Fishing Shirts: UPF + Features Explained

What makes a fishing shirt different than all the others in your wardrobe? The options for fishing shirts seem endless, so the team at AFTCO has broken down popular features to help you pick the best fishing shirt for your next outdoor adventure.

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What Makes a Fishing Shirt a Fishing Shirt?

When looking for a shirt for fishing, you may wonder what makes a shirt good for fishing in the first place. Fishing shirts are built to maximize your time on the water. Shirts built for fishing often provide protection from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, resist stains, and dry quickly.

What UPF Rating Is Best?

Our first recommendation is that if you are looking for maximum sun protection, it’s important that you have ample arm coverage by selecting a long-sleeved fishing shirt. Second, and just as important as the first, find a shirt with the highest UPF sun protection rating available. We take a deep dive on UPF sun protection ratings in our blog post further explaining what to wear fishing with sun protection. In short, we recommend a minimum of UPF 30 for sun protection clothing. UPF 50 will provide maximum protection. The higher the UPF rating, the better, but UPF 30 is a great baseline for ample sun protection while on the water.

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Performance Fishing Shirts Vs. Vented Fishing Shirts

Comfort is in the eye of the beholder, but many anglers find that performance fishing shirts are their best option for a long day on the water. The right blend of polyester and spandex typically provides the best comfort and maneuverability while fishing. AFTCO makes a wide range of hooded fishing shirts, including some with built-in sun masks for maximum protection.

Vented fishing shirts, often called caped-back or button-down fishing shirts, are another popular option to stay cool and protected from the sun while outdoors. They’re often made from polyester or nylon fabric, and the back vent provides additional airflow. Most popular brands, including AFTCO, make these in a relaxed fit for maximum comfort and mobility. If you don’t like the feel of a shirt sticking to your body and prefer a classier/collared look, a vented fishing shirt may be for you.

Women & Youth Fishing Shirts

One of the fastest-growing demographics in the sport of fishing—and at AFTCO—is women anglers. AFTCO is proud to offer a complete lineup of women’s fishing shirts to provide proper sun protection, all-day comfort, and an optimal fit that female anglers need. But let’s not forget our youth anglers! AFTCO ensures that the entire family is covered, with kids’ fishing shirts that deliver the same UPF sun protection but in a scaled-down version to fit the future generations of anglers.

Top 5 Fishing Clothing Tips:

1. Wear a hat at the very least, but an even better option would be a UPF-rated sun mask used in conjunction with your lucky fishing hat.

2. Don't forget your hands! Fishing sun gloves provide amazing protection for the tops of your hands, a usually overlooked and neglected spot on your body. Some fishing shirts include thumb holes to better protect your hands on the fly.

3. A good pair of polarized fishing sunglasses is highly recommended to protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays.

4. We also recommend that you get yourself a good, lightweight pair of fishing pants or fishing shorts to protect your legs from exposure to the sun.

5. Fishing in extremely hot environments? Look into performance fishing shirts that provide cooling properties that will bring your core body temperature down with cooling fabrics and/or ventilation.

When Deciding on Fishing Shirts Brands, Find One That Reflects Your Values

At AFTCO, we have a commitment to conservation through our 10% Pledge to protect and conserve our resources. The sale of each AFTCO product helps to contribute to the 10% Pledge. Together with our customers and conservation partners, AFTCO works to address some of the most pressing needs facing our waters and the fish that inhabit them.


American Fishing Tackle Company (AFTCO)

American Fishing Tackle Company (AFTCO)

Family-owned and operated, AFTCO represents unparalleled quality, performance, and reliability when it counts most. AFTCO is a fishing apparel brand & tackle manufacturer that builds products to handle the harshest elements. From fishing rain gear to a fish fillet knife, at least 10 % of AFTCO’s profits are donated back to fishing conservation through their 10 % Pledge to protect and conserve.