Your Ultimate Wardrobe Checklist
If you think you are going to get through the next few frigid months with your one trusty coat you”ve had since college, you might need to hear the cold, hard truth.
We”ve researched every type of outerwear that exists and have come up with the official list of coats essential to any Winter-dwelling wardrobe. You might think you can get by with one or two quality coats, but not every topper in your closet needs to be a major investment. We recommend you review this checklist and pick the ones worth the splurge — perhaps a classic camel coat? — and the ones — like an embellished statement cover-up or a cape — that might be better sought after in the sale racks. Whatever you do, make sure that whatever you put over your outfit is just as good as what”s underneath.
A Trench Coat
No closet is complete without this key transitional coat, which can take wearers from crisp Fall nights to cool Winter mornings. Loose and belted, it”s often waterproof.
Make an investment: It doesn”t get more classic than a camel-colored Burberry trench.
Get in on the trend: Go with a surprising color, or replace the attached belt with a bold leather cincher.
A Duffel Coat
Quite the Winter-coat workhorse, this outerwear option fastens with horn toggles, also known as walrus teeth, and rope closures. Other features include two large patch pockets, a hemline that falls right at the knee, and a hood.
Make an investment: Opt for one in a sheath silhouette. That way, there is limitless layering potential.
Get in on the trend: For an edgier, more downtown vibe, opt for one with an asymmetrical opening or one that is more formfitting.
Inspired by those worn in polar regions, this is a heavier version of the classic anorak. The hooded coats — most typically in shades of olive or army green — are the perfect casual cover-up for weekends out and about.
Make an investment: Stick with one in khaki or green.
Get in on the trend: Make more of a statement with a fur-lined hood.
This classic military-inspired wool coat — originally worn solely by sailors — is ultrawarm, often unisex, and always double-breasted.
Make an investment: Pick a traditional one in a neutral, like black, dark gray, or navy.
Get in on the trend: Although they typically hit right at the hip, opt for something even longer. And try something in a print, like tartan or houndstooth.
Many fashion insiders don”t use the sleeves of their coats anyway, so a cape — a sleeveless cloak that fastens around the neck and forms a circle — is a practical option.
Make an investment: The more similar to those fairy-tale versions (think Little Red Riding Hood) the more classic, so opt for a simple color with a single ribbon or button tie at the collar.
Get in on the trend: For a more updated approach (and more coverage), wear one that has a closed front and two arm slits.
The ultimate outer layer to make you feel as if you were inside by the fire, a down-filled quilted puffer is the only surefire way to stay warm in freezing temps.
Make an investment: For more function than fashion, pick one that covers the most square footage or one that even dusts the floor. Moncler is a brand proven to keep in the heat.
Get in on the trend: Pick a cropped, collarless puffer that will keep your torso toasty while still showing off your outfit.
A Camel Coat
Consider this the cool parent to the classic trench coat — a warmer version but one that”s stood the test of time while still coming in and out of trendiness.
Make an investment: The minimalist versions from Céline and Max Mara are sure to make lasting impressions.
Get in on the trend: If it ain”t broke, don”t fix it. The only thing worth experimenting with this coat is the hemline.
A Furry Coat
The ultimate cold-weather protector is a fully lined fur coat. And if real fur isn”t your thing, faux-fur alternatives serve the same purpose, often with a much more affordable price tag.
Make an investment: Choose one that kept the natural color and texture of the fur, and take good care to preserve it. A fur coat is the ultimate fashion family heirloom.
Get in on the trend: If you are opting for a wild color or the on-trend patchwork style, faux-fur options might be wise.
A Statement Coat
Sure, no one needs a wild printed topper, but having at least one bold outerwear option will surely come in handy for nights out or when an outfit could use a little something extra.
Make an investment: Although these coats are inherently trendy, you”ll never regret picking a classic print, like leopard, which will always be wearable. Same goes for classic bright colors, like red, or jewel tones.
Get in on the trend: Move on from colors and prints and pick one with embellishments, from feather trim to intricate beadwork.