Best Workout Tank Tops
Have you ever been embarrassed by noticeable armpit wetness and stains while exercising? First of all, you shouldn’t be, it’s natural, but a workout tank top takes away the possibility of pit stains. Indoors or outdoors, chances are that you are going to work up a sweat during your exercise. Keeping all of that hot air next to your body not only creates an uninviting stench but is also uncomfortable. Giving your armpits room to breath makes can really transform your workout.
However, it must be noted that not any old tank top will do! There are specific material blends, fits, and shapes that drastically hinder or improve your experience. A fabric that absorbs and evaporates moisture quickly is ideal. Perhaps, most importantly, is wearing something that makes you feel confident. Whether fit, breathability, or color is your top priority, there is something for everyone here.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 2.75 hrs of research
It is a seamless construction
Designed with four-way stretch fabric
It seems to fit true-to-size
OUR TOP PICKS FOR THE BEST WORKOUT TANK TOPS
1. ALO YOGA VIXEN
It is a seamless construction
Designed with four-way stretch fabric
It seems to fit true-to-size
The price is a bit steep
This top model right here is suitable for women. It is actually a crop top and due to its polyester and spandex blend, four-way stretch material, and breathable core, it is awesome for highly intensive activities.Read more
This is about as breathable as it gets. The main aspect that lends its hand in this regard is the cutout details. These vastly enhance the ventilation that you will be provided.
Even the best garments on the market can fit either too tight or too loose but this does not appear to be one of those examples. Most previous buyers have claimed it has fit them true-to-size.
There is not lining present over the bust so a sports bra will be required with this top. As for the main fabric blend, this mixes spandex and polyester.
Two main features enhance the overall comfortability here. First off, the four-way stretch fabric allows you to move freely in any direction. Secondly, the construction is seamless.
There is a really good variety of color options as you have several lighter and darker tones to choose from. Most of you will be able to find a style for you, let’s just say that.
From a quality standpoint, this is just about perfect. Now, the price of admission is a bit steep and not many of you will be willing to pay this kind of price (and that is fair).
2. UNDER ARMOUR TWIST
Features anti-odor technology
There is a pretty good selection of colors available
Sports moisture-wicking properties
Quite a few users were unhappy with the loose fit
Come on, you knew Under Armour would make an appearance on this list. It is worth noting, though, that they tailored their model to deliver a more generous and relaxed fit.Read more
In addition to the fact that this is designed with a moisture transport system to wick away sweat from your body, it also equips anti-odor technology to prevent the growth of microbes that cause odor.
Indeed, the fit is intentionally made to be more generous and relaxed. Yet, there have been a few reviewers who have noted that the fit can be a little too loose if you go with your normal size.
This is 100 percent polyester and it has an excellent feel to it. As it is polyester, as well, it sports quick-drying capabilities.
Not only does the lightweight stretch construction improve your mobility in all directions but the UA tech fabric is incredibly soft and delivers all-day comfort.
All in all, there are well over a dozen colors to select from. Several of the selections do resemble each other quite a bit, however.
When you put your trust in a high-quality brand, typically good things will happen to you. That is the case here as Under Armour proves why they are so highly regarded when it comes to athletic wear.
3. ADIDAS ULTIMATE
It is both soft and lightweight
There are several color options available
Designed with Climalite fabric
It does fit pretty snug
As simple as this workout tank top is, it is amazing how fantastic it is. The polyester and cotton blend is incredibly comfortable and the moisture-wicking Climalite fabric enhances the breathability.Read more
As was just mentioned, this tank top is indeed made of Climalite fabric and this is going to wick away moisture from your skin as you sweat.
This actually fits more like a compression shirt so if you are looking for something a bit less snug, you may want to order a size up. Of course, various users have also noted that this is quite long (length-wise).
While most options on this list are made up of 100 percent polyester, this is actually a blend of polyester (80 percent) and cotton (20 percent).
Being made with soft jersey, this has a lightweight and soft feel against your skin. For longer sessions, you should enjoy this ideal combination of comfort.
Though there is not a boatload of different color options, the selection that is there is quite good.
