Dress codes don’t go away. They just change shape.

So goes the story of the vest.

With the “power suit” all but passé, today’s business world pressed this formerly informal garment into princedom. But what may have been intended as a move away from starched-shirt rigidity has merely replaced flannel with fleece.

Relaxing of rules? Far from it. In cities all over the world, the unmistakable look of “vest over long sleeve” has merely become Suit 2.0. Call it the “Midtown Uniform.” Thanks to corporate culture’s love affair with vests, layering anything short of a jacket with sleeves risks exposure to the ultimate modern wackness: looking like you use the word “Humpday.”

But all is not lost! Venture outside the cubicle farm and you’ll find a world of stylish, practical layering pieces, none of which scream “yuppie approved.” Looking for the solution to summer outerwear? Keep scrolling.

Shop our favorite vests below.

MIYAGIHIDETAKA Bandana Vest

Bandana Vest

Bandana Vest

$463

MIYAGIHIDETAKA

Buy at Highsnobiety

Miyagihidetaka looks to a full goose-down lining and a classic navy bandana print to find the balance between style and function.

The North Face Black Box Utility Vest

Black Box Utility Vest

Black Box Utility Vest

$104

The North Face

Buy at Slam Jam

If you're looking for something solely for the warmer months, this The North Face vest comes unlined, making it ideal for warm-weather layering.

Patagonia Retro-X Fleece Vest

Retro-X Fleece Vest

Retro-X Fleece Vest

$157

Patagonia

Buy at Slam Jam

Patagonia's Retro-X Fleece is a classic through and through. From the technical canvas trims to the natural-hue fleece, this is the fleece that wrote the rulebook.

Gramicci Quilted Shell Gilet

Quilted Shell Gilet

Quilted Shell Gilet

$71

Gramicci

Buy at Slam Jam

Gramicci should be at the top of your list when you're searching for outdoor expertise with a stylish edge.

Human Made Inflatable Vest

Inflatable Vest

Inflatable Vest

from $175

Human Made

(Available at 2 Merchants)
(Available at 2 Merchants)

Human Made never misses a chance to instill a sense of playfulness in its items. This vest is inflatable, so whether you're winter layering or looking for a summer-outfit topper, this should be a go-to.

Nicholas Daley x Lavenham Sashiko Gilet

Lavenham Sashiko Gilet

Lavenham Sashiko Gilet

$493

Nicholas Daley

Buy at Browns

Nicholas Daley teams up with Lavenham for a three-tone design that puts mesh, quilting, and dry wax-cotton paneling together for a technically sound, style-forward finish.

BYBORRE x Baracuta 3D Tartan Reversible Gilet

3D Tartan Reversible Gilet

3D Tartan Reversible Gilet

$632

Baracuta

Buy at Browns

BYBORRE's futuristic knits have changed the way we look at knitwear. This 3D Tartan Reversible Gilet is made in tandem with Baracuta and it's set for all occasions.

WOOD WOOD Helion Shell Gilet

Helion Shell Gilet

Helion Shell Gilet

$240

WOOD WOOD

Buy at Harvey Nichols

We're always ready for a heavy dose of Scandi minimalism and this time it comes at the hands of WOOD WOOD. We can't get enough of the petrol colorway.

South2 West8 Bush Trek Vest

Bush Trek Vest

Bush Trek Vest

$365

South2 West8

Buy at ssense

Part of the Nepenthes family that can do no wrong right now, South2 West8 takes inspiration from fly-fishing fits. This tie-dye mesh vest epitomizes stylish function.

Arc'teryx Atom LT Vest

Atom LT Vest

Atom LT Vest

$175

Arc'teryx

Buy at Arc'teryx

Last but certainly not least: Arc'teryx. Never write off the fossil when it comes to performance outerwear that works in an everyday setting.

Want to keep browsing? Head to the Highsnobiety Shop for more products that we love. Highsnobiety has affiliate marketing partnerships, which means we may receive a commission from your purchase.

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