Warm Weather Style

    Cold Weather Guys’ Style: The Perfect Puffer Coat

    9th January 2014

    Mens Puffer Vests and Jackets

    My walk to and from the subway usually clocks in at a solid twelve minutes. Enough for a catch-up conversation with an old friend, one act of a favorite podcast…or lately, for my toes to become completely frozen. Like, desperately googling “How do you know if you have frostbite?” when I get home, type of frozen.

    It’s at times like these that a puffer vest or jacket feels just about perfect. A vest for layering under a more professional overcoat, or a coat with sleeves for when you’re really not messing around. No matter which way you wear it, the puffer is truly a winter wardrobe essential.

    Get the Look:

    (Top row, left to right)

    Black Jacket: Obey Black Out Puffer: $150

    Navy/Green Vest: AE Puffer Vest: $29

    Maroon Jacket: Zara Puffer: $120

    Canvas Vest: True Religion Puffer Vest: $228

    (Bottom row, left to right)

    Chambray/Check Vest: SLVDR Insulated Puffer Vest: $67

    Black Wanton Jacket: Diesel Wanton Puffer: $398

    Blue Vest: AE Puffer Vest: $29

    Wool Vest: Gant Rugger Puffer Vest: $188

    Tell us:

    Are you a puffer vest/jacket guy? Why or why not?

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    • Tod C

      No – doesn’t cover your backside or legs. I have a big ass parka for when it is really bad, otherwise a pea coat or duffel us better.

      • Style Girlfriend

        That sounds pretty great too. How long is the parka?

        • Tod C

          Right to the knees, I got it at the Mountain Equipment Co-op here in Canada (if you go outside here you know this store). But it is monstrosity (I can’t sit comfortably in the car with it on) so it is only reserved for desperate situations.

    • Dan J.

      No. Not for me. I think they’re fine for a casual look for the younger crowd. Once you get out of college, however, I think they’re a no go and my college days are long behind me. Even for the younger set, I don’t at all care for them layered under nicer clothes. To me, they just have a very informal vibe, rather like sneakers. I don’t mind mixing some formal and informal items but putting a puffer vest under a blazer, say, is taking it too far, like wearing sneakers with a suit. Just my opinion. You’re entitled to your own, of course.

      • average joe

        did you mean quilted vest under a blazer – i’m not sure a puffer would fit?

        • Dan J.
          • average joe

            wow…i didn’t think that was possible. those are good puffer/ suit looks. I think you’d have to have contrasting colors though to really pull it off and I’m guessing that sport jacket runs a little big for him to pull off wearing a puffer underneath I’ve got a black LL Bean puffer vest and even though it fits slim, I can’t get it to look right underneath my suit jacket

        • Style Girlfriend
          • Dan J.

            Ugh. If you like it, well, then, you like it. But I don’t get it at all. I look at that and I’m thinking “What happened? Did your alarm clock go off late and you got dressed in the dark and ran out the door?” And yes, I realize you just linked to GQ and they’re giving it a thumbs up. I’m not saying you’re wrong for liking it. I’m just saying that the look completely mystifies ME.

            • Style Girlfriend

              Ah well. Different strokes for different folks :)

    • Mathieu Bilal

      I haven’t worn one since high school, I remember them being really popular growing up in NY. With the exception of this week, the NC climate never really calls for one and I’ve been on the fence lately towards adding one to my wardrobe. Did see a cool looking one at a RL outlet that I almost picked up though, looked like something Paul Bunyan would wear.

    • Dave

      I have this one, except the entire coat is the bright blue trim color. I really love it–it’s lightweight yet warm, and I think it looks good. The only downside is that people at work call it my “Costanza Jacket” because it’s puffy, despite it looking nothing like George’s GoreTex parka.

      I really like the ones I see out there with more of a square or diamond quilted pattern–If i had it to do over again, I would probably buy one of those.

    • scott

      In Oklahoma it gets pretty cold with below zero wind chills, temps below 20 for days at a time. My dogs demand their daily walks and I just upgraded my coat to one that will handle anything the weather can throw at me.,default,pd.html
      A bit more substantial than some of those you posted, but I did a lot of comparing against the big “outdoor” brands and for the first time ended up with a Columbia, it’s warm as can be.

