Rain coats are normally all about function rather than fashion and as a result, it can be difficult to choose a flattering rain coat. Rainy days are inevitable, despite the fact that children have repeated "Rain, rain go away. Come again some other day" for generations. The right rain gear, however, can make inclement weather more bearable. The rain coat has been a staple of outerwear fashion since the 1800s when Charles Mackintosh, John Barbour and Thomas Burberry first designed their iconic coats, which are still with us today. Since then, the rain coat has undergone many innovations, but the basic purpose remains, which is to keep you warm and dry, but also with style. No matter what your taste, shape or budget it is possible to find a flattering rain coat that will also keep you dry.
Rain Coat Basics
How and where you'll be wearing your coat will have a major impact on your choice. If you have a larger budget and can afford more than one rain coat, choose one in a shorter length and more casual styling like a bright red or yellow slicker, and another longer coat in a darker color suitable to wear for work or dress-up occasions. Bright colors and bold patterns will lift your spirits even on the cloudiest, dreariest days. You can even take a fashion-forward approach with design and fit.
However, if you can only afford one coat, a longer coat with classic styling is more versatile and will keep your legs dry as well as your upper body. The most important consideration is that your rain coat is in fact waterproof. Buy the best quality you can afford in classic styling and neutral colors such as white, black, brown, navy or cream. If you find a coat you love but the fit isn't right, be prepared to invest in having the coat altered by a tailor.
A coat that fastens high around your neck will keep drafts away. A coat with a detachable hood will keep your head dry. Cotton or canvas looks great and can be treated to be water resistant. Suede is not a good choice for rain coats unless it is specially treated to be water-resistant . If you live in a cooler climate, rain coats with thicker fabric or an insulated lining will keep you warm as well as dry. A packable rain coat will emerge from a tote or suitcase looking fresh.
Men's Rain Coats
The classic look for men's rain gear is the belted trench coat. The traditional color is tan, but black, brown or even a deep maroon colored coat is appropriate for work or dressy occasions. For more casual wear, a shorter zipped or button jacket with a hood will look great with jeans or khaki pants and will stand up to th rigors of the outdoors, whether you're playing a round of golf or tinkering in your garage on the weekends. For heavy rain, a slicker is the best option. Don't be afraid of wearing bold colors. As long as the lines of your rain coat are clean and classic, you will still look masculine.
Fit and Flatter
The most flattering length for a rain coat for both men and women is right at or just above the knee. Petite women and shorter men should consider a coat that hits at mid-thigh to maximize the appearance of height. However, if you can only afford one coat, a longer coat is more versatile and will keep your legs dry. The belted trench coat is flattering for both men and women.
If you're plus-sized, you can still wear a belted trench coat; the cinched waist will give a slimming illusion and prevent you from looking dumpy. However, don't assume that your size will be the same for all manufacturers or even for all styles of coat by the same manufacturer. Try everything on before you buy. You also don't have to limit yourself to black or drab colors. However, avoid wearing too many colors at once.
If you are larger on top or through the middle, choose a single-breasted coat wide enough at the bottom to balance out your shape. If you are pear-shaped, shoulder pads will provide a flattering fit. If you have a boxy shape or are blessed with hourlglass curves, a belted style will create the illusion of a waistine or enhance the one you have.