#TheStreetScene: The fashion evolution of the puffer jacket

Stylish AND warm?!

Puffer jackets are one of the most popular choices when it comes to jacket style in today’s fashion world. Also known as “quilted jackets”, these highly-insulated jackets are not only just a fashion statement, but are very practical too; made to keep you warm in the coldest of temperatures. Some of the biggest brands within the fashion and streetwear industry are known for producing the best modern puffer jackets, including The North Face, ASOS and Patagonia. From high end to fast fashion, there is a puffer jacket for everyone, especially as we approach the colder months.

Image from Unplash

Supposedly originally designed by George Finch, an Australian chemist, for the first mountaineering expedition to get to the top of Mount Everest in 1922, the puffer jacket has been a staple piece within fashion history ever since. Especially at major fashion events such as Paris Fashion week, where brands have put their own spin on the style, evolving it over time. You look back at the iconic images of Diana, Princess of Wales, on her skiing trip in the 90’s with her family, kicking off the trend of the red puffer jacket – something which was a big fashion statement back then.

Diana, Princess of Wales. Image from Pinterest

The 90’s was when the trend of puffer jackets really came in to the spotlight. Looking back at some of the everyday brands which were known for their puffer styles in this time period; Tommy Hilfiger, Nautica, Champion and Nike. They were everywhere, worn by everyone. Especially as they were affordable at the time too, as they were the perfect jacket to wear all year round. With all of them being vibrant colours, the 90’s was when the puffer jacket was at its peak.

A 90’s Tommy Hilfiger puffer. Image from Pinterest

Nowadays there is a clear divide in the brands which sell puffer jackets, from fast-fashion to the outdoor companies to the high-end. There are so many styles and types to choose from. Starting with the fast-fashion brands, companies such as Primark, H&M and New Look have made it easily affordable for people to jump on the puffer jacket trend. More specifically over the past couple of years when the puffer jacket trend made a big comeback, people were able to pick up a plain-coloured puffer for under £40!

A simple H&M puffer. Image from Pinterest

Then you look at the outdoor companies, whose specialty is making the best (technically) puffer jacket styles; The North Face, Columbia, Patagonia. All of these brands had a massive 2018 & 2019 in terms of growth and revenue, especially The North Face which almost went bankrupt in the early 90’s. Now, they are probably the most noticeable brand and style of puffer jacket in the modern era, having come such a long way over the past couple of decades. Even looking at the outdoor-specialist brands such as Columbia and Patagonia – the sudden explosion of interest in puffer jackets has helped saved these brands from becoming extinct!

The North Face puffer. Image from Pinterest

High-end brands really do love the puffer jacket style. Some of the biggest brands in fashion history in the modern era have made the most noticeable styles, from names such as Moncler, Acne Studios, Burberry and Canada Goose. It seems like wearing a puffer jacket today gives you a sense of authority and luxury, whilst looking very fashionable at the same time.

A Moncler puffer. Image from Pinterest

Written by Matthew Nicoll for #TheStreetScene