Men’s Overcoat Buying Tips & Outfit Ideas

A Guide to Men's Overcoat

Overcoat for Men

Buying an overcoat could be tricky if you have no idea about the fabric, color, fit, and quality. But don’t worry, we’ve put together this guide that will help you choose the perfect men’s overcoat.

RELATED: How to Choose Trench Coat?

Topcoat, Overcoat, and Greatcoat

Before we get started, allow me to explain what is the difference between a topcoat, an overcoat, and a greatcoat.

These 3 items could cause confusion if you don’t understand their distinction.

  1. An overcoat is a long coat that is intended to be worn as the outermost garment. The length usually extends below the knee.
  2. A topcoat is a lightweight overcoat. The trench coat falls under this category.
  3. A greatcoat, also known as a watch coat, is a heavy, bulky overcoat that has its root in the military.

How to Choose an Overcoat? A Comprehensive Men’s Guide to Picking the Best Overcoat

A good overcoat can complement a suit effortlessly and create an instantly smarter look.

But what exactly is a good overcoat anyway? And how can you pick the best overcoat for yourself? Below are some helpful shopping tips on how to choose men’s overcoat.

Men’s Overcoat Buying Tips

  1. How long should an overcoat be
  2. Choose the right fabric
  3. Pick the right weight based on climate.
  4. How to choose an overcoat that fits
  5. Pay attention to the overcoat’s sleeve length
  6. Do invest in a good-quality overcoat
  7. Single-breasted vs. double-breasted
  8. Black overcoat
  9. Overcoat & workout outfits don’t mix
  10. Accessorize

1. Understand the Length – how long should an overcoat be?

Traditionally, overcoat should fall under the knee, but if you’re a shorter man, you should always opt for a knee-length or slightly shorter overcoat. This will help to lengthen the torso and create height. If you’re a taller man, opt for an overcoat with knee-length or slightly longer. There is some cropped version of overcoats out there, but keep in mind that short-length overcoat might not be a good option for extreme weather conditions as it only covers half of your body.

2. Choose the Right Fabric – the fabric used determines the lifespan of an overcoat.

Always opt for natural fibers like cashmere or wool, or alpaca as this material is more durable. Overcoat made with 100% wool is the best option because it’s heavy, not too expensive, water-resistant, and it keeps you warm.

3. Pick the Right Weight Based on Climate.

After you’ve chosen the fabric, remember that the weight of the fabric takes an important factor too. Do look for heavy fabrics in an overcoat because they don’t show wrinkles easily, and they will keep you warmer. An overcoat with 17 – 20 ounces or 480 – 570 grams works well for New York winter.

4. Remember the Fit – the best-looking overcoat is the one that fits you the most

First of all, you need to understand how you are going to wear the overcoat. Whether you are going to wear it with few layers underneath, or just a single layer underneath. Ideally, you should have enough room on your overcoat if you are going to wear a few layers underneath. If it is just a single layer underneath, make sure the coat fits you in the most flattering way and it is not over baggy, otherwise, it will make you look heavier.

5. Pay Attention to the Overcoat’s Sleeve Length

The sleeves should be long enough to cover your shirt’s cufflinks but not so long that it makes you look like you’re stealing someone’s coat. Unlike regular office suit, shirt cuffs should not be shown after wearing an overcoat. Your overcoat should reach all the way down to the beginning of your thumb and cover your entire jacket so that no cold air will be sneaked into your body.

If you’re wearing a watch, the sleeves should cover your watch partially or completely. If you can see your watch completely (and hopefully not your forearms), that’s a sign that your overcoat is ill-fitting. Personally I suggest complete coverage of your watch as to protect your watch from the elements (snow, blizzard, drizzle, rain, you name it.) If you’re shopping for watches, check out these cool watches for men from Nordgreen.

Nordgreen native watch with navy blue dial

Photo: Nordgreen Native watch has a slim profile that doesn’t create bulges under sleeves. The dial face and strap can be customized according to your preference. See it here.

6. Do Invest in a Good Quality Overcoat

As always, we would ask our readers to choose quality over price. The reasons are obvious because a good quality overcoat can last longer and save your money to buy it again every winter.

7. Single-Breasted vs. Double-Breasted – which is the more trendy and fashionable design today?

The single-breasted overcoat is the norm out there but the market now has the double-breasted option that is going to make you stand out from the crowd. On top of that, double-breasted is expected to be warmer because they have two layers of fabric on top of each other versus a single-breasted which only has one layer.

8. Black Overcoat…Seriously?

If most of your office suits are black or dark grey, please avoid putting on a black overcoat because it is getting way too bored when everyone out there also wears the same color as you. Try to consider other colors like tan, beige, camel, or maybe light grey. It will create some color contrast with your dark suit and making your style more stunning.

9. Fashion Taboo: Overcoat & Workout Attire Are Not Friends

It definitely looks quite weird if you wear the overcoat with jogger pants or gym tank top. This combination won’t work well. If you want to create some workout look during winter, mix it with a quilted jacket or a hoodie instead.

10. Nail the Look with Extra Accessories

Overcoats are versatile. There aren’t that many accessories that won’t go well with it. Here are some accessories you can wear with an overcoat. For example, a scarf to alleviate your outfit and provide extra warmth when the winter days get harsh; a dress leather gloves or a fedora hat; and of course, wristwatches go nicely underneath the sleeve of your overcoat. If you’re up for a little DIY project, you can make your own smart pocket watch and let it dangle from the buttonhole of your coat.

