Jackets are an essential part of a man’s wardrobe. A jacket is functional and provides warmth on chilly fall or cold winter days, but the right style can also elevate your look. There are different types of jackets to pair with outfits, and the best jackets for men are equal parts stylish, versatile, and comfortable. The challenge can be choosing the right jacket styles for the occasion and season.
Whether you’re looking for new outfit ideas or checking out the latest trends, this guide will help you get familiar with the various types of men’s jackets to experiment with. From casual jackets you can wear anywhere like the bomber and denim trucker to nice classic coats like the topcoat and peacoat that are appropriate for special occasions, here are all the best men’s jacket styles every modern guy should know about and own.
- 1 Men’s Jacket Styles
- 1.1 Blazer
- 1.2 Denim Jacket
- 1.3 Leather Jacket
- 1.4 Biker Jacket
- 1.5 Fleece Jacket
- 1.6 Harrington Jacket
- 1.7 Bomber Jacket
- 1.8 Suede Jacket
- 1.9 Puffer Jacket
- 1.10 Trucker Jacket
- 1.11 Varsity Jacket
- 1.12 Coach Jacket
- 1.13 Down/Puffer Vest
- 1.14 Chore Coat
- 1.15 Field Jacket
- 1.16 Parka
- 1.17 Pea Coat
- 1.18 Overcoat
- 1.19 Raincoat
- 1.20 Technical Jackets
- 2 Classic Jackets
- 3 Short Jackets
- 4 Long Jackets
- 5 Trending Jackets
Men’s Jacket Styles
The blazer is perhaps the quintessential men’s jacket. From weddings to bars to traveling, there is nothing that a blazer can’t do. Cut roomier than a suit jacket, blazers are made to be worn with other separate pieces like slacks, chinos, or even jeans. Many modern gentleman are simply dressing the blazer with jeans for a smart casual look that blends comfort and style. Try finding yourself a casual blazer to wear with other fall layers to keep you looking sharp and staying warm.
The denim jacket has been a trending style for years and continues to be one of the coolest casual jackets to get. Made from durable denim, this light jacket offers a vintage feel on modern outfits. Because they are usually unlined, you can wear just your denim jacket on warmer fall days or you can toss it on top of a hoodie when the temperatures begin to drop. A denim jacket is a perfect way to add an effortless vintage style to your wardrobe. Try personalizing on with patches and embroidery.
Another classic, the leather jacket, has long been a go-to for men looking to keep warm. Leather is naturally insulating and water-resistant, and so is perfect for throwing on in the fog. Classic styles are cut to be roomy in the body and sleeves, and these lend themselves well to being worn over a zip-up jacket or a button-down and a sweater. The best part about these jackets is that the leather will break in as you wear it and the jacket will continue to look better over time.
Biker jackets are close-fitting, black leather jackets with zippers and studs favored by motorcyclists because of leather’s naturally protective qualities. They often feature a large front zipper with wide lapels and sometimes come with a built-in belt around the waist. Also known as moto jackets, this style is great for those with an edgier look. It will pair well with black jeans and your choice of black boots.
Loved by outdoor enthusiasts, college students, and midtown businessmen alike, the classic fleece jacket is a staple for men everywhere. Common in quarter and half-zip styles, fleece jackets are great for maintaining a slim profile. With the advancements in recent years in the tech clothing industry, one fleece jacket may be all you need. Invest in one that has detail that you are drawn to, whether that is color blocking or extra pockets to store things on the go.
Also known as a golf or blouson jacket, the Harrington is a short jacket with elastic cuffs on the wrists and waist. It is typically made from water-resistant, lightweight material and includes a zip front. The roomy construction makes this jacket a favorite for people who need to be relatively active while looking sharp. This jacket is the classic from which other classics, like the bomber and Members Only jacket, are derived. Perfect for unpredictable weather, this jacket can be worn well with a polo or ribbed sweater underneath. Though the name is not as familiar as some other jackets on this list, it may be the most versatile. Anything you wear that does not require a shined pair of shoes is a great outfit to pair your Harrington with.
The bomber jacket is an adaptation of the Harrington and has quickly become one of the most popular jackets for men to wear right now. What sets the bomber apart is that it is usually roomier in the sleeves with a tighter cuff around the waist and wrists. Today, bombers offer a lightweight and trendy option for men looking to vary their wardrobe. They are light enough to be worn over a T-shirt in the spring and roomy enough to wear over a hoodie in the winter.
