Fall 2023 is bringing us all the hottest trends, and there's one that you won't want to miss out on: keyhole shirts! Keyhole shirts come in many variations, with cutouts typically fashioned around the collarbone and cleavage area. This sensual design draws the eye to the collarbone and oftentimes features a high neck for contrast. Cutouts are a fun way to show some skin (we love seeing them in jeans with hip cutouts too!) while still rocking a classy outfit.
As you can imagine, keyhole necklines are not ancient history. Women from the 1800s were not walking around with halter necklines and keyhole cutouts. Keyhole cutout shirts are fairly modern. They started out in the 90s scene when women began wearing more daring clothing and necklines. Today, keyhole shirts don’t just refer to the circular keyhole cutout on halter tops. This season one of the most popular keyhole shirts doesn’t have a ‘keyhole’ cutout, but a straight rectangle or half moon cutout across the collarbone/cleavage area. Even though they show more skin than a traditional round keyhole cutout, they generally don’t dip too low into the cleavage area.
Now that we’ve convinced you about keyholes’ chicness and trendiness, care to try one on yourself? If so, stick with us! We’ve got a list of our favorites up ahead. Plus, learn more about one of fall’s hottest trends, below.
What are Keyhole Shirts and Why Are They Trending?
Since the fall season of 2023 began, women have been obsessing over the latest trend - keyhole shirts. These stylish tops feature a small, circular cutout at the neckline, providing just enough peekaboo allure to elevate any look. Now, circular cutouts aren’t the only type of keyhole out there. As we mentioned earlier, we’re seeing a lot more half-moon cutout shirts by the collarbone area.
We can’t tell you exactly why keyhole shirts are trending, but we can confirm that retailers are taking a cue from celebrity street style and runway looks. Keyhole shirts aren’t a new trend, they’ve just formed new iterations year after year.
How to Wear a Keyhole Shirt
Each type of keyhole has a different type of cutout (circular or half moon are the most popular ones). No matter the type of keyhole shirt you choose, there are a few main characteristics that generally make up a keyhole shirt.
Long sleeves or thick straps for sleeveless tank tops
Fitted bodice (unless it’s a graphic tee, then it’s generally loose)
Thick, structured material
With these qualities in mind, you can envision how to style your keyhole shirt outfit. Any denim goes in our opinion — wide-leg jeans, skinny jeans, and even jean shorts. We’re also not opposed to a cute mini skirt with tights, leather pants, or dress pants. You can also throw on a blazer for a more sophisticated look or to ward off the cold.
Types of Keyhole Shirts
Keyhole Graphic Tees
Asos keyhole graphic tee
These tees are loose-fitted and consist of a v-neck cutout neckline across the collarbone, held together by a flimsy string. Grungy and casual, this style tee makes for the perfect laid-back outfit. It’s also fun to shake things up with a simple graphic tee and try a style that’s a bit different than the norm.
Keyhole Turtle Neck Sweaters
Alo Yoga Keyhole Sweater
Fall 2023 is loving this keyhole style. As the OG keyhole cutout, this circular hole by one’s cleavage is sexy while still being covered up from neck to sleeves and bodice. It’s a little peekaboo surprise on an otherwise cozy, traditional shirt.
Keyhole Sleeveless Tops
Shop the P.E Nation leggings here.
Shop the P.E Nation keyhole exercise top here.
Semi-circle (or half moon) cutouts are super trendy right now and are still considered to be keyhole tops by most accounts. They’re a loose take on the OG circular hole cutout. They show a lot more skin but not as much cleavage.
Keyhole Cutouts: Half Moon Vs Circular
What’s the difference between half moon (half circle) or circular keyhole cutouts. Circular cutouts are the original keyhole trend while half moons are an interation of circular styles. Circular keyholes are often seen in halter tops, blouses, turtlenecks, and croptops. Half moon cutouts, however, are more often seen on sleeveless shirts (with thick shoulder straps) and turtlenecks.
Celebrity Keyhole Tops
You know we love it when celebrities wear the trends we hold near and dear to us. Here are some of our favorite celebrities wearing keyhole tops over the years.
As a fashion trend that transcends all age and style possibilities, keyhole shirts make an impact this fall season. With the stylish possibilities they provide, there’s no limit on how to wear them.