The Ultimate Guide to Finding the Perfect Plus-Size Winter Coat

The Ultimate Guide to Finding the Perfect Plus-Size Winter Coat

Having a durable, warm coat is essential for colder temperatures, but it can be difficult to decide on the perfect style for the season. Consider the different features, fit, and design to get the ideal plus-size women's winter coats.

Types of Winter Coats

Factors to Consider

Our Recommendations

Types of Winter Coats

Plus-size women's coats are available in everything from classic styles to fun, modern designs. To get started, consider the different types of coats on the market:

  • Women's Winter Parkas. A parka is a heavyweight coat that is usually windproof and waterproof or water-resistant. It is lined and/or insulated to withstand cold temperatures.
  • 3-in-1 Coats. These are made with removable linings or inner jackets that can be used together or alone for multiple levels of warmth.
  • Water-Resistant Coats. These are winter coats designed to resist water and inclement temperatures. These jackets can vary from waist length to ankle length and usually have hoods.
  • Trench Coats. A trench is typically a double-breasted belted style inspired by military jackets for a look that is dressy and elegant.
  • Down Coats. A down jacket is insulated with duck or goose feathers (down) and designed to withstand cold temperatures.
  • Stadium Coats. A stadium coat is long (reaching the thighs or calves) and insulated. It may have pockets and a drawstring at the waist to help give it shape.
  • Camping Coats. These include field jackets, barn coats, and other coats designed for outdoor use that are durable and warm.
  • Raincoats. Raincoats may be lined or unlined, but they are usually not as warm as other styles like down coats or parkas.
  • Peacoats. A peacoat is a double-breasted coat usually made from wool and often features a wide collar.
  • Fit-and-Flare Coats. Fit-and-flare coats are structured coat styles that come in at the waist and then gently flare out to create a flattering shape.

Factors to Consider

Find a Flattering Fit

A great fit is important when it comes to buying a plus-size winter coat. As this is an item that will be worn time and time again throughout the season, it is key that a woman feels great about the fit of her coat. Read the sizing information carefully to make sure you get a coat that is neither too big (which can feel frumpy) or too small (which will look less flattering). 

Consider overall body shape as well. Different coat styles have different looks; some might draw more attention to the shoulders, while others might have a decorative hem or other feature that draws the eye lower.

Create Balance

Think about how a specific coat style can help create balance for your body type. Ladies with pear-shaped body types may want a coat style that skims over the hips or has more volume at the top of the coat with its hood and collar, for example. Women who have a more apple-shaped body type, however, might want a more streamlined style or accents like pockets or decorative designs lower on the coat to create balance. Try different coat styles to see which ones work best for your unique, beautiful body type.

It's All in the Details

There are dozens of choices in coat styles for plus-size women, but sometimes it all comes down to the details. There are many ways the small details of the coat can flatter a woman's figure. Eye-catching buttons add interest and definition to a coat, while details like angled pockets can create a sleek, polished look. Fit-and-flare and belted styles look fabulous and are universally flattering. Lightly structured coat styles that skim the body are also flattering looks for most women. Details like quilting, stitching, and faux fur can elevate a coat's style and add to the overall look.

Think About Length and Weight

The length and weight of a winter coat are practical considerations plus-size women will need to evaluate when deciding on the right style. Hip-length women's winter coats are a flattering and popular option, but longer styles also have advantages. Some longer coat styles have a more professional look, and longer heavyweight coats are ideal for more extreme temperatures. Look at the coat's temperature rating and weight to ensure it will meet your requirements. 

Depending on the typical weather, a woman may need multiple coat options, such as a fleece jacket for fall, a water-resistant hip- or waist-length coat for spring, and a heavyweight parka or stadium coat for winter. Some coats, such as 3-in-1 styles or those with removable linings, have the versatility to handle multiple seasons and types of weather.

Choose the Right Fabric and Design

There is plenty of diversity in women's coats, including a host of options in fabric, design, and construction to meet different needs and style preferences. Plus-size down vests and coats have a unique, stylish look, but the look is very different from a long insulated stadium coat. Water-resistant fabrics and insulated styles are important for outdoor winter activities, while wool coats are warm, elegant, and perfect for wearing to the office. 

Some jacket styles have a casual feel, like a short zipped fleece jacket, while others embody a more sophisticated vibe, such as a belted cotton trench. Still others, such as waterproof plus size rain jackets, are designed with specific features.

Will You be Wearing Accessories?

Accessorizing to the hilt is a must during the coldest months of the year. While it's easy to show off an armful of bangles or a major statement necklace during spring and summer, it's a little tougher when you need to cover the majority of your body just to step outside. To the rescue comes the little additions that make your plus-size coat look even more chic and flattering! Try a chunky scarf in a contrasting color over your fleece jacket, for example. Sling a crossbody bag in a vibrant hue over your squall coat to liven up your look. Playing with visible accessories can make all the difference when you want to make a style statement even when you're all bundled up.

Our Recommendations

A great winter coat has a practical purpose, but thanks to the exciting options in plus-size women's coats, no woman has to sacrifice style for the sake of staying warm. Discover a new coat design that can tackle the cold temps and flatter your figure. From classic trenches in pretty neutral hues to contemporary winter coats done in bold, bright colors, there is something perfect for every woman this season. Here are some of our favorites:

The Plus-Size Long Down Winter Coat

We've said it before and we'll say it again: wearing a long down coat is like being swaddled in a hyperthermal sleeping bag. You could be standing around in subzero temperatures and as long as you have a long down winter coat on, good winter snow boots, a hat, and gloves, you'll be golden. These things are designed to keep you warm for hours.

