Johnnie-O Golf Polo Review: West Coast Casual at Its Finest
This is a post from Breaking Eighty contributor Blake Doll.
The first time I saw a Johnnie-O golf polo was at a store in Harbor Springs, MI.
I saw the little dude holding a surfboard on the corner of the shirt, which looked cool, but then it hit me: this couldn’t be a golf shirt…right??
I didn’t think much of it until a few months later when I was at a pro shop at a course in Hawaii. In the shop stocked with Nike, Adidas, RLX, Under Armour, Travis Mathew, and other brands, was this section of softer looking shirts that had the same surfer logo.
I was still a little confused, but the shirts looked sweet, so I decided to pick a couple up and dig in a little bit more.
The Johnnie-O brand clearly has a west coast, more casual feel to them. In fact, the owner prides himself on creating the “West Coast Prep” look – and it definitely shows.
Unlike many other golf brands these days, Johnnie-O doesn’t use neon colors or flashy prints. Instead they catch the eye with their classic striped or solid color looks, and by utilizing a variety of softer yet colorful fabrics.
And it was that same softness that I was first impressed with that has become one of their hallmarks.
After picking up a couple of their shirts I’ve played quite a few rounds in them now and feel like I can give a proper review.
Johnnie-O Golf Polos
Johnnie-O prides themselves on these cotton polos being able to have some stretch in them, which they definitely do. I’ve played in other cotton golf polos that are restrictive, but their fabric blend has more flexibility and stretch to it than any other cotton golf shirt I’ve worn before.
Their polos generally fit pretty well. They’re loose on the front and back, which I like, and it allows for some freedom and air to the body. This is perfect unless you’re trying to rock a six pack (which less face it, is not most of us).
One minor issue is the shirt is a little tight in the underarm areas and can tend to hug the side of the body. Not enough to restrict the swing, but it was something I noticed at times.
Why I Chose Johnnie-O Cotton Over Performance Shirts
My key factor for deciding whether or not you should rock a Johnnie-O during golf is preference. This polo is either hit or miss, based on what kind of shirts you like.
If you’re one for being slightly more comfortable on the course while maintaining a formal look, then this shirt is a great choice for you. If you like this style, but prefer more of an east coast look, then check out Holderness and Bourne.
Also check out Redvanly for a golf company with a very similar style to Johnnie-O.
The Johnnie-O shirts I own and am reviewing are all cotton, though they do make some with a polyester type blend labeled “Performance Polo.”
A cotton shirt may not be what you want on the course during a hot and sweaty day, so think about the type of conditions you’re most likely to play in before picking up a cotton shirt.
One of the reasons I went with cotton over those polyester blend shirts, is because I feel like I can’t wear the latter out beyond the golf course. These Johnnie-O cotton polos I also wear out to dinner or casually out to a bar and feel like I’m perfectly dressed for a night out with friends.
You do trade some protection from sweat and performance compared to other more tech oriented golf companies, however you gain a lot in comfort and style. You’ll get more use out of these beyond the golf course.
Final Impressions of Johnnie-O Golf Polo
Overall, I dig their polos (even if the surfer throws me off the fact they make golf shirts). They’re very high quality for a cotton golf shirt, and you’ll be a fan if you like cotton polos with a casual west coast vibe.
They’re on par with other shirts we’ve reviewed coming in between $75-85 (depending on the style), are comfortable, hold up well on the course, and look great after the round.
- Unique, Casual Style
- Super Soft
- Great fit
- Branding a little confusing
- Ours was a little tight in the arms