These Workwear Brands Do Double Duty as Outdoor Apparel

Workwear is typically made for those with jobs outdoors in rain and wind, but also for men and women in the trades who are crawling, stooping, climbing and generally getting a workout every week. Recently though, brands like Carhartt and Wrangler have made a comeback, and are being worn as trendy streetwear as well as among the outdoorsy type. From boots to caps and pants, the range of workwear has multiplied in the last decade as outdoor adventurers continue to seek durable clothing.

These Workwear Brands Do Double Duty as Outdoor Apparel

Some have shunned traditional workwear brands in the past for multiple reasons. First, there is a bit of a cultural divide between the cowboy and hunting set and their granola-chewing hiking counterparts. Both love the outdoors, but they don’t usually sit around the same campfires.

The weight of workwear is another factor that has prevented workwear from being popular among the outdoorsy. Coveralls from Carhartt may help insulate from arctic breezes but they aren’t going to scrunch down for a backpacking trip.

A third factor has been, for lack of a better word, fashion. Workwear brands have traditionally been no-nonsense, monochromatic and macho. They definitely signal a vibe of getting a job done rather than recreation. But the gap between workwear and adventure wear is slowly closing, and as options proliferate some interesting fashion has hit the market.

New Workwear Brands

Newer workwear brands include Engineered Garments. The company owner is big into the outdoors and has added practical features like pockets and high collars. This brand fully embraces the workwear aesthetic.

Workwear is also popular internationally. Japanese companies have long been interested in making better work clothing. Their tradition is less macho than it is American-inspired, so companies like orSlow have really delved into denim and comfortable fabrics.

Dickies is a brand that continues to show up at Army surplus stores and sporting goods outlets, and their durable tailoring appeals as outdoor apparel due to its toughness. As a brand that comes with a military tradition, there is something here that brings a spit-and-polish no other workwear brand can equal.

For specialized gear, like rain jackets and pants, companies like Red Ledge offer all-purpose outerwear that is durable enough for recreation or field work.

Leaders in The Industry

Carhartt continues to lead the way in this competitive apparel market. They haven’t abandoned cotton, chinos, carpenter pants and overalls but they have branched out to offer microfiber and quick dry options.

If you are into nice looking, no frills workwear check out Stan Ray and their line chinos in bold colors. It’s nice looking but still squarely fitting into the landscape of workwear brands that can double for outdoors pursuits.