Not a style in and of itself, suede jackets are typically Harringtons or bombers that are made from leather with a napped finish. Oftentimes, these stylish men’s jackets come in a deep tan or brown color for a timeless style. The suede jacket grew in popularity in the ‘70s and has recently been making a comeback as a fashion trend. Suede requires a little more upkeep than traditional leather, but suede jacket styles are cool and worth the extra care.
The puffer jacket is another piece that has been taken from outdoor enthusiasts and made into a style staple. Also known as a puffy, the variations of this jacket range from the sleek, packable outerwear favored by backpackers to the extra-puffed large jackets made popular by NYC rappers in the ‘90s. Oversized puffer jackets still enjoy some popularity, so don’t be afraid to make a statement with one. You won’t have to worry about many other layers, as these jackets are incredibly insulating.
The trucker jacket is one of the most iconic pieces of American clothing. The term is often used interchangeably with ‘denim jacket,’ but there are some differences. The trucker name is given to a jacket of any material that has certain elements: the cropped length, the pointed collar, the buttoned front. Most of these jackets happen to be denim, but you can find them in a variety of colors and materials. These jackets are a great piece of American style, no matter what they are made from.
A spin-off of the bomber jacket, the varsity jacket was popularized by the prevalence of letterman’s jackets worn by varsity athletes. These jackets fit like bombers, with leather sleeves in contrasting colors from the boiled wool torso. Though originally only available through schools, you can now pick up one of these jackets in your favorite set of colors. Perfect for adding a little collegiate style to your fall outfits, a well-made varsity jacket will keep you looking good long after your sports career finishes.
While athletes wear varsity jackets, coaches have made their own style of jacket popular. The coach jacket has a straight, clean silhouette with elastic cuffs, a drawstring around the waist, and button closures. Recognizable due to their ubiquity among NFL coaches in the ‘90s, these jackets quickly became popular off the field. For example, the rap group NWA had matching branded coach jackets. Now, they are the perfect piece to provide some protection against wind and drizzle without sacrificing the crisp lines of the rest of your outfit.
An essential for combating variable transitional weather, the down vest is a functional piece that can be incredibly stylish. Very different than traditional suiting vests, these vests are also known as down gilets or bodywarmers in the U.K. Modern styles combine warming insulation with slim silhouettes, and so can be worn over your favorite button-down in the fall.
The chore coat is another piece that has a long history as a workwear piece. The origins of modern chore coats can be traced back to the 19th century. A loose-fitting jacket with a pointed collar, button closure, and roomy external pockets, they were usually constructed from durable fabrics like duck canvas or twill. Modern iterations offered by designers tend to be more form-fitting, but you can still find traditional styles made by workwear brands like Carhartt.
Based on the iconic M-65 military jacket, field jackets are zip-front jackets with collars that button around the neck to offer increased protection from the elements. They are typically made from water-resistant materials and include at least four external pockets, with some inside too. Robert De Niro’s character in Taxi Driver famously wore a field jacket, and you should too. Barbour produces some of the most recognizable field jackets in waxed cotton, but you can find one for any price point.
A parka is the ultimate jacket for keeping warm. Windproof, insulated, long, and most often featuring a fur-lined hood, these jackets offer maximum protection from the biting, dead-of-winter cold. Choose a parka in a classic color like olive green or black and wear it with a sweater, jeans, and boots. If you have to walk to work in winter, wear your parka right on top of your suit.
Traditionally worn by sailors in 18th-century navies, the pea coat is one garment that has not changed much with time. Modern pea coats maintain the thick wool fabric, double-breasted construction, short length, and large collar of their predecessors. These qualities make it incredibly weatherproof. Because of the short, relatively snug fit of most pea coats, it looks best when worn closed. Don’t be afraid to pop the collar when the wind picks up; after all, it is what they are made for.
Overcoats are more formal coats meant to be worn over suit jackets or blazers. Traditionally double-breasted and made from wool or other thick materials, these coats will keep you warm for a mid-winter job interview. They are roomy enough to be worn over your suit and typically end around the knee. Topcoats are just lighter versions of the overcoat.
The term raincoat generally refers to any waterproof garment that is cut long, similar to an overcoat. Rain jackets tend to be shorter, ending around the waist. If you are dressing formally in the rainy season, you will want to invest in a raincoat. They are often made in classic styles so you can be both stylish and dry. There are more casual options that are made from synthetics in striking colors and patterns.
Technical outerwear is comprised of utilitarian clothing made from innovative fabrics. Many jacket brands have borrowed the construction and materials from outerwear and added eye-catching designs. The product of these marriages has been excellent pieces that will keep you protected from the elements while you look at home in the city. Also known as techwear, these jackets tend to be high performance, so they will require an investment, but their high functionality is worth it.
