50+ Types of Coats for Women and Men – Complete Guide 2023

Woman sunglasses orange coat

Coats are necessary any time there is a chill in the air. For most of the country, and much of the world, that is half of the year or more. What you may not realize is that there are lots of types of coats, diverse in style and function as all of the other pieces of your wardrobe. You need to make sure the coat you buy performs as you need and wish.

Do you hope to make a statement with your coat or are you more focused on warmth? Do you need coats for high-profile events or are you looking for casual wear? Do you have the budget and closet space for multiple coats or do you need one coat that can do double, triple or quadruple duty?

Once you’re finished reading, you will be an authority on coats. Just make sure you read it all!

The coat

If you have always wanted to know everything there is to know about coats, you have come to the right place. To get started, we will jump in with what a coat is and isn’t. You will find out the difference between a coat, an overcoat, and a jacket. You’ll learn about the history of the coat, which dates to at least the Middle Ages. We will also explain all of the components of the coat itself.

Having this information makes you more knowledgeable about coats in general, but it also has a practical purpose. The more info you have about coats, the better your buying habits will be.

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You’ll know exactly what to look for and what certain phrases mean as you are shopping. Basically, you’ll be ready to go coat shopping with no questions whatsoever. Are you ready? Let’s get started!

What is a coat?

A coat is a piece of outerwear that is usually worn to add a layer of warmth. Though many people use the terms “jacket” and “coat” interchangeably, they are not the same. The primary difference is that the jacket’s hem reaches no further than the wearer’s hips, while a coat often hits the mid-calf or longer.

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A coat is sometimes worn as a fashion accessory, but more often, it is utilitarian in nature. While coats can be, and often are, fashionable, the primary purpose is to keep the wearer warm in cold weather. There are different degrees of thickness, types of material, and lengths that are worn depending on the event and the outside weather.

The exception to this is the housecoat, which is meant for wearing inside only. The housecoat is worn over other clothing. These clothes are usually pajamas. Often referred to as a robe, the housecoat is made to keep the wearer warm or to cover revealing pajamas when around other members of the house.

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Another tell-tale sign of a coat is that it is always worn over clothes. Some may think that the coat dress is an exception to this rule. This is not the case. The coat dress is not a coat but a dress that is made to resemble one. Naturally, it is possible to wear a coat with nothing underneath. However, that is not recommended.

Parts of a coat

An informed shopper needs to know the different parts of a coat. It is particularly helpful when shopping online. If you know about the various parts of a coat, you know what to look for and the appropriate questions to ask. Remember that not all coats will have all components listed below.

Parts of a coat


Some coats, especially trench coats and raincoats, have belts. The belts help to keep the coat tightly closed. There are many coats that simply have the addition of a belt as a decorative feature.

Coats with belts also have belt loops to keep them in place. The belt loops may appear at any place along the coat’s waist. They are often seen in the middle of the back and/or on the sides.

Coat Back

The coat back is the portion of fabric that covers the entire back of the wearer. It may be two pieces with a seam through the center or one solid piece. If the back of the coat uses two pieces, they may be referred to as “coat side back.” The coat back or coat side back is attached to the front of the coat with a seam on each side of the coat.

Coat Front

The coat front is the fabric that appears in the front portion of the coat. It is usually two pieces that are then connected using a zipper, snaps, or buttons. The coat front attaches to the coat back with a seam.

There are times when coats are made using one solid piece of fabric for the front and back. This is very typical of capes. In this instance, a designer will still refer to the coat front and coat back as separate areas of the coat, but they will also note that the coat is seamless.


The collar is the portion of the coat that frames the neck or upper chest. Coats that are made for extreme weather may have collars that close entirely around the neck and to the chin. These collars may have zippers, buttons, or snaps.

Woman covering face red coat

There are many coats that have decorative collars that are not meant to add more protection to the wearer. Some coats have no collars whatsoever.


As with all clothing items, a coat must have a hem. There will be a hem at the bottom of the coat and one on each sleeve. The coat hem may end anywhere from the mid-hip to the ankle. Some online retailers refer to this as “hem length.”

The sleeve hem usually ends at the wrist. There are some coats that have cropped sleeves that end at the mid-forearm. There are even some short-sleeved coats with hems that go no further than the bicep. These are somewhat rare and primarily serve as fashion items rather than functional coats.


Some coats have a hood that is either sewn in or attached with snaps, buttons, or a zipper. Hoods provide another option for cold-weather wear. They are regularly seen with puff coats, quilted coats, and pea coats, but they are options for coats of any style.

Detail girl face holds hood

A shopper should not expect to find a hood on a coat. Those who are shopping online should look for photos and descriptions that specifically state a hood is included if this is a necessity.


Most coats have an interior lining made from a material like satin, silk, or a polyester blend. This additional lining offers a layer of protection between the wearer’s attire and the outer portion of the garment. It can also function as a layer of warmth.

