Beat the Heat : Tanks & Tattoos

There are many ways to beat the heat during the summer. Taking a dip in the pool, throw on some shorts, crushing a few cold beers while sitting in a kiddie pool, blasting the  A/C or hitting the street with a fresh tank top. Wearing a tank top as a guy can often give people many different impressions of your character, depending on how you carry yourself (Douche-bag, Bro (Fratty), Hippie, Hipster, Surfer or wannabe). No matter which on of these characters best describe you, rocking a tank this summer is something that you should do and do it well. There are some key do’s and don’ts:

Do’s of wearing a tank top shirt:

  • Go for a shirt with a pattern (geometric, graphics, prints)
  • Wear horizontal, thick block striping (gives you chest some definition if you’re a smaller guy)
  • Wear a more fitted tank. Too large of a tank will make your shirt look like a night-gown (save that for the ladies).
  • Pair them with a cotton or linen suit.
  • Work out! Anyone can wear a tank, but, when you are in moderately good shape, a tank will show off your hard work.

Don’ts of wearing a tank top shirt:

  • Unless you play lacrosse, don’t rock a pinny as a tank (you will reach Bro status there).
  • Athletic tees aka “Wife-beaters” are undershirts. Don’t make them the main part of your outfit.
  • Basketball jerseys are not tanks. If you’re not on the court shooting jumpers, leave your jersey at home.
  • Super tight tanks show that you are trying really hard to show that you are jacked. We get it, but, give yourself a bit of breathing room.
  • Know the situation before heading out in a tank top shirt. Headed to the beach, summer outdoor party or strolling around the city, a tank is more than suitable. But, if you are headed to a “fancy” dinner, wedding, graduation or to work (unless you are a lifeguard) you tank should be resting at home.

Horizontal Striped tank by Gap Navy Linen Pants by H&M  – Off White Driver with Navy Leather Laces by Born Crown– Ribbon belt by Old Navy

Tanked & Tatted Up with Mr. Garrett Nelson

Tanks are great for showing off your body art (aka Tattoos). I met Garrett Nelson walking on the streets of Philly on one our typical 90 degrees summer days. It was evident to me that Garrett really knew how to beat the heat with a tank and shorts, while at the same time showcasing his casual style. Since I was really into his look, I featured Garrett on NBC Philadelphia’s, That Girl, That Guy (where I am the weekly contributor). To check out my full critique of Garrett’s look by clicking here.

The take way from this post should be:

  • Guys can rock a tank
  • Your look can be super casual or semi casual depending on how you pair your tank (ie, linen pants or shorts)
  • Tanks are not for the office, unless your job is taking people to the GUNSHOW!

Stay cool my friends,





Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Beach Wear, Men's Style, Style Tip, Summer Wear

Author:Sabir M. Peele

Founder & Creative Director of menswear style & lifestyle blog Sabir serves as an independent brand consulting working with brands like GQ, AskMen, Indochino & Z Zegna (among others). Selected as #GQFall Best Dressed in 2013 & one of Esquire Magazine Best Dressed Real Men in America in 2010. Follow @MensStylePro on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter. Email with your inquiries.

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7 Comments on “Beat the Heat : Tanks & Tattoos”

  1. June 26, 2012 at 9:01 PM #

    Nice post! And thanks for the clarification about wife-beaters … I definitely don’t like seeing guys walk around with them!

    • June 27, 2012 at 11:51 AM #

      Hi Chaucee,

      Well, you know I had to address that issue too!

  2. June 27, 2012 at 7:26 PM #

    I like the tank & slacks!

  3. Momo
    July 1, 2012 at 5:20 AM #

    And BAM!! You have completely changed my outlook on tank tops, thank you for the inspiration.
    Quick question: Did you have any alterations made to those linen slacks you are wearing..or just straight of the rack?

    • July 1, 2012 at 9:45 AM #

      Hi Momo,

      I’m happy that you enjoy the look. In terms of alterations, I hemmed the pants myself (that all that needed to be done).



  4. July 5, 2012 at 12:51 PM #

    That tanks looks nice. Where i can get one?

    • July 5, 2012 at 4:47 PM #

      Hi Gerald,

      The tank I am wearing is from the Gap (the text is hyperlinked under the picture). I am not 100% sure where Garrett’s shirt is from. Try brands like stores like Urban Outfitters for a similar aesthetic.



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