      • scott

        I forgot to ask, what is the favorite podcast you mentioned? Mine is Uhh Yeah Dude, the best comedy podcast of all time. ALL TIME! :)

        • Style Girlfriend

          I’ll have to check it out! I love Julie Klausner’s “How Was Your Week” and NPR’s “All Things Considered” (hence, the “acts” note)

    • Wolf

      I’m a bit too big for puffer jackets, the complete lack of taper makes me look like a fatty. Vests work though in that regard, but one time I tried one on in the store and an ex asked me if I had jumped ship and offered me a Tab.

    • Travis

      My wife has been trying to get me into a puffer vest ever since I took a pic of me in one and sent it to her with a caption about “in-vest-ing”. I’m not even a dad yet, and I have the worst jokes. Turns out the joke was on me though because she really liked the way I looked and has been trying to get me to buy one ever since.

      It’s not that I don’t like them. It’s more of a internal air conditioning problem. We live in Nashville, so winter is pretty mild save about a week out of the year. The rest of the time I get so hot with just a coat and a flannel. A vest would only make me sweat more. The idea is growing on me though, especially after the polar blast. I was definitely able to understand the need for vest as the single digit temps stayed around longer than just one day.

    • Joshua

      A puffer jacket might be too much for Southern California. A pea coat would be my style if I need an overcoat.

      A puffer vest are not practical for me; they will leave my arms cold. I prefer a cardigan (or a waistcoat for a not-so-cold day).

      PS. I wear a sport coat and a dress pant pretty much everyday.

    • TJ

      Nope, not for me. I live in Florida, usually all I ever need is a sweater or sport coat. Occasionally I’ll break out the peacoat, but that is few and far between.

      • Style Girlfriend

        I really can’t imagine anyone in Florida walking around in a peacoat!

        • TJ

          It was in the 30′s for 2 days here earlier this week. I broke it out then. Other than that it really just sits in my closet.

          • Style Girlfriend

            The 30s?! In Florida?? What part do you live in?!

            • Style Girlfriend

              …Admittedly, my understanding of geography and climates, but still. I know Florida’s supposed to be warmer than that!

            • TJ

              Tampa. It is usually very warm. It was a freak thing, guess we got a little of that polar vortex too.

    • gazza1982

      I love some of these but i just bought the reversible bomber jacket from new up and coming UK brand AKA, the reverse side has the look of a puffer but without too much bulk, bought it at and i got it for a good price too. my mates all want one now

      • Style Girlfriend

        I’ll have to check them out..thanks for the heads up!

    • AL-MO

      Quilted field vest? I’d like to try that look (don’t have one yet)

      Puffer vest? Probably not.

    • kellen owenby

      I have a down vest that I wear over my denim jacket during those days that are not quite cold enough for my peacoat or wool m65. Also, I live in GA. So, there are a lot of those days. Also, I work in a very casual office. So, this look works for me a lot of days from November-March…

      • Style Girlfriend

        I think I really need to make a swing to the southern states this year. I am clueless as to your weather patterns!

    • Miss Zias

      Love the list! I think this Rag and Bone one is so fantastic! It’s duck down..

      • Style Girlfriend

        Rawrrrr, I know it’s men’s, but I want that jacket!

    • Justin

      I’m more of a peacoat kind of guy. I’ve adopted it for all occasions. I do have a puffer I bought from Polo a few years back, I throw on for a quick jaunt to the grocery store, but rarely out.

    • Biscuit!

      St. Louis weather is… how do I put this… stupid. I haven’t had a puffer jacket, but do have a vest that I love. It’s pretty nice for when our weather swings 30 degrees in a day.

      • Style Girlfriend

        hahaha, very diplomatically said :)

    • Nate B

      Another couple options missing from your list are Uniqlo’s ultralight down jackets, and Lands’ End’s down vests.

      • Style Girlfriend

        Good additions, thanks Nate!