What Is Outerwear?

Whether you’re hitting the ski slopes or a city sidewalk, outerwear keeps you warm and comfortable. However, the word “outerwear” can be deceiving at first glance. It looks like it’s a type of jacket or coat, but it actually encompasses most clothing aside from innerwear.

Clothing was invented to protect humans from the elements, and the outerwear industry continues to innovate. It seems like there is a never-ending race to create the most feature-packed garments for cold weather. Many products boast waterproof, breathable membranes and zippers, pit zips, hoods that adjust to the weather, torso lengths that adjust to body shapes and even built-in wiping cloths for skiers.

The outerwear industry is a wild and unpredictable frontier, where big dollars are at stake for manufacturers who produce waterproof breathable fabrics. One of the largest players is W.L. Gore, who makes GORE-TEX fabrics, but a number of other large corporations, including Japan’s Toray (Entrant), the French company Polartec and the US-based Mountain Hardwear/The North Face/Sympatex companies make their own versions of waterproof breathable fabric.

Besides fabric technology, sewing standards play a role in how well an outerwear garment performs. The number of stitches per linear inch is also important for how water resistant a jacket or pants will be. The higher the stitch count, the stronger and more durable a garment will be. Arc’teryx, for example, stitches at a rate of 14-16 stitches per inch, which is twice as many as the industry standard.

A great deal of outerwear is made from softshell fabrics. These fabrics have a soft feel, similar to the knit fabric your mom or dad wore in the 80’s. These fabrics are lightweight, stretchy and, if treated with DWR regularly, water repellent.

Another kind of outerwear is active outerwear, which wicks moisture to help prevent hypothermia while you’re exercising outdoors in the winter. This type of outerwear often includes athletic shorts and pants, but it can also include a warm-up jacket.

When it comes to outerwear for men, a classic black overcoat is an excellent choice. Look for a tailored silhouette and a classic color, like Loulou Studios’ version, which can be layered over a black pleated midiskirt with Manolo Blahnik’s T-strap pumps and a roomy black tote from Prada.

In addition to the many features above, some outerwear brands are known for their quality of construction and finishing. For instance, Moncler’s puffer jackets are known for their warmth and style. The brand is committed to preserving the environment, and its materials are ethically sourced. Additionally, Moncler’s products have received several awards and accolades. The brand’s outerwear is a must-have for any guy who enjoys the outdoors.


Green is the new colour. Gear up and begin your flow with the new green journey.