I Lived in NYC for 5 Years—These Are the 8 Most Important Coats to Own

I’m originally from Florida, so when I first moved to New York City in the fall of 2015, let’s just say I was embarrassingly unprepared for just how cold the winters get. The icy air and snow can be brutal (I had to learn what a squall was the hard way—that was not fun!), so I quickly realized that the importance of a dependable and durable winter coat could not be overstated. I spent five years living in the city and over that period I amassed a collection of coats and jackets for all kinds of weather. I’ve since moved to the sunnier city of Los Angeles where I don’t have much of a need for thick outerwear, but I’m hoping I can pass along this bit of fashion knowledge so you can bundle up with style. 

Here, I rounded up the eight types of coats that you should have in your closet so you can be prepared for the freezing cold, miserable days ahead. (Can you tell I’m a summer person?) From insulated puffers and fuzzy shearlings to waterproof parkas and trenches, keep scrolling to get the low-down on all the different types of coats and jackets to have in your winter wardrobe. 

Puffers are a winter coat classic. There used to be a time when I totally wrote them off because I didn’t want to look like a walking marshmallow, but trust me, these are your friends. With their insulating features and all-around comfortable padding, you’ll have a substantial buffer between you and whatever cold weather you’re walking around in. 

This one comes in a ton of colors and has a hood just in case you need to protect your neck and ears. It’s also available in sizes XXS to 4XL. 

When your coat is as soft as a duvet. 

You’ll forget what cold weather even is when you’re wearing this coat. 

You won’t get lost in a snowstorm thanks to this bright hue. 

If you’re looking to splurge, I highly suggest this Canada Goose design. 

Shearling coats are my favorites. I’ve worn the same one from Mother Denim every winter in New York City, so I have a soft spot for this style. The textured lining will keep you cozy, and they often have wide collars that you can fully button up for extra protection from the elements. 

Say hello to this best-selling lavender coat. 

Button yours up all the way to stay extra bundled. 

The huge pockets on this style will get tons of use to keep your hands warm too. 

Apparis makes some gorgeous shearling coats in pretty shades like this vivid orange one. 

My Mother Denim coat is more than a few seasons old, but this new style is pretty comparable. The contrast of the cream and tan is so eye-catching. 

Duster coats and jackets are for those who want some more length to their outerwear. You can also wear some of these styles indoors as loungewear if it happens to be chilly inside your apartment as well. 

Very into this speckled brown style. 

The fit of this coat is unreal. You can easily layer thicker sweaters underneath it too. 

Like the long coat version of your go-to plaid shirt. 

Can totally imagine wearing this all day in my apartment with a cup of hot cocoa and Netflix on. 

Wool will absolutely keep you warm, and you can roll the sleeves up or down. 

A parka or raincoat is absolutely essential not just for winter, but for any season! It’ll definitely come in handy when there’s rain, snow, sleet, hail, and who knows what else falling from the sky. A coat with waterproof, durable materials that can stand up to the elements will keep you toasty, and you can add thick knits and long sleeves underneath them for more layers. 

This longline style will keep you dry and looking amazing. 

Rains raincoats are truly the best. This long style also has a belt if you want to cinch the waist. 

This top-rated style also comes in black, but the forest green shade is actually super versatile. 

Almost like a cross between a parka and puffer, this coat is for those who are really braving the outdoors. 

Wear this one with white for a monochrome look or add some contrast with your layers underneath. 

Some wrap coats have other closures to them and feature a belt as an extra styling option, while others are left completely open with only the belt to keep you wrapped up. Either way, they help with that whole effortless look and are easy to throw on when you’re heading out to your neighborhood cafe for some much-needed coffee. 

Robe, coat, or both? 

You can do no wrong with a gray belted style. 

The statement collar on this speaks for itself. Leave this coat open if you want to show off your cute sweater underneath, but belt it once the wind starts to pick up. 

A warm wool style with a detachable belt will do you some good. 

This Anine Bing design is the epitome of elegance. 

Quilted coats often have standout seams and extra insulating materials sewn inside. The padding of these will be a lifesaver come wintertime, and some styles can actually be layered under a larger coat if the weather calls for it. 

It’s reversible, so need I say more? 

If you don’t want yet another black coat, opt for a deep brown hue. 

It’s called a “cocoon” puffer for a reason because you will be so snug in this. 

A long style helps keep the cold away from your legs too. 

Just by looking at it, I can totally tell that this style will feel like wearing the coziest blanket. 

Tailored coats often have more structured shapes and have a menswear vibe to them. They have a more fitted look and many are double-breasted with buttons. If you’re dressing for a fancy occasion, but you still want to keep warm, you’ll want to go with one of these types of coats. 

The belt on this wool coat makes it so polished. 

Camel coats are a need, not a want. 

Paired with a white turtleneck, this black style is perfection. 

Go bold with some hot pink this winter. 

With the leather buckles, gold hardware, and heavy structured cotton, there’s a reason this coat was featured at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. 

A trench coat is just as necessary for winter as it is for spring. You can fit tons of layers underneath it, but it also does its part to keep any wet snow or rain out. They usually have good ventilation too, so you won’t overheat. 

A khaki trench is a staple. 

Digging the houndstooth print on this style. 

For a pop of color, opt for a light blue one. 

This faux-leather style gives it some shine. 

This trench looks just as great without a belt as it does without. 

Next: Oversize Bomber Jackets Were Everywhere at NYFW, so I Found the 12 Best Ones

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