The white t-shirt from The Bear - How to nail the look

SANVT Journal

Across the 2023 retrospectives of the year’s best shows, one TV show stands tall: The Bear. More than any other series, major publications, from The Guardian to Timeout, have hailed season 2 as 2023’s best TV - following the acclaimed first season in 2022.

As a sustainable fashion brand, SANVT isn’t here to review the show or reveal whether it lives up to the hype. Rather, we’re here to answer a pertinent sartorial question. How do you nail the basic white tee that Jeremy Allen White wears while acting as the show’s talented but tormented head chef?

Photo: Matt Dinerstein/FX

What’s The Bear all about?

First things first, a little about the series. Because, while the hype is everywhere, you’ll need a Disney+ subscription to see the episodes. 

So here’s a quick spoiler-free primer. The Bear follows chef Carmy (Jeremy Allen White) and his mission to transform his family’s beef sandwich shop in Chicago into a Michelin-star worthy restaurant. He’s backed by a hodgepodge of conflicted humans that he must mould into a brilliant team. The show’s acclaim stems from the salvation-seeking human drama that unfolds along the way, combined with the chaos in the kitchen. Not to mention the food, which makes its own transformative journey from honest beef sandwiches to fancy fine dining.

At its heart, despite all the swearing (and there’s plenty), it’s a heartwarming show with a healthy dollop of redemption for everyone involved. There are some fine performances from guest stars in season 2, too - including memorable turns by Jamie Lee Curtis, Olivia Coleman, and Will Poulter (below). It all adds to the depth of the show’s impressive seasoning.

Why is this basic white t-shirt worth my attention?

Back to the tee. It went viral because of the hype around the series. We guess it took the show’s credibility to remind everyone how great a perfect white tee can look. Maybe the excellent indie soundtrack, from Wilco to The Psychedelic Furs, helped a little too.

Just take a look at the Google search trend below. That jump-up in 2023 coincides with The Bear’s second season.

How do I nail the basic white t-shirt from The Bear?

Thanks to The Bear (and Jeremy Allen White) for reinvigorating the timeless style of the white tee, as well as critically-acclaimed television. If you’d like to nail the look - then here are some top tips:

  • 1) You’ll need a plain white tee: Let’s start with the basics. A plain white t-shirt is mandatory. No prints; no other colours. No off-white either. Just a simple white tee. 

  • 2) Fit is critical: This t-shirt has gone stratospheric because it fits the character’s physique so perfectly. It looks almost like a second skin. To get the same kind of look you’ll need a t-shirt that has been designed to fit you well. 

  • 3) High-quality, heavyweight fabric: The tee is not a lightweight tee with an airy drape and is rather a heavyweight t-shirt. This lends a sturdier, workmanlike look. For the same effect, you’ll need a t-shirt with a higher GSM. The tee is also made from high-quality cotton so you’ll also need a tee made from premium fabric. The Bear doesn’t do fast food - or fast fashion, for that matter.

  • 4) Sustainability (in food and fashion): Just like the fanciest Copenhagen restaurants are emphasising sustainability, so is fashion. These days, sustainability should be an integral part of the clothes that you wear - not an optional side. So stick to the first three points, and bake in sustainability, and you’ll have an even more perfect white t-shirt.

Bear in mind that a white tee isn’t technically the best item to wear while cooking, though. Although each to their own - especially if you do want to take the look literally.

Where to buy this kind of perfect white tee?

If you’re looking for the exact t-shirt that was worn in The Bear, then you’re in luck. Fashion sleuths from The Strategist have tracked it down - with a little help from menswear Reddit. Turns out it’s (mainly) a heavyweight t-shirt from German sustainable basics brand Merz B Schwanen. 

Nevertheless, at SANVT we’re essentially offering the same thing. So if you’re looking for an alternative (with a bit more of a boost to sustainability, we might add) then why not try out our heavyweight t-shirt, in plain white.

Heavyweight T-Shirt from SANVT in White. 236 GSM, 100% organic cotton. 

It ticks all of the boxes we mentioned earlier. 

    • Colour: it’s available in plain white.

    • Fit: customizable length and width, to fit all body shapes perfectly.

    • Fabric: high-quality ELS jersey cotton, in a heavyweight 235 GSM.

    • Sustainability: made in the EU from 100% organic cotton, with climate-neutral production.

You’re welcome, chef!