An Overview of the New Brooks Brothers Oxford

Brooks Brothers OCBD Overview 2023

This week we have a guest post from OCBD blog reader and trad, ivy, prep enthusiast M.J. Lacayo (IG profile).

The quintessential shirt for ivy and prep enthusiasts, many mourned the loss of the Brooks
Brothers rendition made popular during the early 2000s. The declaration of bankruptcy during
the global pandemic neutered much of the ability for Brooks Brothers to recover, and the oxford
shirt was deemed to be lost, leaving loyal customers with non-iron, alpha sized imitations.

However, the OCBD has made a reappearance. Manufactured in the United States, the classic, all
cotton, and must iron shirt has finally returned (It even has a front pocket, finally!). I aim to
display the differences between this era, the previous one, and that of long ago.

At a glance, there are some minor changes to this new version of OCBD. It lacks a locker loop,
rear collar button, and gussets. However, the collar and cuff portions of the shirt are different. To
the hand they feel a little thicker, and lightly lined. If any of these are a deal breaker, congrats,
you saved a hefty $198. It doesn’t look like they will be on sale anytime soon, and now fall
under Brooks Brothers’ “new” sizing system; Slim (Milano) Regular (Regent), and Traditional

No gusset on the 2023 OCBD

The Old New Vs the New New

The old OCBD rendition (debuted around 2016 I believe) was the staple shirt for the brand,
many loved the traditional styling with all the precise details. It retailed for $140 and did go on
sale often. As a previous article noted, you can still find some of the older OCBD’s on ebay with
minor milling flaws and for a great price. I would recommend shopping there until that well runs
dry before going for the newer OCBD offering. This version had a nice, soft hand, and an
unlined collar and cuffs. It was durable for sure, and it won many hearts due to its more vintage
design and construction.

The new OCBD does feel heftier and sturdier as a whole. As previously stated, the collar and
cuffs feel lined, but nothing too disturbing. It certainly does not feel like the collars from their
non-iron OCBDs of long ago, so that’s a plus. When thrifting, I look for the 2016 version in a
Madison fit and got the 2023 version in a traditional. The differences in fit are minor to say the
least, but the new traditional fit is a tiny bit wider and longer than the Madison fit.

2016 Brooks Brothers OCBD
2023 Brooks Brothers OCBD

The Old Old Vs the New New

Confused yet? The Old Old OCBD I refer to dates back to the ones sold during the 90s, and has
the same, if not identical features of the new OCBD (the 90s version lacks MOP buttons). They
have the exact same proportions too. It seems like the designers at Brooks Brothers skipped the
early 2000s version and opted to replicate the 90s style and fit.

One minor thing to note, the new OCBD has the care tag inside the side seam rather than at the
bottom or on the size tag itself as seen on the 90s version. I know, it’s a minor distinction, but I
like the placket design more since it doesn’t get in the way of having a nicely tucked shirt. No
matter, a seam ripper and some thread will do the trick and I’ll remove it myself. As with any
shirt, I recommend a cold wash and dry hang for these 100% cotton shirts, as throwing it in the
dryer will surely shrink it.

Circa 1990s OCBD
Similar widths, the OCBD is pretty long!

To those looking to relive the good ol’ days of the Brooks Brothers OCBD, you can’t go wrong
with this one. However, I would dare say to look at the secondhand market first before paying
such a heavy asking price for the new one. They currently come in solid colors like white, blue,
pink, and striped in blue and red. If they threw out some more colors in solids and stripes, they
would be setting a strong foundation for success. For the meanwhile, however, I guess we’ll have
to deal with the pastels.

oxford cloth button down
Jerrod Swanton is a simple man interested in simple, classic, and traditional style.

10 Comments on "An Overview of the New Brooks Brothers Oxford"

  1. Thomas E. Friedman says:

    This spring,I bought a BB Oxford cloth popover. I thought the collar roll was a bit different from another I had bought a few years before. But why put up with that when you can get exactly what you want from Proper Cloth?