In addition, small accessories such as personalized enamel pins can elevate your entire look. I’ve heard a professional enamel pin maker says, “I Don’t Wear Pins, I Wear Attitude.” Indeed, more and more fashion lovers are choosing these delicate accessories to fully express their personality nowadays.

lapel pin on jacket


Although these accessories are not necessary, wearing them will add some points to your overall look.

Overcoat Outfit Ideas for Men – Gallery

We’ve curated 60 pictures to demonstrate how stylish men dress up the overcoat during this winter. Please click the next button or slide left using your finger if you’re on mobile.

Grey wool overcoat, blue office suit, leather boots, leather gloves 1

Camel overcoat, checked office suit, double monk straps shoes 1

Black overcoat, dark blue suit, turtleneck sweater 1

Blue overcoat, checked grey office suit, dotted tie, shades 1

Camel overcoat, grey wool suit, leather dress shoes 1

Looking for more dapper office wear ideas? Follow this link – How to wear a business suit?

Navy overcoat, grey wool suit, white shirt, brown dress shoes 1

Brown wool overcoat, checked grey suit, vest jacket 1

Camel wool overcoat, blue double-breasted suit, shades 1

Camel overcoat, black pinstripe suit 1

Camel overcoat, brown wool blazer, white shirt, brown leather gloves 1

Camel overcoat, white shirt, vest jacket, brown Chelsea boots 1

Grey wool overcoat, white shirt, grey sweater, suede Chelsea boots 1

Grey overcoat, white button down shirt, black jeans, leather boots 1

Camel overcoat, white shirt, brown leather chukka boots 1

Black overcoat, white shirt, black jeans, black leather Chelsea boots 1

Looking for more white shirt fashion ideas? Follow this link – White shirt outfit ideas for men

Beige overcoat, white button down shirt, jeans, loafers 1

Camel overcoat, white shirt, yellow tie, brown sneaker 1

Camel overcoat, white shirt, blue jeans, suede shoes 1

Blue overcoat, white shirt, blue suit pants, leather derby shoes 1

Grey overcoat, white button up shirt, black leather Chelsea boots 1

Camel overcoat, tan turtleneck sweater, sneaker 1

Green overcoat, white sweater, fedora hat, brown suede Chelsea boots 1

Camel overcoat, camel sweater, white shirt, suede Chelsea boots 1

Light grey overcoat, black turtleneck t-shirt, black jeans 1

Grey overcoat, black turtleneck t-shirt, grey suede Chelsea boots 1

Charcoal grey overcoat, grey sweater, leather gloves, white sneaker 1

Black overcoat, grey overcoat, black jeans, boots 1

White overcoat, ocean blue sweater, checked suit pants 1

Camel overcoat, black sweater, brown leather boots 1

Olive overcoat, white sweater, black dress shoes 1

Grey overcoat, light tan turtleneck t-shirt, white jeans 1

Olive green overcoat, brown sweater, blue jeans 1

Dark green overcoat, black sweater, suit pants, leather boots 1

Grey overcoat, dark blue turtleneck t-shirt, wool suit pants 1

Dark grey overcoat, black turtleneck t-shirt, beanie hat 1

Black overcoat, white sweater, black jeans 1

Grey overcoat, black turtleneck t-shirt, jeans, white sneaker 1

Burgundy overcoat, grey sweater, grey sneaker 1

Camel overcoat with fur lapels, black turtleneck t-shirt, blue jeans 1

Love fur collar? Check out another men’s coat with fur collar attached – Parka jacket

Olive green overcoat, blue sweater, grey suit pants 1

Camel overcoat, grey wool suit, light grey sweater 1

Camel overcoat, grey t-shirt, suit pants, scarf, beanie hat 1

Wanna learn types of beanie hat on the market? Read more here – Beanie hat

Camel overcoat, black t-shirt, suit pants, leather dress shoes 1

Olive overcoat, white t-shirt, black jeans 1

Camel overcoat, white sweater, chinos, black scarf, sneaker 1

Blue overcoat, white t-shirt, black jeans, sneaker 1

Grey overcoat, white v-neck t-shirt, blue ripped jeans, suede Chelsea boots 1

Grey overcoat, white t-shirt, black jeans, sneaker 1

Charcoal grey overcoat, black t-shirt, suit pants, white sneaker 1

Black overcoat, grey hoodie jacket, white singlet, dark brown Chelsea boots 1

Beige overcoat, white t-shirt, snapback, leather boots 1

Dark brown overcoat, grey t-shirt, black jeans 1

Camel overcoat, white t-shirt, blue jeans, white sneaker 1

Camel overcoat, black t-shirt, jeans, leather boots 1

Camel overcoat, white t-shirt, black jeans, black leather gloves 1

Camel overcoat, print t-shirt, suede Chelsea boots 1

Looking to replace a new pair of fall or winter boots? Compare the products here – Boots

Grey overcoat, white t-shirt, blue ripped jeans, white sneaker 1

Black overcoat, white t-shirt, black jeans, leather boots 1

Grey wool overcoat, denim jacket, white t-shirt, black jeans 1

Maroon overcoat, denim overshirt, white singlet, blue chinos 1


60 Best Ways to Style An Overcoat This Winter 1

If you like this article, help us to spread the word by sharing this image to your Pinterest or click the Social Media icons on the above to start sharing.