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Here’s the bottom line: you need a chore coat. Why? Because whatever you’ve got on your plate—a low-key park hang, a nice dinner date, a greasy day in the garage, a coffee meeting with a client—the right chore coat will help you get through it all looking as sharp and put together as possible. For generations, all manner of dudes looking to get stuff done, from construction workers to photographers to mechanics to outdoorsmen, have turned to these storage-space-happy jackets for their durability and versatility. There’s virtually no jacket better suited to everyday wear.
Chore coats will shield you from harsh weather, save you from carrying a bag around, and are perfect for layering over everything from chinos and a T-shirt to a button-down and tailored trousers. And right now, thanks to fashion’s ongoing workwear fixation, there’s never been a wider range of worthwhile versions available to you. To save you a vital bit of time, we went ahead and rounded up the 33 worthiest men’s chore coats on the market right now.
If the appeal of workwear to you is all that baked-in “authenticity,” well, it doesn’t get much more authentic than this. Chore jackets as we know them were first donned by laborers in France in the late 1800s, originally dubbed bleu de travail—“worker’s blues”—for that attractive, irrefutably French shade of indigo. Not long after, in 1913, Le Mont St Michel began crafting their iconic version of the coat. More than a century later, its appeal has only deepened: the roomy patch pockets and hardy construction are as practical as ever, and something in the cut and drape and color lends the OG jacket all the ease and elegance of an impeccably tailored unlined blazer.
You’re probably looking at this jacket and thinking, “No need for the write-up, GQ. I’m well acquainted. Every dad/uncle/general male authority figure in every hometown in America wore one of these growing up.” And while we appreciate you trying to save us some work, you aren’t totally correct. Thing is, this bad boy actually comes courtesy of Carhartt WIP—“Work In Progress”—the Detroit stalwart’s European-designed, streetwear-inflected offshoot. They kept all the best parts of those Carhartts you remember—the impenetrable cotton canvas, the corduroy collar, the rivets, the decades-long lifespan—while also ripping out the heavy blanket lining for spring and trimming the whole thing down just a smidge. The result is the rare remake better than its source material: a jacket that can still stand up to an honest day’s labor, but no longer fits like a stiff cardboard box.
Red Kap has been doling out hardwearing, affordable workwear for decades. Case in point: their lapel counter coat. The French blue is just the right shade, and it’s made using a lightweight but hardy blend of polyester and cotton. At just $25 a pop, you can even get one in every non-bleu color and still pay less than some of the cheaper options on this list. Pair it with your favorite graphic tee and sneakers for a casual off-day look, or go full on fall vibes with a hoodie, cords, and boots.
Alex Mill’s signature work jacket boasts all the hallmarks of a classic chore coat but swaps the typical moleskin fabric for an eco-friendly denim. The fabric is composed entirely of post-consumer cotton made in a family-run, zero-waste mill in Guatemala. That upcycled process imbues the denim with a ton of character and a lived-in feel that won’t cost you months and months in break-in time. The fit is also immaculate. A lot of modern versions are cut too slim, and old-school originals are often too frumpy, but Alex Mill hits an ideal relaxed silhouette that’ll look great layered over everything from a light tee to chunky knit hoodie.
If you’re looking for considered details and expert craftsmanship—without any of the extraneous capital “F” fashion stuff—this is the chore coat for you. Orslow is known for its hardcore workwear reproductions, and it doesn’t get much better than this 1940s-inspired coverall jacket. It’s made using Japanese selvedge denim with a subtle slubby texture, contrast stitching, patinated brass buttons, and an impeccably relaxed fit. With top-notch materials and vintage construction techniques, this piece is built to last well past the 2040s.
28 More Chore Coats We Love
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