Nothing is quite as classic as a navy blazer. It should be the first formal piece you own besides a suit. Try for something in a lighter shade of navy without gold buttons or details to give it more versatility. Once you have found one that fits perfectly, wear your navy blazer with khaki chinos or jeans. Style it with a powder blue button-down, pastel chinos, and boat shoes for a yacht club chic, or wear it with olive chinos, boots, and a sweater for a classic fall aesthetic. To be strictly business, try a white shirt with charcoal grey slacks, your choice of tie, and a navy blazer on top.
Waxed Canvas Jacket
Waxed canvas is a material that will help protect you from the elements. They also break in as you wear them more, aging like fine wine. Modern suppliers have embraced waxed jackets as the timeless pieces they are. There are plenty of riffs on this jacket, from chore coats to truckers to field jackets. Barbour sells the most recognizable waxed canvas jackets, but new American heritage brands like Flint and Tinder offer fresh takes on the classic. Find one that suits your style and wear it with your best worn-in denim so that your outfit looks like it was made just for you.
Brown Leather Jacket
Captain America wore this jacket in the ’40s and present day, and it looked great in both eras. You don’t need to be built like Cap to pull this jacket off; it is already timeless by itself. Look for a jacket that has been passed down by your dad or grandpa or get a new one to break it in yourself. Modern leather jackets that are cut slim look great over a T-shirt and jeans. Roomier fits are a great outerwear piece for semi-formal looks; try a chocolate or chestnut leather jacket over a striped dress shirt and slacks for an all-American business casual look.
Blue Denim Trucker
The denim trucker jacket is perhaps the most recognizable piece of Americana in the fashion world. With a cropped look that ends around the waist, this jacket is perfect for adding a stylish edge to your casual looks without dominating the outfit. Levis made the original, but these jackets are universal now. Decide what details you like, and you can find one to suit your style. Wear it with grey chinos and a T-shirt or go all out and wear a denim jacket with jeans. You can take your favorite denim jacket into smart casual occasions by wearing it with chinos and a button-down; just make sure your jacket is well-tailored and free of holes.
The navy pea coat will give you a clean-cut style reminiscent of the swashbuckling navy of centuries past. It is appropriate for casual, smart casual, and even business casual looks. Try a navy pea coat with a shirt, tie, flannel-lined grey trousers, and boots for mid-winter business affairs. New England-based brands like LL Bean and Brooks Brothers always carry traditional peacoats that will take you through stormy seas.
The fishtail parka is another piece that was pioneered by the military and commandeered by the public. It has become a standard piece for outerwear, and rightly so. It is protective and the silhouette is effortlessly cool. The M-51 is the original military style, but there are countless spin-offs to suit your taste. Pick one up and wear it whenever the weather gets cold enough. Though not traditional outerwear, wearing your fishtail parka over a navy or grey suit will help keep you warm, dry, and stylish. Alpha Industries has been the industry standard for military heritage pieces such as this one.
We typically think of wool as coming from sheep, but camel wool is a fabric that has been common in menswear since at least the 19th century. Though it can be dyed, camel wool is often sought after because of its trademark golden-tan hue. A camel topcoat is an essential piece for smart casual and formal wear. The signature color gives any look, whether it is dark denim with a button-down or a suit, a beautiful finish. ASOS offers a camel coat with a relaxed feel, perfect for casual or semi-formal looks. Designer brands like Ralph Lauren sell camel topcoats that will require a hefty investment, but camel has been in style since the 19th century, and it is not going to go anywhere now.
Nylon Bomber Jacket
The bomber silhouette that was made famous by WWII pilots lives on today in fashionable styles available at all price points. Get an olive bomber with room in the sleeves and an elastic waistband and wear that with slim jeans and boots for an easy fall look. Styles that have a matte finish and hold their shape well, such as those offered by Everlane, are appropriate to layer over an untucked button-down or polo with dark chinos. These days, nearly every retailer, from designer brands to the Gap, will have a selection of these jackets for you to choose from.
Sometimes referred to as a denim jacket with fur, shearling jackets are designed to look good but feel even better. Also known as a trucker or sherpa-lined jacket, the classic denim shearling jacket looks great worn over a T-shirt for everyday looks. If you want the shearling look in a more refined style, try a leather shearling jacket in a chocolate brown. Many smaller retailers that specialize in ranchwear will have unique takes on this jacket.