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Gap, Inc. was founded in 1969 by husband and wife Don and Doris Fisher to solve a simple problem--Don couldn't find jeans that fit properly. The company's first store was located in San Francisco and exclusively sold jeans. Gap didn't actually manufacture its own clothes originally (that started later), but it was committed to having a much larger selection of Levi's than the department stores so that consumers would no longer struggle to find a pair that fit well. For the first few decades, the brand was known as "The Gap," which alluded to the so-called Generation Gap, and the stores' youthful energy attracted a unique clientele.

By the late 1970s, Gap had started manufacturing its own clothing in addition to selling Levi's. This decision ended up being an integral part of the company's later success because Levi's started distributing its products to larger department stores in the '80s. A major brand revolution happened within the company before the end of the century, and Gap had firmly established itself as a popular private manufacturer by the year 2000. In spite of a few blips in management and several of its stores being forced to close due to economic factors, Gap continues to be a major presence in the American fashion industry. Toeing the line between mainstream and luxury clothing, the company's product line appeals to a very wide range of consumers.

Babies & Kids Merchandise


Since Gap has so many specialty divisions like Baby Gap, Gap Kids, and Gap Maternity, the main Gap product line specifically appeals to the niche of older kids, teens, and adults. In men's sizes, you can find short- and long-sleeved tees (including a limited selection of graphic tees), as well as henleys, V-necks, thermals, baseball tees, and more. The brand also makes a broad line of sweaters, sweatshirts, and outerwear like vests, blazers, and pea coats. Jeans continue to be a main element of the brand's product line. The line is called "1969"--named after the year the company was founded--and it includes a  wide range of different styles, washes, and colors. You'll also find other men's pants like khakis, cords, and runners, as well as a variety of shorts.

Many of the basic Gap products for women are similar to those available for men. Additional options in tops include fashion blouses, tanks, and camis, and you can choose among a very wide selection of skirts and dresses for any occasion. Entire GapBody and GapFit lines have been developed within the women's category. GapBody manufactures bras, underwear, loungewear, and sleepwear, while GapFit is devoted to workout clothes like yoga pants, capris, workout tops, and sports bras.

Mom rating

Whether you are shopping for yourself or for your older son or daughter, Gap offers a variety of excellent clothing options. Comfortable, stylish, and durable, these clothes tend to be on the expensive side, but they are built to last for a long time. One of the best parts about Gap is the brand's versatility. From loungewear to casualwear to formalwear, you can find Gap clothes to wear in pretty much every situation. We give Gap 4.5 stars out of 5.

Women's Merchandise


The Gap women's line includes a variety of stylish options, ranging from casualwear to formalwear. Everyday tees include crew necks, V-necks, boatnecks, and tanks in a variety of patterns and colors. Fashion tees are slightly trendier and are available in styles like tunics, dolman sleeves, peplum tees, henleys, and more. The brand's other tops include button-down shirts in silk, sateen, denim, and flannel. Sweaters range from loose-fitting cardigans of all different lengths to fitted crew and V-neck sweaters. You'll also find sweatshirts that include stylish hoodies. When the weather turns bad, Gap carries jackets for lighter coverage as well as heavy winter parkas.

Jeans are key to all of Gap's target demographics, but the women's denim collection is particularly extensive. The brand's 1969 line features a range of cuts, including skinny, straight, boot, boyfriend, girlfriend, and more. They are also available in several different washes and colors. Khakis, sweats, chambray pants, trousers, leggings, and crop pants are also available. Gap features plenty of dresses and skirts in both casual and formal styles, and their lengths vary. Shorts come in a number of different fabrics and styles, from roll-up shorts to scuba shorts. With its GapBody and GapFit divisions, the brand offers intimates and workout clothes, respectively. High quality bras, panties, sleepwear, yoga clothes, and sportswear make up these popular lines.

Our rating

Few brands have as much diversity as Gap--especially when you look at the selection of women's clothes available. Regardless of your sense of style, you are almost guaranteed to find at least some fashions that appeal to you, and you may decide that the array of relatively muted colors and tamely fashionable designs is perfect for dressing on trend without making too much of a splash. Gap has gradually transitioned into more of a luxury brand, and its price tags do reflect that change. On the other hand, the clothes available from the store cycle through so quickly that there are almost always plenty of excellent garments on sale. You will never have to worry about Gap quality because these clothes have a longstanding reputation for being built to last.

Gap logo
  • Established 1969
  • Mainstream clothing for everyone
Sold at:
Gap stores and online
Types of items:
Shirts, t-shirts, graphic tees, henleys, polos, v-necks, camis, tanks, blouses, sweaters, sweatshirts, button-down shirts, jeans, khakis, cords, underwear, socks, bras, sleepwear, loungewear, blazers, jackets, yoga pants, workout clothes
Related brands:
Gap Kids, Baby Gap, Gap Maternity, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Piperlime, Athleta
Our rating:

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