Should a Coat Be Fitted or Loose?

When it comes to selecting a coat, the fit is one of the most important things to consider. Although some of this is up to personal preference, we have found the most helpful tips and guides to ensure you find the perfect fitting coat.

A coat can be either fitted or loose, depending on its use and style. A fitted coat should not be too tight that it stretches the zipper or buttons across the widest part of your torso or so tight that you have restricted shoulder movement. A looser style should not be too big that it is cumbersome or not warm enough. Keep an eye out for the overall length and sleeve length to ensure a proper fit.

While these are the basics, we have more info on how to make sure your coat is just the right fit for you. So be sure to continue reading!

A charming young woman with brown hair in elegant stylish trench coat, Should a Coat Be Fitted or Loose?

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Picking A Coat - Loose Or Fitted?

Both coats that are fitted and are loose are both in style in our day and age. This can make the process of buying or getting out your old coat a bit more confusing than it needs to be. There are plenty of factors when it comes to your coat selection, like the length, style, necessity of the coat (winter vs. summer windbreakers), and the occasion.

We'll help you consider all of the options, so don't worry.

Selecting a coat that fits should be like Mother Bear in Goldie Locks - just right. Having a coat that is too tight is awkward and difficult to move in while one that is too loose may be unflattering and burdensome.

The biggest tip we can give you is to wear your coat with purpose. If you are shooting for an oversized look, make sure that it matches up with the type of coat you wear. Something longer usually suits this style.

The same principle applies to fitted coats. Don't wear a regular styled coat in a size that is too small for you as this can make you look and feel uncomfortable.


Length is one of the most important things to consider when it comes to your coat. A coat should hit where you want it to and how it was designed. Peacoats are a longer jacket and some puff coats fit right at the waist. Both can fit you great if that is what you are aiming for.

When you shop for coats online, there's a section that will tell you where the hem will fall. Try to stay within the perimeters given there to make sure the coat fits how it was designed.

Beautiful woman in coat walking and enjoying old city

If you are going for a loose style, longer jackets can be a good way to go. Remember that the coat should still fit your shoulders.

Another length aspect to make sure fits correctly is your sleeves. The sleeves shouldn't be sliding up too far on your wrist exposing skin. They shouldn't be covering your hands either.


Your style can be the biggest influence on the overall fit of your jacket. Some people prefer to have figure-hugging clothes and some feel best in the comfort of a loose-fitting coat. So make sure you pick something that shows off who you are and makes you feel confident. Keep in mind that you want to be able to look and feel good in your coat.

If you can't make up your mind about the style or you love both, try out your options. You can always use another coat.

Fitted Winter Coat

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Stylish Fitted Coat

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Oversized Teddy Coat

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Carhartt Coat

Click here to view this coat on Amazon.


The purpose and need of your coat can help you tell how your coat should fit as well. If it's summer and you need a lighter outer layer, you will need your typical size. Do a little arm mobility test.

If you are selecting a winter coat, it may be best to get something that fits a little looser. This is because you will probably be adding multiple layers underneath to keep you nice and warm.

Joyful model girl having fun in the winter park

If the bulkiness is not anticipated beforehand, it can become difficult to zip up your coat or to move in it.


The fit of a coat can be important depending on the occasion you are wearing it for. A loose-fitting coat can be stylish but is often more suited for street style or casual occasions.

A fitted jacket looks great in professional settings as well as dress-up occasions.

At this point, you should have a lot of options and even more confidence when selecting the fit of your coat. Just in case you have some additional questions, continue reading.

How Should A Long Coat Fit?

A long coat should fit well at the shoulders and the arms. The sleeves should be long enough to cover up the layers underneath but not too long that they cover your hands.

Depending on the coat, the coat should fit the length generally expected. Most don't go past the knees unless they are specifically designed that way. However, not all do go down that far. Try on a few different options to see what fits your body best.

As stated above, the coat should either zip or button up without stretching and tightening across the chest. You want to be able to move in your coat, after all.

Should You Buy A Coat One Size Bigger?

It is better to buy a coat that is intentionally oversized than to size up for the look. However, if you are in between sizes, it is better to go a size up since you typically wear a layer or two underneath.

If you're purchasing a coat online, we always recommend that you read the reviews to see if you need to size up or not. Some websites even have it listed if the coat runs large or small. If you're purchasing in person, try the coat on with a couple of layers on so you know how it will fit beforehand.

How To Size A Kid's Coat?

Kids' clothing is usually sorted according to age. Though this is typical and somewhat useful if your kid fits within the average size for his or her age group, it might not be the best way to give your child the right size every time.

Many tags and product charts have details about the exact size that you need to look at for a proper fit. Some even have weight, which can be extremely useful.

Take your child's measurements with a measuring tape of the waist, shoulders, chest, and height. Allow for an extra inch for the jacket to account for growth. If you have a child that is in a growth spurt phase, try to size up. Click here for a great size chart on kids' coats.

If you are in the market for a new coat for your child, we've included a couple of great options below.

For the boys

Click here to see this coat on Amazon.

For the girls

Click here to see this coat on Amazon.

In Closing

While finding a perfectly fitting coat or two can be a little bit difficult, we hope our instructions will make your process go more smoothly than before. Your taste, occasion, and purpose will all play a role in your overall choice but follow our guidelines to find your coat and peace of mind.

For even more tips on jackets, check out some of the other articles right here on!

How Long Should a Bomber Jacket Be?

Are Bomber Jackets Warm Enough for Winter?

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