Styling Windbreakers in 8 Ways
Talk to the hand! The 90s are making a comeback in fashion, and while nostalgic for many millennials, the trend is becoming popular with Gen-Z. From wide-leg, high-waisted jeans that were once donned by leading ladies all over to platform sneakers a la the Spice Girls, the 90s are going through a revival, and many are here for it.
One of the most surprising pieces to make its way back into the closet of fashionistas everywhere is the windbreaker. While typically used for running or as a transition piece between seasons, it is now becoming a signature piece in the closets of many ladies who follow the latest fashion trends.
Although a windbreaker doesn't seem like a trendy fashion staple at first glance, it has become one. This versatile jacket can be dressed down or up in the easiest ways. It can be used for the gym, running errands or a date night on the town.
With so many different ways of styling this piece, we must first dive into the different types of windbreakers to familiarize ourselves.
Types of Windbreakers & Their Use
Windbreakers come in many shapes and sizes. From cropped to color-blocked to weatherproof, these various types can make different outfits for very different occasions. Learning the styles can most certainly make styling them easier for those who have recently purchased one.
Active and athleisure
Some windbreakers lean more toward activewear and athleisure, fitting the mold of what they have been traditionally used for. These takes are usually made with lighter, breathable material that makes running easier. Nylon is usually more lightweight, and for women, these can also come cropped.
Perfect for someone who's an avid runner, gym junkie or always on the go, these types of windbreakers are functional and elevate your workout style.
Windbreakers have typically been used as transitional pieces between seasons. From summer to fall when you need a light jacket, or from winter to spring to keep you dry from April showers, this is when you usually see the windbreakers being rocked.
For those who prefer to use their windbreaker year-round, it's best to buy a neutral color that can work well in each season. Think of a nice tan, deep olive or even light gray. These colors are easy to style according to the season.
These options are specifically for the winter months and are great for layering. Made of different materials, these keep you warm and make a good mid-layer when out and about.
Throw one under your coat while skiing or over a chic black turtleneck; styling makes a difference in the overall look. Whether active or edgy, this is just one example of how versatile a windbreaker can be and what an essential piece it is in any closet.
Color-blocked windbreakers are so 90s and so trendy. These are definitely for a casual look and serve a very fashion-forward vibe. While other types of windbreakers may be found in specialty stores, these are easier to come across and can be found at many different stores.
These have the potential to be used in so many ways. Inspiration can be found in magazines, on Instagram and Pinterest. Fun and trendy, pair the same jacket with black skinnies, mom jeans or even leather jorts, and you have three very different outfits for a multitude of occasions.
How to style a windbreaker
Styling a windbreaker is really about the message you want to send. Are you running errands and want to feel comfy but look cool? Do you want to exude an edgy vibe on a coffee date with your best friend? Or are you going for the cool-girl look in the office? Nailing down the vibe you're going for will point you in the direction of how to style this exquisitely versatile piece.
The athleisure go-to
A windbreaker can pull together any leggings/bicycle short & sports tank combo to make it the ultimate athleisure outfit. So whether hitting the gym or running errands for the day, look chic in your favorite windbreaker and athletic gear combo.
Start with a good pair of leggings, then add a white or black cropped top to the mix. Next, layer some dainty gold jewelry, grab a pair of chunky sneakers and throw on your favorite windbreaker.
Try slicking your hair back into a low pony parted right down the middle to complete the look. The cutest comfy athleisure outfit is now yours. If you want to take it up another notch, swap the leggings for bicycle shorts and add some tube socks. You will be shouting 90s chic when you step out of your home.
Preppy color blocking
Before you begin putting this look together, step back for a moment. Close your eyes and envision a Tommy Hilfiger ad from the early 90s. There were red, blue and white that always looked cool accompanied by a good pair of medium wash denim.
Preppy meets modern; this look plays off a 90s classic. Find a color-blocked windbreaker, thinking of the red, blue and white from Tommy. Pair it with a tube or a tank top that matches the windbreaker's primary color. Throw on a pair of medium wash straight leg jeans, black sunglasses and white sneakers. You'll be looking like a preppy queen right out of boarding school.
Keep it classic
Are you more of the classic type? Do you prefer neutrals over color and never like anything too bold? Then this look is right up your alley.
Find a neutral-colored windbreaker; think beige, black, light gray or olive. Pair it with a simple white top underneath. This can be a cropped white t-shirt, or a cute sleeveless mock neck, whichever is more you.
Layer some dainty gold necklaces over your top and mix in either a comfy pair of sneakers or your favorite Chelsea boots. Slick your hair down the middle or back into a bun. Either way, this is a classic look that will turn heads wherever you go.
The cooler months let us experiment with edgier fashion. Whether chunky boots or leather anything, it's always a good time to try a rebel look. Styling a windbreaker during the winter is absolutely no exception
When the temperature drops, grab your favorite windbreaker and throw a black turtleneck under it. Pair that with a good pair of straight-leg jeans and some chunky combat boots. If you're feeling adventurous, top it all off with a bucket hat. Choose a multi-colored windbreaker over a solid one.
Play around with color
Speaking of color, windbreakers are a great way to add extra color to your wardrobe. Because these are layering pieces, it's a good idea to buy one (or two) in different colors to add a pop of that into your outfit.
Enjoy a lovely spring day with a light jacket. Team a bright windbreaker (think pink, yellow and orange) with high-waisted light denim or bicycle shorts in a matching color. Throw on some tube socks and a pair of platform sneakers.
Make it baggy
Oversized clothes are definitely 'in' right now. Whether you choose a more oversized shirt and slim-fitting bottoms or wide-leg pants with a more form-fitting top, it's all about balance to pull off this look.
If you find yourself loving baggier clothes, it's time to add a windbreaker to your wardrobe. Find a windbreaker you love, go up a size and pair it with a more form-fitting silhouette. Think of a flattering black dress or a crop top and skirt combo, something that balances the heaviness of the windbreaker.
Top the look off with a nice pair of sneakers for a day look or black boots to transition into an evening outfit.
Go heck for leather
Leather is a staple for the fall and winter so pairing a windbreaker with this fabric creates a fun look for day or night. Pair your neutral-colored windbreaker with black leather pants for a chic, elegant look that can be a transitional day-to-night outfit depending on your shoes.
If you want to go a little edgier with the look, swap out the pants for a leather skirt or shorts. Add patterned black tights underneath them and your favorite pair of chunky boots. Try tucking your windbreaker into your shorts or skirt for a more elevated look.
Mix and match patterns
Artistes love daring prints for good reason. Find a patterned or color-blocked windbreaker and match it with a printed bottom. Make sure that the colors are complementary. Pair your windbreaker with a loose-fitting midi skirt and pointed heels to put together an overall bold outfit.
Fashion is subjective, but style is forever
Fashion trends come and go like the wind, but certain pieces have stood the test of time - and the windbreaker is one of them. It has evolved from a simple jacket to a standalone fashion piece that will instantly take any look from basic to edgy.
Whether you go bold, classic, or cool-girl chic, there are so many ways you can wear a windbreaker. Go on and style yours by picking out all the latest looks from bhfo.com now.