Mens Extreme Cold Capsule Wardrobe

Mitch here!

I chose to live in Chicago, and I’m dealing with the consequences of that decision right now. So today I focused my winter blues into a rethinking of my winter gear—and the result is this capsule wardrobe for extreme cold conditions. Have no worries; I left my winter shorts out of it!

Where to Shop:

J.Crew: I should just make my home page. It’s the first place I look when shopping, and it’s usually the last because they have what I want and I buy it—game over. J.Crew’s winter clothes game is strong. And don’t forget about Factory for even better deals.

Nordstrom: As if an incredible selection of top brands and consistently low prices wasn’t enough, Nordstrom has the best customer service and easiest return process on the internet. This stuff matters!

Amazon: Amazon Fashion is no joke, and their new Amazon Wardrobe service—which lets you try on clothes at home at no cost—is just nuts.

L.L. Bean: L.L. Bean is the king of winter gear. This is the stuff you’ll have for life. Now sold on Nordstrom, too!

Extreme Cold Capsule Wardrobe

Mens Extreme Cold Capsule Wardrobe

Shirts: Flannel Shirt / Long-Sleeve Henley / Sherpa-Lined Plaid ShirtStretch Mockneck / Plaid Flannel

Flannels and plaids. Plaids and flannels. There’s a reason that cold weather dwellers from coast to coast look like they’re wearing a plaid flannel uniform. It’s warm! I recommend layering with a stretchy mock neck or henley under a warm flannel. Bonus points if it’s sherpa-lined.

Mens Extreme Cold Capsule Wardrobe

Coats: Nano Puff / Quilted Vest / Rain Jacket Canada Goose / Hooded Parka

The unspoken truth about extreme cold living is that your coat will be the only piece of clothing anyone sees for six months of the year. It’s also the single most important component to staying warm. I use three coats throughout the winter: The lightweight and surprisingly warm Nano Puff, a vest/rain jacket combo for wet winter days, and a heavy parka for the other 80 percent of the winter. Two great options here and here.

Mens winter boots for Extreme Cold

Boots: Waterproof Chukkas / Shearling Lined Bean Boots / Bean Snow Boots / Insulated Sorel Boots

I use three varieties of boots throughout the winter. These waterproof Ugg Chukkas are super warm and comfortable—like wearing slippers around the city. I’m a Bean boot maximalist, but only recently discovered this Shearling-Lined pair which takes the whole experience to the next level. For snowy conditions, I love both these Bean Snow boots and insulated Sorel boots which can handle anything but are still sharp-looking enough to prevent me from looking like a 12-year-old getting off a school bus.

Men's winter accessories

Accessories: Knit Hat / Wool Mittens / Barbour Beanie / Wool Socks / Scarf / Gator Mask / Convertible Gloves / Moccasins

From hat to socks, reliable accessories can make or break a winter wardrobe. And in addition to scarves and beanies, this year we get to rock surprisingly warm face masks around all day. What fun! I’m a mitten guy, and when necessary, I opt for these convertible mitten/gloves that make it possible to send a text or take a picture without removing the whole glove. Also, shout out to these super comfy moccasins which I’ve taken to wearing around the house all winter.

Men's winter lined pants

PantsLined Chinos / Lined Cabin Pant / Waterproof Briar Pants / Flannel-Lined Jeans

We live in a miracle world where after a few quick keystrokes on your computer a friendly person will bring flannel lined pants to your door. I suggest a pair of lined chinos, cabin pants and jeans. And, because I learned this lesson the hard way this week, a nice pair of waterproof briar pants should keep you dry and toasty if it snows two feet overnight.

Men's winter sweater collection

Sweaters:  Crewneck / Hoodie / Fisherman Sweater / Wool Sweater / Shawl Cardigan

It goes without saying that a solid sweater collection is essential to any winter wardrobe. I’ve grown a real appreciation for wool this winter, and today I’m recommending woolen fisherman sweaters, crewnew sweaters and shawl cardigans. I can also say that on truly cold days, adding a simple hoodie as a layering piece works great.

Men's extreme winter pullovers

Layers: Fleece Pullover / Better Sweater Pullover / Quilted Vest / Sherpa Quater Zip / Performance Pullover

I’ve mentioned it a few times already in the post, but layering pieces are the most important part of any extreme winter wardrobe. I’m a huge fan of quarter zip pullovers (as you can tell from the above selection) as they work great under a parka outdoors or as a top layer indoors. These selections are all wrinkle-free and impenetrable. They also have a satisfying zipper that you can obsessively zip up and down all day which is nice.

Mitch. OUT!