Whether you’re spending time outdoors or just going about your day-to-day, coping with cold weather demands the use of a quality winter coat. But what makes a good winter coat? What insulation should it contain? Of what material should it be constructed? How should it be sized?
For help in making your decision on your own winter coat, read our recommendations for the best winter coats for men. After that, take a look at our buyer’s guide and our collection of frequently asked questions. Good luck with your search and selection!
Our Top Picks
Striker Men’s Climate Jacket
The North Face McMurdo Down Parka
CAMELSPORTS Men’s Winter Jacket
If you’re really serious about staying warm in the winter, you need the Striker Men’s Climate Jacket. It is waterproof and windproof for added protection in cold, snowy weather. And, it’s our recommended premium choice of the best winter coats for men.
Among the most important features of the Striker Men’s Climate Jacket is its flotation technology. The Striker jacket is capable of keeping an average person afloat for up to two hours in the event of a cold-weather water accident.
Other features of this best winter coat for men include its liner, which can be worn on its own in less-than-frigid weather. The Climate Jacket also includes an array of pockets that will keep your cell phone, outdoor gear, or whatever, close at hand.
The Striker jacket represents the pinnacle of cold-weather technology. Striker Technologies, the developer of the jacket, has been around for nearly 20 years and has become the highest standard of the industry.
- Lots of storage pockets
- Plenty of room for layering other clothing
- Excellent choice for ice fishing
- Sizing may run smaller than expected
- May be too heavy for some wearers
- Sleeves may be a bit small for some wearers
If you’re looking for the perfect parka to keep you warm during the coldest of winters, then look no further than the North Face McMurdo Down Parka.
Known for its quality products, The North Face has done it again with this parka–it’s waterproof and windproof and guaranteed to keep you warm thanks to the 600-fill-power recycled waterfowl down insulation.
This parka comes with a draft flap that covers the center front zipper to keep out the elements and an adjustable hood with a removable faux-fur trim.
- Great combination of style and durability
- 2-layer DryVent fabric provides both waterproof and breathable protection from the elements
- Concealed alpine chest pockets with secure-zip
- bulky; not as suitable for everyday wear.
- May be too heavy for some purchasers to wear comfortably
Offering lots of great features, the CAMELSPORTS Men’s Winter Jacket is a clear winner among the best winter coats for men. As our choice for the best budget-conscious option among men’s winter coats, the CAMELSPORTS jacket offers style along with warmth.
Among other things, the CAMELSPORTS jacket strikes a great balance between bulk and warmth. That allows the wearer significant freedom of movement, a feature that can be absent among other men’s winter coats.
The CAMELSPORTS jacket also includes a stand-up collar to protect the neck against cold breezes. And when needed, the jacket is also equipped with a hood for additional cold-weather protection. As a final note, the CAMELSPORTS jacket’s fill material is both fluffy and dense for maximum insulation.
- Offers good rain and wind resistance
- Stylish design and appearance
- Wristband is adjustable for added warmth
- Sizing may be somewhat inaccurate
- Zipper subject to snagging
- May weigh more than some users expect
For hiking, snowboarding, or nothing special, The North Face ThermoBall Eco Snow Triclimate 3-in-1 Jacket is an excellent choice among the best winter coats for men.
The North Face jacket features a completely waterproof shell and a warm inner liner that can either be worn together or independently. The versatility of this jacket offers a ton of options for wearers in the unpredictable weather of wintertime.
The inner liner of this jacket comes with The North Face’s ThermoBall Eco insulation that is made from 100% post-consumer recycled polyester–which means you’ll stay warm even when wet.
- Warmth compares favorably to down-filled coats
- Secure-snap Hand pockets on the inner jacket
- Outer jacket comes with a standard fit for easy layering
- Fit in the hip is restrictive for some wearers
- Flaws within the zipper design
- Sizing may differ between outer shell and inner lining
Given the bulk, insulation, and weight of many of even the best men’s winter coats, it can be difficult to find a comfortable option. Happily, that’s not the case with the Columbia Men’s White Out II, our most comfortable option among the best winter coats for men.
The Columbia Men’s White Out II jacket features polyester in its shell, lining, and insulative filling. Polyester is particularly effective at trapping body heat. Multiple layers of polyester, as featured in the Columbia Men’s White Out II jacket, multiply that effectiveness.
In addition, polyester is water-resistant, which makes this Columbia jacket particularly good in snowy conditions.
The White Out II jacket is also very light, weighing in at just over 1 pound. That, of course, makes it a comfortable way to keep warm in wintry temperatures.
- Easily packable for camping and travel
- Great alternative to down-filled coat
- Readily accommodates layering of other clothing
- Insulation may be installed unevenly
- Cut may not be flattering to some body types
- Inside pockets should be zippered
Best Winter Coats for Men Buyer’s Guide
As you think about purchasing a men’s winter coat, you’ll certainly want assurance that it will keep you adequately protected from low temperatures. But that’s not all you should consider in your search for the best winter coats for men.
In addition to the warmth provided by a coat, you should be interested in how well it will shield you from frigid winds. Also, you should want to know how well it will protect you from precipitation, particularly during snowy weather.
