Trench coats are a tried-and-true staple that complements virtually any closet—and from leather dusters to sleeveless options, today, they’re available in more styles than ever. “I love trenches year-round,” stylist Amanda Wood says. “They dress up any outfit similarly to adding a sports coat or blazer. You can pop a trench over a lightweight summer dress, or over your three-piece suit, or [add it] to your blazer, hoodie, joggers, and trainers look.”
As with other closet staples, when you’re shopping for a trench, arguably the most important factor to consider is fit. Particularly if you’re petite, this can make or break your look—who wants to be flooded in khaki? “The trench should fit properly and look tailored, while still having enough room to add in the layers you wish to have under the coat,” Wood says. “If you’re petite, you should be looking for a shorter length trench that hits above the knee, otherwise the coat will wear you instead of you wearing it. If you are taller, you should look for a trench that falls a bit below the knee.”
With that in mind, keep reading for the best trench coats available now, as well as styling and shopping advice from stylists Wood, Venk Modur, and Liz Teich.
Meet the Expert
- Amanda Wood is a personal stylist for her brand The Haute Edit. She provides services to individuals looking to change up and elevate their looks.
- Venk Modur is a wardrobe stylist and co-founder of Mariko & Venk.
- Liz Teich is a commercial and personal wardrobe stylist, on-air style expert, and native New Yorker.
Best Oversized: COS Organic Cotton Oversized Trench
Who else recommends it? Cosmopolitan also picked the COS Organic Cotton Oversized Trench.
This oversized trench from COS comes recommended by Modur as an alternative to pricier options from Bottega Veneta or Thom Brown. We love the versatility on this one—you can leave it open for a cool statement, or button it closed for a more elegant aesthetic.
Material: 98% cotton, 2% elastane | Size Range: 2-14 | Length: 55.5 inches (size 6) | Care: Machine wash
Best Budget: J.ING Ellee Beige Belt Trench Coat
Woman-founded J.ING is known for offering tailored expensive-looking pieces at an affordable price point. This double-breasted trench is no exception (we're particularly obsessed with the plaid-lined cuffs). Wear it layered over your office outfits for a smart but effortless look.
Material: 100% polyester | Size Range: XS-L | Care: Machine wash at or below 86 degrees; line dry in shade
Best Splurge: Burberry The Kensington Heritage Long Trench Coat
No surprise here—Burberry is the designer when it comes to trench coats, and their coats are timeless enough to make them worth the high price tag. “I love [the] trenches from Burberry,” Wood says. “They have been making them since the 1900s and have perfected the trench.” Part of the brand’s Heritage collection, the Kensington has a classic look with practical details that will make it your new go-to.
Material: 100% cotton; 100% viscose sleeve lining | Size range: 00-16 | Care: Specialist dry clean
Best Leather: Karen Millen Oversized Leather Trench Coat
If you’re looking for a timeless leather option that you’ll wear for years to come, this pick from Karen Millen takes the cake. It comes with a lot of the trench details that you love, and it's available in an array of colors, including a bright green option which adds an unexpected twist to your spring and fall wardrobes.
Material: 100% leather body; 100% polyester lining | Size Range: 2-12 | Length: 46 inches (size 10) | Care: Do not clean
Best Classic: Coach Solid Mid Trench
Like Burberry, Coach is a reliable option when it comes to high-quality, classic trenches. We love all of the timeless details on this coat, from the double-breasted silhouette to timeless color options.
Material: 68% cotton, 32% polyester; 56% polyester, 44% viscose lining | Size Range: 00-14 | Length: 38½ inches | Care: Dry clean
Best Wool: Silk Maison Empire Wool Trench Coat
A luxe remix of your typical trench, this Merino wool coat gets high praise from reviewers for its elegant look and high-quality construction. Wool is known for its insulative, durable, and wrinkle-resistant properties, so it's always a solid outerwear option.
