As the days get colder and winter is upon us, it can be challenging for guys to stay warm while still looking stylish. Our hibernating senses kick in, and we add layer after layer to protect us against the chill. But with the right jacket, you can keep your look on-trend without sacrificing warmth.
The key is knowing what and how to invest your money. We are prominent purveyors of style that can transcend seasons somewhat, offering us more bang for our buck. A winter coat is a fine example. Should we desire a piece with the best warming and water-repellent properties, we will likely need to invest a little wonga!
This article will explore some of the best winter jackets for men that combine style and function—from timeless overcoats to modern puffers. Whether you’re looking for a classic coat or something more daring, plenty of options are available to keep you both warm and fashionable in cold weather. This way, you will know that any purchase is money well spent.
1. Parka Jacket
Move your polar adventurer spirit into top gear and get your hands on a heavyweight parka. Famed by the world’s foremost explorers of ice-capped mountains and arctic landscapes, it can withstand the coldest temperatures. But, even if your terrain is more Shoreditch than Snowdonia, the parka can still be present.
Typically produced in a mid or long-length, those extra inches can be vital come winter. The exterior is as hard-wearing as they come due to a technological focus on materials that wick away rain and wind. Inside, you get a soft lining enclosing a warm but lightweight down filling.
The parka jacket’s job was first to keep the wearer warm, but importantly, it also allowed movement and breathability. Keeping a close eye on the fabrics used for the interior and exterior will ensure yours will do the same.
2. Puffer or Down Jacket
Puffer coats have become increasingly popular thanks to their lightweight yet warming design. From cold-weather specialists like Canada Goose to high-street brands such as Uniqlo, everyone has dipped their toe into this product category. So, how can you differentiate between one another? The key is to do a little research.
As the needs of our outerwear change, brands invest time and research into adapting materials. Puffer jackets might have only been seen on the slopes in the past, but now they are present in every city where the temperature drops to chilling levels. As a result, the jacket needs to be less bulky without losing its warming properties.
We recommend high-quality down-filling for this jacket style to benefit from lightweight cosiness. However, several brands use synthetic or recycled alternatives to significant effect, so do your own detective work.
Dependent on how and where you will wear a puffer jacket, guys have myriad options. Short or long versions are both available, for example. Just remember that you will get more mobility from one that finishes on the waist.
Lastly, thinner versions are an excellent choice for men seeking a multi-faceted piece. Not just adept as an outer layer on the coldest days, it is a nice mid-layer piece for extra style points. Then, later on, it can be unshackled to take the edge of a slightly chillier spring day as your headline outerwear.
Those men who air on the side of formality in their daily outfits will be more than familiar with the overcoat. The saviour of many suits in wet and chilly conditions, the coat impeccably finishes off any tailored look. But, it is equally accomplished in more casual surroundings.
There has been an explosion in athleisure over recent years. Combined with changing views on the office uniform, us guys don’t always need to be formally dressed. This has encouraged stylish gents to experiment, mixing their tailored mainstays with less casual partners. Think suits and trainers or a t-shirt and blazer. Done right, it can rejuvenate tired work wardrobes. The overcoat is no exception, worn with jeans, hoodies or sweatpants. However, the latter is a step too far for this menswear enthusiast.
The overcoat’s versatility, functionality, and smart silhouette make it an evergreen choice for men. As a go-to fabric, we pick wool because it can hold 20% of its weight in water before feeling too heavy. Though, there are more lightweight options in nylon or cotton that will sacrifice the warmth that wool delivers.
Whether you need a traditional overcoat that tops off your outfit for work or a relaxed contemporary number for the weekend, menswear has overcoat options to suit every budget.
Peacoats are a timeless winter coat style for men, offering warmth and style in one package. This jacket features a double-breasted closure and a classic notched collar, giving it a smarter edge over some of its outerwear compatriots. That said, it is as comfortable with a pair of jeans as tailored trousers.
Like much of menswear, the peacoat has its roots in the military. Its thick wool material helped naval personnel keep warm on the deck of ships when on patrol. What is their loss is our gain with this style being a mainstay in the wardrobes of some of the best-dressed men.
