Men’s lightweight cardigans don’t seem to get the love they deserve. This often-overlooked sweater makes a perfect choice for brisk summer evenings or as a layer in cooler months, but it doesn’t tend to be a lot of men’s first choice when choosing an outfit.
It is too bad that they aren’t more popular because lightweight styles are easy to slip on under a jacket or over a shirt and can be worn in almost any situation. Since they are so thin, you don’t add bulk to your look and keep things looking tidy and put together.
Thin cardigans generally fall into two types: cotton-based designs or fine knit wool styles like merino or cashmere.
The sweaters that are cotton-based will give you coverage and a bit of warmth, but depending on where you live, most cotton styles aren’t warm enough for winter wear.
While those that are merino or cashmere-based will have excellent insulating properties, so they will keep you warm even in pretty cool temperatures.
In this post, we have found both types of sweaters: those that are thin with coverage and those that are thin and warm. Read on to see a few of the best men’s lightweight cardigans.
Lands’ End Supima Cotton Cardigan
The Lands’ End Supima cotton cardigan is an excellent option to start our list. It is made from lightweight, soft, 100% Supima® cotton that has been combed for smoothness and pill resistance.
This is a thin yet sturdy silky feeling design, so it won’t keep you super warm, but reviewers love that it is good quality, and is versatile enough to be worn day to day or as a business casual sweater. It is also machine washable, so it is pretty low maintenance.
Men tend to use this sweater in warm weather when it can be a little bit brisk, like at the beginning of fall or late spring.
Available from Lands’ End
Amazon Essentials Men’s Standard Cotton Cardigan
Amazon Essentials Men’s Standard Cardigan is a 100% cotton design with almost 2000 five-star reviews. People love the quality and price of this design and appreciate how comfy and versatile it is. It is also said to be good for everyday use since the knit isn’t too heavy and feels soft against the skin.
Most men find the cut to be comfortable, and despite it being cotton, it can work well as a layer in colder temperatures under a heavier coat.
If you are on a budget and are looking for a light to medium weight style, this comfy, layer-friendly cardigan may be a good choice for you.
Available from Amazon
Polo Ralph Lauren Cotton V-Neck Cardigan
Polo Ralph Lauren’s Cotton V-Neck Cardigan is a soft, lightweight layer with a contemporary stylish cut. It has five-button down the front and the signature embroidered RL pony on the left chest. You can machine wash it, and if you are a fan of the polo brand, it is great for choice for everyday wear.
Men love the cut, fit, and say the material is lightweight but warm. It can work well for spring or autumn, or winter if you live in a warmer climate.
Available from Ralph Lauren
ASOS Design Cotton Cardigan
This cardi by ASOS Design is another simple option that would make a stylish addition to any man’s wardrobe.
The fit is described as regular fit, and the knit is lightweight, with the cotton being made ethically and sustainably. It has a button placket and ribbed trim.
This sweater is perfect for those cold days at the office, where they keep the temps a little too cool.
Available from ASOS
Uniqlo Linen Blended Cardigans
Uniqlo has two lightweight designs that may be worth looking at depending on what you are looking for. First up is their Linen Blended Cardigan that is described as ‘lightweight, and breezy.’
Linen is traditionally a nice fabric for warmer months because it is very breathable, although it often isn’t the softest fabric. The material on this cardi is described as a “smooth linen blend”.
Reviewers find it to be very thin, light and say it doesn’t provide any warmth. There are some mixed reviews on this style, so if you are interested, try it on in-store if you can before purchasing.
Available from Uniqlo
Uniqlo Men Extra Fine Merino V-neck Long-sleeve Cardigan
The other style to check out is the Uniqlo Men Extra Fine Merino V-neck Long-sleeve Cardigan.
This sweater will provide a nice level of warmth from the 100% ultra-fine merino wool so it can be worn in colder weather.
It is a favorite for office wear due to the soft, thin feeling and excellent color selection. The other great feature is that it can be machine washed.
Available from Uniqlo
Bonobos Cotton Cardigan
Bonobos have cotton cardigans that come in a few unique colors. This looks like it is thicker than other cotton styles on this list, but it is described as a soft and lightweight yarn.
It could make a great layer for a cooler summer night or an overly air-conditioned casual office. This sweater should be wearable year-round but may not be the best option for frigid weather if you are looking for a sweater that will be insulating.
Available from Bonobos
Textured Zip-Front Cotton & Cashmere Cardigan
This post is a little v-neck heavy, but if you are looking for a cardi with a bit of a different style that is still lightweight, a great one to check out is the Textured Zip Front Cotton & Cashmere design that you can find at Nordstrom.
It is mostly cotton (95%) with only a touch of cashmere (5%), so it won’t be super warm but should be airy and breathable. It also has a very slight waffle knit that adds a subtle texture. The key feature of this design is the two-way front-zip closure that gives it a modern look that is super stylish.
Available from Nordstrom
The Men’s Store at Bloomingdale’s Merino Wool Cardigan
The Men’s Store at Bloomingdale’s Merino Wool Cardigan is a slightly looser fit than some other styles on this list.
It is a classic fit, although reviews mention that it runs small, so if you like this style, you may have to size up. Reviewers also describe this as a nice lightweight sweater that looks great and has a good fit.
Available from Bloomingdale’s
Suitsupply Washable Merino Wool Cardigan
The Suitsupply Washable Merino Wool Cardigan is your standard lightweight design that works well as a thin layering piece.
Reviews say this lightweight but a warm sweater. The neckline is an unusual polo-style collared neck which gives this sweater a nice twist.
Available from Nordstrom
Tie Bar- Perfect Tipped Merino Wool Cardigan Heather Grey Sweater
This Perfect Tipped Merino Wool Cardigan Heather Grey Sweater from Tie Bar is a 100% merino wool style with a little touch of contrasting color down the front and on the sleeves.
It is lightweight and has a banded bottom to give it a nice fitted look. The only downside to this design is that it is dry-clean only.
Available from Tie Bar
Looking for more lightweight layers? See our post on The Best Lightweight Sweaters for Men
Latest posts by Molly London (see all)