Gap T-Shirts Review


Priced at the top end of our range, Gap's offerings are soft with a relaxed fit and no pilling. Stretching at the neck after washing is a pain point. We say wait for a sale.

Gap has made a name for itself as a reasonably affordable brand that occupies a sweet spot of casual fashion. Its basic tees and jeans are iconic in the Western world, but are they really that much better than less expensive brands? The answer is yes and no, according to our Gap T-shirts review.

It's evident that the fabric Gap uses for its T-shirts is of a finer grade than the fabric used for the budget-conscious tees at Old Navy, which is also owned by Gap Inc. After running both the men's Essential crew-neck T-shirt ($16.50) and the boys' vintage pocket tee ($15) from Gap through the ringer, we saw almost no signs of wear. Pilling, fraying, and fading were virtually nonexistent. The 100 percent cotton material of the men's shirt and the 60 percent cotton, 40 percent polyester fabric of the boys' shirt stayed smooth and soft. Still, not all online reviewers appreciate the fabric. On the Gap website, the men's shirt has earned only 3.5 out of 5 stars from 18 total ratings, with some users complaining that the tee is too thin.

The seams on the Gap tees are tighter and appear to have a higher stitch count than the comparable Old Navy shirts, which theoretically should translate to fewer loose strings and less unraveling in the long run. Shrinkage for these shirts is on the lower end of the spectrum. Our men's size-large shirt lost 1 inch of length from shoulder seam to hem, going from an initial length of 29 inches to 28 inches after laundering. Our boys' size-small tee shrank only a quarter of an inch, from 20 inches to 19.75 inches in length from shoulder to hem.

On the negative side, we noted that the collars of both the boys' and men's crew-necks stretched out significantly after laundering. Additionally, our adult T-shirt model called the fit of the men's tee "a little loose in the middle," something that could be a pro or a con depending on the wearer's preferred fit.

There's no doubt that Gap T-shirts are good products, but they aren't perfect, and they cost more than others on our list. The shirts' relatively dear price, especially given their tendency to stretch out in the collar, confines them to our second tier. We advise that consumers carefully consider their T-shirt needs before choosing to spend extra for this brand; try to find it on sale.

Gina Briles

Gina K. Briles writes family, household, and shopping-related product reviews. She is a displaced Jayhawk and a coffee addict living in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, two small children, and Vizsla dog.

See full bio