If the holy trinity of winter jackets—the down puffer, the wool topcoat, and the denim jacket—already has a place in your coat closet, you might think your outerwear arsenal is fit to take on the season. But if you don’t have a waxed canvas jacket in the mix, you’re missing out on a staple that has serious versatility and only gets better with age. While modern waterproof materials like Gore-Tex and DWR coatings might require less maintenance (you’ll need to re-wax your waxed cotton goods every now and then), there’s simply no competition when it comes to style. The waxed canvas jacket wins every time.
The origin of waxed canvas garments stretches back to the 17th century. Realizing that their ship’s sails caught more wind when wet, Scottish and English mariners began greasing them with fish oils: It provided the same effect, but the oils prevented the sails from absorbing moisture, which would weigh the ship down. Fabric manufacturers British Millerain and Halley Stevensons in Scotland took note, and they adapted that logic to produce and patent their own weatherproof waxed cotton materials. These fabrics soon became an ideal material for making lightweight but incredibly sturdy weatherproof bags and protective outerwear.
Those two heritage names are still the leading purveyors of waxed canvas today. They’re used by a number of acclaimed menswear brands, including Belstaff, Filson, and Peregrine. Today’s waxed canvas jackets come in many easy-to-layer styles and silhouettes, but no matter which you choose, they’ll keep you dry and comfortable through all kinds of winter weather. And once you pick one, it’ll develop unique creases and colorations the more you wear it. Want to put one in your closet? These are our top picks.
The Best Waxed Canvas Jackets for Men
1. Reese Cooper Waxed Cotton Hunting Jacket
Reese Cooper’s update on a classic hunting jacket comes slightly cropped and fully lined with a rayon jersey fabric for a comfortable feel. In addition to its rich green (or bright yellow) color, it stands out from the crowd thanks to several unique details, including webbing straps at the waist and back, a contrast corduroy spread collar, and a removable drawstring hood to cover your noggin on blustery days.
2. Belstaff Fieldmaster Jacket
Composed of plain-weave six-ounce waxed British Millerain cotton, Belstaff’s Fieldmaster Jacket is adorned with corduroy trims, four stormproof bellows pockets, and an internal waist drawstring so you can optimize the fit. It also features the brand’s signature antique brass hardware and checked cotton-twill lining.
3. Flint and Tinder Flannel-lined Waxed Trucker Jacket
Flint and Tinder’s Waxed Trucker is made in America with a sturdy Martexin seven-ounce sailcloth sourced from New Jersey. The jacket comes in seven different colorways—perfect for layering over any winter outfit. This jacket’s price point makes it notable bargain, especially considering it’s fully lined with warm, super-soft flannel.
4. Peregrine Bexley Jacket
With a sartorial legacy that spans over 200 years, family-owned Peregrine still makes every single one of their garments in the U.K. The rugged Bexley Jacket is made of thick weather-resistant British Millerain eight-ounce waxed canvas, and it’s styled with vintage military touches like a gun shoulder patch, a buckled throat tab, and brass snaps.
5. Barbour Bedale Wax Jacket
The Bedale Jacket is a classic piece of outerwear first released in 1980. It was originally designed for equestrians: Its shorter length and a generous fit were tailored for riding on horseback. The modern version is constructed with a waterproof six-ounce waxed cotton and utilizes Barbour’s signature tartan cotton lining for warmth. The hard-wearing Bedale is fashioned with a soft corduroy collar and moleskin-lined handwarmer pockets; elasticated cuffs and a studded front placket provide extra protection from cold, wet weather.
6. Filson Trench Coat
Filson’s thigh-length trench is crafted of mid-weight waxed cotton from Halley Stevensons, the legendary Scottish waxed cotton specialists (the company has been in business since 1864). While the shell is expertly engineered to shield from all kinds of precipitation, the interior is optimized for coziness: the Cover Cloth lining, wool-lined collar, and flannel-lined hand pockets will keep you nice and toasty.
7. Woolrich Mountain Jacket
Woolrich’s Mountain Jacket is a total treat in frigid temperatures. It’s not only made from the tough-as-nails British Millerain waxed cotton, which ensures protection from wind and water, but it also comes padded with PrimaLoft insulation for excellent warmth in cold temps. Its raglan sleeves and bellows pockets give it a distinctive look, too.
8. Orvis Heritage Field Coat
The Heritage Field Coat from Orvis is an iconic waxed canvas jacket. Likes its past iterations, this jacket capably holds up in drizzles and downpours, but it now comes upgraded with enhancements like reinforced elbow and shoulder patches, gusseted underarm panels with grommets for ventilation, and a waterproof game pocket on the rear (a nod to classic British hunting jackets).
9. Kühl Kollusion Jacket
The latest version of Kuhl’s wax-coated Kollusion Jacket is an affordable, highly practical garment to wear for any outdoor pursuit. It’s breathable and slightly stretchy (so you won’t feel hot or constricted when shoveling your front walk), it comes with a generous amount of pocket space, and the hood can be rolled up and stored inside a zip pocket at the collar. At this price, especially, it’s hard to find a better combination of all-day performance and waxed canvas style.
10. Todd Snyder English Waxed Dylan Jacket
Todd Snyder’s Dylan is cut from British Millerain waxed cotton in a classic American trucker silhouette, and it pairs well with a button down or a turtleneck sweater. It’s also one of the warmer garments on our list: It’s blanked-lined, has a soft moleskin collar, and comes with side tab adjusters at the waist to create a snug, wind-resistant fit.
11. Lands’ End Bayfield Cotton Parka
With PrimaLoft insulation, a soft-brushed flannel lining, and a three-piece adjustable hood with a visor, the Bayfield Parka from Lands’ End will certainly keep you nice and toasty through the winter. Better yet, its waxed cotton shell is a major aesthetic upgrade over your average synthetic winter jacket.