As the evenings start to draw in and the temperatures plummet, it is time to grab that winter coat. Winter coats work best in winter, but that shouldn't stop you from purchasing one to wear in other seasons. It will surely come in handy in any type of cold weather, or even going on holiday to colder places.
Trying to find this versatility in one item of ladies clothing can be challenging, but we're here to help you find a style to keep you cosy and dry right through the season. To give you some inspiration, we've also ranked our 10 favourites to buy from Amazon and John Lewis, from waterproof jackets to long trench coats all available in a range of sizes, varieties of colours from festive green to reliable black.
Melissa Melles is a Wardrobe Concierge based in Manchester, helping both women and men find their style and have confidence in what they wear by organising their wardrobes.
With 10 years of industry experience, Melissa's clients trust her expert opinion when it comes to style advice. Her experience spans from TV, music and editorial styling, to working in Paris showrooms, to personal shopping in luxury department stores and more.
Find out more about Melissa via her Instagram or head over to her website where you can see all the expert consultation services she offers - from simply organising your wardrobe space to sourcing those hard to find 'New Season' pieces!
Short or long, puffer or fur, there's a huge range of cosy coats out there. Essentially, a winter coat must be warm and it must be comfortable. But this doesn't mean compromising on style – which is lucky as it's often the only item of clothing people will see when you're out and about in the cold!
The type of coat you end up going for will depend on a number of factors. Are you a keen walker who's more focused on a weather-proof layer, or an office worker who wants to look stylish on a frosty morning commute? The following range of styles will have you covered for any eventuality.
Puffer coats, also known as down coats, are like cosy sleeping bags you can wrap around you all day. These coats are filled with warm – but very light – down, which insulates your body without weighing a tonne. If you don't like wearing animal products, look at where their down comes from as some options are filled with feathers.
Coats like these are great for the adventurer, but with more stylish designs now available you can also wear them on a day-to-day basis. Do be aware that down isn't the most waterproof, and will become saturated with moisture when exposed to a heavy downpour or snowfall.
I love puffer coats! So lightweight yet so cosy! For me, nothing beats a puffer coat, long or short, sleeves or no sleeves. There are lots of options now too, you don't have to get feather down, you can get polyester filled puffer coats now meaning they're animal free. Puffer coats are great for keeping you very nice and warm in the winter months.
Real fur is a controversial choice, but this classic look is not off-limits just because you don't like the idea of wearing animal fur. Nowadays, fur imitations are everywhere, and look every bit as glamorous.
It has to be said that fur coats are not always the most practical; they can be bulky and often aren't waterproof. If you want to make a fashion statement, though, throwing on a fur coat is an easy way to achieve this. They also have the added bonus of being very cosy and warm!
Faux fur coats are great for when you're wearing a dress and heels to an event or a dinner where you don't want a heavy coat to ruin the line of your dress or a bulky coat that doesn't suit the style. Faux fur coats are an accessory in themselves like wearing a handbag or jewellery to get you from the car to the door.
Smarter wool or wool-look coats often come in a wide range of patterns and colours, allowing you to express your individual style. Though you'll usually come across classic colours like camel, grey and black, they're by no means limited to these.
Confusingly, they're often made of polyester rather than actual wool, but don't let this put you off as wool requires more care, and is more expensive. And they still look just as good! Whilst they lack some of the extras which make down jackets better for extreme conditions, they make a great addition to your work or going out wardrobe.
Wool or wool-look coats are really great for keeping you warm. I find them best in Spring and Autumn when it's too cold not to wear a coat but not quite puffer coat weather! Just be sure to take an umbrella with you as they are certainly not waterproof! They look great with scarves too.
Fleece is a material synonymous with winter wear, and rightly so – it's very warm yet also light, sweat-wicking and breathable, which is great when the temperature keeps changing throughout the day!
It also feels lovely on and falls somewhere between a jumper and a coat, giving you all the comfort of the former and the protection of the latter. In general, fleece coats are better for casual wear or as an insulating layer, though, as they aren't waterproof.
Fleece coats are usually an insulating layer under a bigger coat but again like the wool coat in Autumn and Spring when it's not quite cold enough yet they are great worn on their own. A lot more casual than a wool coat so great for when you're running your errands on the weekends.
Everyone knows the weather during winter can be less than pleasant, particularly in the UK when the forecast is unpredictable at the best of times. Because of this, you're going to want a coat that can cope with a number of different conditions. Here are some things to look out for.
The material of a coat is important when it comes to keeping you warm, but if heat can escape through any gaps, it's not going to be able to do its job very well. This is why it's crucial that your coat tightens up securely.
Some technical coats have the option of fastening around the neck and the sleeves, ensuring that no body heat gets out. You may not need your coat to be this extreme, but even with a wool-look or fur option, a coat that fastens securely down the front will make all the difference when the winter chill hits.
Looking out for extra fastenings on coats can help to keep you warm, for example, some coats have drawstrings around the bottoms and if you tug on the toggles you can sinch it in so it keeps you cosy and warm. You can also get coats with detachable hoods or hoods hidden in zips, not necessarily just for the rain, they can provide you with shelter from winds too.
We know it can rain at any time of the year in the UK, but the winter months can be something else! To be ready for all occasions, especially if you're an outdoorsy type or commute by foot or bike, consider a coat with a waterproof outer layer.
