What Kind of Shirts Do Roofers Wear (Material and Fit)

About to fix a roof? 

Wondering how to dress up for the job? Well we are here to help you out with that. 

Whether it be fixing your own roof or another’s, roofers have to dress to keep themselves warm, comfortable and safe, even in the most unpredictable conditions.

As the job warrants you to stay out in the scorching heat or wet drizzle, for long hours, the kind of shirt that you choose to wear matters a lot. 

So, should a roofer just put on a white t-shirt and a plaid shirt or should he/she dress up carefully to protect themselves?. Well we are going to answer that question for you. 

What Kind of Shirts Do Roofers Wear

What kind of shirts do roofers wear? 

The most troublesome thing a roofer has to put up with is the burning rays of the sun. As roofers have to work right under the sun, without any shade or protection from the sun, the shirt they wear is the sole protective shield they’ve got.

The shirt roofers wear must protect them from the harmful sunrays, should keep the body from overheating and if it’s nippy, the shirt must keep the roofer warm. 

Long sleeved shirts that provide maximum coverage is an apt option to protect the skin from the harmful sunrays or frosty winds.

As dark colours tend to absorb more heat, it is always best to stick to lighter shades in summers as they have low thermal absorption rate.

Light shades also make you less conspicuous, which helps you to work without drawing too much attention from prying eyes. 

Wearing black is not a total no in summers, given that the shirt is loosely fitted giving ample space between the skin and shirt, so that the heat from the body can move up and out through the garment. 

The shirts have to be breathable, comfortable and must withstand rough use as well. In the end the type of shirt a roofer should opt depends upon the conditions in which he/she is working. 

Material of shirt

As roofers have to keep themselves from getting sunburns and heat exhaustion in summers, the material of their shirts should be thick enough to protect the skin from harmful solar radiations and breathable enough to let out the heat and maintain a good airflow.

100% pure cotton is the most preferable option as it provides great comfort, breathability and helps keep you cool. 

As the material ought to be moisture and stain resistant, durable and comfortable, most of the manufacturers prefer to use blends of fabrics to get the desired result.

Roofers can use shirts or tshirts made of blends of cotton/ spandex/polyester given that the major component in the mix is cotton. 

During winters it is best to go for insulating materials such as thinsulate or wool. Wool, especially one with high wool content, is the most desirable option as it can keep you warm without making you sweaty. 

100% polyester or synthetic material is a big no when it comes to roofers’ shirts as they are not breathable and can melt and burn you under high temperatures.  

Measurements of shirt 

Loose fitting shirts tend to be the best option for roofers working in summers. It is important that there is ample airflow that keeps the body cool, allows the sweat to dry up and keeps you comfortable.

If there is no proper ventilation, the heat will be trapped inside the garment, overheating the body and draining the roofers’ energy.

Hence roofers ought to use loose fitting shirts or t-shirts, with slits on the sides and open panels to the back which can enable free flow of air. 

In winters it is best to wear thick shirts or t-shirts with long sleeves. In winters loose fitted shirts or t-shirts are layered for heat and layers can be removed as the temperature goes up as the day progresses. 

Why should roofers wear long sleeved shirts? 

It is always preferable for roofers to opt for shirts or t-shirts with long sleeves. Longer sleeves provide more protection from sunburns when you are working out in the sun for long hours.

It can also save you from minor cuts and scratches at work. And it has also been found the long sleeves can keep one cooler in summers as the sweat under the shirt provides a cooling effect when air passes through it. 

Roofers’ Shirt- Summary

Colour  Light colours
Sleeves  Long sleeves
Fit  Loose fit
Material Cotton/ cotton blends(Summer)


Roofers’ shirt vs other shirts/ hoodies. 

Roofers can opt for shirts or t-shirts or hoodies as long as the measurements and materials are perfect for them.

As compared to shirts and t-shirts, roofers tend to prefer hoodies as they provide more protection from harmful UV rays, small cuts and scratches and keeps the body cool while maintaining humidity.

But as long as the material is thick enough to protect the skin from direct sun rays and is of breathable material and light hue, roofers can opt any one of them without apprehension. 

Bonus tips for Roofers to keep their shirts clean and comfy 

      • Always carry an additional change of clothes
      • Make sure to tune in to the weather forecast before leaving for work 
      • Use disposable tyvek coveralls when there is tear-off dust involved
      • Never clean clothing with roof solvents or gasoline. 

Top 5 shirts/tshirts for Roofers 

1.) Wrangler Riggs Workwear Men’s Logger Twill Long Sleeve Work Shirt

Made from 100% pure cotton, the material of the shirt has a peach finish and hence is extremely soft and comfortable to wear. The shirt is easy to clean as machine wash is possible.

Button down collar and cuff and split back yoke ensures more breathability and provides a cooling effect and the full length sleeves for protection and comfort to roofers. 

2.) Hanes Men’s Beefy Long Sleeve Henley Shirt 

Made of 100% pure cotton, the fabric of the shirt is extremely soft and breathable. 

The material is durable and would last you a long time. The shirt is machine washable and is hence easy to clean regularly . 

3.) Hanes Men’s Ultimate Cotton Heavyweight Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt 

Hoodies provide more coverage and protection and is hence one of the most sought out garments by roofers. This hoodie is made with 90% cotton and 10% polyester fabric that is machine washable and light. 

Pilling resistant material of the hoodies guarantees that the hoodies look fresh and good for a long time. 

Fleece lining provided makes it a suitable choice in winters and roofers can also pull up the hood to protect their head and neck from the biting cold. 

4.) Woolly Clothing Men’s Merino Wool Long Sleeve Shirt 

Made of 100% pure merino wool, this shirt is the best option for roofers in the cold winters. 

Odor resistant material, that is breathable and itch free leaves you feeling fresh even after long hours of work. 

Durable material and stylish design that is perfect for any occasion make this shirt a must have for a warm yet cool roofer look. 

5.) Fruit of the Loom men’s crew tshirt 

Made with a 100%cotton fabric, this short sleeved solid tshirt is the perfect fit for you on a not so sunny yet too warm day. It has a flat stitched collar and hems for greater comfort.

There are no tags or bands that would rub against your skin to cause irritation. The breathable fabric keeps you comfortable, cool and fresh for long hours. 

See also: Do Roofers Have to Wear Hard Hats?

Stephen Luettgen
I have 12+ years of experience in construction, inspections, handy work, and currently working as a Construction Site Manager. In today’s day we spent a significant part of our time at workplace and a right work gear can have significant impact not only on your safety but also work quality.

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