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HOW TO TELL IF A T-SHIRT IS OF GREAT QUALITY

T-Shirts come in various prices ranging from just $5 to over $100...but how do you know if the t-shirt is actually worth the money that you spent? Well, there are a few things you should look for in a t-shirt.

​The Light Test

One of the first things I do when I get a t-shirt is to do the "light test". What I mean by this is to hold up the t-shirt against any light source. The more light that goes through the shirt, the less dense it is. A dense t-shirt is a higher quality one. Density does not affect weight or thickness of the shirt.

Feel the Shirt
The easiest way to test out t-shirt quality is simply by feeling it. What you'd want to feel is a soft t-shirt that is firm at the same time. Not something that would look like its going to rip if you tug on it. 

Check What it is Made Out Of
Generally, the best shirts are 100% cotton. But that does not mean you should ignore every other material. Also, just because one material may be considered better, that doesn't mean it's always true. It all depends on how it's made. A cotton/polyester blend shirt from a high end brand is more likely to feel nicer than a cotton shirt from a cheap brand. Each material has its own benefits and drawbacks. Cotton has the comfort and softness while polyester brings more durability, less wrinkles, and wicks moisture. Tri-blends (a blend of cotton, polyester and rayon) offer the best of each material, while being super soft and having a "signature" blended look to them. Supima cotton and Egyptian cotton are the best kinds of cotton. They are said to resist pilling, stretching and fading while being super soft. 
If it's a Ring-Spun Cotton T-Shirt, Check its "Singles Spun" Count
Ring-spun cotton is cotton that goes through a spinning process that softens and straightens the cotton fibers. However, it gets a bit more complex than that. For example, "30 singles spun" is better than "18 singles spun" cotton. The higher the number, the better the quality. 30 singles spun is higher end and 18 singles spun is on the lower end of the spectrum. All of the t-shirts that we offer include premium, ring spun cotton in their composition. We offer a 32 singles-spun t-shirt here and a 40 singles-spun shirt here.
More about the different kinds of t-shirt fabrics can be found here.

Check the Stitches
Check for any loose threads hanging from the shirt. Then, turn the t-shirt inside out and check the stitches on the inside. Again, check for loose threads. Also, check how many stitches there are on the inside. The more stitches there are, the better. If you are unsure about how many stitches is enough, just check multiple shirts from different brands and compare the difference. 

Do the Wrinkle Test
The wrinkle test is simple. All you do is get the shirt and crumble it up. If there are a lot of wrinkles, it is most likely a low quality shirt. If there are no wrinkles at all, chances are its made of a synthetic material like polyester, which is usually less desirable than cotton. What you want to see is something in between the two, just a few wrinkles.

Price Isn't the Deciding Factor
One of the most important points to consider is that just because something is expensive, it doesn't mean that it is better quality than everything else. Usually higher price does indicate better quality, but there comes a point where you are paying more for the brand name than for the shirt quality. Brands like Armani that charge a lot for their apparel do it because they can. They do it because people will pay extra to have an Armani shirt. In reality however, you are mostly paying for the name, and the quality would be similar to a t-shirt from Club Monaco lets say, which is much more affordable. Below are 2 pictures of t-shirts. One from our brand Quarter Key Apparel, and one from Supreme. We offer a premium quality t-shirt for $22 USD while Supreme offers their good quality t-shirt which people spend over $100 for. Why the big price difference? Not because of quality, but because of the name. There's nothing wrong with spending extra because you like a specific brand and want to be apart of it, in fact, I do like supreme. You just need to know the difference of when you are paying for quality vs. paying for a name.


Conclusion
T-shirts come in many different materials and price points. It is important to do all these little tests when buying a t-shirt to ensure you are getting quality apparel and to remember that price isn't the deciding factor! If you are buying from an online store like us​ and can't necessarily check all these things, what you can do is buy something and if it really doesn't match your quality standards, it can be returned! Great t-shirts almost always come at a bit higher of a price but remember that a quality t-shirt will last you much longer than a regular t-shirt and will look better too, so in my opinion it is definitely worth it to spend extra on quality rather than quantity.

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