As mentioned, the peacoat is versatile enough to dress up or down depending on the occasion, which is why we love it. Generally in a neutral navy or black colourway, it offers the perfect antidote to a formal shirt/tie combo or a more casual chunky knit.
No matter how you wear it, invest in a wool or wool-blend version. This fabric will keep you warmer while giving a structured silhouette due to the greater weight. Synthetic substitutes will hold their shape only a short time while being more susceptible to pulling and discolouring over time.
5. Canvas Chore Jacket
The rugged, workman aesthetic of the chore jacket makes it an excellent alternative piece for winter. Crafted from hard-wearing materials, it has protected those working outside (like construction workers) from the elements for years. Meaning it won’t even flinch at your morning commute.
Where other winter jackets rely on their insulation to protect the wearer, the chore jacket has thick heavy cotton as a barrier. This staunch fabric creates a boxy, utilitarian fit that works well within a casual workwear outfit, especially if the more traditional brown or cream colours have caught your eye. Though, experiment with navy or dark green to see how this jacket works with more formal pieces to offer a minimalist overture.
With this jacket, you get added details that engage your look nicely — a positive in winter when style inspiration can be lacking. Take the large buttons, diagonal pockets or Americana motifs that can all draw the eye. This is why the chore jacket can get our nod as a jacket in our rotation on milder days.
6. Duffle Coat
The much-maligned duffle coat is notoriously overlooked when men shop for a winter coat. Think of it in a recent film or tv show, and you typically imagine a teenage protagonist (Submarine) or a famous bear from Peru (Paddington). The result is a coat that is perceived to lack the style credentials of others.
If you scan the street-style photos of Pitti or the latest fashion weeks for inspiration, you may have seen a duffle coat resurgence of late. We should note how stylish Japanese gents pair it with tailoring effortlessly. At the same time, bold colourways have made it a more contemporary pick for a casual look, which is why this military-inspired coat works so well. A long line silhouette crafted from heavy wool beats the cold-weather elements while its toggles and hood add style interest.
The result is another naval coat making its way onto the list.
Should the duffle coat in its natural beauty not be enough for you? Why not add a fur-lined hood or tartan lining to take things up a notch? Either as god intended or with the additional benefits, the heart of this jacket is a robust and warming choice for winter.
7. Shearling Jacket
Being surrounded by sumptuously soft shearling on the coldest days is hard to beat. Shearling is crafted from natural sheepskin wool and is heavy, breathable and luxuriously soft combined. A heavy hitter at beating lowering temperatures, it is not to be confused with its sherpa cousin.
The most popular shearling jackets take the warming properties of this natural material and enclose it in a mid-length, leather exterior. And this is what was incorporated by pilots to keep themselves warm in chilly cockpits during WW2.
Shearling now gets partnered with parkas, denim, bomber jackets and anything else you can think of. This breadth of choice has inevitably made it a unique proposition for winter.
We take our style notes for shearling from Sylvester Stallone (Rocky IV) or Robert Redford (Downhill Racer), more so than Del Boy. The shearling jacket should evoke a sense of masculinity, so pair it with heavy-duty boots and denim to re-enforce this.
Our final consideration for men regarding shearling jackets is their susceptibility to wetness. As a result, check the forecast to avoid getting caught in a downpour.
8. Fleece Jacket
Should your requirements for your winter coat require a little less Arctic expedition and a bit more walking holiday chic? The fleece jacket is the ideal pick. Menswear’s desire for outdoor-inspired clothing is strong, clearly shown by the popularity growth of brands like Patagonia.
Like all our choices in this list, we want our winter jacket to help keep the cold at bay. A fleece jacket does that to aplomb with its shaggy sherpa exterior, repelling wind and rain as we should expect for an item technically crafted for those spending extended periods outdoors. In addition, without the bulkiness of a parka or puffer jacket, it makes transitioning from different temperatures a breeze. Perfect for those travelling to and from work.
You can skip the trek to Moutain Warehouse to get your hands on this. From streetwear to the designer world, the fleece jacket, as with the hiking boot, has become mainstream menswear.