Some coats have additional fur lining at the hemlines or around a hood. This is meant to be aesthetically pleasing as well as a cold-weather necessity.


Not all coats have pockets. However, most have at least two side pockets that are usable. Some coats have multiple pockets on the outside and on the inside. They may have pocket flaps or even the ability to be closed with a zipper or button.

Detail woman hands pocket coat

The depth of the pocket is important for many wearers. When shopping, look for information that shows the exact depth of each pocket to make sure it is sufficient enough for your needs.


Coat seams, like nearly all articles of clothing, are necessary for joining the different parts. Seams might appear as a center back seam, a side back seam, a side front seam, side seam, or a sleeve seam.


The sleeves are the portions of the coat that cover the wearer’s arms. Most coats have sleeves that reach the wrist. There are some coats that have cropped sleeves or even short sleeves.

The style of the sleeve on a coat may greatly vary depending on the style. Different styles might include cuffed, raglan, kimono, cape, bell, dolman, leg of mutton, and puffed sleeves.


Some coats have a vent in the back. This is typical of trench coats and pea coats. The vent is not made for air circulation but to allow ease of movement. The wearer is less confined in a coat that has this break in the center of the coat back.

A vent may be as long as waist-to-hem or as short as a few inches. Those who are concerned about constriction in coats should look for coats with vents.

Coats, undercoats, overcoats, and jackets

Is it a coat, an undercoat, an overcoat, or a jacket? You might hear these terms used interchangeably. You might even use them interchangeably yourself. The truth is, each of these items has its own unique characteristics.

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A coat is a piece of outerwear that is worn over other clothing. It can range from light to very heavy. The length may be mid-hip to ankle. There are multiple styles, fabrics, and uses for the many types of coats.

A jacket is similar in nature to a coat but is shorter in length. Jackets can be of varying styles, thicknesses, and lengths. However, the length of a jacket never goes beyond the mid-hip.

An undercoat is not truly a coat at all. An undercoat is a piece of clothing that is worn under a coat but over other layers of clothing. Most types of blazers can suit as undercoats, you can also wear a suit vest under your coat. The term “undercoat” is not often used.

Portrait woman looks camera fur coat

Confusingly, an overcoat is not the opposite of an undercoat. An overcoat is simply a coat that is worn over other clothing. While that is true of all coats, an overcoat is thick, midweight, has long sleeves, and extends below the knees. 

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By comparison, a topcoat is similar to an overcoat but can be slightly lighter and shorter. A very heavy overcoat is a greatcoat. Both terms “topcoat” and “greatcoat” are not often heard.

History of the coat

It might be argued that the coat dates to the earliest days of clothing as people have always had the need for warmth in cold areas. However, the true history of the coat dates the medieval and renaissance times. It was an outer garment that remained fitted to the waist with a full skirt that was knee-length or longer. These coats buttoned up the front in a single column of buttons (single-breasted) or double column of buttons (double-breasted).

19th century lady posing street

Many people continued to wear capes rather than coats through the early-20th century. However, this practice became less and less common as the years wore on. The variance and utility of the coat surpassed that of the cape, making it the preferred choice of outerwear for over 100 years.

Now that you have a basic introduction to the coat, you are ready to keep learning! In the next chapter, you will be given an overview of the different types of coats you might find. Don’t stop now! Keep reading!

Types of coats

A coat is not just a coat. There are multiple types and styles that are worn for different occasions. From the formal chesterfield coat to the casual duffle coat, those who are interested in style have a variety of choices. This chapter details all of the different types of coats available today. Once you finish reading, you will have a clear understanding of each coat style. This will help you determine what coat you need to wear for any given occasion.

Types of coats for women

Women’s coats are those coats that are made for a smaller frame. Women tend to have narrower shoulders and wider hips than men, which requires a slightly different set of measurements when the coat is being designed. Anyone can wear a woman’s coat. Those who choose these styles, particularly when shopping online, must ensure the shoulder width and arm length match their needs.

Portrait woman yellow fur coat

Keep reading to learn about the different types of women’s coats, a bit about their history, and what makes each style stand out.

Formal attire coats for women

Formal coats are those coats that are worn to special events. Most of these coats are not intended to be worn throughout the formal occasion but as an accessory for cold-weather wear. Other formal coats, especially those that make use of lightweight materials like silk and chiffon, may be worn throughout the evening as part of a formal ensemble. Formal coats are typically worn to special events like cocktail parties, weddings, celebrations, or even funerals.

Two women casual coat hat handbag
Cape coat

A cape coat, usually referred to simply as a cape, is a sleeveless coat that drapes across the wearer’s shoulders, arms, and back. It meets at the neck with a tie, button, or snap. A cape is often worn with formal attire to black-tie events. 

Capes are often made with light materials like chiffon or lace. They can also be made from heavy materials like wool, velvet, or even fur. Capes are sometimes adorned with jewels and elegant embroidery. In common vernacular, a long cape is sometimes referred to as a cloak.