Look for materials like waxed cotton, Gore-Tex (or similar brand-specific variations), or DWR (durable water repellent) outer coatings.
Always check if a coat is waterproof, some coats are just water resistant and will only protect you from light showers leaving you soggy in heavy rain. This information should be on the labels but when shopping so be sure to check with staff members they can help advise which are the most waterproof materials.
When you don't want to be carrying around an umbrella, or you want another level of protection, a hood is the answer. Hoods – like the coats themselves – come in many forms, such as those with a fur lining or some other quirky feature that may appeal to the fashion-conscious as well as the practical.
You can also look for a removable or retractable hood, should you like the idea of not always needing to have it hanging down when the sun comes out.
I love a hood, for I'm not a fan of traipsing around in the rain with an umbrella, battling my way through crowded cities in a sea of other umbrellas. Hoods are great to protect your hair from getting wet with no effort required. Also as I mentioned previously, not only from the rain, but hoods protect you from the wind too.
Women's clothing is often notorious for its lack of pockets and this is definitely something you don't want to find with your coat. Pockets make the perfect place to put your chilly hands on a cold winter's night to warm them up, so there needs to be enough space for this.
Secondly, pockets are great for storing your winter essentials if you don't always want to have to go rummaging through your bag. When designed well, pockets can add to the functionality and the look of a coat.
A good winter coat will have pockets. It's nice sometimes when you're out and about running errands to not have to carry a handbag with you all the time. When you have big enough pockets you can just have your essentials in them, plus you can also find coats with inside pockets keeping things like your phone safe.
Brands are getting better and better at catering to a plus-size market, so ranges of coats have plenty of choice. Bear in mind that womens coats don't always use traditional sizing, and instead opt for a small, medium and large scale.
You can always look for a sizing guide (which can vary brand to brand), or check the measurements if you're unsure, as you'll want to make sure your coat fits properly before you buy.
When shopping for coats it is a lot easier now that most brands cater to pretty wide ranges of sizes, some brands if they do cater to plus sizes will advertise this, but if not it's worth asking for the size guide because often you'll find the size for you.
With so many different styles to choose from and so many occasions for which you might need one, we've done the hard work and found 10 winter coats that tick all the boxes. We're certain our list will have the right coat to keep you going all the way from the end of autumn to the start of spring!
|Type/Material||50% Wool, 30% viscose, 20% polyester|
|Type/Material||65% Cotton, 35% polyamide|
|Fastening||Zip, buttons, sash|
|Size Range||8 - 18|
|Type/Material||80% Wool, 20% other|
|Waterproofing||DWR outer layer|
|Type/Material||Padded, 100% polyester|
|Fastening||Zip and velcro, extra straps|
|Waterproofing||DWR outer layer|
|Type/Material||80% Wool, 20% polyamide|
|Type/Material||94% Polyester, 6% elastane|
Ilse Jacobsen Hornbæk
3/4 Length Detachable Hood Raincoat
Wilma Wool Blend Coat
Women's Aden Insulated Coat
Florence Winter Long Padded Water Resistant Rain Coat
Side Zip Quilted Jacket
Faux Fur Shall Collared Coat Wool
Owen Reversible Trench Coat
International Qualify Waterproof Trench Coat
Lauren Wrap Wool Blend Coat
Cropped Fluffy Jacket Notch Lapel Winter Faux Fur Coat
Strong, Light and Durable With Water Resistance Up to 5000mm
Sleek, Simple - Purposeful Made of Recycled Wool and Polyester
An Ultra-Waterproof Option for Stormy Conditions
Super Warm, Super Dry & 100% Polyamide
Fitted, Simple and Stunning
Wrap Yourself Up & Stay Warm
A Reversible Trench Coat For Mild Winters
Formed and Clean, Expertly Crafted
Make a Statement in Blue and Keep Warm From Head to Toe
Easy Going Light Winter Wear
|Type/Material||94% Polyester, 6% elastane||80% Wool, 20% polyamide||Padded, 100% polyester||100% Polyamide||100% polyamide||80% Wool, 20% other||100% Polyester||65% Cotton, 35% polyamide||50% Wool, 30% viscose, 20% polyester||100% Polyester|
|Fastening||Zip||Buttons||Zip and velcro, extra straps||Zip||Zip||Zip, sash||Buttons||Zip, buttons, sash||Sash||-|
|Waterproofing||Water resistant||Not specified||DWR outer layer||DWR outer layer||Not specified||Not specified||Not specified||Fully||No||Not specified|
|Size Range||8-16||6-14||XS-5XL||4-28||XS-XL||XS-XL||8 - 18||8-18||XS-M||4-20|
Picture the scene: You've wrapped up and braved some pretty rotten weather and you're finally home, so now all you want to do is get cosy and snug. Sound familiar? Have a look at some of our related wintery buying guides, which will hopefully help to stave off the chills of any cold day.
From frosty mornings to stormy nights, winter can have it all. A good coat is one of your key defences against the elements, but you also want it to represent your own individual style. This guide has hopefully provided you with the key points to consider when shopping for yours, and we bet you'll be looking forward to the next cold snap just so you have an excuse to wear it!
Author: Emma Cramp
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