The Best Zip-Up Hoodies For Men
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Every guy needs a hoodie in his wardrobe. Get the right one and a hoodie can be one of the most versatile pieces of clothing you can own, taking you from the couch to the gym to lunch to your next big party. Wear the wrong hoodie and you risk looking like a little kid, or worse, a slob or slacker in desperate need of a closet refresh.
A hoodie makes a great layering piece to keep you warm in the fall and winter; in the spring and summer, keep a hoodie around in case you need a light jacket for when it gets chilly at night. A hoodie is also great to throw on when you’re hanging out in the house, keeping you cozy while working from home or while you’re on the couch watching your favorite TV show or movie.
The best hoodies (a.k.a. a hooded sweatshirt) come in all shapes, sizes and materials, but to really make an impression, here are a few things to consider.
What You Need to Know Before Buying a Hoodie
Materials: Much like T-shirts and sweatshirts, hoodies come in different materials, but we like a cotton blend fabric (typically a cotton and polyester mix) for comfort, durability and softness. A cotton blend hoodie can be tossed in the wash and won’t lose its shape; in fact, it’ll only get softer and more comfortable over time, achieving that oft-desired “worn in” look. We’ve also found a hoodie with an anti-pilling fabric, so it’ll always stay looking like new. Wearing your hoodie on a run or hike? Looking for sweat-wicking materials to keep you dry.
Lining: If you’re looking for a hoodie for warmth, you’ll want to consider one that’s thermal-lined, to add an extra layer between you and the elements. Unlined hoodies are best for the gym or everyday wear, as they’ll be lightweight and less stuffy. We’ve included options for both lined and unlined hoodies on our list.
Features: As its name suggests, a hoodie comes with a built-in hood, that can be adjusted to be more snug or loose using a drawstring pull. The best hoodies will also have two front pockets — one for each hand — and some come with interior pockets too, great for hiding your wallet and keys. A classic hoodie will have ribbed cuffs at the wrists and a ribbed hem at the bottom, to help it keep its shape.
Zip vs. No Zip: Hoodies can be thrown over your head like a sweatshirt, or unzipped like a jacket. We prefer a zip-up hoodie, which is easier to take on and off, and allows you to layer better as well. The best zip-up hoodies also offer versatility — zip it all the way up when it starts to get chilly (say, when you’re warming up by the campfire), then leave it unzipped or half-zipped when it gets warm again.
How to Wear It: The best zip-up hoodies can be worn almost anywhere and with almost anything. Throw it on over a T-shirt and jeans, or wear it under a denim jacket. Going to the gym? A zip-up hoodie looks great with shorts and sneakers. Find a hoodie made from a thicker, weightier material and it can take you into a restaurant or party too; just make sure it’s not the same one you just wore for your workout.
We found three great zip-up hoodies for men, that are as versatile as they are stylish. They’re available in multiple colors and sizes, ensuring that you’ll stay warm, cozy and comfortable no matter your personal style or occasion.
1. Hanes EcoSmart Men’s Hoodie
Hanes is known for their super soft and comfortable T-shirts and underwear, so it’s no surprise that they’re behind this cozy hoodie too. Even better: this cotton blend hoodie incorporates a polyester material made from recycled plastic bottles. The bottles are converted into a yarn that’s then mixed with cotton to create a lightweight, sustainable fabric.
This hoodie has a relaxed fit, though a ribbed waistband and cuffs keep things from looking too baggy. Hanes says the fabric is pill-resistant, though you may need to run it through the wash once to get rid of any initial lint and fluff.
We like the durability of this hoodie, which holds it shape and keeps its color even after multiple cycles in the washing machine. A tag-free collar means no annoying hang-tag scratching the back of your neck.
PROS: Eco-friendly materials means more sustainable production.
CONS: The most lightweight option on our list, which makes it great for summer months. But if you want something to keep you warm in the winter, you’ll want to consider another option.
2. Carhartt Men’s Zip Front Thermal Hoodie
Carhartt is known for their rugged, durable workwear and this hoodie is no exception. Designed for the outdoors, the cotton blend hoodie is lined with a cozy thermal material that keeps you warm when temperatures drop. A water-repellant finish helps you stay dry if you’re accidentally caught in the rain.
The hoodie features a brass front zipper, reinforced cuffs and ribbed waistband, and two large front pockets to keep your hands toasty. Inside, find a small storage pocket (great for keys and ID) plus a built-in loop for easy hanging.
The material is thick, soft and comfortable like a favorite blanket, but super breathable as well. It’s also got just enough stretch to let you move freely without feeling constricted.
PROS: Cozy cotton/polyester fleece blend with a polyester thermal lining for extra warmth.
CONS: Water-repellant but not waterproof; the hoodie can repel a light sprinkling, but won’t keep you dry in a rainstorm.
3. Russell Athletic Men’s Zip Fleece Hoodie
Russell Athletic is one of our favorite brands for workout wear, and we like this medium-weight hoodie, which lets you move comfortably while still keeping you warm.
It’s great for a run or hike, or as your go-to hoodie for the gym. Russell’s “Dri-Power” moisture-wicking technology helps the material repel sweat and odors, keeping you dry and stink-free.
Deep front pockets are great for stashing your phone and keys while you’re on the move, while a ribbed waistband and cuffs provide a trim, tailored fit.
This hoodie is substantial enough to wear as an everyday piece too, say, with a pair of jeans and sneakers. It’s got enough weight and style to let you wear it to brunch, on the plane, or to your next party. Get it in black for a slick, streamlined look, or choose from four other colors.
PROS: Slightly more tailored fit and stylish details (I.e. Russell logo patch and contrast color zipper) make this a hoodie you’ll want to wear out.
CONS: Some may find this too heavy for their workout.
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