7 Ways to Make Your Heavy Parka Actually Look Cute

January is finally upon us—and for super stylish collegiettes, this can only mean one thing: the struggle of winter dressing. While we’re all about looking cute, dressing for winter also involves getting creative when it comes to staying chic, warm and dry all at the same time—for many of us, this means trading our pretty pea coats for heavy parkas when the snow and sleet hit. Fortunately, believe it or not, it’s easy to make a parka look a lot more fashionable than you’d think—these looks straight from our favorite street style stars are proof.

1. Layer It On


On this season’s most freezing days, layers are the answer to all of your winter woes—and a practical parka can easily be made more interesting when worn over a layered look. Any type of collared shirt worn underneath a snuggly sweater is a tried and true way to instantly make any outfit a little more sophisticated. We like this casual take on the look, with a denim shirt worn under a neutral colored sweater.

Get her look: ASOS Slim Fit Denim Shirt ($38 at ASOS) and Warmlight Pullover Sweater ($59.50 at Madewell)

2. Add A Blanket Scarf


Is there anything better than a massive blanket scarf on a cold morning? (Hint: It’s basically a socially acceptable way to bring your blanket out of bed with you—so, no). A blanket scarf is also an amazing way to chic-ify a plain parka! Look for statement colors, interesting patterns and, when in doubt, go for a pretty plaid like this bundled up fashionista.

Get her look: Wool Plaid Scarf ($44.95 at Sole Society)

3. All Black Everything


It’s no secret that fashion girls are big believers in the whole “all black everything” thing—Jay-Z was definitely onto something. Green parkas are great, but for a slightly sleeker look, opt for one in black—and rock the all-black look from head to toe. We love the way blogger Michaela Babuskova of FIGTNY elevated hers by pairing it with black leather pants.

Get her look: Anorak Parka With Faux Fur Trim ($146 at Zappos) and Imitation Leather Pants ($19.99 at H&M)

4. Go For the Double Jacket Look


Take advantage of your parka’s oversize shape by layering it with another jacket underneath. Not only will you stay seriously warm while walking to class, but you’ll have another entirely different cute outfit underneath for when you take your coat off indoors! Any light jacket will look fab, but we love the way this street style star wore a moto jacket underneath hers—it totally toughens up the look!

Get her look: Faux Leather Moto Jacket ($32.90 at Forever 21)

5. Do Denim on Denim


A little bit of winter weather doesn’t have to get in the way of amazing off-duty weekend style. The Canadian tuxedo, aka denim on denim, is the easiest way to maintain your effortless weekend look, and pairs amazingly with a parka. Take your style cues from this blogger and up the warmth factor by wearing a denim jacket instead of a chambray shirt.

Get her look: Denim Jacket ($68 at Nasty Gal), Button Through Skirt in Mid Wash Blue ($42 at ASOS) and Opaque Tights ($14.90 at Express)

Related: How to Get Away With Wearing the Same Coat Every Day

6. Dress It Up


Headed to a slightly dressier affair? You can still look on point in a parka— seriously! Take it from blogger Chiara Ferragni—a heavy winter coat looks unexpectedly chic when paired with a sweater dress and tights. For extra warmth under your dress, update Chiara’s look by swapping typical tights for black sweater tights.

Get her look: V-Back Sweater Dress ($27.90 at Forever 21) and HeatTech Knitted Tights ($14.90 at Uniqlo)

7. Back to Basics


When it doubt, get back to basics. Simple, wear-forever pieces like a French girl-esque striped tee and boyfriend jeans are essentials you probably already have in your closet—and it turns out that they look amazing underneath a military green parka.

Get the look: Striped Cotton T-Shirt ($24.99 at Mango) and Blue Ripped Hayden Jeans ($80 at Topshop)


Sure parkas are totally practical—but with a few styling tips and tricks, it’s easy to transform your heavy winter coat into a stylish wardrobe essential!