The Beginners Guide Collar Stays


Stay down! STAY. DOWN! Ever felt like we’ve had to yell that to our collars? Not out loud that would be weird. But to see our collar curl up in a very unattractive fashion is frustrating. That’s why we use collar stays. As kids, we took these little sword things from our dads and played around with it. Oh, the imagination of kids. But as adults collar stays are just as important as the shirt. In an interview, a meeting, or on a date, a crisp collar can tell a lot about a person. We tend to take people a bit more seriously depending on how sharp they dress. We could be talking to a brilliant mind who carelessly puts his clothes on and a person who may not be as bright but dresses the part, and somehow we will take that person more seriously. 

What are collar stays?

You know when your shirt collars start to bend down and curl up like a taquito? Collar stays are the flat tabs that you stick into the little pockets inside your shirt collar to make your collar look sturdy and flat. Collar stays are one of the more overlooked items when it comes to dressing shirts. Collar stay will vastly improve the appearance of your shirt. Some collar stays are sewn in the shirt already and is located on the underside of the shirt with a little pocket for you to insert the tab. 

Does it matter what collar stay that I get? 

Collar stays just like people come in many shapes, forms, and fashions. Some are long, wide, shorter, thinner, sounds like we are describing many of our family members. Collar stay can be made from many different materials, but the most commonly used ones are stainless steel, sterling silver, pearl, brass, and most commonly, plastic. 

Many may go the cheaper route and buy the plastic collar stays, but over time they bend if you forget to take them out of your shirt when you put them in the dryer and eventually need to be replaced. 

Some manufacturers make the shirts without the collar stays to save a few pennies and leave it up to the consumer to be responsible enough to have a quality collar stay. Others already have the collar stays sewed into the shirt. 

How do I Wear My Collar Stay?

If you look at the underside of your shirt, there is a small area to insert tabs to help flatten out your collar. All collar stays are not the same as all shirt collars are not the same. Some collar stays are longer, wider, or shorter. There are two things you want to know about your collar stay, size, and flexibility. You want a collar stay that is thick and sturdy. When you put your collar stay in you, want a small piece of the collar to stay to poke out but not too far that it is poking into you or too short that it goes all the way inside the pocket area of the shirt. 

Type of Collar Stays

Plastic Collar stays are the most common because they can make them at a low cost. But like your dishware, we would judge you if we opened up your cabinet to see nothing but plastic cups, plastic plates, and plastic forks and knives. The plastic over time will end up with wear and tear, and your collar would ask you why don’t you love me enough to get a higher quality collar stay. 

The stainless steel collar stays. OK! Someone put on their big boy pants. A tear has just rolled down my eye. Welcome to the big leagues! Stainless steel collar stays provide the stiffness and durability that the collar needs. The weight, the firmness does the job you walk out your door with pride, knowing that your collar will stay in place and have you looking sharp for any occasion. 

Brass collar stays. OK, you are now showing off. They have the same functionality as the stainless-steel stays, but these are made from… drumroll, please…brass! These are the ones you give as gifts to your boss that may help you be in their good graces, especially when promotion times come up. Brass-collar stay is the talk of the party. 

There are also gold, magnetic, and there are even collar stays made from bone, don’t ask, you can look that up on your own time on where they get the bone from, but you get the point. 

Collar stays are an essential item in your wardrobe arsenal that you should invest in for the long run. In short, when creating your wardrobe, every little detail counts when it comes to your image. Give yourself a wardrobe boost and step your “collar stay” game up.


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