Take your style to the next level with the puffer and windbreaker
Words: Buntu Ngcuka | Photography: Tarryn Hatchett | Styling: Akim Jardine
One of the main functions of outerwear is to keep you dry and warm. And because your jacket or coats forms the outermost layer of your outfit, they're a chance to make a statement. Try bold colours, play with proportions, test out different textures, or simply update your look withthe latest must-wear-right-now pieces. The puffer jacket and windbreaker are two styles to do all these things and more. Here’s why lightweight outerwear will take your winter style to the next level, all while protecting you from the elements.
Also making a comeback from the 90s era? The windbreaker. But not the bottle green or navy ones you wore as part of your school uniform or the oversized anoraks your elderly neighbour wears. Nope. The fashionista’s go-to is well-fitted and flattering with a ribbed waist and cuffs. You can channel the retro look with a clashing colour block and neon hues, or keep it lowkey in simple black.
Because they’re constructed from such lightweight fabric, layering will be essential if you want to cosy up. Wear a hoodie under a track top-like windbreaker, or put it on over a graphic sweatshirt if you’re going for a statement-making look. You can even go for a head-to-toe ensemble with a complete tracksuit. If you do, hold off the accessories. The nylon fabric does enough on its own. All you need is a pair of sneakers and a rolled-up beanie.
The puffer’s origins can be traced way before Mase, Puffy, Biggie and co started sporting them as part of their regular attire. It started off as a jacket hunters and fisherman would wear to keep warm on their journeys thanks to its down insulated lining. In 1936, a man named Eric Bauer created his own version, added quilting for even heat distribution and ribbed cuffs and collars to keep warmth close to the body.
While A$AP Rocky and most of your street style faves rock bright colours like red, orange and yellow this season, it looks equally as good in more demure colours like black. Go for vinyl-like or canvas fabrics to really stand out, or be ready for the outdoors in an olive green jacket with faux-fur lined hood for a little bit of opulence. Keep the rest of your silhouette streamline in slim-fit sweats or skinny jeans, and complete the look with a beanie and high-tops. How loud you want to go is up to you, but let the puffer be the star of your look.