Picture this for a moment: In the middle of the morning rush, you look down and see a pesky little hole or two at the bottom of your T-shirt. Ugh. At least you're not alone.
So, why is it such a common occurrence in the same spot? “That part of the shirt is a primary abrasion point,” said Bayard Winthrop, the founder and CEO of American Giant, an American-made basics brand. “The fabric there is (rubbing) against the hardware: your belt, the tops of your jeans, all points of wear. The friction, repeated over time, has caused the fabric to deteriorate.”
That's annoying. But, Winthrop continued, “the real culprit here is often the T-shirt fabric itself. The garment itself might be produced as cheaply as possible, cutting costs where possible. Bummer, right?”
Totally. He suggested looking for shirts made from the highest-quality cotton. “Look for brands that call out what type of cotton they are using — a longer fiber length is a good sign — and how the garment is constructed,” he said, adding that a particularly high-quality cotton will usually be mentioned by name, such as Supima. Are the seams unraveling before you even get it home? Does the fabric feel like a disposable tablecloth? If so, the shirt probably isn't the best purchase.
Overall, Winthrop suggested that paying close attention to construction is the No. 1 way to avoid this problem, regardless of price. “A T-shirt is a no-fuss garment. You should be able to wear it with a skirt, pants or jeans and do your work and go about your day without worrying about whether your clothes will hold up,” he said. In other words, it's worth the initial investment for longer wear.
If you’re already committed to a favorite T-shirt brand, you can always adjust your bottoms — try an elastic band, a tie waist or a tried-and-true pair of leggings.
See, you're not the only one!
This article was originally published on June 21, 2016 on TODAY.