The Coolest Puffer Jackets to Keep You Warm in 2018 And Beyond
The puffer jacket is big, and I don't just mean in terms of its inflated silhouette. This 90s staple has been slowly making a comeback over recent years but this winter has seen it enjoy an ubiquitous status, as influencers took it down from the slopes and discovered the stylish possibilities of juxtaposing it with tailoring and more formal pieces. Reassuringly retro and comforting in the face of the harsh elements of winter and an uncertain world, it is no wonder that the puffer, which is both fun and functional, has been welcomed with open arms by so many.
I succumbed unexpectedly to a black shiny puffer in the window of MONKI on Carnaby Street before Christmas. It reminded me of a shiny metallic navy puffer I bought from Benetton in the spirit of the style of All Saints (the band) when I was 15. Unapologetically brash, there is something uplifting about a shiny winter jacket in the darkest months and I wore it with such pride that year and in fact for several years after the puffer trend receded into the realms of non-fashion obscurity. Unfortunately, that particular jacket lost its lustre when somebody at home put it into the washing machine one day and the vinyl coating melted and so, when a possible replacement caught my eye on a dark December evening, I had to have it immediately and it is simply one of the best things I have ever bought! It is light in weight, heavy in warmth and waterproof. I haven't had such a practical winter jacket in years! Cannot recommend it enough. And the great news is that this particular jacket and its counterparts are on sale. Sizes are limited but prices are low and with at least two more cold months ahead and the probability that the puffer has attained a permanent classic status in our winter wardrobes, they make for wise investments.
Some of the coolest and most luxurious offerings on the puffer jacket scene are from the new Ukrainian brand IENKI IENKI. Created in an array of bubblegum colours in slightly exaggerated voluminous shapes, the label's founder and designer, Dmitriy Ievenko was inspired by the puffer's association with everyday workwear growing up in the 90s and 00s in post-Soviet Ukraine and he decided to reinterpret the item into something truly special with a vibrant palette, beautiful construction and a unique goose down filling for extra warmth. Also flying the shiny flag, IENKI IENKI's collection of jackets include some in reflective foil hues, which will certainly lessen your chances of getting lost in the snow.
Another new brand making interesting puffed-up shapes is Biannual, hailing from Canada, where they know a thing or two about keeping warm in sub-zero temperatures. Using recycled fibres instead of down, Biannual's boxy puffer jackets throw a further retrospective nod towards nostalgic associations with childhood ski-wear with colour blocking and stripes.
Whether it's plain, matte, velvet, shiny, patterned or striped, insulation is all about inflation this year and our love for the puffer shows know sign of going down.