How to Layer Up for Winter – A Style Guide for Men

Now that we’ve moved through December, and slipped into 2019, it’s easy to think that spring’s just around the corner. While Christmas and New Year might be behind us, the warmer months are still a long way off, and the worst of the winter is yet to come. So, forget about donning that Hawaiian shirt (unless you’re actually heading there), and focus instead on the challenge of looking cool while dressing to keep warm.

Why Wear Layers?

You probably came here for advice on men’s fashion – not a lecture on science, so we’ll keep things simple...

Multiple layers are far more effective at keeping you snug than a single, thick item of clothing (even when the total weight and thickness are equal). That’s because a pocket of air is trapped between each layer – and air is a fantastic insulator. On top of that, wearing multiple layers means you’ll always have the option of shedding clothing if you get too warm.

But how about style? Can layering up help us to cut a sartorial dash, or will it leave us looking like the Michelin man? Honestly, both are distinct possibilities, but by applying a healthy dose of common sense, and following a few tried-and-true style principles, option A becomes a safe bet.

Start with a Shirt

Choosing a classic shirt instead of a T-Shirt is an easy way to show that style is a factor in your decision making. (Not that we have an issue with the T, but it can’t be denied that a shirt adds a certain je ne sais quoi to a man’s look!)

Naturally, what goes on beneath the shirt is your business alone, and if the coldest of days tempt you to don a vest, then that needn’t compromise the style you’re aiming for.

Add Knitwear

There was a time when knitwear was the preserve of the older generation – a safe and cosy choice that seemed to belong in the same setting as a pipe and slippers. Then fashions changed, in the way that fashions tend to do, and the sight of style-conscious men dressing in knitwear became common once again.

Most knitwear is crafted from either wool or acrylic – a popular synthetic alternative that can be a little easier to care for. Some jumpers bring together a blend of both materials. Whether wool or acrylic, knitwear jumpers are comfortable, warm, and on-trend once again.


A shirt plus knitwear jumper makes a solid combination – but maybe not one that’s likely to turn heads from a distance. Accessorising is a proven way to add an extra dose of panache, and done correctly, it needn’t upset the balance of the look you’ve developed.

Some men are nervous about accessorising, and shy away from wearing bold statement pieces. If you find yourself in this category, then you may feel happier wearing an accessory that’s functional as well as stylish, and given that we’re still deep in the cold winter months, what could look more natural than adding a scarf into the mix?

Style vs. Comfort

Keeping up with developments in men’s fashion doesn’t have to mean shivering your way through the winter. Follow the tips we’ve laid out here, and you’ll find it easy to marry style and comfort seamlessly.