Dickies Performance Workwear Review

Dickies Performance Workwear - Feature
PTR Review
  • Overall Rating 8.5

These clothes are actually easier to compare to some other rather expensive sports wear that I have from the likes of North Face and UnderArmor. The materials have a high-end feel and delivered as promised.

Overall Score 8.5 (out of 10)

Nearly 100 years ago, Dickies began as a bib overall company. Things have progressed incredibly and today they are one of the world’s largest manufacturers of workwear. All throughout its history they have produced clothing and products that keep up with the times, with its customer’s needs, and maintained affordable price points. Today they offer a broad spectrum of work clothing that includes service, hospitality, construction, and industrial sectors. Given the new line of Dickies Performance workwear that we had a chance to check out, we can see that Dickies is a serious contender not only in workwear but as clothing that can be worn on and off the job.

Recently, we had the opportunity to review some of the new Dickies Performance workwear. In our initial conversations with them, we told our rep that since we are located in Central Florida and it’s summertime, we needed to check out their best warm-weather gear. The feels like temps are usually in triple digits thanks in part to an abundance of humidity and – if you think sweating through that mess isn’t enough – there’s always a chance of a torrential downpour to add to the misery.

So what does this mean for work clothes?

Fast Drying and Comfortability

Well, we need something lightweight, yet tough. We need something that dries fast and stays comfortable while it’s drying. The Dickies Performance Collection seems to be designed to match those requirements.

Before we get into each of the different pieces of clothing that we reviewed, lets take a quick look at what the core of Dickies Performance workwear is. One of the first things we noticed across the different products was the section of the materials used. Synthetic fibers are in as they facilitate easy care, are more breathable, can offer higher comfort when they are wet, and dry quickly. Given the variety of clothing in the line, there are products that can fit nearly any industry or job function.

In designing the clothing, Dickies utilized what they call Comfortable 3-D construction. The design of the clothing from the beginning is to deliver maximum flexibility and freedom of movement. Many of the clothing pieces incorporate patented moisture management and odor control that won’t wash out. This gives the look and feel of cotton yet, it dries 4 times faster. Here’s a run down of the pieces I got to work (and sweat) in.

Dickies Performance 11-Inch Relaxed Fit Flat Front Short Model SR100

At a Glance:

  • Sits slightly below waist with extra room in seat and thigh
  • 4.4 oz. 67% cotton/33% nylon
  • Enhanced with performance features to keep you dry and comfortable
  • Moisture wicking technology to keep you dry & cool
  • Tunnel belt loops at side seam for secure fit
  • Convenient multi-use pocket and back welt pockets
  • UPF 50+ sun protection
  • MSRP: $24.99 – $26.99

Of all the items I looked at, these Dickies Performance 11-Inch Long Relaxed Fit, Flat Front Shorts were my favorite. My wife even noticed that I would keep going back to them. They have been washed at least a dozen times and they still look like new. You know how when you find those perfect, comfortable shoes? That’s how these shorts feel – they’re just right.

Dickies Performance 11-Inch Relaxed Fit Flat Front Short Model SR100

Maybe it’s me, but I am sure that most guys would say the same. Their flat front style looks good for your social and off-the-job functions, yet they are tough, quick drying, and moisture-wicking for on-the-job comfort. What makes them feel so good is that they have a cotton-like feel but dry faster thanks to a cotton/synthetic blend of fibers that grab the moisture and wick it away from your body.

I did like the slightly hidden bonus side pocket on the lower right-hand side for my cell phone. Also, the front pockets were deep and easy to get things in and out of. The only thing I would think to add would be some way of reinforcing the bottom outside edge of the front pockets for all the guys that carry a pocket knife with a clip.

Check out more information here.

Dickies Performance Flex 11-Inch Relaxed Fit Bi-Stretch Cargo Short Model SR104

At a Glance

  • Sits slightly below waist with extra room in seat and thigh
  • 5.6 oz. 90% polyester/10% Spandex
  • Two traditional side pockets
  • Two back pockets with flaps
  • Two cargo pockets with flaps
  • UPF 50+ sun protection
  • MSRP: $31.99 – $36.99

The Dickies Performance Flex 11-Inch Relaxed Fit Bi-Stretch Cargo Shorts are a joy to wear. They are light weight yet have all kinds of on board storage space. What takes them a step further is the 90% polyester/10% Spandex blend material they are made of. This combination gives you all kinds of flexibility. If you are climbing ladders, in and out of your truck, loading/unloading out of your trailer, or doing anything that takes some extra stretching or movement, these shorts literally move with you. You will never feel the material sticking to you or inhibiting your movement.

Dickies Performance Flex 11-Inch Relaxed Fit Bi-Stretch Cargo Short Model SR104

The material also keeps you cool as it wicks moisture away from your skin. The cargo pockets and back pockets have Velcro to keep the flaps closed. I will admit that I am not a big fan of cargo pocket shorts as I feel most make the pockets look bulky and sloppy when they are actually empty. I love how these shorts allowed plenty of space if you decided to load up the pockets but otherwise, the pockets didn’t look as sloppy and folded themselves to almost non-existent when empty. Tough yet light, these are high on my list of new favorite shorts to wear.

Check out more information here.