Women’s double-breasted coat

A women’s double-breasted coat is a versatile piece that is useful for formal and less formal occasions. Those who want a coat for wearing to the office, to dinner, or even on casual occasions might find the double-breasted coat to be the right choice. 

Women beige double breasted coats

A double-breasted coat is easily spotted by its two columns of buttons along the center of the torso. It also has clean lines, a long lapel collar, and usable side pockets. These coats are usually made from thick material like wool, though linen is not uncommon either. 

Cocoon coat 

The first cocoon coat was designed by Paul Poiret in 1913. Drawing inspiration from the Japanese kimono, Poiret created a voluminous coat that was regularly worn with formal dresses of the era. Today, a cocoon coat offers a unique marriage of casual and formal styles to create a shape that works in most environments. 

The cocoon coat has relaxed shoulders and a loose waist, which provides a similar appearance to a cape. The primary difference is that a cocoon coat has wide sleeves, which is not found in capes. It also has a button-front closure. Formal cocoon coats are made from wool, cashmere, or even fur.

Fur coat

A fur coat refers to any coat made with fur. Fur coats are usually long and stylized with straight arms and a heavy collar. A fur coat may have a front closure with a long zipper or buttons. Fur coats are often made from the pelts of minks, foxes, rabbits, or chinchillas. 

Elegant woman fur coat

There are ethical issues that arise from wearing these coats as the animals used for them are regularly mistreated and kept in cruel conditions prior to being killed for their pelts. This has caused faux fur to become a popular alternative. Faux fur is also far less expensive, but it also doesn’t have the same lifespan as real fur.

Semi-formal attire coats for women

A semi-formal coat is one that is worn in settings that are more casual than black-tie events. A semi-formal coat is a good choice for wearing to the office, but it can also double as a coat for dinners, informal parties, and even day-to-day wear. Semi-formal coats are more formal than their casual counterparts, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be worn in casual environments.

Women’s chesterfield coat

The Chesterfield coat was originally worn in the United Kingdom in the mid-19th century. It was named for George Stanhope, 6th Earl of Chesterfield. This coat style was thought of as very formal until it gained great popularity in the 1800s. As more people began wearing the Chesterfield, it began to be considered a semi-formal coat. 

Blonde woman brown coat street

The coat is characterized by being tailored with side seams and darts rather than horizontal seams. It is slightly cinched at the waist, which also features two to four pockets. A Chesterfield coat can be single- or double-breasted.

Women’s peacoat

A peacoat is a classic style that was inspired by navy uniforms from the early 18th century. They are usually dark blue or black. They are made from heavy wool that keeps the wearer warm and protected from precipitation. 

Peacoats are usually double-breasted. Peacoats for women may be available in multiple colors and patterns. They sometimes have cinched waists and flared skirts. They are good choices for staying warm while remaining somewhat formal in style.

Military coat

A military coat is a coat that is styled after a military tunic. It has a long hem that usually reaches the ankles or thighs. It is almost always double-breasted with two long columns of brass buttons. A military coat usually has a standing collar but may have a wide lapel. 

Women’s military coats often have a somewhat loosely flowing skirt. They may have cinched waists or belts. Most military coats are available in dark colors like olive green, navy blue, grey, or black.

Women’s car coat

Just as the name implies, car coats were created for riding in cars. In the early 20th century, open-top vehicles created a need for coats that protected clothing from dirt and dust. Today, the car coat has retained many of the characteristics of that early style. 

Woman posing coat holding bag

They are single-breasted coats with straight collars and diagonal welt pockets. The one-piece coats have a-line silhouettes and are usually mid-thigh length. These coats are usually made using a light fabric in order to allow easy wear while driving.

Belted coat

A belted coat can refer to any coat that has an attached belt around the waist. Belted coats are offered in a wide variety of styles, such as the military coat, trench coat, or even a fur coat. 

Fashion model woman red coat

Belts are sometimes used as the primary closure on some types of coats, such as in the wrap coats. At other times, belts are simply used to create an attractive silhouette. Belts are either sewn to the coat or attached separately with the use of belt loops.

Wrap coat

A wrap coat is a coat that does not have the traditional button or zipper closures. Instead, women who wear wrap coats must wrap them tightly around their mid-sections and close with the aid of a belt. 

Some wrap coats have hidden buttons that help the coat stay closed along with its belted feature. Wrap coats are offered in a myriad of styles, colors, fabrics, and patterns. They are popular choices with formal and semi-formal clothing because they can be tied tightly or loosely, which keeps delicate fabrics from wrinkling.

Drape-vest coat 

A drape-vest coat is an entirely unique style of coat that is one part warmth and one part style. The coat drapes from the wearer’s shoulders, creating a waterfall of fabric from shoulder to mid-thigh or lower. A typical drape coat has no closures. It is made with very light fabric to aid in the draping effect. 