    • oxford cloth button down says:

      Thomas, you hit the nail on the head of the upside of customs shirts. Getting what you want, when you want it.

  2. Dick says:

    Thank you for this write-up. I appreciate the attention to detail, particularly since I’ve been curious about these.

    Something else that is worth considering is the source of the cotton. The 2023-era shirts no longer explicitly advertise themselves as being made with Supima cotton. I take this to mean that they are no longer using it. This seems rather unfortunate given that Brooks has also, once again, bumped up the price to nearly $200, which of course also follows the price bump from under $100 to $140 in 2016. That alone is a deal-breaker for me.

    Incidentally, the label on the new shirts legitimately looks like a Brooks Brothers knockoff to me, though that is obviously not the case and only a superficial complaint. But would it kill them to put a little more effort into it? It just looks cheap.

    • MJ.Lacayo says:

      Thank you Dick,

      You are correct, the newer shirts (and some dress shirts Ive seen in the backrooms) have “Cotton Stretch” or “100% Cotton” found on the tags. Your suspicions are well founded and, knowing the new owners of the brand, is probably true to an extent.

      The $198 price tag is a hard pill to swallow, which is why I would go to other stores and Ebay sellers first before resorting to this option. Even if I were to spend upwards of $200, I’d look at J.Press first. Being a sales associate gave me the opportunity to get this at a better price.

      The tag does look like its lacking soul, but, asking for a better looking tag would probably be too much to ask for.. like all the other things we want from BB but haven’t received.

  3. Nevada says:

    I really appreciate the thorough rundown of details on the new US-made Brooks Brothers OCBD. Looks like a terrific shirt, though equivalent versions are now available elsewhere at a somewhat lower price. (Mercer, Press, etc.)
    For my budget, the alpha-sized Vietnam-made version is actually a terrific shirt. Of course I’d rather buy something made domestically, but when a sale is on, these are very hard for me to pass up: The Large happens to fit me as perfectly as a neck/sleeve-measured size would, and while they’re not made to the high standard of those reviewed here, and the cotton isn’t Supima, these are nonetheless unbeatable OCBDs for the price and merit serious consideration for those on more of a budget. Just my two cents.

    • oxford cloth button down says:

      Nevada, those non-usa ocbds are a good price when on sale. They weren’t on my radar. That’s great that the alpha shirts fit you so well. Also Press is still cheaper than BB, but Mercer has moved their OCBD prices up to $225.

      • Nevada says:

        My goodness, $225 is a bit of a price jump for those Mercer shirts. Still, from all I’ve heard, they’re doubtless worth every penny. But it makes the near-$200 offerings from Brooks seem thriftier choice. Yes, I’m fortunate that I could be a size model for the Vietnam-made version. I’m quite happy with them.

    • JJ says:

      I would be interested in a more detailed review of the non-USA must iron OCBDs. The reviews on the BB site have not been great. I think offering a solid OCBD made outside the US is a good move for the brand. I really enjoyed the USA made old/new OCBD, but not everyone can afford it…..not to mention the serious price increase on the new/new shirt.

  4. Lawrence Jennings says:

    Outrageous prices on all fronts. They could easily be sold for $100 and still be profitable to the maker.

  5. JDV says:


    It is wonderful to see you posting again. And many congratulations on your life additions. I’ve lost count of the “new” Brooks OCBDs since they closed the Garland factory during the pandemic and went into bankruptcy—and I am delighted to see that the factory is making them again. But one note, the fit they now call Traditional, in reality, the Madison fit, as you point out, is not the Traditional fit of old. Men who like a full fit button-down oxford are still forced to look elsewhere, and forget trying to explain that to any current BB employee. I had settled on Michael-Spencer until Spencer’s very sad passing in 2021. Yes, his customer service was fabulous, above any. He once remade an entire shirt for me just b/c I asked for a different collar to be applied. Ebay was helpful for a while, but Traditional fit Garland-made, must-iron shirts are in very short supply there now. Again, very glad that you are posting again.


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