Material: 100% wool | Size Range: S-L | Care: Dry clean only
Best Single-Breasted: Everlane The Long Mac Coat
Depending on who you ask, macs and trench coats are essentially the same: They’re both all-weather and pretty versatile, with raglan sleeves and an extended length. This pick from Everlane has a clean, utilitarian look that will perfectly complement a wide range of styles. Just note that it does have an oversized fit, so size down if you’re looking for something more fitted.
Material: 100% cotton shell; 100% recycled polyester lining | Size Range: 2-14 | Length: 55½ inches for size 6 | Care: Machine wash
Best on Amazon: London Fog Single Breasted Belted Trench with Hood
London Fog has been producing quality outerwear for nearly 100 years, so you can trust that their trenches are a worthy investment. This classic pick is available in both black and khaki and comes with useful features like a sleek belt and removable hood. Plus, this pick is offered up to size 3X, making it one of the more inclusive options on the list.
Material: 100% polyester | Size range: S-3X | Care: Machine wash
Best Short: Lattelier Knee-High Trench Coat
Great for milder weather, this knee-high pick from NYC-based brand Lattelier is chic and fun. Dress it up for dinner, or pair it with your favorite Levi’s and a tee for the perfect transitional weather look.
Material: 100% polyester shell; 100% cotton lining | Size range: S-XL | Care: Dry clean only
Best Size Range: ASOS Design Curve Longline Trench Coat
One of the best parts about ASOS is that items from their own line come in a variety of different body fits, including tall, petite, maternity, and curve. This longline trench is one of such options, and it delivers by providing a fashion-forward, utilitarian look—just copy and paste the product name into the search bar to find the tall, maternity, and "regular" options. Reviewers suggest sizing down.
Material: Lining: 100% polyester; Body: 79% polyester, 21% cotton | Size Range: 0-26 (in tall, regular, curve, and maternity) | Care: Dry clean only
Best for Winter: & Other Stories Padded Trench Coat
Add more dimension to your typical black coat with this padded trench from & Other Stories, which also comes in beige. It has a classic, double-breasted silhouette that can be cinched in with the included belt.
Material: 100% polyester | Size Range: 0-12 | Length: 45 inches (size 4) | Care: Machine wash warm
Best Check: Reformation York Coat
Plaid is one of the more versatile patterns out there, pairing perfectly with all of your basics. We love this pick from the Reformation, which has a slim-fitting silhouette and a double-breasted center.
Material: 68% wool, 23% polyester, 6% nylon, 3% alpaca hair | Size range: XS-XL | Care: Dry clean only
Best for Outdoors: Helly Hansen Welsey II Trench Coat
If you live in a particularly rainy or cold climate, your standard trench coat might not do the job of protecting you from the elements. This pick from Helly Hansen pairs a chic silhouette with practical details, like a packable hood and water and windproof construction. For super low temps, you can also opt for the insulated version.
Material: 100% polyester | Size Range: XS-XL | Care: Machine wash, tumble dry
Best Two-Toned: Rails Bristol Two Tone Double Breasted Felt Topcoat
Remix your usual outerwear look with this asymmetrical pick from Rails, which has a camel side and a gray side. Each color is still fairly neutral, so it’s more wearable than you’d think.
Material: 50% wool, 50% polyester | Size Range: XS-XL | Length: 41 inches (size M) | Care: Dry clean only
Best Cashmere Blend: Jenni Kayne Cashmere Overcoat
An editor and celebrity favorite, California-based brand Jenni Kayne makes an über-cozy coat that combines a classic look with a luxe cashmere-blend material for a versatile piece that you can make your own. We’d bet it’s pretty warm, too.
Material: 71% wool, 11% polyester, 10% cashmere, 2% alpaca, 6% other fibers | Size Range: XS-XXL | Care: Dry clean only
Best Lightweight: Babton by Aritzia Maximo Trench
Made with TENCEL™ Lyocell, which is described by the brand as "a wood-based fiber produced through a closed-loop production process," this is a super chic option that will carry you through fall and spring. With a removable tie-waist belt and a length hitting just above the knee, it's a great lightweight layering option to support virtually every piece in your wardrobe.
