What Are Close-Out T-Shirts?

Every bargain hunter has seen the phrase “close-out” a time or two. We all know that it is a sign that something is being sold at less than its usual price, but most of us don’t know what it actually means. You may not have even considered that it has its own meaning and isn’t simply synonymous with words like “sale,” “special” and “discount.”

red tags with sale lettering

When you’re in the market for inexpensive t-shirts, close-outs can be a dream come true. Before you take the plunge, though, it’s important to understand exactly what the phrase means. So, what are close-out t-shirts? Keep reading to find out!

Demystifying Close-Outs

When the companies that manufacture t-shirts decide to stop producing and offering garments in a certain color or style, there are typically a lot of products left over. Since the company no longer technically offers the item, it cannot be sold as a current item. In order to keep old products from taking up space in warehouses and factories, the companies look for buyers who are willing to purchase them in large quantities at extremely low prices. This practice is known as offering factory close-outs. The manufacturer essentially “closes out” the product line by selling it at a steep discount.

Close-Outs Aren’t Factory Seconds

One mistake that many people make is assuming that close-out products do not have the same quality as first-run merchandise. This is not true. If a t-shirt does meet the manufacturer’s quality standards, it is sold as irregular or as a factory second or reject. The term “close-out” does not refer to quality. Close-out shirts are first-quality products that are being sold at steep discounts to make way for new styles, colors, etc.

closeup stack of folded t shirts

Close-outs come from all of the leading brands. Alstyle, Gildan, Anvil, Fruit of the Loom and countless other reputable companies sell off their old merchandise at discount prices so they can constantly create new products for their customers.

Why Buy Close-Outs?

Buying close-out clothing from a wholesaler like The Adair Group is an excellent way to save money. Whether you are a single parent looking to dress your kids without breaking the bank, you’re looking for affordable blank shirts to customize for your employees or you are thinking about starting a business selling custom t-shirts, buying close-outs enables you to get the shirts you need at a price you can afford.

When you buy close-outs, you also don’t have to be concerned about quality. Irregulars and factory seconds tend to have small imperfections that could be problematic if you were to try to resell them. With close-out shirts, however, you can rest assured knowing that you are purchasing top-quality products and the most affordable prices possible.

Shopping for close-out shirts is good for the planet, too. If consumers don’t buy them from wholesalers, then wholesalers will not purchase them from manufacturers. And if manufacturers are unable to sell off their old products, they sometimes end up sending them to landfills. After all, they have to go somewhere even if no one is willing to buy them. Buying close-out clothing keeps discontinued colors and styles out of landfills, which can have a positive impact on the environment.

colorful arrangement of folded t shirts


Close-out t-shirts are great for everyone. They allow businesses to move old merchandise, make money and start work on new product lines. They also enable wholesalers, like The Adair Group, to get great deals on products that they can sell to their own customers for a profit. Consumers are able to purchase the clothing they need at a fraction of the regular retail price–and those great deals help keep unwanted clothing out of landfills.

At The Adair Group, we source our close-out t-shirts directly from the manufacturer rather than working with a third party. This allows us to secure the best possible deals while ensuring that the close-outs we buy are of the highest quality.

If you are looking for a great deal on tees, close-outs are a great option. Most are just as stylish as the pieces that are currently being produced by manufacturers, but they cost significantly less. Whether you are trying to outfit your family or you’re looking for affordable shirts to start a business, close-out tees are a great investment!

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