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September 09, 2019

It is almost that time of the year again. Halloween! People love dressing up as the Tom Selleck Magnum PI in his iconic red Hawaiian shirt or one of his other shirts. But to mimic his look, it takes more than just wearing his shirt. Here are a few shirts and style tips to maximize your Magnum PI look. 

The easiest and most obvious look is to imitate Tom Selleck's look with the original Magnum PI shirt. To achieve this look, you need 4 things.

  1. Jungle Bird (red) shirt
  2. Blue jeans or khaki shorts
  3. Mustache
  4. Detroit Tigers baseball cap

original Magnum PI Hawaiian shirt in the Smithsonian

The key thing to remember is that this show took place in 80s, with most of the show happening in the early to mid 80s. The shirt is actually the easiest part of the outfit. To really capture his style, you need to mimic the clothing style of the 80s. Back then, shorts were shorter and blue jeans were tighter than they are today. Magnum also wore his shirts with the top two buttons or more undone. Sometimes more! This unbuttoned look was not confined to Magnum PI. Don Johnson (Crockett) and Phillip Michael Thomas (Tubbs) often wore their shirts with more buttons undone in Miami Vice, another popular show from the 80s. 

In TV shows today (like the new Magnum PI), the lead characters usually wear their Hawaiian shirts untucked. But back in the 80s, Magnum wore the shirts tucked in nice and tight whether wearing shorts or blue jeans. 


1980s Magnum PI outfit with red Hawaiian shirt, baseball cap, and mustache

In addition to the red shirt, he also wore the black version of that same shirt. You can wear it just like the red one, tucked in with some of the buttons undone.


Magnum PI shirt (black) tucked into blue jeans with belt

Another shirt that is on some of the Magnum PI promos is the black Star Orchid shirt. Most notably he is seen wearing this print in the show poster in or next to a red Ferrari.



Magnum also wore the purple Calla Lily Hawaiian shirt. What makes this shirt interesting is that Tom Selleck actually picked out this shirt. According to Tim Smith of Pacific Clothing, the manufacturer of this shirt, Mr. Selleck personally visited their showroom office back in the early 1980s and picked this shirt out himself. So while the red Jungle Bird shirt may be the most iconic Magnum PI shirt, this Calla Lily shirt might reflect Mr. Selleck’s personal style more than others.



The most recent shirt we have that Mr. Selleck wore is the Mini Anthurium blue shirt. This shirt was just re-released in 2019 after being out of production since the early 1980s. 



Mini Anthurium Hawaiian shirt worn by Tom Selleck in Magnum PI



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