A coat of this size and material can cost anywhere from $100–200, so it's definitely something to be thought of as an investment. A high-quality long down winter coat will last you for years. Although a coat like this is less about style and more about functionality, it might help to know that style icon Angelina Jolie is routinely seen wearing the long down winter coat, especially during the long winter days working on a film set. 

Although black might be the most classic color for a long down winter coat, you can also get it in gray (another timeless color for a winter coat), green (for when you're feeling festive), or purple (for the moments you want to remind yourself and everyone around you that spring will indeed return again someday).

A Plus-Size Insulated Quilted Barn Jacket

This jacket is suitable for three seasons, especially if you live in a milder climate. If you live in a place like Southern California or a region that doesn't get harsh snowfalls, you can stretch out the wear of the jacket through the fall, winter and spring seasons. 

An insulated quilted barn jacket is quaint, rustic and classic and has just as much style as it does function. It will complement and complete your outfit rather than covering it up. It goes without saying that an insulated quilted barn jacket is more lightweight than a long down coat, but it still does the trick of keeping you warm on those unseasonably chilly spring or fall mornings or on a milder-than-normal winter day.

The Expedition Down Parka

This is for the days when you know you're really going to be roughing it, whether that means picking up the kids from school and waiting in the blustery cold for a few too many minutes or going on a bona fide winter hike on the snowy trails of the nearest park. At $300, a women's winter parka is an investment like the long down coat–something that will serve you well for many years. It's the kind of coat designed with functionality in mind yet it manages to be stylish without effort.

Most down parkas typically come in black, but you may be able to find it in another dark, solid color. It's not exactly the kind of coat to be worn when you're feeling fashionable or expressive; it's what you wear when you mean business and you know you need something heavy-duty to brave the cold weather. Down parkas are designed to withstand temperatures that drop as low as -35 degrees Fahrenheit. 

The material is water-resistant, so no matter how much it snows on you, you're not going to stay wet. And don't forget the other attractive feature of the parka: pockets. You've got plenty with a down parka–enough room to store all the essentials, including those items you'd typically cram into your purse

The Squall-Insulated Long Stadium Coat

Like many winter coats, the long stadium coat is stylish in black. This coat is made of luxury and practicality all in one. The neon shell prevents the harsh elements, whether rain or snow, from ruining your outfit and leaving you cold and wet. The lining is quilted, so it will keep you toasty and warm even on those snowy days. Priced under $150, it's a bargain coat, but one that is high quality and will last for years.

The Vest

Not just any vest. Not something drab and dreary and explicitly utilitarian, a clothing item designed to throw on quickly when you're taking the dog on a quick walk or dropping the kids off at dance class. No, we're talking about a women's winter vest with flair. 

Find yourself a colorful print vest to add to your fall and winter wardrobe. If you want something simple that will go with a multitude of outfits, opt for a black-and-white checkered vest, something you can wear throughout the holiday season with more festive tops and still get plenty of use out of it during the rest of the year. 

Although a black-and-white checkered vest is decidedly more versatile, it's always nice to have a plus-sized winter vest that offers a splash of color in the midst of a cold, snowy winter. In these instances, why not brighten up the whole day (and your outfit) by sporting a colorful evergreen or wild cherry floral vest? Again, this is the type of vest that is particularly fitting for the holiday season, but you'll still get plenty of use out of it before and after. 

Finally, one of the best things about a vest is that you can wear it indoors without getting strange looks. So, go ahead and throw on that gorgeous print vest; it'll go smashingly with your outfit at the next holiday party you attend

The Faux Fur Hooded Down Winter Jacket

What's better than a down winter jacket? A plus-size down winter jacket with a (faux) fur hood. With this added feature, even if you forgot to grab a hat earlier in the day, you'll still be able to keep your head just as warm as the rest of your body. The outer shell is 100% polyester and comes with water-resistant coverage, so no matter how rainy or snowy it gets, those weather elements aren't getting through. And on the days when you don't need the hood or just aren't feeling it, you can easily detach it from the rest of the coat and put it back on whenever you need it later. 

This coat offers a flattering fit, thanks to its slimming shape and material designed for ease of mobility. A coat like this is designed for extended outdoor activity, so plan to wear it when you're taking the kids sledding or checking out a community winter festival.

Get ready to embrace the chilly weather of fall and winter! Snag the perfect plus-size winter coat today to accompany you on all of your adventures.

The Heathered Hooded Squall Winter Jacket

Gray though this jacket may be, it is in no way a dreary or bland piece of winter wear. The color is classic and sharp. The best part? It can be worn with anything and make the whole outfit look good. As stated in the name of the jacket, this one comes with an adjustable hood to keep your head protected on those particularly snowy days when a hat alone just doesn't cut it. The hood also comes with a visor, providing extra protection for the face. The jacket is windproof and waterproof, fully insulated, and made with 300-weight fleece lining. If all that doesn't start warming you up just reading about it, we don't know what will. You'll be all ready for the coldest winter day so long as you have this jacket on.

The Three-in-One Squall Jacket

This is the jacket you'll wear when you and the hubby are going on an adventurous three-hour-long snow trek through the woods. Or the coat you wear when you are going on your solo snow run early in the morning. Though it's technically a raincoat, this squall jacket is designed to withstand temperatures as low as -5 degrees Fahrenheit. It's a waterproof and wind-resistant coat, so if you plan to spend a long time roughing it outdoors, this is the coat you want to be wearing. The cuffs and hoods can be tightened to seal the wind out and retain warmth. The fleece lining can be removed, allowing you to wear it on its own as a fleece jacket or just wear the outer shell instead. And of course, when the two jackets are combined, it creates a heavy-duty jacket designed to keep you warm and dry.

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