Looking for a running shirt that fits right, manages moisture, and looks cool?
🏃♀️WeeViews Ambassador Brynn Cunningham did some running shirt recon to find the best shirts for runners and multi-sport athletes.
😮FYI...some of these running shirts are so cool, you might even wear them when you're not running.
👕Check out these 9 cool runner-tested tees...
The plain ole running shirt is one staple in a runner’s closet that can top off any runner’s comfort level, no matter the distance or duration of the run.
Perhaps the running shirt doesn’t seem as important as:
But it can definitely enhance the running experience.
Just ask any runner who spent years running in oversized cotton t-shirts or cheap tech tees from races.
The running shirts on this list were tested mostly on:
Interestingly, I’ve never worn a T-shirt for a 50k trail ultra, always one of these tank tops, but I’ve run sub-ultras.
However, I’ve logged plenty of miles training for ultras and triathlons in these running shirts.
For assistance in determining your own size, here are the female wear tester’s measurements:
The Brooks Distance T-shirt, which I wear in size small, boasts a classic cotton T-shirt look and feel with a shorter length than most t-shirts, which I prefer.
Because of its simplicity, the Brooks Distance T-shirt can transition from the streets to the trails, making getting dressed for your day easy.
However, if you don’t like anything touching your throat, this might deter you from the shirt. I never notice it, even when running.
The Brooks Distance T-shirt runs small:
💲I would definitely purchase this affordable shirt (I snagged it for $21.73 during an online sale) in other solid colors like navy to serve as a never-fail staple not only in my running wardrobe but also for everyday use.
I mostly use the Distance T-shirt not exactly for the longest distances, contrary to its name, but for shorter runs.
The Ibex Women’s Merino Tencel Pocket Short Sleeve Tee, which I wear in size extra small, is:
I love the pocket for the mere classic look of it, though it has hardly served a functional purpose. Sometimes I stash my keys in it for a few seconds when I’m hurrying out the door.
This t-shirt is:
💲If it weren’t for the high price tag, I would own the Ibex Merino Tencel Tee in every single beautiful color it has to offer (as of March 2023, those colors are black, midnight navy, gold and dusty amethyst).
😍Hands down, I would wear this shirt everywhere for everything, everyday… well, almost.
There is a lot to love about relaxed, lightweight, button-up collared shirts, especially ones in the subdued, fun Pale Rose Flora print of the Mountain Hardwear Shade Lite Short Sleeve Shirt, which I wear in extra small.
After all, I love wearing an oversized men's button down, so when I saw this hit the market, I had to have it.
FOUR words to describe the Shade Lite?
Here's a few examples, I can...
Oiselle accurately describes the Oiselle Flyte Short Sleeve as “iconic,” and it is in fact one of the first running-specific shirts that I bought (in 2015), loved, and still love.
That’s saying a lot, because I’ve been running since 1994, when I was 11 years old. Even though it wasn’t until I began running ultras in my late 20s that I got serious about what I wore, because, well, it mattered.
I credit the Oiselle Flyte Short Sleeve for inspiring me to select smart, high-tech running t-shirts. This running shirt has:
Truth: After wearing this running shirt, I became dedicated to the true, made-for-running T-shirt, never to look back at those old, ragged cotton numbers again.
A few more things about the Oiselle Flyte Short Sleeve running shirt:
A note about sizing: I purchased the Oiselle Flyte Short Sleeve in size small before the bird print became the standard for this shirt. I’m not sure if the sizing has changed over the years , but I wear an extra small or size two in other Oiselle shirts.
The moment I put on the Oiselle Flyout Short Sleeve, which I wear in size 2, it became a favorite for hot, hard running.
😍The incredibly lightweight HoverFit fabric does indeed hover over the body, giving it a weightless, nearly-naked feel, just like the Oiselle Flyout Tank Top, reviewed here.
🥵When the heat is soaring in the 80s and 90s with 100 percent humidity, THIS is the only running shirt I want. It wicks moisture in a superior way and dries quickly.
If you like the Oiselle Flyout Tank Top, you’ll LOVE this one.
It’s my go-to for:
On really knows how to turn a running shirt into something of a technical masterpiece.
From the photos, you can see the obvious difference between the front and the back:
This is a perfect race and speed work running shirt.
The Patagonia Capilene Cool Lightweight Shirt, which I wear in size extra small, is an absolute staple for trail running and all outdoor sports.
It’s one of my go-tos for trips that involve:
🔥Like the Oiselle Flyout, it handles heat and humidity exceptionally well.
It is a bit longer than the Flyout, which is the only reason I did not choose it as the “Best” for those conditions.
I prefer the inch and a half or two shorter hemline of the Flyout, a minor point, but one that is important to me.
More about the Patagonia Capilene Cool Lightweight Shirt...
I also have this shirt in a high-visibility bright yellow for road and gravel runs and bike rides.
When I need a running shirt for...
THIS one always lives up to the high standards Patagonia infuses into its every item.
The rabbit EZ Tee, which I wear in size extra small, is one of those oh-so-buttery soft t-shirts that exude comfort and, well, ease, as the name implies.
It’s so soft and snuggly I think I could take a post-run nap in it.
Usually I’m not a fan of large emblems or brand names printed on shirts
I like this one for “EZ” easy zone-one runs.
I love all things Smartwool. In fact, Smartwool has made my best-of-the-best running lists for:
Thus, when I wanted to add a v-neck to my short-sleeve running shirt quiver...
When you’re in the mood for a loose fit, this shirt is wonderful.
Based on reviews, I chose the extra small.
But as you can see in the photo, it runs large, particularly larger than the other extra smalls and definitely larger than the Brooks small reviewed in this article.
Nonetheless, I love it for short, easy runs and can even pull off wearing it as everyday wear before or after a run thanks to its odor resistance.
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