Dickies Performance Short Sleeve drirelease Tee Model SS500

At a Glance:

  • Jersey knit, 85% polyester/15% cotton
  • Built-in odor protection
  • Wicks away sweat to keep you dry and cool
  • Features popular chest pocket
  • Great tor layering – no static cling
  • MSRP: $20.99 – $22.99

If there is one piece of clothing that nearly everybody utilizes, it’s the tee shirt. I’ll admit that I wondered how you’re supposed to add performance and value to such a simple part of nearly everyone’s wardrobe. With the Dickies Performance Short Sleeve drirelease Tee, there are plenty of things built-in!

Dickies Performance Short Sleeve drirelease Tee Model SS500

To start, there is the Jersey knit, 85% polyester/15% cotton blend that makes up the body of the shirt. This blend feels soft and natural, but it makes it so that moisture is quickly wicked away from the skin and it dries up to 4 times faster than cotton alone. The shirt doesn’t wrinkle either. I’ve tried. I have washed it, wadded it up, and then put it on and it still looks great.

Pro (Bachelor) Tip:

To the guy that lives out of a laundry basket, you need one of these for each day of the week so that you always look like you have someone doing your laundry.

The shirt is treated with Freshguard odor neutralizer to help ensure that your BO stays under control and is guaranteed for the life of the shirt by Dickies. When the temperatures drop, this tee is great for layering since there is no static cling. If it was up to me I would call this the “Perfect Performance Tee Shirt”. It really is that good.

Check out more information here.

Dickies Performance Cooling Polo Model SS503

At a Glance:

  • Traditional fit for work and play
  • 100% Polyester Knit
  • Long-wearing, quick-drying, easy-care polo
  • Built-in UPF protection blocks UV rays
  • Extended shirt tail stays tucked in
  • MSRP: $28.99 – $30.99

The Dickies Performance Cooling Polo is my second favorite piece of clothing that we reviewed. This shirt’s material is made with hollow 100% polyester yarn that traps cooler air close to the skin. That polyester you keep hearing about is what wicks away the moisture and perspiration away from your body. The upper back and side are made of mesh panels that facilitate more ventilation.

Dickies Performance Cooling Polo Model SS503

The neckline is tagless so there is no chafing. The knit collar and three-button plackets add to the classic polo look. I found that I would wear this shirt more for going out than work. It’s the perfect shirt for meeting with clients, stopping by a job site to give directions to the crew, and then off to lunch with the wife. The whole time the shirt looks neat, wrinkle-free, and no one notices that you sweat because the shirt does such a good job of moisture management for you. I plan on picking up one of these in each color offered!

Check out more information here.

Dickies Short Sleeve Poplin Performance Shirt Model WS636

At a Glance:

  • Poplin, 100% Cotton
  • Resists wrinkles
  • Easy care stain release
  • Button-down collar
  • Box pleat at back yoke for comfort
  • 4.5 oz. Poplin, 100% Cotton
  • MSRP: $25.99 – $28.99
Dickies Short Sleeve Poplin Performance Shirt Model WS636

The Dickies Short Sleeve Poplin Performance Shirt was the most traditional out of the collection that we saw. If you are in need of a summertime button-down style work shirt, this shirt is up to the task. It’s 100% cotton and is wrinkle-resistant, though they do get in there if you don’t hang it up. The fabric is also treated to have an easy care stain release.

The shirt that arrived for review came as if it had a light starch treatment like my dry cleaners do to my more dressy button-down shirts. I found for me that the large size seems to be a little large on my frame as compared to the other size large shirts that came in. After a few washes, I would expect the shirt to shrink slightly, but it’s really held its size well. I like my clothing to be a little on the closer fitting side, but since this is a natural fiber, the extra space does help facilitate cooling. I found the shirt comfortable and easy to recommend if it fits your style.

While the button-down style isn’t necessarily my go-to, it is for Managing Editor Kenny Koehler

“Button downs require a little more care – you may have to iron them and get them sized well in case of shrinking. They also don’t wick moisture as well as 100% polyester. What I love about them is the look. As a foreman or project manager, you come across as being more professional. I wear long sleeve button downs year round and simply roll up the sleeves as things heat up.”

Kenny Koehler

Check out more information here.


For years I have worn Dickies carpenter pants and jeans. I have always found them long wearing, reasonably priced and readily available. Never have I had a problem with quality or performance – other than they were 100% cotton and could get pretty hot in the summer while holding the sweat on me. While some of my counterparts wore workwear from other companies, I always thought the best value was with Dickies. With that said, I jumped at the chance to take a look at the new Dickies Performance workwear and I was not disappointed.

Obviously, these are very different than the carpenter pants I am used to. These clothes are actually easier to compare to some other rather expensive sportswear that I have from the likes of North Face and UnderArmor. The materials have a high-end feel and delivered as promised. I used the clothing on a wide variety of projects, but I have to point out that I also wore these clothes for a few mountain bike excursions, a trip to the shooting range and for a few social functions. The versatility and easy to maintain neat look is what I really appreciate.

After sweating in these all afternoon, they still looked about as good as I had put them on when I started my day once things cooled down. In referencing the value aspect, these clothes shine, especially in comparison to the aforementioned brands that I use in my sporting adventures. I got similar performance for half the price (or less) of the other offerings. The Dickies Performance clothing line is a big win in my book.

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