 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "New Look's denim is popular for its purse-friendly pricing and comfy fits, and that carries through to their denim shirts too - this one looks comfy, cool and a classic fit."

  4. 4/12

    ASOS Design Denim Shirt

    ASOS Denim Shirt

    ASOS Denim Shirt

    Sizes: 4 - 18

    Colours: Blue or black

    Delivery: Free on orders over £50

    Returns: Free within 30 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "Another affordable buy, this time made from a lighter denim with chambray. Chambray shirts tend to be less rigid than regular denim and look softer when worn - maybe that's why Princess Kate and Meghan prefer one?"

  5. 5/12

    Good American Oversized Denim Shirt

    Good American Denim Shirt

    Good American Denim Shirt

    Sizes: S-5XL

    Colours: Denim

    Delivery: Free delivery 

    Returns: Within 21 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "Khloe Kardashian knows good denim and this, from her Good American line, is just about the perfect oversized denim shirt. Lightweight enough to tuck into jeans, but heavy enough to be worn as an overcoat, it's getting rave reviews for its high quality too."

  6. 6/12

    Mint Velvet Cropped Denim Shirt

    Mint Velvet Cropped Denim Shirt

    Mint Velvet Denim Shirt

    Sizes: XS-XL

    Colours: Blue

    Delivery: Free on orders over £100

    Returns: Free UK returns

    Editor's note: "Mint Velvet has designed a stellar cropped denim shirt, in a beautiful indigo blue. It's great for layering, or wearing alone, and gorgeously oversized."

  7. 7/12

    Hush Deanna Denim Shirt

    Hush Denim Shirt

    Hush denim shirt

    Sizes: 4-18

    Colours: Authentic blue wash

    Shipping: Free delivery on orders over £75

    Returns: Within 28 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "Hush's denim shirt is an easy wear, with a relaxed wash and loose fit. Size up to wear as an overshirt or go for your normal size and wear fitted."

  8. 8/12

    All Saints Alba Oversized Denim Shirt

    All Saints Denim Shirt

    AllSaints Denim Shirt

    Sizes: XXS-XXXL

    Colours: Blue

    Delivery: Free delivery 

    Returns: Free within 28 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "This AllSaints denim shirt could definitely double up as a denim jacket, as it's super oversized and super thick. Made from 100% cotton, the gold buttons add a little touch of luxury."

  9. 9/12

    Karen Millen Embellished Denim Shirt

    Karen millen embellished shirt

    Karen Millen Denim Shirt

    Sizes: 6-16

    Colours: Blue and black

    Shipping: Standard delivery costs £4.99

    Returns: £2 within 28 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "For something a little different, try Karen Millen's incredible embellished denim shirt, with all over embellished detailing - how cool! You'll find this shirt in sizes 6 to 16 and it comes in black denim too."

  10. 10/12

    Barbour Aster Denim Shirt

    Barbour Denim Shirt

    Barbour Denim Shirt

    Sizes: 8-18

    Colours: Blue

    Delivery: Free economy delivery

    Returns: Within 90 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "Barbour has somehow created the ideal denim shirt that bridges the gap between smart and casual; I love the rounded neckline and statement collar, while the fit is slightly oversized. It's a great indigo blue too, and on sale for just under £60!"

  11. 11/12

    Everbelle Pintuck Denim Shirt

    Tu Denim Shirt

    Sainsbury's Denim Shirt

    Sizes: 6-22

    Colours: Blue

    Shipping: From £3.95

    Returns: Within 30 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "This Everbelle denim shirt from Sainsbury's is a smarter alternative to your usual style of denim shirt, with pintuck detailing and a slim fit. Wear with smart trousers or even under a pinafore dress."

  12. 12/12

    & Other Stories Dropped Shoulder Denim Shirt

    Stories Denim Shirt

    & Other Stories Denim Shirt

    Sizes: XS-L

    Colours: Blue

    Delivery: Free on orders over £50

    Returns: Free within 30 days of purchase

    Editor's note: "This denim shirt swaps a pointed collar for a high grandad style collar, giving a new spin on the classic denim shirt. Wear alone, or under a sweater with the collar popped over the top."

How to style a denim shirt now

Since Y2K fever is still high, double denim is the easiest look to emulate. It’s OTT denim shirts with cargo jeans, it's slimfit denim shirts with jeans in a matching wash and it's layering one over a slimfit polo neck teamed with flared jeans.

A guest is seen wearing a gray coat, denim top and pants with cream bag outside the Jason Wu show during NYFW
A NYFW goer opts for bleached double denim, smartened with a grey overcoat and heels

Take one look at the recent fashion weeks, or street style, and they're everywhere. This time around, your denim washes don’t have to match either. Try a mid-wash jean with a darker denim shirt or go stonewashed top, white jeans for a fresh take. Patchwork or laser-detailed denim shirts work well too. Or, go for a boxy shape and wear over a classic slub tee with jeans in similar shades; keep accessories in neutral shades, like black, white or cream.

A guest wears sunglasses, a blue patchwork denim full look, a shirt, flared denim jeans pants , a bag, leather pointed shoes , outside Herskind, during the Copenhagen Fashion Week AW24
Patchwork denim doubles down on the Cowboy core look, as seen at Copenhagen Fashion Week

If you’re really feeling the denim, layer it up times three – jeans, denim shirt and denim jacket or swap jeans for a denim mini, maxi skirt or denim shorts.

Irene Kim at Paris Fashion Week
Irene Kim wears triple denim at Paris Fashion Week

Celebrities wearing denim shirts

On or off-duty, celebrities rely on a denim shirt to see them from restaurants to the red carpet.

Katie Holmes attends the alice + olivia presentation during New York Fashion Week
Katie Holmes adds jeans, a trench coat and a pop of colour to her denim shirt ensemble

Actress Jodie Turner-Smith turned to a denim shirt for a Netflix premiere, paired with a denim jacket and jeans for the ultimate cool-girl look.

Jodie Turner-Smith attends the White Noise New York Film Festival Opening Night Screening on September 30, 2022 in New York Cit
Jodie Turner-Smith hitting all the right style notes in triple denim at a premiere
Emily Ratajkowski attends the Loewe Womenswear Spring/Summer 2023 show in Paris
Emily Ratajkowski in double denim at Paris Fashion Week

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Emily Rajatowski chose an oversized denim shirt and baggy jeans for Paris Fashion Week, proving the look can be as sexy as it can stylish.

 

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