Material: 100% lyocell; 100% cupro lining | Size Range: XXS-XL | Care: Dry clean only
Best Sleeveless: Object Organic Cotton Sleeveless Trench Coat
While better suited for milder weather, sleeveless trenches are a fun option to experiment with. This neutral pick available at ASOS updates the traditional trench silhouette with a D-ring belt and exaggerated shoulders. Wear it layered over a dress of the same length for an unexpected look.
Material: 100% organic cotton | Size Range: 2-10 | Care: Machine wash
Best Minimalist: Low Classic Recycled Nylon Single Trench Coat
Low Classic is beloved for its minimalistic staples, and this trench is no exception. We love the double-layered look, which gives more dimension to an otherwise utilitarian piece. It serves a purpose, too: The half-wool base layer provides warmth, while the nylon shell helps protect you from the elements.
Material: 72% cotton, 28% recycled nylon; 52% viscose rayon, 48% polyester lining | Size Range: S-L | Length: 47.24 inches (medium) | Care: Dry clean only
Best Satin: Lattelier Double Breasted Trench Coat
Perfect for wintry days and dress-up occasions, this trench has a luxe yet relaxed look that reviewers love. We think it’d be great for spring, too!
Material: 82% acetate, 18% polyester | Size Range: XS-XXL | Care: Spot treat or dry clean only
What to Look for in a Trench Coat
If we’re going off its Wikipedia definition, a classic trench is double-breasted with wide lapels, raglan sleeves, a storm slit, and pockets that button closed. While many newer versions have since departed from this original look, you’ll probably still see hints of it in the details.
The typical trench coat material is cotton gabardine—these are what Burberry’s OG coats were made from. Today, you can find options in fabrics like leather, wool, and 100 percent cotton, along with waterproof nylon and polyester blends.
As with other staples, the fit is key: Do you want a classic silhouette, or something more oversized and androgynous? Will you need room to wear layers underneath? These are all important questions to consider when shopping.
When can you wear a trench coat?
Available in a wide variety of materials and cuts, a trench coat is one of the more versatile coats out there—so it suffices to say that you can wear it at just about any time. However, if we’re talking about your more traditional, cotton gabardine option, wearing it during transitional fall and spring weather is probably your best bet.
How should a trench coat fit?
The stylists that we spoke with agree that shoulders and sleeve length are key places to focus on when trying on a trench. “The most important places to look for is that it fits in the shoulders and the sleeve length,” stylist Liz Teich says. “It's tough to tailor a trench that's too big in the shoulders because often you have to take out the lining and it could be more costly.”
“In fitting the shoulders first, there should be a straight line down from the end of the shoulder, down the length of the arm and ending in the area from the wrist to the knuckle of the thumb,” Wood adds. “In the back area, there should not be any pulling or stretching, which would indicate that the coat is too small.”
Is a trench coat the same as a rain coat?
In short, no—and the difference comes down to the material. “A raincoat is made with various water-resistant materials,” Teich says. “A trench is typically made from a durable water repellent material called cotton gabardine. It's usually double-breasted, belted with deep pockets, and never has a hood like a raincoat.”
Why Trust Byrdie
This article was written by Lily Sperry, a freelance writer for Byrdie, and editor at The Spruce. When selecting picks to include in this list, she did hours of independent research, considering each option’s style, durability, and price point. She also consulted with a handful of stylists for insight on how a trench coat should look, fit, and feel.
According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we weren’t able to find enough trench coats from a Black-owned and/or Black-founded business. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at email@example.com and we will evaluate the product ASAP.
25 best trench coats that'll definitely stand the test of time. Cosmopolitan. https://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/fashion/g38820956/best-trench-coats-for-women