In spite of the snugger fit that you may or may not be appealed to, this is an excellent option for men. Much like with Under Armour, Adidas is also a top-end brand so that helps.
4. ASICS GEL-COOL
Does not interfere with mobility
Limited color options
The reflective logo is very small
If you are looking for a bit more coverage than some of our options, you will definitely want to check out this option from Asics. It is lightweight with a loose fit and great breathability. While it is only available in four colors, the coral and sea glass colors are quite striking.Read more
As with any shirt this shape, the ventilation provided is impressive. You receive great airflow through the armholes and also feel much cooler by just having your arms bare. To further enhance the breathability of this garment, it is equipped with Gel-Cool technology which gives the fabric a sort of 3D effect. The fabric has small holes in it that allow air in and out, making it a very breathable garment.
This Gel-Cool shirt is intended to fit slightly loose. It does not hug the body but still maintains an attractive shape. It is available in a wide range of sizes, from Extra Small to Extra Large.
This garment is made from 72% polyester and 28% spandex. There are no extraordinary treatments that make it difficult to wash. It also features a small reflective Asics logo on the top right.
Thanks to the casual fit of this shirt, it does not affect your ability to move, stretch, or run. It is also seamless which highly lessens the possibility of chafing. Reviewers love the lightweight comfort and full-coverage of this garment.
Whether you are looking to stand out or not attract attention, there is a color option for you. You can choose from bright colors, such as coral or sea glass, or more muted tones, such as gray or black.
Unless this just plain out isn’t your style, there is not much to dislike about this option. It is lightweight, comfortable, and impressively breathable. While more color options would be nice, we do admire the four options.
5. DEGREE BY REFLEX
It is stretchy enough to not be snug
Designed with moisture-wicking fabric
Features four-way stretch material
Rolling up can be an issue
Another great option for women, this one is presented by 90 Degree by Reflex. And, though it can tend to bunch up at the bottom, it sports a breathable and comfortable core.Read more
Thanks to the moisture-wicking fabric that has been utilized here, this is going to keep you cool during workouts and on hot summer days.
Please note that this option is intended to be fitted. One of the issues that are present here, however, is that the bottom tends to roll up a bit while you are moving your arms.
The compression-type fabric that is present is a bit on the stiffer side (though it is not exactly uncomfortably stiff).
Comfort is not an issue here, let’s just say that. The four-way stretch material, in a way, counteracts the issue of the bottom rolling up as it allows you to move around freely.
Yes, some of the color options do repeat themselves a bit but, for the most part, the variety is there and that is all you can really ask for.
The potential remedy to the “rolling up” problem is to order a size up. On warm and muggy afternoons, though, you will adore this particular garment.
6. NIKE DRY MILLER
Most of the colors look great
There are mesh side panels
Features a 100 percent polyester core
It runs large
Nike finally makes it on this list and it was pretty much inevitable. As great as their garment is, though, be aware that virtually all previous buyers have recommended ordering a size down.Read more
In addition to the fact that the Nike dry fabric allows you to stay dry, clearly, there are also side panels integrated that are made of mesh for improved breathability.
Yep, if you want to take the advice of previous buyers then you should order a size down here. This simply has been known to run large.
The all-polyester composition should not be too much of a surprise at this point but just note that cotton nor elastane are utilized here in the slightest.
First off, the racerback design allows you to obtain a free range of motion. Yet, what also enhances the comfort are the flat seams.
If you are not a fan of blue then you cut the color selections in half, basically. Though a lot of light colors are available, the selection could be a little better, admittedly.
Once again, you have to contend with a tank top that can be finicky in its sizing. Truth be told, this is just something that you have to learn to put up with when shopping online.
7. ICYZONE ACTIVEWEAR
Features lightweight and soft fabric
Designed with flatlock seams
The fabric also wicks away sweat
It is quite big and loose
The armholes are enormous
Due to the exaggerated armholes of this next option, you will either like it or hate it. There may not be an in-between, quite frankly, but from a quality perspective, this is great.Read more
Well, would you look at that? This bad boy right here is designed with sweat-wicking fabric. It is almost like that is a staple of this sort of thing.
You have probably seen people wear tank tops like this. As alluded to, the armholes are literally enormous. All in all, previous users have noted that this fits very loosely as a result.