A drape-vest coat is a type of drape coat but with one stunning difference: It has no sleeves. Wearers often layer the drape-vest coat over a long-sleeved shirt or dress. It is not meant to be removed as most coats are. Instead, it is part of the full ensemble.

Women’s wool coat  

A wool coat is any coat that is made with wool. Wool is a very popular material for coats because it is long-lasting, somewhat inexpensive, and offers a great deal of warmth. Unlike fur coats, wool can be treated to be waterproof, which makes them ideal for winter weather. 

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Wool is regularly used in peacoats, Chesterfield coats, and cocoon coats, among many others. Vegans who prefer not to wear wool can find synthetic wool coats. These are often less expensive but do not have the longevity of a true wool coat.

Casual wear coats for women

Casual coats are those coats that are worn for everyday events. They are good choices for days spent outside, running errands, or spending time with family and friends. These coats are almost always prized for warmth and usefulness above style.

Maxi coat

A maxi coat is a coat that is oversized and extra long. It usually reaches the wearer’s ankles, though it can be as short as mid-calf. Maxi coats are offered in almost all styles of coats. Trench, puffer, military, and fur coats are all available in maxi styles. 

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A maxi coat is preferred by people who live in areas that get very cold because they offer more protection for the legs than shorter coats and jackets. Maxi coats are also trendy, especially when they are made using light, flowing fabrics.

Winter coat

A winter coat is technically any coat that is constructed specifically for winter wear. It is made to be very warm and waterproof for use in the snow and rain. Puffer coats are the most typical style of winter coat. These coats take advantage of the wearer’s body heat to keep warmth in even when it is very cold outside. 

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Most winter coats have both zipper and button closures. They often have attached or detachable hoods. They may be as short as mid-hip or as long as ankle-length. Some winter coats also have ribbed collars and wrists for added warmth.

(see also: Puffer Coat)

Faux-leather puffer coat

A faux-leather puffer coat is simply a puffer coat that is made using faux leather. The use of synthetic leather is popular with puffer coats because they provide a stylish look that remains waterproof, unlike regular, untreated leather. Faux leather is also less expensive than real leather, and it appeals to those who prefer not to wear animal skins.

(see also: Puffer Coat)

Anorak coat

An anorak is historically a very thick, hip-length, pull-over coat that has a hood that ties around the wearer’s neck. Most anoraks have fur around the hood to create even more warmth. 

Today, a typical women’s anorak coat may be pull-over style, or it might have a front zipper or button closure. It is usually made of synthetic nylon with either synthetic or down stuffing for added warmth. Hoods are usually attached and lined in faux-fur. Anorak coats are suitable for wearing in very cold temperatures, including snow and rain.

Women’s raincoat

A women’s raincoat is a coat that is constructed specifically for use in the rain. Raincoats are usually at least knee-length or longer. They often button up the front in a double-breasted fashion, though single-breasted raincoats are not uncommon. 

Fashion portrait woman hat raincoat

Most raincoats have attached hoods that might have additional ties or snaps to create a snug fit. Raincoats are made from coated nylons and other similar, synthetic fabrics. Some have an additional interior lining that adds warmth along with protection from precipitation.

Women’s trench coat

The earliest known trench coat was developed in the mid-19th century after Thomas Burberry invented gabardine fabric. Gabardine is worsted wool that is blended with cotton. It is very tightly woven to create a waterproof fabric that is comfortable to wear, unlike rubber or vinyl raincoats. 

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The trench coat varies in length from just above the knee to the ankles. It is double-breasted with ten buttons and wide lapels. It has usable pockets with button closures and a belted waist. The trench coat gets its name from being worn in the trenches during World War I.

Puffer coat 

A puffer coat is a winter coat that uses a specific design technique to create air pockets for retaining body heat. The air pockets, or “puffs,” usually have some type of insulation as well. 

The coat is usually made with nylon and insulation that is either down or synthetic. Many puffer coats have detachable hoods with faux-fur lining. A puffer coat is sometimes referred to as a quilted coat or a bubble coat.

Hooded coat 

A hooded coat is any coat that has a hood attached. Hooded coats come in a large variety of styles. Hoods are commonly seen with anoraks, winter coats, and raincoats. They can be found with capes, trench coats, peacoats, and many others. Hoods on coats are either directly attached to the coat or detachable using zippers, buttons, or snaps. Hoods often have fur or faux-fur lining to shield the face from cold wind.

Woman fashion raincoat
Women’s shearling coat 

Shearling is a material used to make coats that are very warm, soft, and stylish. Shearling coats usually have wool lining and wool accents both for warmth and for fashion. Shearling is technically the skin of a sheep or lamb. It is tanned to create a suede surface on one side, which is worn facing outward. 

Woman holds hood coat

The inside has a layer of clipped fur. It is a heavy coat that must be kept out of wet weather for fear of damage. Synthetic shearling is a good alternative for those who want to wear shearling coats in snow or rain.

Faux fur coat

A faux fur coat is a coat that is made to look like real fur while taking advantage of synthetic materials. Faux fur may cover the entirety of the coat, or it might only adorn the hem, wrists, and/or hood. 

