8 Warm, Stylish Winter Jackets for Guys
stay warm without wearing a sleeping bag
Winter just hit in NYC (a little late, but I’m fine with it), which means it’s time to break out the heavy duty outerwear.
Since we’re all grown ups here (or would like to be, anyway), our winter coats must accompany us more places than just out to the snow mounds at recess, so the goal is to find a style that actually looks good while keeping you warm. Technical outerwear might be great for the mountain (or playing “king of the mountain” on those aforementioned snow mounds) but it probably won’t play as well at the office over a suit, or on a date with your girl.
Of course, shopping for a winter jacket can be more complicated than simply picking out a color you like. As Jezebel’s Erin Gloria Ryan put it:
“Everything that will keep you warm is at the expense of the pain of another living creature. Life is cruel and survival depends on merciless consumption of other living things, and modern life has insulated us from the truth of that brutality. Either that, or human beings aren’t meant to live in places that get cold enough to wearing tights under pants.”
But hey, we’ve got to stay warm, so we might as well just get on with it.
If weight is important and when temperatures are very cold (think: Arctic circle cold), choose down. Down provides the most warmth in relation to its weight, and its easy to compress to a small packing volume. A 500-fill coat is good enough for most conditions. A 700-800 fill power range is suitable for extreme cold and bitter winds.
Synthetic down is best for weather that shifts between rain and snow. The synthetic padding is less sensitive than down and the fibers are able to regain their shape even after long-term use. They can also withstand a certain amount of moisture without losing the ability to insulate your shivering body.
I’m staying warm in the ladies version of this Fjallraven number; its length keeps my butt and thighs warm and the synthetic lining with loft padding has been successfully defending me against the wind, snow, and rain we’ve been seeing.
The synthetic fur trimming protects your face against snowstorms (though when the temperature really dips, you may still want to wear a hat). Practical pockets let you store what you need, while ribbed knitting at the neck keeps cold drafts out.
2. Canada Goose Chateau Parka, $745
A word to the wise: plenty of stores are already selling out of this popular parka, so if you want one, shop now.
3. Alpha Industries N-3B Parka, $149.99
This jacket reminds me of the coats you see in army surplus stores… but actually concerns itself with fit and style. Thanks to this tailored version of an Americana classic, you won’t look like you’re walking around in a sleeping bag. Also, it’s on sale. Win-win.
4. Woolrich Classic Arctic Parka, $695
There’s something to be said about all the black and grey we see in people’s wardrobe during the winter months. And that something is: you will definitely stand out if you actually opt for color. This red parka from Woolrich will look great with just about anything outside of formalwear.
5. Penfield Stapleton Jacket, $365
While it’s on the pricier side, Penfield outerwear somehow manages to look both modern and classic for years – decades even – at a time.
Besides looking perfect, it’s also perfectly warm – and how could it not be when the brand hails from Massachusetts the (cold) heart of New England. Invest in one of these, and you’ll look both smart and sharp.
A tip on sizing: If you’re deciding between two sizes, size down. I promise you’ll have enough room in there to layer three sweaters if you really want to, and you won’t end up looking like a kid in his big brother’s hand-me-downs.
6. Spiewak Waxed N3-B Snorkle Parka, $355
Name sound familiar? That’s because this New York-bred brand has been churning out outerwear for law enforcement and public service servants since 1904. That means your mailman wears Spiewak, and your mailman knows from staying warm outside in the winter. Thankfully, their lifestyle side of the brand keeps all the technical aspects of their service side without giving off even a whiff of postal worker.
7. Old Navy Mountain Parka, $75 (On Sale)
It might not keep you the warmest of the bunch, but for less than $100, this Old Navy number is a stylish, affordable option for the guy whose farthest trip is generally from the parking lot to the office and back again. If you don’t need to break the bank on your winter coat, don’t.
8. Norse Projects Willum Down Storm Wool Jacket, $1,170
For those whose commutes keep them outdoors a little longer, this Norse Projects puffer coat with a wool shell can be considered a great “splurge” option. Is this Copenhagen-based brand’s offering expensive? Sure. Will it ever go out of style? No.
Which of the above is your top pick, and how do you stay warm and stylish in the winter?
*And for you west coasters/southern hemisphere dwellers, what’s your “light jacket” preference?