Though this mostly comprised of polyester (70 percent), there is also a nice hint of rayon (30 percent). Overall, this makes the fabric pretty darn soft.
In addition to the natural softness, the flatlock stitching was engineered to reduce the amount of chafing that persists.
You know this is about what you would expect for the color variety. Most of the available colors are lighter in tone, though, so do be aware of that.
Look, there is just not going to be much of a middle ground here. What will make or break this purchase are the exaggerated armholes. As for the quality, it is more than present.
8. ASICS READY-SET
Features a 100 percent polyester core
There is a solid selection of colors
The texturized mesh enhances the breathability
The sizing has been all over the place for previous buyers
Speaking of running shoe brands, how about ASICS? They also prove their worth in the world of workout tank tops as this one is perfect for all you men out there reading.Read more
What is able to deliver the breathability here is the texturized mesh that has been implemented. Not only does this enhance the ventilation but it will also wick away sweat.
Truth be told, the sizing has been all over the place here. For the most part, most buyers agree that it is a little too tight in the upper region and too loose in the stomach region.
As with most of the options on this list, this is made up of quick-drying polyester. For the record, this is comprised of 100 percent polyester.
The same texturized mesh that was just alluded to also enhances the overall comfort here. Overall, this is just a comfortable option.
Unlike other workout tank tops, there is not a ton of variety here. There are a few different variations of blue and a few other colors, but that is about it.
The sizing is going to scare off a lot of you here and that is fair. Everything else is top-notch, however, so if you can find the right size it will be worth it.
9. NELEUS Y-BACK
The mesh fabric provided targeted ventilation
Comes in a pack of three shirts
Designed for bodybuilders and gym fanatics
The cut at the bottom has been criticized a bit
The material feels like an old jersey which may not be for everyone
For all you muscular men out there who enjoy Y-Back tank tops, you will probably be digging this next option here. It is offered in a pack of three so that is really nice.Read more
All in all, the moisture-wicking fabrics are going to do just that, wick moisture away. But, what also helps here is the mesh fabric that has been strategically placed for ventilation.
The fitting is pretty loose but what various users have commented on is the “weird” cut at the bottom of this shirt.
It is worth noting that the main fabric composition is polyester. However, various reviewers have noted that this feels like old jersey material. So, not all of you will be appealed to this sort of thing.
Many gym fanatics and bodybuilders will appreciate the Y-Back design of this model. Of course, the feel of the fabric is not that soft so do not expect a luxurious experience.
Neleus actually sells their tank top in packs of three. This enhances the value but it is worth noting that you can’t pick the three specific colors (there are merely different color combinations available).
Even by just glancing at the photos, you can tell that this almost resembles a jersey. The Y-Back design is going to be very compelling to several of you, as well.
10. UNDER ARMOUR HEATGEAR
Features four-way stretch fabric
The elastane makes for a compression fit
Has UPF 30-plus protection
The size seems to run small
The fabric is a little rough on the skin
Compression wear in and of itself has several known benefits when it comes to exercising. So, it makes sense that a model such as this would make an appearance on this list.Read more
All sorts of features enhance the breathability of this garment. This includes the material that will wick away moisture from your skin, stretch-mesh underarm panels and mesh panel on the back of the neck.
Overall, this seems to run small and as it is a compression shirt that is not too much of a surprise. Also, it can have issues with bunching up at the bottom.
What allows this to work as compression gear is the elastane that is implemented. 16 percent of the blend is this and the other 84 percent is polyester, for the record.
Despite the fact that the four-way stretch fabric is really nice, various previous buyers have reported that Under Armour changed the feel of this fabric (it is a bit rougher).
The color variety is actually severely limited but the few options that are present are really good at least (white, black and carbon heather).
Hey, at the very least, this is an Under Armour model. In all seriousness, the compression fit will make this appealing to several of you but the rougher feel of the fabric is a bit of a bummer.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Do yourself a favor and buy a model that is breathable.
