It’s hard to think of a jacket more useful, more handsome, more versatile—heck, more all three at once—than the best chore coat. (We’ve been sitting at the computer for, like, 20 minutes trying to come up with one but…nada.) See, the best chore coat really does it all. From toughing it out on the jobsite to kicking back after said job with a couple of brews in its many pockets, the chore coat is as practical as it is stylish. And that’s exactly why it’s a menswear must-have.


The Best Chore Coat, According to GQ


The coat’s origins trace back to French workers who donned the jacket in durable fabrics like cotton or moleskin as the foundation for working on all kinds of projects, from farms to railroads. But its utility is what helped the style extend beyond its origins. The generous pockets provided plenty of storage for tools, gloves, and cigs, while the buttoned sleeves allowed workers to roll them up when the working got going.

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. They still retain their utilitarian charm, but the hammer and nails have been replaced by a cell phone and ear buds. 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 17 worthiest men’s chore coats on the market right now.


The Best Original Chore Coat

If the appeal of workwear to you is all that baked-in “authenticity,” well, it doesn’t get much more authentic than this. The kind of chore jackets we’re used to today were first donned by laborers in France in the late 1800s, and 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. Over 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. And though the inimitable French blue will always be in-style, this lush forest green colorway feels just a little more unique. (It’s not as common as military-favored olive drab, but is perhaps just as wearable.) Jeans and a gray hoodie, a thrashed vintage T-shirt with a pair of wide-leg khakis, some cream-white pants and a dressy button-up for some southern Italian flair—no matter what you wear with it, it’s all fair game.

The Best Affordable Chore Coat

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 cozy vibes with a hoodie, cords, and boots.

The Best American Classic Chore Coat

Carhartt Work In Progress

The French chore coat may be the blueprint for every other chore coat, but Cahart WIPt’s Michigan jacket is an American classic that’s staked its claim on the modern menswear landscape. Just ask your dad, his dad, and his dad. Hell, they probably still have one or two hanging in their closets right now. That’s because the iconic piece of workwear was built like a tank with stiff cotton canvas that could only be broken down to a cozy softness through real life wear and tear. The blanket lining is super warm, the corduroy collar is perfect against the neck, and the grip of pockets means you don’t really need to bring a bag with you most of the time. It’s the kind of jacket that feels right at home with some full-fitting raw denim jeans with some hardy boots (workwear and all that) but can take on a cozy hoodie and luscious corduroy pants for a softer, autumnal vibe.

The Best New American Classic Chore Coat

Alex Mill’s signature work jacket boasts all the hallmarks of a classic chore coat but swaps the typical moleskin fabric for a range of tasty materials like upcycled denim, garment-dyed linen, and even Japanese denim. This fall, however, we’re really feeling this fine wale corduroy that’s buttery soft and the perfect weight for versatile layering. It’s hefty enough to act as an overshirt on warmer fall days but can stand in as a proper jacket in cooler temps since the relaxed-but-not-sloppy fit lets layer over a thick sweater.

The Best Wool Chore Coat

Buck Mason’s felted chore coat is at once reminiscent of the chunky wool chore coats of the early 1900s and a classic Brooks Brothers sack jacket. In other words, it’s the ideal in-between jacket that can act as a sportcoat and a chore coat. Toss it on over a cardigan or a turtleneck to jazz up a polished look even more, or wear it as a top layer over sweats to warm up and lean into its cozyness. And don’t worry—the wool is double-boiled so there’s none of the itchy, scratchy feeling.

The Best Linen Chore Coat

Alex Crane’s chore coat is as breezy as a kite thanks to a lightweight French linen and perfect for wearing in the warmer months. The interior chest pocket on pares it down and coordinates with a minimalist getup or lets your freakier clothes take the spotlight. The jacket is also great for those impending breezy nights when you’ll want to reach for some layer without going too overboard on heft. And though we’re partial to the versatile olive green colorway, the Kite comes in a heap of different colors and even a few patterned versions to fit any wardrobe.

The Best Denim Chore Coat

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 1950s-inspired coverall jacket. It’s made using a custom-woven 9-ounce Japanese selvedge denim that’s been washed and faded with painstaking accuracy, triple-needle 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 2050s.

The Best Designer Chore Coat

Prada’s entry into the chore coat world is clear riff on the classic Carhartt, but it’s made for anything but workwear. Prada first introduced nylon to its collection in 1984, pushing the boundaries of what high fashion could encompass and it’s since become a marquee material for the Italian label that continues to draw fashion fiends. Employed in the workwear context, it gives the dusty chore coat a swish and sheen that’s made more for stunting than anything else. Working hard or hardly working? If it’s a Prada chore coat, you know the answer.


Plus 10 More Chore Coats We Love

Drake’s

Johnson Check Melton Wool Donkey Chore Coat

Drake’s dedication to executing high-end, well-crafted takes on tried and true classics isn’t limited to tailoring. The brand’s take on the chore coat melds hefty melton wool with a traditional blackwatch plaid and the result is somewhere between Barbour jacket and duffel coat, perfect for braving brutal winters.

Paynter Jacket Co.

Who knew chore coats could be part of the hype cycle? Paynter Jacket Co. has made waves with its outerwear not only for its high-quality craftsmanship and handsome designs. Each piece is released in limited drops and if you’re not quick, you’ll have to wait and try the next drop.

Banana Republic

Clapton Nubuck Leather Jacket

It’s always worth digging into big box retailers to see if they’ve got some hidden gems. Case in point: This buttery smooth nubuck leather chore coat from Banana Republic is part blazer and part chore coat—and all around stunner. The caramel hue will transition from the office to date night in a breeze and you can look forward to the patina it’ll garner over time.

Craig Green

High-fashion designers often look to workwear for inspiration, but few have used the chore coat as a springboard like Craig Green has. The Worker Jacket is one of the staple pieces that helped set Green apart from the rest, with its channeled quilting, boxy fit, and belted waist, it’s a forward-thinking take that’s still a grail for many today.

Ben Davis Original style jacket

It doesn’t get much grittier than Ben Davis. The real-deal workwear brand has been slingin’ crunchy denim and board-stiff canvas goods to countless tradespeople for decades. In that time, it’s also garnered for itself a reputation for California style. So pair this with some crisp jeans and a pair of Chucks to tap into that easy-going West Coast energy.

Todd Snyder

Herringbone Tailored Chore Jacket

Todd Snyder’s mastery of menswear means we get a tastefully tailored chore coat rendered through a suiting fabric material (a.k.a, an ideal hybrid of a garment).

Universal Works

It’s hard to tell what we like more about this Universal Works chore coat. Is it the traditional chore coat elements? Is it the subversive Japanese-style kimono construction? Is it the mesmerizing zig-zag stitching? We’re gonna go with all of the above.

Red Kap

Beefier, warmer, and with even more pockets than Red Kap’s basic option.

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