Best sweater vest

Outerwear

Sweater vests are back in style, with vintage styles, argyle prints, short crops and chunky knits dominating the retro trend.

BestReviews is reader-supported and may earn an affiliate commission. Details.

Which sweater vests are best?

Sweater vests are back in style — just in time for sweater weather. These sleeveless, typically low-cut knit pieces are ideal for transitioning into cold weather and versatile enough for fun, casual outfits and office attire alike. 

Vintage sweater vests in argyle and cable-knit bring retro vibes to the trend, and slim, chic sweater vests are perfect for layering at work. If you’re looking for an affordable sweater vest ideal for layering, the YesNo Loose Swing Chunky Cotton Cute Sweater Vest is ideal and pairs well with many wardrobe pieces. 

What to know before you buy a sweater vest

Knit

Vests are the ideal transitional piece for layering to take you from warm weather into chillier months. Few garments are as versatile and cozy as sweater vests, which carry the appeal of knit autumn sweaters while being easy to layer and making a trendy fashion statement. Ultimately, the coziness and aesthetics of a sweater vest come down to its knit. 

  • Light, thin knit sweater vests are suitable for late summer or for regions where winter is mild. They can be worn as tank tops for a bold fashion statement or layered over tees for a modern spin on a timeless piece. 
  • Chunky knit and crochet sweater vests are typically looser and warmer. On the other hand, cable knit sweater vests create a vintage look, layer nicely over white button-down blouses and pair with denim for a classic outfit. 

Buttons, zipper or pullover 

Pullover sweater vests are typically the most popular option for their neat, timeless aesthetics and no-fuss layering. Buttons add a sharp and neat touch to a sweater vest and can create a scholarly aesthetic. A zippered sweater vest is a modern, practical option ideal for layering on hikes or during other outdoor activities. 

Sizing and cropping

Sweater vests can be tightly cropped and chic or chunky. Chic tailored sweater vests look professional and slimming. Chunky sweater vests are highly on-trend and great for layering in a dark academic wardrobe. Ultimately, what silhouette you choose comes down to where and how you intend to wear your sweater vest. 

Cropped sweater vests are trendy (and a current TikTok obsession) and look great with high-waisted jeans. Many people choose to wear sweater vests that expose some midriff for a stylish and fun look. 

Neckline 

A deep V-neck is the most recognizable sweater vest look and lends itself well to a smart look with versatile layering options. A less common option worth considering is a turtleneck sweater vest, which can be worn on its own as a shirt and pairs well with skirts and jeans for a look that can take you from the office to happy hour and more. 

Solid vs. print

Sweater vests come in argyle prints, houndstooth patterns and other bold prints. You can select a sweater vest in a monotone color for easy styling. 

How much you can expect to spend on a sweater vest

Sweater vests range in price from $25 for polyester sweater vests to $150-$250 for high-quality sweater vests made from expensive knits from name brands. 

Sweater vest FAQ

What should I pair my sweater vest with? 

A. The sky’s the limit when it comes to possible outfits to create with your sweater vest. 

Long, baggy sweater vests look great over leggings or skinny jeans for a balanced silhouette. Cropped sweater vests pair well with high-rise and mom jeans for an on-trend look. 

For a fun look, try pairing a sweater vest with a tennis skirt or a slim profile denim skirt. Layer it with a chunky chain necklace and white tennis shoes for a modern twist. 

How should I care for my sweater vest? 

A. Follow the care instructions on the tag to care best for your sweater vest. Most knit vests benefit from delicate care, meaning you should hand wash your sweater vest and lay it flat to dry. To prevent pests from eating holes in your sweater, store it in a plastic box during warm months when you don’t intend to wear it. 

What’s the best sweater vest to buy?

Top sweater vest

YesNo Loose Swing Chunky Cotton Cute Sweater Vest 

YesNo Loose Swing Chunky Cotton Cute Sweater Vest 

What you need to know: This is a 100% cotton sweater vest with a loose, draped look ideal for wearing with leggings. 

What you’ll love: You can layer this pull-on sweater vest over most outfits. It looks especially nice with turtlenecks or over leggings or skinny jeans. The ribbed V-neck and hem add neat detail to this chunky hanging sweater. It also has pockets.

What you should consider: Must be washed by hand to prevent damage. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Top sweater vest for the money

Women Solid Classic V-neck Sleeveless Pullover Sweater Vest Top

Women Solid Classic V-neck Sleeveless Pullover Sweater Vest Top

What you need to know: A chic and sophisticated sweater vest with a slim fit in a variety of colors to match most formal attire. 

What you’ll love: The attractive, deep V-neck is paired with a flattering sleeveless cut for a tailored profile. It’s ideal for pairing with a uniform or pairing with skinny jeans for a fun date night outfit. It’s made of a soft viscose and nylon blend. 

What you should consider: Though it’s soft, this sweater is too lightweight to provide much warmth. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Gihuo Women's V-neck Sweater Vest Uniform Cable Knit Sleeveless Sweater

Gihuo Women’s V-neck Sweater Vest Uniform Cable Knit Sleeveless Sweater

What you need to know: A 100% cotton vest with a scholarly appearance and a soft and comfortable feel. 

What you’ll love: You can easily pull this sweater vest over your bottom layer for coziness and warmth. Ideal for wearing in chilly fall weather. The deep V-neck and classic twist knit create a timeless vintage look perfect for the dark academia aesthetic. It’s durable and stretchy. Layer it over light wash denim and a white blouse for a sharp look.

What you should consider: It is not as cropped as some people desire. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Evelyn Waugh writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.