Right from the get-go, tank tops themselves are more breathable than ordinary shirts as they do not cover as much skin. However, just relying on that will be a mistake because there will be options on the market that will be more breathable than others. And, if your intentions are to use the model you buy for workouts (which is the point of this guide) then it needs to be breathable, without question. The main component to look for is a fabric that has the ability to wick away moisture. Yes, you have your generic fabrics such as polyester and cotton (which will be touched on later) but most manufacturers (such as Adidas and Nike) will design their garment with special fabrics.
These same special fabrics will be specifically tailored to wick away moisture from your skin when you begin to sweat (which is going to happen when you exercise). In addition to this, you can also look for mesh paneling on the sides or any implemented texturized mesh as this can enhance the ventilation and overall breathability. Oh, and some designs will even take this a step further and will be equipped with anti-odor technology that will prevent the growth of microbes that can cause odor.
Is size really everything? Well, in this case, that statement is pretty spot-on accurate.
Wouldn’t it be nice all brands of clothing fit you the same? Unfortunately, you know as well as anyone that this is simply not the case. You have to account for the fact that some workout shirts will naturally be sized differently than others. So, do not just assume that you can order the size you normally do as this may not always be accurate. What you also need to take into consideration is some options on the market will be designed to fit loosely while others will be designed to fit semi-tightly (compression-style). And, speaking for the latter, studies have been conducted that have shown that compression-style clothing (in general) is not quite as effective as everyone makes it out to be.
Overall, however, the best way to go about the sizing is to conduct some research on your own. Glancing through user feedback can allow you to come to a conclusion on what size you should order. For example, if nearly everyone is claiming that a particular model fits tight and is advising all buyers to order a size up then it is a safe bet to do so.
Chances are, you will see most models made of polyester and there is a reason for that.
If you took the time to go through all the above products then you probably noticed a theme throughout. This being that most models on the market will be made of polyester. It is not as if polyester is head and shoulders above every other fabric on the market but it just so happens that nearly every great workout shirt incorporates it in some way or another. Now, some designers will stick to a 100 percent polyester composition while others will opt for a polyester blend. Of course, even when you see a polyester blend, polyester itself typically is the bulk of the percentage.
Some of the other common materials you may see in such a blend are cotton or spandex (also known as elastane). Cotton is well-known for its softness and comfort while spandex is known for its stretchiness. When coupled with polyester, these types of garments can be fantastic to wear.
But, why is polyester so darn popular, anyway. Well, for starters, it sports quick-drying capabilities and this makes it suitable to be used for outdoor clothing, in general. Additionally, it is resistant to stretching, shrinking, abrasions, and wrinkling. Oh, and above all else, it is also made up of strong fibers that do not add a significant amount of weight.
In addition to everything that has been discussed, there are also other features that can play a role in this section.
In a way, everything has been leading to this section. Literally, each of the previous three sections has a direct implication on the comfort of any given garment. So, we are not going to repeat anything here. Instead, let’s offer some additional insight as there are other features that you need to look out for. Starting off, what about how the fabric composition feels? Different blends will offer different comfort and feel, clearly, but polyester itself has been known to feel like silk. Most of the time, any polyester blend is going to be pretty comfortable against your skin.
Moving forward, let’s look at two potentially crucial features. Firstly, you may want to look for models that implement four-way stretch materials. As opposed to those that are only two-way stretch, four-way stretch fabrics will stretch in both directions and this will improve your range of motion so you do not feel restricted when you exercise. Secondly, if you want unmatched comfort, then look for seamless constructions. Without the use of seams, the chances of chafing are minimized as the overall feel will be much smoother.
Though not of the utmost importance, this can still hold some relevance.
Okay, so does the color you end up selecting really matter that much? Well, truth be told, only you can answer that very question. You see, the importance of the style and the color is going to vary from person to person. But, there is one factor that you can take into consideration. There is probably a strong chance that you will be wearing your new shirt in hotter and muggier weather. Due to this, you may want to be wearing clothing that is lighter in color. As many of you probably know, darker colors will absorb a lot more heat than lighter ones. Why else do you think your parents told you to avoid black on hot sunny days?
As far as appearance, most sellers out there will offer their models in a variety of different colors. From women to men, you should be able to find color choices that are appealing to you.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Breathability is as important of a factor as there is so it is no surprise that you need to be fully aware of what it is and why it is vital. But, what makes any garment (let alone a workout tank top) breathable? Well, in this section we break down exactly what you need to look for as the last thing you want is to be miserable and drenched in sweat during your exercises.
