With the new academic year just around the corner, it's probably time to update the kids' school uniform.
Before kids go back to school (opens in new tab) in September, there's always a mad rush to the shops to replace jumpers with holes in them, battered trousers and shoes that don't fit anymore. Especially if you've got more than one child who needs kitting out with all new school uniform essentials the prices can really add up.
With this in mind, we take a look at the best ranges on the high street and online to reveal who comes top of the class in school uniform for 2021. From Britain's cheapest school uniform to the best last-minute finds, we've taken into account quality, price and variety when assessing the school uniforms on sale this year so you can be sure you're also getting the most for your money.
Best school uniform for 2021:
GTK favourite 2021: Aldi school uniform
Aldi's school uniform is one of the cheapest this year, rivalling fellow-supermarket Lidl with their incredibly low school uniform prices.
To pick up a full set of the essentials, including polo shirts and trousers or a skirt, it will cost you just £4.50. The range overs most ages, going up from 3-years-old to 11-years-old.
Pick up school uniform bundles at Aldi online from July 18 and in-store from July 22nd. However due to the incredible low prices, we recommend heading into store to find the final bargains as many of the key pieces have sold out already online.
What we love: Aldi also supplies PE kits, school shoes and back to school accessories, so parents can get their entire school kits sorted in one shop. All of their items also come with that clever water-repellent shield, are tumble dryer safe, and easy iron, meaning you don't have to spend hours helping your sprogs looking picture-perfect.
Aldi’s uniform will cost you… Polos - 2 pack £1.75 Trousers - from £1.75 Sweatshirts - £1 Pleated skirt - £1.75 Pinafores - 2 pack £6.99 Ankle socks - 5 pack for £1.99
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT ALDI SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for low prices: Lidl school uniform
Lidl are another supermarket with school uniforms at unbeatable price points. Much like Aldi, Lidl have re-launched their complete school outfit bundle for just £4.50.
The bundle, available for less that £5, includes a two pack of polo shirts, one sweatshirt and either a pair of trousers, shorts or a skirt. However you can also pick up the uniform items, which are all available for children ages 4 -12, separately. Prices are slightly increased this year from last year, but still start from just £1! So it's certainly one of the most affordable places around to get what your children need to start school next month.
Lidl are also a great option this year if you missed out on Lidl's amazing deal, as their school uniform goes on sale in-store from August 19.
What we love: Many items in the collection, such as the polo shirts, sweatshirts and cardigans, are 100% cotton so gentle on delicate skin. Lots of the pieces like the shirts and sweatshirts are also made using easy care fabric, meaning they're simple to clean, and friendly for the environment too. Items like the trousers, shorts, skirts and pinafore are also made using water-repellent technology, so the clothing won't be soaked if your little ones get caught in the rain or any spillages occur.
Lidl’s uniform will cost you… Polos - 2 pack £1.75 Shirts - 2 pack £2.49 Trousers - £1.75 Shorts - £1.75 Sweatshirt- £1 Cardigans - £3.49 Skirts - £1.75 Pinafores - £2.99 Leather school shoes - £6.99
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Best for kids who love the playground: Tesco uniform
Also pretty tough to beat on price is F&F at Tesco! This supermarket offer a nice variety of school uniform and a 100-day guarantee on most of their items. This means that if your little one wears down their uniform in just a few weeks, you can return it for an exchange. Ideal for those excited to get back in the playground again.
Tesco's polos, t-shirts, and pinafores come with a Teflon TM stain repellent. This essential addition means that their uniform is protected from any of the stains, whether that be grass, food or mud, that come with school life. Their skirts and trousers come with an adjustable waist as well, so you don't need to necessarily update their items with each passing school year as they grow either.
What we love: Tesco's prices truly are hard to beat. With prices starting from as low as £2, and going up to only £10 for a 2-pack of pinafore dresses, they're perfect for those on a budget. But that doesn't mean the quality isn't there - their uniforms are durable too.
