It's easy to see why so many people love to wear a compression t-shirt. A short sleeve compression shirt, for example, is a versatile addition to your wardrobe, perfect either as an undershirt or as a sleek, fitted overshirt. The right compression gear gives you plenty of support in a comfortable tee that also shapes your torso for a flatter, more pleasing look. Here's how to pick and wear compression shirts that will keep you cool and comfortable!
Compression wear is a class of garments that are made of materials designed to stretch for fit but provide pressure against your body. Athletes commonly wear this type of clothing for the additional support it gives their muscles and the faster recovery time it provides after strenuous exercise. Some people will wear compression garments to support the treatment of medical conditions, such as inoperable hernias, gynecomastia, or to aid postpartum recovery. One of the most common reasons that someone chooses compression gear, however, is for aesthetics.
For example, a compression t-shirt can be worn for a variety of reasons. It feels natural, as t-shirts are a common part of most everyday wardrobes. Unlike other t-shirts, the material in a short sleeve compression t-shirt; works to flatten bulges and curves, while providing tight, toned lines. This can give a leaner looking tummy, the appearance of smaller love handles, and can minimize the chest area.
Choosing the Right Garment
Purpose - The first thing you need to consider before buying your first compression piece is why you need it in the first place. Whether you’re looking for additional activity support, relief from the discomfort of a medical concern, or just want to look more like yourself, there’s a perfect compression t-shirt, tank top, bodysuit, or even belly band for you.
Areas In Need - The second most important factor is which parts of your body need to receive compression in order to fulfill the garment’s purpose. If you want to flatten extra breast tissue, for example, you may not need help with love handles, so a full-length shirt may not be needed. Alternatively, if you have a spare tire but still have a flat chest, you may be more comfortable with a shirt that only works to tone and flatten your midsection.
The Over/Under - There is no wrong way to wear a compression t-shirt as long as you’re comfortable. Some choose to wear a short sleeve compression shirt as their gym wear. Other people would rather keep their compression gear a secret, wearing it only under clothes. Once you’ve decided how to wear your compression shirts, it’s time to look at the garments that will fit these three criteria.
What to Look for in Your Garment
Once you understand what you want out of compression wear, you can start by eliminating pieces that don’t fit your needs. To do this, you’ll want to look at certain characteristics of the items.
The Right Cut - During your search, you’ll find everything from tank tops to long-sleeve compression shirts. There are shirts made with a standard crew neck and those with deep-cut v-necks. If you’re wearing your compression t-shirt under clothing, you’ll want to pick a style that will be hidden under the outer clothing you plan on wearing. After all, if you want to keep your use of compression gear discreet, you don’t want a too-long sleeve giving it away.
The Right Material - Most compression gear uses a blend of nylon and spandex to provide the right amount of stretch and compression, but the ratio can vary. Depending on the settings used during the knitting process, blends with higher nylon content may or may not stretch less and provide firmer compression. Similarly, those with more spandex may stretch more, but offer a less firm feel, but this, again, depends on the knit settings and whether or not the final product is meant to offer 2 or even 4-way stretch. Some garments may use non-stretch panels made of nylon for maximum shaping and support. Cotton is also frequently found as a breathable liner and for a soft, luxurious feel.
The Right Layers - It’s important that your compression t-shirt gives you a sufficient amount of compression to control bulges and curves. For additional support, some garments will use several layers of compression material to create a stronger panel for problem areas.
The Right Seams - You want your compression gear to be comfortable, and one often forgotten factor in that comfort is the seams of your short sleeve compression shirt. Look for seams that lay flat so they don’t create pressure points of discomfort under your clothing and so you minimize the bunching of the garment under your clothing. Make sure armholes are cut to allow free movement, as this will not only make your compression t-shirt more comfortable to move in but limit the likelihood of the underarm seam causing irritation.
Living in Your Compression Shirt
Your compression shirt should be tight, yet comfortable. There should be plenty of compression to serve its chosen purpose, but not constricting. Make sure it supports your activity level, and wear it daily so it becomes a part of your day-to-day life. This will help not only make it a more natural part of your wardrobe but can actually train your body shape so you reap some benefits, even without your compression t-shirt.
Choose the Value You Deserve
Finally, as with most things, you’re going to get what you pay for. We use quality materials for shirts designed for real people who want the best compression gear possible. If you have any questions about our material, designs, or what compression wear would help your body’s needs, call us. Order your compression t-shirt and gear from Underworks today.