How to Choose the Right Outerwear for Your Needs

Your Guide to buying the best outerwear


The purpose of this outerwear buying guide is to provide you with the information you need to make an educated and informed decision when purchasing outerwear. Whether you are looking for a warm winter coat, a lightweight windbreaker, or something in between, this guide will provide you with the key considerations you need to make when shopping for outerwear. We will discuss the different types of outerwear available, what features and qualities to look for, and how to choose the right size for your body type. We will also provide resources to help you compare the different brands and styles, and offer suggestions on how to care for your outerwear. By the end of this guide, you will be equipped with the knowledge you need to find the perfect outerwear for your lifestyle.

Key features

  1. Material: What type of material is the outerwear made from? Is it waterproof or windproof? Does it have breathable, moisture-wicking properties?
  2. Fit: Does the outerwear fit true to size? Does it have adjustable features such as cuffs, drawstrings, and adjustable hems?
  3. Insulation: How much insulation does the outerwear offer? Is the insulation suitable for cold or mild temperatures?
  4. Style: Does the outerwear come in a variety of styles or colors? Is there a hood or pockets?
  5. Care: What type of care is needed for the outerwear? Is it machine washable or dry clean only?

See the most popular outerwear on Amazon

Important considerations


  • Weather Protection - Outerwear provides protection from inclement weather such as rain, snow, wind, and cold temperatures.
  • Durability - Outerwear is typically made from durable materials that are designed to last for many seasons.
  • Style - Outerwear comes in a variety of styles, colors, and designs to suit different tastes and occasions.
  • Breathability - Many outerwear options are designed with breathable fabric to allow for comfortable movement and temperature regulation.
  • Versatility - Outerwear options can be worn for different activities, such as skiing, hiking, cycling, and other outdoor activities.


  • Cost - Outerwear may be more expensive than other pieces of clothing, with certain brands and types of outerwear costing significantly more than other types.
  • Weight - The heavier material and insulation used in certain types of outerwear can make them bulky and uncomfortable, especially in warmer climates.
  • Durability - Outerwear is designed to protect from the elements, so it may not last as long as other clothing items, especially if worn often in harsh weather.
  • Fit - Depending on the cut of the outerwear, it may not be as slim-fitting as other pieces of clothing, and it can be difficult to find ones that fit properly.
  • Maintenance - Depending on the material, outerwear may require extra care for cleaning and storage.

Best alternatives

  1. Raincoats - water-resistant outerwear designed to protect from the rain
  2. Parkas - a long, heavy coat with a hood, typically made of waterproof material
  3. Windbreakers - a lightweight, wind-resistant jacket with a hood or collar
  4. Trench Coats - a long, double-breasted coat with a waist belt
  5. Leather Jackets - a type of outerwear made of leather and lining
  6. Fleece Jackets - a lightweight, warm jacket made of fleece fabric

Related tools, supplies, and accessories

    Fleece Jackets - A jacket made of fleece material typically used as a mid layer in cold weather Rain Jacket - A jacket designed to keep you dry from the rain Insulated Jackets - A jacket filled with insulation to keep you warm on cold days Parkas - A long coat with a hood, usually insulated and waterproof Down Jacket - A lightweight jacket filled with down that is designed to be lightweight and compressible Snow Jacket - A jacket designed to keep you warm and dry in snow Vest - A sleeveless jacket usually used as an outer layer or mid layer in cold weather Softshell Jackets - A jacket made of a soft material designed to be more breathable than a hardshell jacket Hard Shell Jackets - A jacket made of a rigid material designed to be waterproof and windproof Windbreakers - A lightweight jacket designed to protect from wind and light rain

Common questions

  1. What type of outerwear is best for different climates? Depending on the climate, shoppers should consider different types of outerwear. For colder climates, shoppers should look for jackets, coats, and insulated items. For warmer climates, shoppers should look for lighter layers such as vests, light jackets, and windbreakers.
  2. What type of insulation should shoppers consider? Depending on the climate, shoppers should consider different types of insulation. For colder climates, shoppers should look for down or synthetic insulation, while for warmer climates shoppers should look for lighter insulation such as lightweight fleece or down.
  3. What should shoppers look for when choosing a style? Shoppers should consider fit, fabric, and features when choosing a style. Fit should be comfortable and flattering, fabric should be breathable and weather-resistant, and features should suit the intended activity.
  4. What is the best way to care for outerwear? Outerwear should be cleaned or washed according to the care instructions on the garment tag. Generally, outerwear should be washed in cold water and air dried or hung to dry.
  5. What should shoppers look for when shopping for outerwear online? When shopping for outerwear online, shoppers should pay attention to sizing information, fabric information, and customer reviews. Additionally, shoppers should consider the return policy of the website.


In 1971, the United States Navy issued a contract to a French fashion designer, Pierre Cardin, to design and produce the first fire-resistant flight suits. Garnering inspiration from the era's burgeoning leisure-suit trend, the U.S. Navy was so impressed with Cardin's design that they kept ordering more suits for over 20 years. This marked the first time fashion had ever been used in military outerwear, setting the stage for today's uniform-like styles which are popular in the outerwear world. Source:

Disclaimer: This buying guide was not created by humans, and it is possible that some of it's content is inaccurate or incomplete. We do not guarantee or take any liability for the accuracy of this buying guide. Additionally, the images on this page were generated by AI and may not accurately represent the product that is being discussed. We have tried to convey useful information, but it is our subjective opinion and should not be taken as complete or factual.