One of the best things about fall and winter is that you get to wear your favorite coat almost every day. A good coat is like a good suit. Put it on and you feel almost invincible. The following options should help most of us get that feeling for a relatively affordable price (some are more affordable than others). In-person items were tried over a suit jacket or blazer to make sure they fit, and sizes are noted below. Head here to get an idea as to the height/weight of the fella (hi) in those shots.
GAP Wool Blend Mac Jacket – $96.20 w/ HAPPY ($148)
Surprisingly good weight. 60% Wool, 25% Polyester, 10% Rayon, 5% “Other” blend just feels like a good quality melton wool. Simple, covered, single breasted placket with patch pockets just below the waist. Raglan sleeves make it look a little more casual than a standard topcoat, but not terrible. Collar has good stiffness to it and should stay standing if you want it to block the wind. Body is lined in a 100% cotton, slightly quilted chambray, with a light amount of polyester fill for insulation. Always on sale. Size shown above is a medium. A little boxy through the sides, but it’s not flying-squirrel bad. Just $74 if you’ve got a BR/GAP/Old Navy card and you use the Black Friday preview code BFRIDAY
J. Crew Peak Lapel Topcoat in Wool/Cashmere – $315 w/ SHOPNOW ($450)
Spendy, but it’s a looker. 95% wool and 5% cashmere feels softer than having just that 5% thrown in there. Lined in Bemberg cupro which should breathe easier than a poly lining. Peak lapels are a nice touch, but do know that the button stance is a bit lower than most other coats. Meaning: there’s a bit more open space to that “V” that other topcoats, and you’ll need to wear a scarf on the coldest of days. Some guys will actually prefer that. Warm without being stiff or bulky. Ludlow fit. Size shown here is a 41R. Not 40, 41. Pricey… but best in show. Code is good for 30% off through today, 11/23.
Shockingly enough, maybe the best feeling fabric of the bunch. 90% wool and 10% cashmere. Noticeably smooth & soft out of the box. The interior lining is 100% polyester, and not the best feeling stuff, but not unexpected at this price point. Sleeves are pretty trim in diameter and run long (see how it hangs up on the right hand glove). As was the case last year, these aren’t going to be the warmest coats. But they’ll look pretty darn good. Size shown above is a medium in the grey glen plaid pattern. Also available in navy and black. Seems like they’re having a hard time keeping the camel color in stock. Again, not the warmest, but best in show in terms of the cheaper options. Code is good for $15 off $100+.
Boden Quilted Jacket – $142.80 w/ FRND ($168)
Seemingly an annual inclusion on this list, but for good reason. It’s “imported”, but the quality is really quite impressive. Seems to outperform the competition from Barbour too. Will go on sale every so often. Lined in a 100% cotton, flannel-like fabric with a Westminster print on it. One thing worth noting is that at the end of the sleeves, the cuffs have an internal elastic band inside. Intention is to keep snow/rain/wind out, but some guys can find that snugness a little annoying. Kinda odd to see that they only make it in navy these days, whereas they had multiple shades available in the past. Code FRND is good for 15% off, but if you’ve never ordered from them before, use 7M6R to get 20% off as a first time customer. Big thanks to Corbin A. for the tip!
Lands’ End Tailored Moon Mills Wool Topcoat – $279.30 w/ THANKS & 2323
Tweedy. Has that speckled thing going for it. Pricey at full retail, but with the often-run 40% off codes, you could nab it for $239. Shell has that authentic, slightly-rough texture of tweed. Not the heaviest thing, and you might need to layer up if it gets real cold. Lined in nylon. Size shown is a 40R. If you want to skip the tweed/Moon Mills price hike, and instead go for a solid navy, know that it looks like they have the exact same coat, only in a wool blend, for a heck of a lot less. Code & pin is good for 30% off, and expires today, 11/23. But there will be more codes.
Found it. Surprisingly good feeling. 55% wool, 35% poly, 10% other is the makeup for the body of the jacket, while the lining is 100% poly. But not a bad feeling poly. Not scratchy. Silky. Hits right below the belt line. Nice baseball-jacket style collar. Snaps are clean and tight. Size shown here is a medium.
Got high hopes for this one, but just haven’t been able to find it in store quiet yet. The fabric makeup is almost exactly the same as last year’s version (2015 = 60% Wool, 35% Polyester, 5% Other, 2014 = 60% wool, 40% Polyester), and last year’s camel topcoat from BR earned a well deserved best in show nod. There appears to be one design change to this year’s version, which puts flap pockets more front and center, instead of slashed out on the sides. Some won’t like this, since it’s not as easy to stick your hands in them for warmth.
A coat of a different cauh-lah! Sure, that “rust” shade is different, yet not overly loud. And the color is toned down by the dead simple design of the jacket. It’s a single breasted, mid-thigh topcoat with a covered placket. Hacking (that mean’s they’re angled) pockets make it a bit easier to shove your hands in there. 50% polyester, 47% wool, 3% acrylic. Size shown is a medium. Runs a tad small, so strongly consider sizing up for ease of layering. Ships and returns free via Nordstrom.
For those who love Everlane’s “radical transparency” policy. A 75% wool, 20% polyamide, 5% cashmere melton wool blend milled in Italy, then shipped to Suzhou China for the cutting and sewing. Covered placket. Available in charcoal or black.
