Winter is coming... oh wait, it’s already here. Are you looking to ditch that bulky jacket your mom got you and step-up your winter aesthetic? Do you want to find that perfect combination of practicality and fashion? Then I am here to help.
<em>Acrylic beanie: </em>You cannot go wrong choosing a beanie to keep your head warm during the cold winter months. The fit should be tight around your ears, but loose at the top of your head. Preferably, try to find an acrylic, solid-colour beanie with simple stitching. Recommended brands: Carhartt, American Apparel. Cheaper alternatives: H&M, Old Navy.
<em>Earmuffs:</em> If you want to keep your ears warm without the unfortunate hat hair produced by beanies, I suggest earmuffs. The top of your head takes a slight blow but hair is there for its functionality, too. Recommended brand: 180s.
Probably the most versatile piece and you can get away with wearing almost any colour or pattern. They can be the standout or complementary piece to your outfit. Patterns I prefer are plaid, striped, and tribal.
<em>Traditional winter scarf: </em>For optimal warmth, aim to get a 100 per cent wool scarf. If the quality of the scarf is lackluster, it could lead to irritation, but there are wool blend options available. The length of the scarf when resting on your neck should just pass your waistline. This length enables you to tie many common knots. For knots, Google is your friend. Recommended brands: Banana Republic, Danier. Cheaper alternatives: H&M, Gap.
<em>Infinity scarves:</em> These aren’t just for basic bitches that drink Starbucks and can’t even. The functionality is adequate as infinity scarves naturally wrap around your neck, and can be adjusted to also cover your face depending on how many loops the scarf allows.
The most important article of clothing you need during the cold winter months. If there is anything you should allocate the majority of your funds to, it is this.
<em>Ski/Snowboard jackets:</em> These are typically the bulkiest of available jackets so fit is very important. The jacket should have simple pockets that do not add any additional bulkiness. Since this will most likely be your every day jacket, go for dark or neutral shades — navy blue, black, grey, or forest green etc. — so it will not clash with your pants. If you have money: Arcteryx. Recommended brands: The North Face, Patagonia. Cheaper alternative: Columbia.
<em>Toggle/duffle coat:</em> Aesthetically speaking, this is my personal favourite because of the toggle buttons and leather rope. It can be worn with dressier clothes, but it’s casual enough to wear everyday. Made of a woollen material, these jackets are capable of dealing with mild conditions depending on the quality. Recommended brands: Topman.
<em>Parka:</em> If you want optimal warmth then go for a parka. Parkas can be very bulky so fit is crucial when it comes to purchasing one. Look for one that does not have large pockets as this adds bulkiness. Personally, I prefer parkas that go past the waist and have an open bottom, instead of versions that are cuffed at the waistband. If you have money: Canada Goose. Recommended brands: H&M, Topman.
Unless you are wearing snowpants, there are not many pants that assist in combating the sub-zero temperatures. This is why I highly suggest the use of long johns under the pants you already own. They will add a bit of bulkiness to your legs, but the additional warmth is worth it. For guys that wear super skinny pants, I’ll be praying for you. You can pick up a pair at Target or Wal-Mart for cheap.
Boots are the second most important article to buy when it comes to winter wear. You should invest a pretty penny when it comes to purchasing boots, as a high quality pair will last multiple winters. Avoid buying a bulky pair, and stick to brown or black boots. Most mid-level priced boots are never the most insulated, so wear thicker socks. Recommendations: Dr. Martens 1460 8-eye, Danner Mountain Light II, The North Face Back to Berkeley Boot, Blundstone Chisel Toe Boots, Wolverine 1000 Mile.