Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Best Bets for Kids Polo's for Back to School

Update: All New and Updated for the 2017 Back to School Season!
This post was originally published in 2013 and has been the most popular post in the Best Bests series on the Uniform Mom site over the years.  It is updated each summer to reflect changes is retailer pricing and availability. 

So you're ready to start your back to school shopping?  Hold your horses until you've read my Strategic Plan for Back to School Shopping. Then, when you're ready to begin your comparison shopping, we've got you covered. This post is the first in a series called, Best Bets, which will feature comparisons from all of the major retailers on all your back to school basics.

When it comes to Back to School Polos, you can find them everywhere. Regular retail prices for the basic school uniform polos range from $5.97 to $22. Based on my research, your target price is to buy uniform polos for under $10.When you are out shopping and you find one you like at or below that target price, make the purchase with confidence that you've found a good sale price.

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Best Bets for those on a Budget

If your on a tight budget, check out these options all regularly priced under $10.  Look for sales prices and coupons on these items to find a great deal.

Walmart (Girls / Boys)

The George brand polo (shown to the right) is regularly priced at $5.97. You can save can even more if you take advantage of the bundle offers of 2 packs, 3 packs or 4 packs. I agree with the positive reviews of these polos. The fabric and the quality of the shirts are great. They will hold up for the entire school year. Personally, we've only tried the white polo, but reviewers report that the color items will hold their color wash after wash.

Fabric: cotton blend & treated with Scotchgard for stain protection.

Girls Sizes: XS - XXL
Girls Colors: White, Navy, Green, Burgundy, Black, Bright Green, Pink, Royal Blue, Light Blue, Red, Bright Yellow, Purple, Tangerine, Lemon

Boys Sizes: XS - XXL, Husky M - XL (fewer colors)
Boys Colors: White, Navy, Green, Burgundy, Black, Bright Green, Gray, Royal Blue, Light Blue, & Red, Bright Yellow, Purple, Tangerine, Lemon

Cat & Jack Short Sleeve Polo (Girls / Boys)

In summer 2016, Target launched the Cat and Jack brand of children's clothing which includes a school uniform collection. My criticism of the new uniform line is that the "nightfall" color is not a true navy.  It is a lighter shade of blue that may not pass inspection at schools with rigid uniform enforcement policies and procedures. If navy is the required color at your school, you might shop elsewhere. However, good news with the launch of the items in 2017. Some of the items in the uniform collection have been updated to a new color, "Navy Voyage", to better comply with required school uniform colors.

We tested the girls short sleeve polo last school year and found the quality to be comparable to the Cherokee brand polos that they replaced.  They added additional colors this season.  The polos are competitively priced at $7, but are have been on sale for as low as $4.

Fabric: 100% piqued cotton
Girls Sizes: XS - XXL
Colors: White, Navy, Green, Light Blue, & Red 
Boys Sizes: XS - XXL
Colors: White, Black, Red, Navy, Light Blue, Yellow, Blue, Green, Burgundy (boys only), Pink (girls only), Gold (girls only), Purple (girls only)

This unisex pique polo is offered in 16 colors and is priced at $9.99.  In the past, I've seen them feature these on sale for as low as $4.99.

Fabric: 60% cotton/ 40% Polyester.
Sizes: Kids 4-16, Toddler, Juniors, & Mens
Colors: White, Black, Red, Navy, Light Blue, Yellow, Royal Blue, Green, Burgundy, Pink, Gold, Purple, Jade, Gray, Orange, & Kelly Green.

Old Navy (Girls / Boys)

We've tried this brand of polo and found the quality comparable to others featured here. The polo is regularly priced at $9.94. Look for them to be featured on sale as low as $6.

Girls Sizes: XS - XXL, L - XXL Plus
Girls Colors: White, Navy, Hunter Green, Burgundy, Black, Pink, Royal Blue, Light Blue, Red, Purple, and Gray. Yellow, Bright Green and Bright Pink are no longer offered.
Boys Sizes: XS - XXL, L - XXL Husky
Boys Colors: White, Navy, Black, Purple, Hunter Green, Burgundy, Royal Blue, Light Blue, Red, Gold, Yellow (long sleeve only), Orange. Brown is no longer offered.

Best Bets for Color Selection

If the uniform dress code at your school allows for a variety in colors, there are a few retailers that carry a wide selection of color choices to brighten your wardrobe. The Best on a Budget option of the Walmart George Polos shown above offers 14 color options.  Below are some additional options:
French Toast Unisex Pique Polo
French Toast Unisex Pique Polo

French Toast Unisex Short Sleeve Pique Polo (featured right) 

This is a great brand for school uniform items.  Fair prices and good quality.  Available in 17 colors regularly priced at $10.98, and look for them to be featured on sale.

Sizes: Toddler, Kids 4-20, Husky 10-20, &Teen
Fabric: Cotton Polyester Blend
Colors: Black, Light Blue, Burgundy, Navy, Royal Blue, Teal, Purple, Green, Kelly Green, Gray, Pink, Yellow, Orange  Red, and White.

This polo retails for $18.00.  You can add a monogram or a school logo. You can read our full review of the Lands End interlock polo and we find these to be the softest of all the brands we've tried.  The quality is outstanding.

Sizes: Little Kids 4 -7, Big Kids 7 - 20 and Adult
Fabric: 100% cotton interlock
Colors: Cobalt, Black, Light Blue, Burgundy, Navy, Purple, Green, Teal, Gold, Gray, Pink, Yellow, Orange  Red, and White.

Girls' Active Polo - Red
Lands' End Active Polo

Best Bets in Active Polos

Lands' End Active Polo (Girls / Boys)

This polo retails for $30 and it is description states that it "draws moisture away from the skin for quick-drying comfort. The fabric also blocks out harmful UV rays and has an antimicrobial finish to help fight odors."

Boys Sizes: 8-20; Little Boy Sizes 4 - 7
Girls Sizes: 7-16; Little Girl Sizes: 4-7
Fabric: 100% Polyester
Colors: Red, Black, Classic Navy, and White

French Toast Active/Sport Polo (Girls / Boys)

This cheerfully priced option is only $11.98 for the girls Active Polo and $10.98 for the boys Sport Polo.

Boys and Girls Sizes: 4 - 16
Fabric: 100% Polyester Interlock
Colors: White, Light Blue, Navy, and Red (boys only)


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  9. Do you have a best bet for girl's long sleeve polos? I need to order for the fall/winter.

  10. Scotchguard has forever chemicals, as do most stain resistant sprays. I believe 3M was sued into stopping production - just fyi for folks who are concerned about PFOA/PFAS and the like (same with Teflon, etc.)