Photo: Courtesy of Burberry

Q: It’s raining out. I’ve been trying to get by with an umbrella so I don’t have to buy yet another jacket but I’m getting drenched. Do I really need to go out and buy a raincoat?

Well, let me start by telling you what doesn’t look good: that windbreaker with your company’s logo on it from six years and two jobs ago. Ditch that immediately.

There is nothing worse than sitting in the office in wet clothes all day so, yes, you do need a wet weather solution. It can, however, be more functional than a basic raincoat.

For a woman, the decision on what to wear in a downpour is easy. Most of us have some sort of trench that we bought especially for rainy days and, in fact, we are quite excited to have the opportunity to wear it. But guys may not feel the same way. You don’t need ten coats, one for snow, one for rain, one for warm weather etc. You need a few that are versatile, that you can layer, and will get you through more than just a few rainy days.

That’s why I love coated or waxed lightweight jackets that can double as a sportcoat. If it’s too lightweight for fall, pair it with a vest, like the zip-in waistcoats from Barbour. Then in the spring, when the days get warmer again, you can wear it alone without the extra layer.

If you wear a suit to work every day, you’ll need something longer so opt for a trench that fits over your suit or sportcoat. I love a nice navy trench on a man, especially with a gray suit underneath. It looks slightly more modern than the classic khaki trenches, but that all depends on your coloring. Here are a few trenches that work great with workwear.

Also, please invest in a quality umbrella and not one of those five dollar pieces of junk you get on the street corner. Though rain can be a pain, it can also be an opportunity to show off some style. And nothing says you’re a gentleman like a handsome umbrella.

-Nicola Harrison Ruiz*

*Nicola Harrison Ruiz is DOWNTOWN Magazine’s Men’s Fashion and Lifestyle editor. She is also a men’s style consultant and founder of Harrison Style. She gets asked a lot of questions about what to wear and how to wear it, and she’s always up for the challenge. Got a style question? Don’t be shy, ask!

 

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Hokkaido Waterproof Blazer, $475

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Stutterheim Stockholm Raincoat, $445

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Brunello Cucinelli Waterproof Jacket, $2,880