Outfitwoman wear stylish outfit and carry purse

Faux fur is a good choice for those who love the look of fur but do not like the animal cruelty that often accompanies it. Conversely, faux fur has become controversial in recent years due to the use of plastic to make fine hairs. 

Duffle coat 

The duffle coat is thought to have been first designed in the early-to-mid 19th century. The coat is named after the town of Duffel in Belgium, which is where the original fabric was sourced. A duffle coat uses a double-weave wool fabric. 

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It is traditionally lined in a tartan pattern. The coat has an a-line silhouette with an attached hood and toggle fasteners. The toggles are typically made of wood, but they can also be made with horn or leather. The toggles were created to be easily removed when wearing gloves in the winter.

Types of coats for men

Coats traditionally made for men can be worn by anyone. However, these coats are marketed to men because they are made with a masculine figure in mind. The shoulders are broad, arms long, and overall length longer than a traditional women’s coat.

Many of the coat styles for men are similar to those that are worn by women. The differences between these two types are almost always solely based on measurements rather than actual fashion. Another difference between typical men’s and women’s coats is that those coats sold to men rarely have the variety of colors and patterns as coats for women.

Formal attire coats for men

Formal coats are worn to special, black-tie events. They may be part of the ensemble, or they may be removed once the venue is reached. A formal coat is often considered an overcoat. Unlike women’s formal coats, men’s formal coats are rarely worn outside of special events or certain office environments.

Men’s single-breasted coat

A men’s single-breasted coat is a somewhat simple coat with a singular column of buttons. It is designed to resemble a suit jacket or tuxedo but is made to be worn over the top. 

This is why it is sometimes referred to as an overcoat. Length can vary from mid-hip to ankle, but most single-breasted coats reach just above the knee. These coats are usually made from wool but are sometimes made from linen or silk.

Covert coat 

A covert coat is a type of overcoat that is single-breasted with notch lapels. It has flap pockets and either four or five lines of stitching at the cuffs and hem. It is typically shorter than knee length. These coats always have notched lapels and sometimes have ticket pockets. 

Man covert coat street

Traditional covert coats are light brown to deep tan, though sometimes they are found in other neutral hues. The covert coat gets its name from the material used in its construction. The heavy tweed covert fabric comes from the French for “covered.” The covert coat is sometimes referred to as a Crombie coat.

Semi-formal attire coats for men

A semi-formal coat is one that is worn in professional or dressy settings but not necessarily black-tie events. Many of these coats can be worn as casual coats as well. Most semi-formal coats have a function that does not provide a great deal of warmth but focuses more on style.

Men’s chesterfield coat

Like the women’s Chesterfield coat, a men’s Chesterfield coat uses side seams rather than a horizontal seam to create its unique silhouette. A men’s Chesterfield coat is not cinched at the waist as a woman’s version usually is. 

The men’s Chesterfield coat has two to four pockets at the waist. It usually has a wide lapel. This coat can be double-breasted, but it is trendier to have a single-breasted Chesterfield. The coat is usually made with wool or a wool and cotton blend.

Men’s car coat 
Modelo masculino guapo en traje negro posando en movimiento sobre fondo gris

The car coat was originally made for driving in open-top cars. The coat’s purpose was to allow easy movement while also protecting the driver from dust and debris from the road. The car coat is made to allow flexibility and easy movements. It is made from a lightweight material and uses a vent to create even more movement.

Men’s wool coat

A men’s wool coat refers to any coat that is made from wool. Wool is popularly used in most heavier coats because it keeps the wearer warm, is relatively inexpensive, is long-lasting, and, if treated properly, stands up well to rain and snow. 

Man posing hands coat

Wool is typically seen in peacoats and Chesterfield coats as well as many others. Typical wool coats are dark colors like black, navy blue, and dark grey due to the difficulty of dying wool in lighter shades. However, coats that are made with wool blends are offered in multiple shades.

Men’s peacoat

The peacoat is a classically elegant coat that is often associated with naval uniforms and sailors. This coat is made from heavy wool that is treated to withstand water. They are traditionally available in dark blue, black, or dark green. The term peacoat comes from the Dutch word “pijjekker,” which means twilled blue cloth coat. The peacoat has been used since at least the early 1700s.

Men’s double-breasted coat 

A double-breasted coat is a men’s coat that has two columns of buttons, usually five in each column. The coat itself is often similar to suit jackets or overcoats. It has clean lines, seamed sides, a vented back, and pockets. These coats have darted lapels and may include a belt, though this is not common. 

The length of these coats can be as wide-ranging as mid-hip to ankle. Double-breasted coats are good choices for wearing with suits in formal, semi-formal, and professional environments.

Long coat 

A long coat is technically any type of coat that is long enough to cover the lower legs, past the knee. Examples of men’s long coats include the Chesterfield and the Covert coats. Other coats, like double-breasted coats, trench coats, or even raincoats, could be considered long coats by some. Most people think of overcoats and long coats as synonymous, though this isn’t precisely the case.