Old Navy Wool Blend Topcoat – $71.96 w/ EARLYBIRD ($119)
Surprisingly little construction to this thing, which can sometimes give it a bit of a frumpy appearance. 40% wool and 60% poly/acrylic/”other.” Like the UNIQLO coat, it’s not gonna keep you that warm. But, if you’re in the market for a mid-thigh topcoat at a lower price point, then it’d be a great beginner’s topcoat. Otherwise, go with the UNIQLO. Currently 40% off with the code EARLYBIRD.
J. Crew Dock Peacoat w/ Thinsulate – $187.60 w/ SHOPNOW ($298)
J. Crew’s take on the classic peacoat (more on authentic peacoats at the end of the post). Not as boxy as some more traditional designs, and the 10-button, slightly longer front should keep your suit jackets and blazers reasonably protected. The chest high hand-warmer pockets, in addition to the standard flap pockets at the waist, are completely key. Just charcoal and navy this year. Seems to go on sale pretty often.
Bonobos “The Mainline” Topcoat in Grey Plaid – $348.60 w/ JET ($598)
A splurge that just hit the sale section, and is thus worth keeping an eye on. Italian wool, a different but not too outrageous pattern, and short peak lapels. Will drop under four hundred bucks if Bonobos runs an extra 20% off (or more) sale code. A warning for the beefier dudes: Looks like this thing is only made in their “slim” cut. Not their standard, which is already decently contoured. So a slim might be too close for some to get over a suit or sportcoat comfortably. UPDATE: This just went on sale for an extra 30% off with the code JET. Code is goo 11/24-11/25.
Lands’ End Quilted Barge Blazer – $146.30 w/ THANKS & 2323
One of those hybrid, mixed-media things. There’s a lot going on with this jacket, but it’s surprisingly well executed. You’re looking at a jacket with a waxed cotton body, wool/cotton sleeves, and a corduroy collar & elbow patches. Cut in a sportcoat style no less. The waxed cotton body comes from Halley Stevensons of Dundee Scotland, and the jacket as a whole has a nice, high-quality feel in your hands. Fit is a tad boxy, and it could have benefited from a center or side vents in the rear (it’s vent-less) but that might be getting a bit picky. It’s an odd duck, but a good duck. Functional sleeve buttons at the cuffs, but that’s not so worrisome since it’s outerwear, and not a true sportcoat where you’d like to show some shirtcuff if you can. Size shown is a medium. Reg. $209, but the code and pin drop it by 30% through today, 11/23.
JCP Stafford Wool Blend Topcoat – $107.99 w/ VIP43 ($275)
Best in show for those who prefer their coats to be a little more traditional in structure and length. JC Penney hasn’t changed these much, if at all compared to last year’s version. It still feels like the super soft wool used on their camelhair blazers, the shoulders have a little bit of structure but aren’t too boxy, and the slash pockets at the waist are super handy (hardy har friggin’ har…). 63% wool, 32% poly, and 5% “other.” Just about knee length. Made in the Dominican Republic. They do run a bit big. Size shown is a 38R. Always on sale. Going to be noticeably warmer than the UNIQLO topcoat, but won’t be overly toasty either. Currently an extra 20% off with the code.
First mentioned in the SPECTRE Steal the Style post. Ribbed lambswool collar, sleeves, and back, with a quilted torso. Solid quality knit too. Tightly woven, and seems to keep the wind at bay. Not super warm, but good as an extra layer or when outside and on the move. Ships and returns free via Nordstrom. Also available in navy. Size shown is a medium.
The just so-so Topcoat: B.R. Plaid Topcoat – $149 w/ BRSAVE ($298)
Looks better on BR’s site than it feels in person. Maybe it’s the nylon in the 60% Wool, 20% Polyester, 15% Nylon, 5% Other blend, but it feels a little more rigid than most of these other coats (and more rigid than BR coats from the past.) Also… it’s not that warm. Despite having a bit of insulation buried in there, it doesn’t feel like it’d do all that well in frigid temps. Doesn’t drape so hot. Not everyone is going to like the flap pocket at the chest. Size shown is a Medium. Terrific muted plaid pattern though. Right now it’s 50% off with the code BRSAVE (it’s one of their “select styles” getting this cut).
Hat tip to reader Nico for pointing out that this isn’t a half-bad match for the Topcoat Bond wears to Rome in SPECTRE. Mid thigh instead of knee length, but still much longer than a standard peacoat. Epaulets at the shoulders. Haven’t seen this one in person yet, but EXPRESS seems to make some solid wool blend coats for the price. Especially when you factor in sales and all the codes they run.
Decent if you can get it on sale, which it often is. A little boxy, but should keep you warm on a budget. Fabric makeup for the shell is 60% Wool, 25% Polyester, 10% Rayon, 5% Other fibers. Insulated with poly. Typically an annual inclusion on this list. Size shown above is a medium.
The Mega Splurge: Suitsupply 100% Cashmere Navy Topcoat – $779
Good cripes. Simple, classic, and made from 100% Italian Milled Cashmere. Good luck trying to keep your date’s arm off yours. And if they get cold and you drape your coat over their shoulders? Just make sure you get it back.
The Reminder: Go check out your local Army/Navy Surplus store
The annual nudge to go check out your local surplus store if you’ve got one nearby. There were a lot of peacoats & topcoats from wheelhouse retailers that were tried on and could have made this list, but most cost more than an Army/Navy surplus coat,without delivering equal quality or better looks. Most surplus stores carry high quality, usually made-in-the-USA outerwear. Feel free to swap out buttons if they’re too showy (like on the bridge coat on the right). Both of the coats shown here were found for the low $100s