Finally, the breathability of a winter coat is also important. The less breathable a particular coat may be, the more of a problem you may have with the accumulation of sweat. In addition to being uncomfortable, sweat accumulation can create health issues through loss of potassium and sodium.
Technical, Hard Shell and Soft Shell Coats
You’ll be confronted with choices among three types of coats among the best winter coats for men — technical, soft shell and hard shell styles.
Technical coats are specifically designed for men who spend a lot of time outdoors. But if you live in an area where winter temperatures can plunge steeply, you may need a technical coat for everyday use.
Soft shell coats
Designed to keep you mobile while keeping you warm, soft shell coats are best seen as mid-layer options in cold weather. Teaming a soft shell coat with a hard shell outer layer is your best option.
If you can wear a soft shell coat on its own in cold weather and still be comfortable, you’ll find that it’s very breathable. That’s a definite help among the best winter coats for men in wicking away sweat when you’re exerting yourself.
Hard shell coats
You need to be careful if you’re looking at a hard shell coat as an option among the best winter coats for men. These coats aren’t designed for protection from the cold. Instead, they are particularly good at keeping water and wind at bay, which is undeniably helpful in cold weather.
If you’re considering a hard shell coat, you’ll have to wear other clothing under it. Only then will you be ensured that you are warm as well as dry and protected from the wind.
Best Winter Coats for Men Frequently Asked Questions
You’ve seen our recommendations for the best winter coats for men, but that certainly doesn’t mean all of your questions are answered. Read on for some additional guidance on evaluating winter coats, particularly with regard to fill materials.
Is down the best fill material for men’s winter coats?
There has long been a debate over whether down or some synthetic fill material is the best option for the best winter coats for men. And frankly, it’s doubtful that the debate will ever be settled.
Down jackets likely will keep you warmer than synthetic-filled jackets, but there are trade-offs that make synthetic fill an attractive option. First, of course, is the initial cost, with down jackets routinely costing more than synthetic-fill jackets.
And there’s the fact that down, unlike synthetic fill materials, loses its insulative properties once it gets wet. Adding to the complications for down filling is that down-filled coats will require specialized cleaning, which will only add to their cost over time.
But synthetic filling is, as a general rule, not as comfortable as down filling. That’s in part because down filling will more readily adhere to the body’s contours than synthetic fillers.
However, many people are allergic to down fill, in which case a synthetic fill is the only reasonable choice for coat insulation. Also, synthetic fill material, specifically polyester fiberfill, is more resilient than down fill and will last longer.
In a perfect world, down would be the hands-down favorite fill material for men’s winter coats. In the real world, however, it’s a toss-up.
In the end, the choice of down over synthetic fill will be a personal preference when considering the best winter coats for men.
What synthetic fill material works best in men’s winter coats?
If synthetic fill is your choice among the best winter coats for men, you’ll still need to decide what type of synthetic fill you want.
Coats with a mid-layer synthetic fill are designed for relatively low-exertion activities like walking or fishing. Within that category, coats with puffier insulation provide warmth at the expense of maximum breathability.
As an alternative to mid-layer fill, some synthetic-fill coats, called active-insulation coats, are more breathable. That, of course, makes them more suitable for more strenuous activities like jogging or skiing. And that’s not a bad option in considering the best winter coats for men.
In addition to their enhanced breathability, active-insulation coats are better than mid-layer coats at regulating temperature.
Will the insulative properties of a men’s winter jacket decline over time?
One thing you’ll want to know before deciding which of the best winter coats for men is best for you is how long its insulative properties will last. Read on for a quick look at the durability of both down-filled and synthetic-filled coats.
As you’ve already learned, down fill will lose its insulative properties when it becomes wet. Over the long term, down can also lose its insulative properties through compression. Compression occurs when a down-filled garment is rolled up for long-term storage or is wedged tightly in a closet for a long time.
When properly cared for and carefully stored, a down-filled coat should last for at least 10 years. Certainly, that’s not a bad lifespan among the best winter coats for men.
If you’re choosing a synthetic-filled option among the best winter coats for men, you’ll find a confusing array of brand names for that insulation.
The important thing to know is whether the coat you’re considering is a “short-staple” type or a “continuous filament” type. A “short staple” coat will feel most like down but will be less durable. Also, short-staple synthetic insulation will move around more freely, possibly creating “cold spots” in the coat.
Wrapping up Best Winter Coats for Men
Now that you’ve seen our recommendations and tips for choosing a men’s winter coat, you’re ready to make your own selection.
- About the Author
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Born in Madelia, MN, to a now 5-generation Minnesota family, Ryan’s MN roots go deep.
A painter by day, Ryan founded Life in Minnesota in 2013 with his wife Kelly to chronicle their musings on everything Minnesota. Ryan and Kelly are raising their 7 kiddos in Maple Grove, MN.
When he’s not shuttling his kids around to hockey practice, you might find him in the shop working on his leatherwork. Undoubtedly, there will be a family trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area every summer, and of course weekends at Grandpa’s cabin up north in the summer.