Formal guy suit coat sitting chair

An overcoat is a type of long coat. The purpose of the overcoat is to wear it over other clothing. Overcoats are made of heavy materials like wool or even fur. Their purpose is to keep the wearer warm while also protecting semi-formal clothing. Overcoats tend to be large enough to allow the wearer to have multiple layers that include a dress shirt and a suit jacket.

Casual wear coats for men

Casual coats are usually those coats that are not worn in professional or formal environments. These coats are good choices for daily wear or recreation. Some casual coats can be considered appropriate for work or even dressy, though not formal events. This depends mostly on the material used for the coat and its silhouette. For instance, a trench coat might be considered appropriate for wearing to work, while a parka is rarely the best choice.

Men’s trench coat

A trench coat is a long coat that doubles as a raincoat. It is a double-breasted, belted coat that usually reaches the ankles. It can be as short as the knee. The trench coat was invented by Thomas Burberry in the mid-1800s. It remains popular today for its versatility and comfort.

Parka coat 

A parka coat is a very heavy coat that is made to be worn in extreme temperatures. The parka dates to at least 1625, though it was likely worn much earlier than that. Inhabitants of the Aleutian Islands wore parka coats made from animal hides to keep them warm in frigid temperatures. 

Man green sunglasses winter jacket

Today, parka coats are usually made from synthetic materials with a fleece or wool lining. They have heavy hoods that are lined in real or faux fur. Parkas usually reach the wearer’s hip but can be longer.

Down coat/Puffer coat  

A puffer coat is a coat that uses a seaming process to create pockets for trapping body heat. The puffs are usually rows but can be small squares or diamond shapes. Puffer coats are made using synthetic materials for the outside and inner lining. In most cases, the interior is insulated with down. This is why the puffer coat is sometimes referred to as a down coat.

Couple puffer jacket winter walk
Duffle coat

The duffle coat was named after the double-weave wool that is used in its manufacturing. This wool was created in Duffel, Belgium, in the early 1800s. Interestingly, the material is also used in creating the arguably better-known duffle bag. 

A duffle coat is an a-line coat with an attached hood. Toggle fasteners are used to make the coat easy to take off and on when wearing gloves. These toggle fasteners have been adopted in many other types of coats both for style and function.

Men’s raincoat 

A men’s raincoat is a coat that is used for wearing in the rain. They are often offered in trench style, though some raincoats are single-breasted overcoats or even capes. Most raincoats go past the wearer’s knees in order to keep as much clothing dry as possible. 

Guy plastic red coat sunglasses

Raincoats were traditionally made from rubber or vinyl, but it is much more common to find nylon raincoats today. A raincoat often has a fleece lining to add comfort and retain warmth. Some raincoats, though not all, have attached hoods.

Men’s shearling coat

Shearling is sheep hide that is removed from shorn sheep. The inside of the hide is tanned to create a suede-like appearance, while the outside is clipped to retain some of the wool. A shearling jacket is worn with the wool inside and the suede outside. It is a very warm and beautiful jacket, but it is not made for wearing in areas where moisture might be an issue.

Men’s leather coat 

A men’s leather coat is any coat that is made from leather. Most leather coats are trench-style, though leather coats can come in a very wide range. Leather is a popular choice because, though expensive, it is long-lasting. 

Leather also has a timeless look, which allows one to invest in a leather coat that they know will still look great for years. Those who love the look of leather but prefer not to wear animal skin can still get the same look with faux leather. However, faux leather does not have the longevity of the real thing.

Hoodie coat

The typical hoodie is basically a sweatshirt with a hood. A hoodie coat offers more length and more insulation while providing the same comfort. Hoodie coats usually have zip-front closures and ties around the hood. Modern hoodie coats sometimes include spots for Bluetooth headphones or earbuds. 

Man taking selfie city landscape

Traditional coats for men

Traditional coats are those coats that have deep roots but are rarely seen today. These coats either served purposes at one time that were no longer necessary, or they evolved over the years to be more appropriate for changing times. Traditional coats continue to be an important part of costuming and sometimes make appearances in special ceremonies and celebrations.

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How to choose a Coat? Types of men’s coats.
by BE BIGGER — Tips for men
Frock coat

The frock coat was very popular during the Victorian and Edwardian eras. These long coats are fitted with a highly cinched waist. It includes a reverse collar and lapels. The frock coat is very rarely seen now except in some formal military uniforms and on high-fashion runways.

Morning coat

A morning coat is a single-breasted coat that connects with a single button in the middle. The morning coat includes pointed lapels and two ornamental buttons on the back waist seam. The morning coat has tails, but, unlike a tailcoat, the front of the coat gradually curves into the tails. A morning coat is not common, but it is sometimes worn for formal celebrations.

