I bought a bunch of ‘work shirts’ from Target; this $18 blouse is my favorite

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The prospect of returning to the office and having to see people IRL again forced me to take a long, hard look at my closet. Sweatshirts and tees? I have plenty of those. Dressier tops that look like I put a little effort in? Not so much.

I didn’t have a ton to spend on new “work shirts,” so I decided to see what Target had to offer. Recently, I hit the jackpot at the retailer with these jeans and this top, so I was feeling pretty optimistic. I ordered five different tops in a few different colors and patterns and hoped for the best.

The verdict? I wasn’t thrilled with two of the options, and I was only “meh” about two of the others. But this Universal Thread Women’s Short Sleeve Tie-Front Button-Down Blouse? I’m in love! I originally ordered it in the Navy Bird and Red Floral patterns but went back for the Brown Floral after I tried it on at home.

Universal Thread Women’s Short Sleeve Tie-Front Button-Down Blouse, $18

Credit: Target

Universal Thread Women’s Short Sleeve Tie-Front Button-Down Blouse, $18

Credit: Target

Universal Thread Women’s Short Sleeve Tie-Front Button-Down Blouse, $18

Though this top is described as a “tie-front,” as you can see from the photo you can wear it as a regular button-down shirt. That’s how I’ve styled it, and it looks great with work pants and jeans alike. If you want to feel extra professional, it looks really cute when you layer a blazer over it, too.

Credit: Jeanine Edwards

The reviews for this top are a bit mixed, but don’t let that dissuade you. There are lots of shoppers like me who love the blouse and think it’s perfect for summer. “I like this shirt and came back to get another color!” one shopper wrote in their review.

Another shopper commented, “Great summer button up!”

There are, however, some shoppers who’ve had problems with the shirt shrinking after laundering. My personal experience is that if you don’t put the blouse in the dryer, there’s no shrinkage. I’ve washed mine in the washing machine, then hung it to air dry and it still fits just like it did when I first purchased it.

At just $18, I’m pretty stoked about this Universal Thread blouse. The prints are so pretty, the fit is incredibly flattering, and most importantly, I feel put together again for work.

If you liked this story, check out these designer deals under $100 at Nordstrom Rack.

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