What Tesco’s uniform will cost you… Polos - 2 pack from £2.50 Shirts - 2 pack from £3.50 Trousers - girls 2 pack woven fob trousers from £6 Jumpers - 2 pack v-neck jumpers from £6 Cardigans - 2 pack from £8 Skirts - skater skirts from £6, kilt skirts from £8 Pinafores - 2 pack £10
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT TESCO SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for variety: Sainsbury's school uniform
Sainsbury’s offer a great variety of school clothes for very reasonable prices. They're not the cheapest but they do offer a good quality. So if you're looking to spend a bit more - but not too much more - they may be the one for you.
Firstly, we love Sainsbury's school uniform because there's a HUGE selection of colours. Pick from nine different shades in the jumper section alone. All pleats are permanent as well, which means no ironing (yay!). The colours are also wash-resistant, meaning they’ll stay brighter for longer and shoes are scuff resistant. Much like Tesco, Sainsbury's use Teflon for a super strong stain-repellent finish.
But one of the biggest perks of their uniform is the fact that they offer reinforced knees on their trousers, meaning the material won't be worn down after any falls or adventurous playing.
Whether you're shopping for young kids or older teens, Sainsbury's will certainly have something they need. The supermarket offers uniforms from the primary school to secondary school-age, so you can get everything you need in one go.
What we love: Unlike other retailers, Sainsbury's offer a range of fits for their clothes too. For example, their shirts come in 'regular', 'slim', and 'plus'. You can get their skirts in 'regular', 'plus', and 'longer'. They're ideal for a growing teen.
Sainsbury’s uniform will cost you… Polos - 3 pack from £3.50 Shirts - 3 pack from £4 Trousers - 2 pack from £6 Jumpers - 2 pack from £4 Cardigans - 2 pack from £6 Skirts - 2 pack from £6 Pinafores - 2 pack from £9
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT SAINSBURY'S SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for quality: Marks & Spencer school uniform
Marks & Spencer have become famous for their school uniform over the years.
One of our favourite things about M&S range is that it all comes with in-built fabric technology that helps to make sure items need minimal care from parents.
M&S include grow-proof cuffs and hems in the range too, so you can unpick the threads for an extra 3cm as kids grow. Supercrease™ technology in the trousers means crease lines stay in wash after wash and blazers are ink resistant so leaky pens won’t ruin shirts. Their expert StayNew Technology also helps keep the uniform looking as good as new - ensuring no bobbles, no bagging clothing after a few months, and keeps the colour as good as it was when you bought it.
They've also made sure their uniform is non-iron with heat technology activated. So just make sure to tumble dry after washing for crease-less clothes in a flash. Plus, their shoes are scuff-resistant, so whatever the kids get up to, they'll look polished and ready for lessons afterwards.
Of all the options, Marks & Spencer are that little bit more expensive - but we reckon it's worth it for the quality.
What we love: M&S uniforms are made well with high-quality fabrics. But best of all, they're also eco-friendly, so you can feel good about purchasing from the retailer. All of their items are made from responsibly sourced cotton, meaning their clothes will reduce environmental impact and will help improve conditions for farmers who source the material.
What an M&S uniform will cost you… Polos - 3 pack from £7 Shirts - 2 pack from £9 Trousers - from £11 Jumpers - from £8 Cardigans - from £9 Skirts - from £9 Pinafores - from £10
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT M&S SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for all ages: Morrisons school uniform
With a huge selection of uniform on offer in a wide range of colours and age ranges, Morrisons took the prize of GTK's favourite school uniform last year. While Aldi took the top spot this year, Morrisons are still offering parents great multi-packs, so you can be safe in the knowledge that you're getting your money's worth. They also have an assortment of handy tech features to keep your kids looking smart.
Morrisons’ Nutmeg range for kids is still very well-priced. But it is slightly more expensive than the likes of Aldi and Lidl. They also have a really huge range of stock available, meaning you're bound to find something you like.
