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Retro T-Shirts That Are Always In Fashion

Retro T-Shirts That Are Always In Fashion

Learn what retro t-shirt designs never go out of style and how to keep your closet stocked with vintage t-shirts you can wear with any outfit for any occasion.

When it comes to building a timeless wardrobe, it’s important to keep retro t-shirts in your collection. Because of their versatility, a good vintage t-shirt can be styled either up or down to fit any occasion or mood. But knowing which t-shirt designs will stand the test of time can be tricky for new and even veteran thrifters.

That’s why we put together a guide for retro t-shirt designs. We’ll even share tips for building fashionable outfits around those t-shirts, so you know what items to look for the next time you’re shopping second-hand.

Here are the top 15 retro t-shirt styles that will always be in fashion: 

Professional Sports Team T-Shirts

If you love watching or even playing sports, a professional sports team t-shirt is an absolute must in your wardrobe. Show your support for your favorite NFL, NBA, NHL, or any other sports league by rocking one of their vintage shirts. Not every team will be easy to find—but that’s part of the fun. We recommend pairing sports team t-shirts with athletic shorts, leggings, or even sweatpants. Keep your outfit casual and don’t forget a stylish pair of sneakers.


NASCAR is a sport unlike any other and these shirts are too iconic not to have their own category. If you love cars, racing, and nostalgia, then you need at least one vintage NASCAR t-shirt in your collection. NASCAR shirts often feature vehicles, famous drivers, and even just the iconic NASCAR logo. Whichever NASCAR shirt style you pick, it will pair best with a pair of casual blue jeans or a classic denim jacket. 

Retro Band T-Shirts 

Buying and wearing vintage band t-shirts is a great way to show off your personal style and music taste. And don’t be discouraged if you come across a design you love, but don’t know the band. Get the shirt and use it as an excuse to expand your playlist. After all, you might discover your new favorite band. We recommend styling music t-shirts to match the artist’s style. If it’s a rock band shirt you’re wearing, go for an edger look with dark jeans and a black leather jacket. If it’s a grunge band t-shirt, pair it with ripped jeans and a beanie hat. The possibilities are endless. 

Retro Character & Movie T-Shirts

Nostalgia is powerful. And t-shirts featuring cartoon characters or movies from your childhood will turn heads wherever you go. Gone are the days of being “too cool” to like characters. It’s all the rage to wear t-shirts featuring Disney characters like Mickey Mouse, old Nickelodeon shows like SpongeBob, and even retro movies like The Goonies. Feel free to get adventurous when styling these t-shirts—embrace bright colors, fun patterns, and unique accessories.

College & University T-Shirts

Wearing school shirts isn’t just about school spirit. College and University t-shirts can serve a multitude of purposes. Like professional sports team t-shirts, school shirts can indicate what collegiate teams you support—especially during March Madness or college football season. If you’re not into sports, school t-shirts are great to wear when you’re completing a messy project, like painting a room or gardening. Because sometimes you need to throw on a shirt you don’t mind getting dirty. 

Athletic Brand T-Shirts

Athletic brands like Nike and Adidas are some of the best t-shirts to buy vintage because most of the time, you can’t tell the shirts are vintage. Sports t-shirt styles haven’t changed much in 40 years and chances are, you can buy a Nike swish shirt from a second-hand store that looks exactly like a version being sold new at a big retailer. And it will be a fraction of the price from the thrift store. Plus, athletic t-shirts are easy to style. Pair them with athletic pants or shorts and don’t be afraid to mix and match athletic brands. 

Fashion Brand Logo T-Shirts

If you have a passion for fashion but are ballin’ on a budget, the thrift store is the best place to stock up on desirable fashion brands like Lacoste, Polo Ralph Lauren, and Tommy Hilfiger. Plus, fashion brands are always great investments to pick up at the thrift store because they’re often made from quality materials, and you can buy pieces knowing they’re going to last a long time. And fashion brands are easy to style—dress them up with your favorite slacks or even a flattering skirt and pair them with your most glamorous accessories.

This is only the beginning. There are so many vintage t-shirt styles that could fit in your wardrobe. So the next time you’re thrifting, don’t forget to check out the retro t-shirts section. You never know what treasure you might find.