Here’s the problem with the hooded sweatshirt:
Buy a saggy, ill-fitting number and you risk looking like a sad allegory for Silicon Valley, no matter how comfortable you might be.
Don’t be that guy.
Thankfully, there are better, more grown-up options these days, as confirmed by our roundup of great hoodies that run the gamut of styles and prices.
What you’re looking for: a garment that will keep its shape, for starters. Keep in mind that brands today are experimenting with a range of fabrics — fleece, for example, is having a moment — and you’d do well to follow suit.
And generally speaking, we’re in the camp that believes basics are better when there’s minimal branding. So obnoxious logos? Leave 'em for the kids.
Below, you’ll find the hoodies we’ve got our eyes on.
Mission Workshop Bosun Fleece
The SF label takes its most popular silhouette and gives it a streetwear-inspired update. That means fleece. It’s nevertheless a technical wonder, featuring merino wool from New Zealand and four-way stretch panels for extra versatility. Speaking of versatility, check the hood — it’s removable. $265
Northwest Knitting Co. Pullover Hoodie
A heritage brand revived by John Mooty, the man behind Wilson and Willy’s in Minneapolis, Northwest Knitting Co. makes all of its wares in New York’s garment district using a Merino Dual Cloth, a proprietary tri-blend fabric comprised of merino wool on the outside, cotton on the inside and spandex connecting the two, meant to move with you and not lose its shape. $158
Champion Reverse Weave Classic Hoody
A clean hoodie available in countless of colors from a legendary brand that knows American sportswear. If you’re wondering what the reverse bit means, it’s that the fibers are woven upright (instead of horizontal) to minimize shrinkage and loss of shape. $99
And Wander Back Nap Raising Hoodie
Led by Keita Ikeuchi and Mihoko Mori, both formers designers for cult Japanese label Issey Miyake, And Wander is all about bringing Japanese finesse and craftsmanship to technical outdoor gear. Nothing demonstrates that better than this jaunty adventure hoodie that’s quick-drying, UV-resistant and built for mobility. $165
Outerknown Lowtide Hoodie
A beach-friendly hoodie from a world renowned surfer. Go figure. The Lowtide Hoodie features terry toweling fabric weaved into the outside and inside for an unmatched feel. Bonus: a percentage of sales will go directly to the workers who sewed it. $78
Edgevale Fleece Hoody
Hoodies that function well out on the trail but look stylish on the streets are actually hard to find. This number from Edgevale strikes a happy balance. It made from cozy, lightweight Polartec shearling fleece, and cut with room to layer. $224
Velva Sheen Pullover Hoody
Founded in 1932, the Ohio-based brand continues to churn out elevated basics you must wear to understand. This simple hoodie is made from loopback jersey with no-frills details like metal eyelets and flatlock stitching. Best part? It’s still made right here in the U.S. of A. $179
Reigning Champ Pullover Hoodie
You can’t talk about elevated sportswear without talking about Reigning Champ. In regards to fit and quality, the Canadian brand is simply in a league of its own. The double-knit pullover forgoes the standard kangaroo pocket for an ultra-clean silhouette, and will keep its shape thanks to flatlocked seams and raglan sleeves. $145
Myles Apparel Element Hoodie
The problem with most workout hoodies are they’re too flimsy to wear outside of the gym. Not so with the Element Hoodie from Myles Apparel. The comfortable French Terry has a water-repellant finish, keeping you cool, dry and comfortable. Add in a trim fit that’ll make you look svelte, and you may wanna forget the gym altogether. $88
Marine Layer Banks Hoodie
If you’re looking for a throwback look, take a gander at Marine Layer’s new Banks hoodie. The SF-based brand is known for making comfy clothes, and the Banks hoodie is made from tri-blend sherpa fleece (hello texture!) with a retro stripe detailing at the shoulders. $98
Muttonhead Camping Hoodie
For a brand known mainly for its joggers, it can produce a worthwhile hoodie, too. The Canadian label sells this number as a “blanket in hoodie form,” and that’s accurate. Details include a button placket closure and a curved hem, done up in an all-over medium weight fleece, hence the blanket. $128
Stateline Athletic Fit Zip Hoodie
With the proliferation of menswear labels dedicated to making casual sportswear, deciding which basics to buy has become increasingly confusing. Our pick: Stateline. The New York-based upstart brand makes hard-working essentials far sturdier than most. $89
Basic Rights Pullover Hoodie
If there’s one thing we wield as fact, it’s Basic Rights make the essentials look astonishingly good. The brand with a decorated backstory has its basics down pat, including this simple pullover made from 100% French Terry cotton with slim, flattering cut. $95
Nau Off the Grid Hoodie
Fans of tech-forward garments will appreciate Nau’s Off the Grid Hoodie. The piece consists of an insulated quilted core, while the sleeves are made from wool. The result is a versatile addition to your closet that’ll keep you toasty and look damn interesting while doing so.
Faherty Pacific Poncho
Ah, the poncho. The ultimate symbol of laid-back style, and none do it better than Faherty. The Pacific Poncho in Topeka Rail takes inspiration from 1940s Southwestern saddle blankets. And while it’s naturally got a relaxed fit, the poncho is the perfect layering piece for adding a shot of pattern to any outfit. $188
Main Photo: Mission Workshop