The range is available for ages 3-13 and all colour items have colour stay technology, meaning the colour will maintain for up to a minimum 50 washes. Almost an entire school year! The skirts and trousers also come with an adjustable waist and hem, meaning they'll fit as your kids grow. Trousers have reinforced knees for any falls or grazes. Many items are also stain-repellent and have Teflon EcoElite tech with a renewably sourced finish.
Shirts are easy iron, so there's minimal fuss there. And we reckon kids will love the soft feel of the jumpers and sweatshirts. GoodtoKnow tested them ourselves, and agreed that they were uber-snuggly...
What we love: As well as the fantastic prices on offer from Morrisons this year, the supermarket chain are offering most of their school uniform in multi-packs, which is great for kids who love a run around in the playground.
What Morrisons’ uniform will cost you… Polos - 2 pack from £2.50 Shirts - 2 pack from £3 Jumper - 2 pack from £6 Cardigans - 2 pack from £7 Trousers - 2 pack from £8 Skirts - 2 pack from £7 Pinafores - £3 each
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT MORRISONS SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for long-term wear: John Lewis school uniform
At the top end of the high street is John Lewis. The prices at John Lewis are higher but the uniform quality is great! They're a known and trusted brand among many parents.
The great design, fabric protection and clever finishing touches, including reinforced stitching along the seams as well as reinforced knees in trousers, mean each item is designed to last and stay in shape.
John Lewis’s uniforms are 100% cotton so it's kind on sensitive skin. All trousers, shorts and skirts have adjustable waists to cope with growth spurts and add comfort for active kids. Shirts are easy iron and John Lewis uses plant-based and renewably sourced, Teflon® EcoElite protection, so stains and spills can be cleaned up quickly and easily.
Customers have also raved about John Lewis uniforms as they are thick and durable, meaning they last for years and years. One happy shopper said of the boys trousers, "I have been buying these trouser for 6 years now for both of my sons. The quality has remained the same over these years. The trousers are long lasting, fit perfectly and have never even needed repairing!"
What we love: If you want a one-stop shop for all your school uniform needs, John Lewis is the place. As well as uniform, the store also offers a children's shoe fitting service, as well as an autism-friendly shoe-fitting service. Staff in selected shops have been trained by the National Autistic Society, to "measure your child’s feet in a comfortable environment, tailored to their needs".
John Lewis also uniforms for many specific schools from across the country, as well as selling those handy extras such as name labels, aprons for cookery class, and even Scouts and Brownies outfits!
A uniform at John Lewis will cost you… Polo shirts - 3 pack from £7 Shirts - 2 pack from £8 Trousers - from £9 Jumpers - from £8 Sweatshirts - from £6 Cardigans - 2 pack from £13 Skirts - from £9 Pinafores - from £10
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT JOHN LEWIS SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for multi-pack offers: New Look school uniform
New Look is a high-street staple store, so it's easy to shop in person and online. While they offer a huge selection on women's and girls' clothes, a little known fact is that New Look also sells Girls' school uniforms.
They fewer multi-pack offers and their items are more expensive than some of the others on our list, however, they offer quality that you can rely on and a stylish fit that no child will complain about.
As well as basic essentials like polo shirts, trousers, pinafores and skirts, New Look also pride themselves on offering a good range of other essential Back to School items like backpacks, water bottles and lunch boxes so your child can go off to school already feeling fabulous.
What we love: Simple and stylish, New Look school uniforms are an easy go-to whether you're looking to stock up for the school year or just grab a few essential items. The store prides themselves on being fashionable, so you'll find school uniform essentials geared towards looking great as well as being practical and suitable for school. They also offer more variations on classic shirts, such as puffed sleeves.