Dinner coat
Man wedding suit posing park

A dinner coat is another term for a tuxedo jacket. The dinner coat is part of a suit that is worn to formal events. It is a single-breasted coat that usually has only one button that remains unused. A dinner coat may match the suit, or it can be a highly stylized piece adorned with bright colors, embroidery, or even sequins, depending on the occasion.


A coatee is a very tight-fitting coat with a short waist in front and long tails. It was commonly worn by military personnel during the 18th century. This traditional coat is not one that is often seen outside of reenactments or as part of special ceremonies. The coatee is worn with a Highland dress for special events.

Traditional scottish piper attire castle

A tailcoat is a formal coat that has a short waist in the front and long tails behind it. The tailcoat is often double-breasted though it is typically worn open. Tailcoats are only worn for very formal events like weddings and black-tie affairs.

There are so many different types and styles of coats that it is easy to be overwhelmed. This guide has given you information about some of the most popular coat styles available. Refer to it again and again as you make plans to shop for your next coat! Are you ready to learn more? Don’t stop reading now!

How to choose the right coat for you

Choosing a coat isn’t as simple as picking one you like and then taking it home. There are a lot of factors that you need to consider when you pick the best coat for you. You need to think about how long you will be wearing the coat, what purpose it is meant to fulfill, whether the style is a good fit for your body type and your overall budget. As soon as you are finished reading this chapter, you will be ready to shop for the perfect coat!

How to choose a coat depending on the occasion

You will need a different coat depending on where you will be while you are wearing it. If you only want one coat that will work for every occasion, look for a coat that is versatile and somewhat neutral. Don’t choose a coat that is typically only worn for formal events, like a fur coat. Likewise, don’t choose a coat that would be inappropriate for dressier affairs, like a puffer coat or an anorak. Instead, opt for a black peacoat or wrap coat that will go with everything while also easily transitioning from the office to the evening.

Woman brown coat covers face hand

There are plenty of options if you are willing and able to buy coats for specific occasions. The best way to stretch your dollar while also having coats for every event is to choose coats that have the most longevity. For instance, it might feel fun to buy a coat that is the “color of the year,” but it will lose its panache in only a few months. Meanwhile, a coat that is black, brown, grey, or navy will stay in style for years to come.

Formal Events

A good formal coat is a women’s double-breasted coat. It works for all events and, if chosen in a dark color, will not distract from your ensemble. A special occasion coat, like a cocoon coat, is also a great choice.

Fashion model long coat

Business Meetings and Office Wear

A peacoat is a good, all-purpose coat that is easily worn for dressier meetings, to the office, or for a casual night out. In fact, most wool coats are fine for semi-formal events and day-to-day.

Cocktail Parties

You can wear the same coats to cocktail parties as you do to other formal events. However, you might consider a coat that is less functional and more fun. Lighter coats and capes with embroidery and beading look beautiful at cocktail parties. Fur or faux fur is another good option.

Casual Daily Wear

Man poses hands pockets coat scarf city

You will never go wrong with a trench coat. These less formal coats are stylish and functional while also providing much-needed protection against the elements.

How to choose a coat depending on the weather

For many of us, the primary reason we go coat shopping is that we expect to need some additional layers of warmth. Unfortunately, not every day is either hot or cold. You may need different styles of coats depending on the type of weather you regularly experience in your region.

Spring Showers

While rain is possible any time of the year, it is almost a given in spring. Look for a coat that can withstand wet weather if you live in an area that sees a lot of rainfall. That means you should avoid shearling coats or anything with untreated suede. Look for raincoats and trench coats for warmer spring days or treated wool for those chilly days that can also bring rain.

Fall Winds

Heavy winds turn hot summer days into brisk autumn evenings. Look for coats that aren’t overly thick but will still provide the much-needed protection you deserve. A car coat is a great choice for early fall. It is light and breezy, with just enough warmth to break through lightly cold weather. Late fall may require something a bit heavier. Look for a military coat, especially one with removable lining and a hood.

Bitter Winters

Male heating hands green puffer coat

Very cold weather calls for a serious coat. An anorak is a great choice for cold winters. Other good options are puffer coats, duffle coats, and any wool coat that comes with a thick lining. Leather coats can be great for winter wear as long as they are water-resistant. If you opt for faux leather, make sure it is thick enough to provide the necessary warmth.

How to choose a coat based on colors

Your coat may or may not be a part of your ensemble. Some coats simply exist to be removed the moment you walk inside. Others will become an important part of what you are wearing. Consider colors when coat shopping based on how and where you plan to wear them.

Neutral colors for coats are black, navy, brown, and grey. These colors work very well in nearly all environments and occasions. However, there are times that bold colors and patterns are excellent choices.


Black is a go-to for most coats. It looks sleek with formal and professional wear while looking stylish in more casual environments. Conversely, it is generally considered a faux pas to wear black with brown shoes or a brown suit. If you prefer browns, you might consider avoiding black or purchasing your favorite coat style in two different colors.

