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I grew up in New England, where the fleece jacket was a way of life. Much of the year is defined by weather that’s too temperate for heavy-duty winter coats but too crisp for mere sweaters alone. That’s where fleece jackets come in—versatile, comfortable, warm, and durable top layers. They don’t require the same attention (and dry-cleaning bills) needed for upmarket overcoats and parkas. Also, there’s something so reassuring about the style’s grab-and-go mentality. It pairs well with everything, can be easily packed, and hardly ever wrinkles. Indeed, if you’re living in a cool climate, you can never have too many fleeces.

I remember my fist fleece, The North Face’s Denali, which, as a teenager, felt like a real style statement and commitment. The fact that the style still exists today—albeit with barely noticeable tweaks—speaks to its longevity. And while I still have the same jacket in near-pristine condition in my closet, I know that, should anything happen to it, I’m able to purchase a near-identical one. This is because a good fleece not only transcends trends and seasons, but will really stand the test of time. What’s more, with the way that ’90s and ’00s fashion have been trending in recent years, my good old Denali has never felt more relevant. 

Today, the menswear market has exploded with fleece options, ranging from high-performing tech varieties to options from designer and luxury brands, all of which are primed for an on-the-go lifestyle. Winter is coming, dear reader, and if you’re on the market for some of the best fleece jackets for men, here’s where to start. 

What to Consider Before Buying the Best Fleece Jackets for Men:

Material: “Fleece” is something of an umbrella term, so it’s important to look closely at the material composition and weave of what you’re trying to buy. First is general fleece, which is a synthetic fabric woven to mimic the natural properties of wool. It has a brushed surface that is comfortable and cozy against the skin. Then there’s sherpa, which is a blend of synthetic fibers woven to mimic the appearance of a sheep’s natural fleece, with a fluffy and textured pile. Finally, there’s shearling, which is actually made from the skin of sheep or lambs, with leather on one side and fluffy wool on the other.

Fit: The fit of a fleece can affect its versatility. Roomy styles lend themselves to being layered easily over an outfit, but some guys might prefer something more fitted. My jacket, for instance, has a slightly relaxed silhouette. It can be worn alone or over a light sweater. Be sure to read the product descriptions carefully so you can make an educated decision about whether or not you’d like to size down or to find the style that best suits you. 

Seasonality: Fleece is a perfect choice for the cooler months because it is both warm and breathable. Jackets made of the material, in particular, are so much more versatile than heavier coats: They move with your body, can withstand a beating, and are generally machine-washable. They’re a reliable day-to-day option when you need something more casual and light, but still insulating. 

Best Overall Fleece Jacket 

When it comes to retro-inspired pieces, there’s a fine line between something with a fresh vibe and something that just looks old. This Patagonia fleece, the OG, falls solidly into the former category. It’s warm, looks great with jeans, and (best of all) is made from 100 percent recycled polyester in a Fair Trade Certified factory.

Material: Recycled polyester.
Fit: Regular.
Colors available: 7.

Buy Now on Backcountry: $229

Buy Now on Rei: $229

Most Streamlined Fleece Jacket

Arc’teryx produces some of the sharpest, most streamlined jackets in the market—and this fleece is no exception. Its clean silhouette works well in a range of environments, from outdoor adventures to city commutes.

Material: Recycled polyester.
Fit: Slim.
Colors available: 5.

Buy Now on Arc’teryx: $180

Best Sustainable Fleece Jacket

Though known primarily for its winter coats, Canada Goose also has a strong fleece game. In fact, most people might find that this substantial fleece jacket can, in some cases, stand in for even heavy-duty parkas. It’s made from a proprietary Kind high-pile fleece—a combination of recycled wool and bio-based fibers—to support the brand’s mission of reducing its global carbon footprint. 

Material: Recycled wool and lyocell.
Fit: Slightly oversized.
Colors available: 3.

Buy Now on Canada Goose: $650

Most Durable Fleece Jacket 

There’s something so reliable about L.L.Bean pieces—primarily, that they’re built to last and can really withstand a beating. The high-pile sherpa on this fleece jacket is cozy and warm, and the ribbed hem and cuffs add an extra layer of durability. 

Material: Polyester.
Fit: Regular.
Colors available: 5.

Buy Now on L.L.Bean: $119

Best Luxury Fleece Jacket

Introducing the luxury shearing that dreams are made of. This Jil Sander Plus jacket is designed with an unpretentious, comfortable silhouette. It is crafted out of the most sumptuous Italian shearling, with a vegetable-tanned leather pocket on the chest.

Material: Shearling and leather.
Fit: Regular.
Colors available: 1.

Buy Now on Saks Fifth Avenue: $7,080

Best Classic Fleece Jacket

Behold, my personal go-to topper. Made from reliable, durable Polartec fleece, this jacket is built to last. It is an enduring style statement for both outdoorsy types and city dwellers alike.

Material: Recycled polyester.
Fit: Relaxed.
Colors available: 3.

Buy Now on Rei: $180

Best Sleeveless Fleece 

Don’t sleep on fleece vests—especially this winner. The twill trim and high-pile sherpa on this smart Hartford style are a welcome, stylish update to the stalwart style beloved by Midtown corporate bros.

Material: Polyester and acrylic, with cotton trim.
Fit: Regular.
Colors available: 2.

Buy Now on Mr Porter: $365

Best Pullover Fleece Jacket

There’s something about a pullover fleece that has an extra dose of coziness, something that feels like a warm hug. And this Sacai style certainly fits the bill. It’s trimmed with a shell material that keeps wind and precipitation at bay and has a perfectly slouchy silhouette that is a sleek upgrade from more entry-level fleeces.

Material: Polyester.
Fit: Regular.
Colors available: 1.

Buy Now on Mr Porter: $1,350

Buy Now on Saks Fifth Avenue: $1,350

Best Designed Fleece Jacket 

Turn to Nobis for luxe, well-designed outerwear pieces. The brand’s Kepler fleece jacket combines premium sherpa with a profoundly durable stretch ripstop, finished with smart details such as magnetic closure flap pockets at the waist and an interior zipper pocket for added storage.

Material: Polyester.
Fit: Regular.
Colors available: 3.

Buy Now on Nobis: $595

Best Preppy Fleece Jacket

If preppy, vintage-inspired pieces are your vibe, fleece jackets can be a difficult category to navigate . . . until, that is, you come across this fleece from Drake’s. It is designed in a creamy shade of white with retro, sport-inspired contrast blue piping.

Material: Wool, nylon, and polyester.
Fit: Regular.
Colors available: 1.

Buy Now on Drake’s: $530


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