A uniform from New Look will cost you… Shirts - 2 pack from £9.99 Trousers - from £8.99 each Jumpers - from £7.99 each Cardigans - from £8.99 Skirts - from £5.99 each Pinafores - from £12.99 each
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT NEW LOOK SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for choice of colours: Asda uniform
George at Asda offers an amazing variety, with all sorts of items to choose from. When it comes to girls shirts for example, you can decide from 17 different options, including long sleeved and short sleeved ones, and colours including white and blue. So there will certainly be something for your little ones to choose from!
Asda's uniform also has some glowing reviews online, meaning you've got real insight on how durable the clothing is from parents who have actually used it. Of the senior girls straight leg trousers, many reviews have shared how well they fit their young ones, and how great quality they are for the price.
One wrote: 'Great quality and fit great value for money and by and hard wearing', while another said: 'My daughter had these for school. Great quality and true fit. Well worth the money.'
They also offer a wide colour selection to choose from, with the standard grey and black as well as a more unusual brown, burgundy and green.
Asda have some great technologies in their products to make life just that little bit easier. Their polo shirts have ‘Stay White’ technology to keep your whites looking gleaming, while the shirts are easy iron. Their trousers are also tapered with adjustable waists for an improved fit, and a Teflon® finish to keep stains at bay. Asda's girls skirts and pinafores have an anti-pill finish too, so they'll look smart for longer. Their school footwear is also scuff resistant, and made with Micro-Fresh® technology to prevent odours developing
What we love: George offers a 100-day 'satisfaction guarantee', so if parents aren't happy with the clothing, it can be returned within 100 days (with proof of purchase) for an exchange or a refund. A brilliant promise for parents with unruly kids!
A uniform from George at Asda will cost you… Polos - from £2.50 Shirts - 2 pack from £3 Trousers - £6 Jumpers - from £4 Cardigans - from £4 Skirts - from £5 Pinafores - from £5
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT ASDA SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for growing kids: Matalan school uniform
Matalan's school uniform range is the perfect mix of affordable and great quality, with prices starting at just £3. They've got a huge range on offer, with lots of technical benefits for customers to enjoy. They tick all the boxes, with easy iron shirts, and 100% cotton unisex polo shirts, a much more breathable material for kids.
Like many other retailers, they've also given their clothes adjustable waists. Most are also made with Teflon and have a resistant coating to repel water and stains.
What we love: The range of choice available at Matalan is excellent, with colours and styles to cover most uniform bases.
A Matalan uniform will cost you… Polo shirts - £3 - £6 Shirts - 5 pack from £10 - £17.50 Trousers - from £5 - £9 Jumpers - from £3 Cardigans - from £4 Skirts - from £4 Pinafores - from £8
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT MATALAN SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
Best for brands: Next school uniform
Also at the higher end of the high street, Next!
On their own-brand clothing, Next have stain-beating Teflon and they're actually is one of the few retailers to also stock other brands, so parents can buy Clarks shoes, Nike sports gear and Adidas coats through the site as well. Parents can pick up swimming goggles, for those all important lessons too! In terms of variety, it is hard to beat. Like a couple of the other retailers, Next also offer other bits for school such as stationary, backpacks, and water bottles from children's favourite brands.
Online, Next also offer up a handy uniform builder service. This allows you to easily choose from all the bits on the website in easy-to-see categories. You'll pick trousers and shorts, shirts and polos, shoes, knitwear and jumpers, coats and jackets, sports and swimwear, dresses and playsuits, and skirts and formal shorts, ensuring you don't miss a thing you might need.
What we love: The variety of styles and colours on offer. You can get a zip-up pinafore, a button-up pinafore, a pleated pinafore and a jersey pinafore - to name but a few! Their jumpers also come in seven different colours too, as just one example. Perfect for fussy children!
A Next school uniform will cost you… Polos - 5 pack from £15 Shirts - 5 pack from £20 Trousers - from £8 Jumpers - from £8 Cardigans - from £7 Skirts - 2 pack from £12 Pinafores - from £8
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT NEXT'S SCHOOL UNIFORM (opens in new tab)
School's back in September - time to hurry to the shops!
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