Man outdors looking at watch

Navy is a popular color with peacoats, military coats, and many wool coats. It is a versatile color that is appropriate with most outfits. There are those who say that navy should not be worn with black, but the two shades complement each other very well when worn together. Navy is possibly the most versatile choice, but it may not work for all formal occasions.


Brown is another neutral tone that is popularly worn throughout the year. Dark browns are good choices for natural fibers, like wool and leather. Lighter browns are common in raincoats and trench coats. Brown is an especially good choice for fall.

Stylish girl trench coat


Gray can be worn in the same way as black as it is simply a lighter version. That means it is not ideal for pairing with brown unless the gray is very light and the brown very dark or vice versa.

Other Colors

You might feel the need to be trendy or bold. If so, go for it! There should be nothing keeping you from wearing a coat that reflects your personality or the season’s hot shade. Just remember that a coat like this might only be worn for a short while.

What to wear with a coat

The good news is that coats go with everything. You can wear a coat with jeans, slacks, suits skirts, dresses or even exercise clothing. That said, there are some things to note when choosing what to wear with a coat.

A heavy sweatshirt or sweater can be worn with a coat, but the thick layers may make the coat look bulky and feel uncomfortable. If you like to layer, choose a loose-fitting coat. A trench coat, an overcoat, or a wrap coat might be the best choice.

Man holds winter coat
Source: Ante Samarzija on Unsplash

If you mostly dress in casual clothing, a puffer coat or an anorak is a fine choice. These look great with jeans and leggings. If you tend to wear skirts, dresses, or dress pants, a more formal coat is a better option.

Your basic plan should be to match a casual coat with casual clothing, a formal coat with formal clothing, and so on. Keep in mind that you have a lot of wiggle room when it comes to semi-formal and business casual coats.

The shoes you wear with your coat can be significant. Casual coats, like raincoats and duffle coats, are fine choices for wearing with sneakers or casual boots. Dress shoes and heels might look out of place with these types of coats. Instead, opt for a Chesterfield coat, a double-breasted coat, or another formal to semi-formal choice.

Accessories should not be forgotten when considering what to wear with a coat. Coordinate your handbag to the coat you are wearing. It is unnecessary to match colors as long as there is no clashing and the style is in sync. For instance, you shouldn’t use a casual tote while wearing a fur coat. In addition, you shouldn’t carry a brown bag if you are wearing black or dark grey. Other accessories, like gloves, scarves, and hats, should follow the same trend. As long as they are equally formal or casual, you shouldn’t have to worry about whether the accessories are a good match.

Picking out a coat is as easy as knowing where and when you want to wear it. Now that you have all of the information about how to buy a coat, you’re ready to go shopping! But first, don’t forget to read the next chapter. You’ll learn everything about coats for women by the time you are done.

Coats for women

After reading about coats, you have exactly what you need to start shopping. Decide when you’ll wear the coat you need, how often you’ll wear it, what fabric you prefer and if you need a specific coat. Thinking about what you’ll wear with the coat is as important as where you will wear it.

Another important consideration is budget. Do you want to buy a trendy new coat every year or do you need a coat that will last? In the end, you might end up spending the same amount of money as long-lasting coats tend to cost a little more. Think about whether you want to spend a large sum of money now or if you prefer to spread it out over the seasons.

Woman pink coat ladder

Lastly, consider how many coats you want to buy. There is no law saying you can’t own two, three or 20 coats if you have the funds and the space for them! When you’re done here, you will see as many different coats for women as you can imagine. You’re almost guaranteed to want to buy more than one.

Coats for men

As it happens with women’s coats, there are a lot of factors you should consider to select the right coat for you. It is of vital importance you know when you will wear your men’s coat, the frequency, the weather, and even the season—all these matters to choose a men’s coat with the right fabric.

If truth be told, there are lots of types of coats for men. However, not all of them are appropriate for each and every occasion. Some coats are more formal than others. There are casual coats too, which are not suitable for a formal environment. Yet, you may want to get a versatile men’s coat you can wear almost anywhere. 

Not to mention that coats are kind of expensive garments. So, you must take into account your budget and how many coats you need. Not surprisingly, style is a key factor too. I strongly advise you to get yourself a stylish coat that goes with your personality and fashion preferences. What I mean is that there are men’s coats that are somehow more classic, and you can wear them over and over again. Still, there will always be the latest trends to leave others breathless. Pick something you’ll wear!

Here are some top men’s coats ideas to get you started:


There is no doubt that you now know everything you ever wanted to about coats. You probably learned many things you never even considered! You understand what coats are appropriate for formal events, which coats can be worn on multiple occasions and even the history of some of these styles.

You are now aware of the different components of a coat and how those pieces might be significant when making purchases. You even know the difference between a coat and a jacket! All-in-all, after reading each of these chapters, you have a thorough education on coats.

What questions do you have about coats that were left unanswered? Ask in the comments! Do you have anything to add about coats? Share that with us in the comments as well!

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