Fabric weight, GSM etc.: A Guide to finding the perfect T-Shirt weight

Cosima Haas

Next to the material and production, the fabric weight of a t-shirt plays an important role in choosing the right one. Because depending on the occasion or season, reaching for a t-shirt with the wrong fabric weight can be fatal. Together with SANVT brand ambassadors, we present three of our t-shirts with different fabric weights, clarify the term fabric density and GSM and help you choose the right t-shirt for your needs.

What is fabric weight and GSM all about?

The term GSM stands for "EN = Gram per square meter" (g/m²). Accordingly, this measurement provides information about the weight as well as the density of the material per square meter. The higher the GSM value, the heavier or denser the fabric and the garment. But beware: different fibers have different weights, even if they have the same fabric density. For example, cotton is heavier than Lyocell. Accordingly, the weight cannot be used as the sole criterion for the quality of a garment. Accordingly, a higher GSM value does not stand for a quality characteristic. Production, weaving technique and material must also be considered and are decisive in determining quality.

The Lightweight T-shirt: Perfect for hot summer days or free time

Brief Facts:

  • GSM: 160 g/m²
  • Season: Summer or midsummer
  • Occasion: Vacation; Free-time
  • Material: Premium cotton & Lyocell

Another selection criterion for fabric density: the season and occasion you want to wear the garment. Therefore, it seems pretty obvious that in summer you should rather reach for t-shirts that have a low GSM value. The Lightweight T-shirt from SANVT has a fabric weight of 160 g/m². It is made of a noble blend of premium cotton and the biodegradable fabric Lyocell. This fabric combination ensures that moisture can be better absorbed. Look forward to always feeling cool and comfortable in the summer and say goodbye to sweat stains! 

The all-rounder for always and everywhere: the Perfect (or medium-weight) T-shirt

SANVT Brand Ambassador Jannik Madsen (@jannik_madsen) wears the Perfect T-Shirt in the color Off-White.

Brief facts:

  • GSM: 180 g/m²
  • Season: All year round
  • Occasion: Vacation; Free-time; Office
  • Material: 100% ELS cotton

Whether for everyday wear or for after-work, the Perfect T-Shirt is a true all-rounder and can be styled either smart or casual. Thanks to the high-quality ELS cotton, the Perfect T-Shirt is 45% more robust against external influences than other types of cotton. This ensures sustainable longevity. In addition to high durability and quality, the Perfect T-Shirt is at the same time still fabulously soft and thus one of our bestsellers. With a fabric weight of 180 g/m², the T-shirt is medium-weight, non-transparent, yet breathable and can thus make its appearance throughout the year. 

Robust and breathable: the Heavyweight T-shirt


Influencer Sonny (@by.sonny) in the Heavyweight T-Shirt in the color Off-White.

Brief facts:

  • GSM: 180 g/m²
  • Season: Autumn and winter
  • Occasion: Free-time; office or as a base layer
  • Material: 100% organic cotton

Last but not least: our heaviest t-shirt, which is made of 100% organic cotton, with a GSM of 235 g/m². Now you might think: this t-shirt can definitely only be worn in fall or winter due to its heaviness. But not true. Our heavier T-shirt is handmade with our specially developed knitting structure and is therefore breathable and thermoregulating despite its weight. The high GSM promises high durability and longevity. Whether as a base layer in cooler seasons or in the summer for a chic occasion in the evening - with the Heavy T-Shirt you have many options.

Photo credits: Chris Fraas (@chrisfraas); Sonny (@by.sonny); Janik Madsen (@jannik_madsen)