You have probably heard the old cliché “size means everything” about a million times but it really does reign true here. Of course, it should be changed to “fit means everything” as that really is what is going on here. And, should this really be news to you considering you and everyone else knows how painfully annoying it can be to shop for garments that fit? Oh, and this is only amplified when ordering online.
If you did not know any better, you would think that all tank tops on the market are made with some sort of blend of polyester. While this is not true, when it comes to exercise and outdoor clothing, this is a fabric that tends to be utilized frequently. Of course, many brands will be made with some sort of blend of polyester and will typically incorporate one or two other popular fabrics (such as cotton and spandex).
Other Factors to Consider
The durability of a clothing item is not always one of the first things that cross our minds when shopping. However, for normal use items, this is less important. However, when shopping around for exercise gear, it is something that you should look into. These articles of clothing will most likely be washed more often, be put through more stress, and will absolutely have to deal with body odor.
One of the most important aspects of maintaining the durability of these garments is to not toss them in the hamper while they are wet (with sweat). If your shirt sits in a ball of sweat for a few days each week, eventually, you will not be able to wash out the stench. If you are not going to wash the shirt right away, you should hang it to dry before tossing it in the hamper. Afterward, when it comes time to wash, it is important to follow the directions on the label. Some of the fabrics used to make exercise garments should only be washed in water of a certain temperature and most should not be put in the dryer.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: As a woman, is it considered tacky if you can see my sports bra under this style of top?
This is a matter of personal preference. However, no one should feel judged while exercising. Sports brasSports brasSports bras are not typically revealing and there are many women who exercise in only a sports bra. There are many different styles of bras and tops and they may not always line up exactly. In our opinion, being able to see a sports bra underneath these garments is no issue at all. However, as mentioned, this is truly a decision that only the wearer can make.
q: Will polyester shrink?
One of the most annoying aspects of garments that are comprised of 100 percent of cotton is they are going to shrink. On the flip side, this is one of the advantages of polyester as it is not going to shrink under normal circumstances. As mentioned earlier, it is going to resist shrinking as it is made up of synthetic fibers. Even so, you should stick with washing your 100 percent polyester model in cold water.
q: Is moisture-wicking fabric waterproof?
If you really assess the core principle of how moisture-wicking fabric works then it would make sense to think about this question. After all, this type of fabric is taking sweat off of your body and wicking it away and it is not absorbing it. So, in theory, it would be classified as waterproof, right? Well, there are waterproof fabrics that are breathable but in a technical sense, moisture-wicking fabric (in general) is still going to take a long time to dry if you submerge it in water. So, to err on the side of caution, it is best to not classify this type of fabric is waterproof.
q: How can you stop sweating?
Even with breathable clothing on, which includes your new workout tank top, sweating can still be a persistent issue. In regard to how you stop it, you can’t but you can mask it a little bit. After all, the human body sweats when hot as it regulates its temperature. In addition to wearing breathable garments, which were already touched on, you can also apply antiperspirant deodorant before you go to bed. Due to the fact that deodorant takes some time to be effective, this can help. Of course, if you believe that your sweating is more excessive than it should be, you can also seek medical treatments.
q: Why do people wear tank tops underneath clothing?
The main reason that you will see people do this is that the base layering (which would be the tank top in this case) is going to wick sweat away from your body. So, in essence, even if you did not have an outer layer that was breathable this would at least help a bit. Then again, you should really wear clothing that is all breathable when you are working out. This is simply a solution if you feel the need to add more layers (and this can also come into play if you want to do some exercising in the winter or during colder climates).
q: Okay, so why is it called a tank top, anyway?
At the end of the day, this really does not have any relevance to the buying process but it is a fun question all the same. Sometimes, you sit back and randomly wonder why a particular product is named the way it is. Well, have you ever done that with tank tops? What is really cool is they are actually named after tank suits. These were one-piece bathing suits of the 1920s that were worn in swimming pools and tanks. There is nothing like random and useless trivia, right?