The best men’s sweaters

Shirts & Tops

The cardigan was named after James Brudenell, 7th Earl of Cardigan, a British Army major general who led the Charge of the Light Brigade at the Battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War.

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

Which men’s sweater is best?

When the weather starts to cool and the leaves begin to fall, that means it’s time to stow away the shorts and swimsuits and pull your warm and cozy clothes out of storage. But whether due to the passage of time, packing on a few pandemic pounds or a particularly dank attic, eventually the time comes to add a few new sweaters to the wardrobe. 

At its best, a great sweater not only will protect you from chilly weather, but it can also impress your friends and colleagues or help you stand out at your winter office party. With enough browsing, research and the occasional trip to the fitting room, finding a new sweater is a cinch. 

Finding the best men’s sweaters

When shopping for a new men’s sweater, there are a few important points to take into consideration, such as price, size, occasion and needs. For many, purchasing a new sweater can be daunting by the price tag alone, but it doesn’t need to be expensive or a designer brand to be effective; there are more than enough affordable options available. When it comes to sizing yourself or a loved one for a new sweater, you should read any available information about the garment’s fit and whether it is true to size on average. Occasionally, you may want to size up or down for comfort, which may warrant a trip to your department store’s fitting rooms.

Another important consideration is your need or occasion to wear a specific style of sweater. While many men’s sweaters and cardigans are suitably formal, others such as holiday-themed sweaters are too casual for normal work days. In reality, it shouldn’t be hard to find great options for formal occasions and casual gatherings without spending too much. 

Types of men’s sweaters

  • V-neck: These versatile sweaters have a “V-shaped” front collar that makes it easy to add to a button-down shirt to create a classic semi-formal look. Often, V-neck sweaters are designed precisely for layering, making them less desirable as standalone protection from the elements — but perfect for bringing any business-casual outfit together.
  • Crew-neck: If you’re looking for a standalone sweater with extra warmth and coziness, a crew-neck sweater usually does the trick. With its round neckline and occasional tapered cuffs, it can serve as an independent centerpiece to most cold-weather outfits, easily bouncing back and forth between formal and casual. These are also often found with fun seasonal designs that help get everyone in your orbit excited for the holidays.
  • Cardigan: This popular sweater style has a wide collar and is open on the front and usually fastened by buttons or a zipper. A cardigan is one of the most versatile garments in your wardrobe, as it can be worn for casual or formal occasions, while remaining extremely comfortable. It’s also a great top layer to set yourself apart from others.
  • Half/Quarter-zip: This type of sweater holds its own place between casual and semi-formal since it’s seen in offices as much as out on the town. It’s elongated neck is akin to a turtleneck with a zipper extending partway down the torso. It practically evokes the image of a dad sipping coffee while telling corny jokes. But it’s a comfortable alternative to anyone who finds other sweaters too formal.

Men’s V-neck sweaters

COOFANDY Men's Shawl Collar V-Neck

COOFANDY Men’s Shawl Collar V-Neck

This cable knit sweater is soft and comfortable with designs that add texture and style. With its swooping V-neck collar, it makes a great top layer over a button down or solo as the centerpiece of your fit. It’s made from 97% polyester and 3% spandex, and it’s also 100% comfortable. 

Sold by Amazon

Goodthreads Men's Merino Wool V-Neck Sweater

Goodthreads Men’s Merino Wool V-Neck Sweater

Made with 100% Merino wool, this soft and lightweight sweater comes in a wide array of colors, making it a perfect top layer to complement any button-down shirt. It won’t stand up to cold weather on its own, but it’s perfect for the milder weather of fall.

Sold by Amazon

Croft & Barrow Regular-Fit Patterned Easy-Care V-neck Sweater

Croft & Barrow Regular-Fit Patterned Easy-Care V-neck Sweater

This soft fabric sweater features an attractive diamond checker pattern that swings between academic and relaxed. Made with cotton, rayon and nylon, the soft fabric is anti-pilling and machine-wash safe.

Sold by Kohl’s

Men’s crew-neck sweaters

Amazon Essentials Men's Long-Sleeve Fisherman Cable Crewneck Sweater

Amazon Essentials Men’s Long-Sleeve Fisherman Cable Crewneck Sweater

Say what you will, but Amazon’s Essentials line of basic apparel boasts a lot of hits — this sweater included. Made with 100% cotton, it’s comfortable, versatile, visually appealing and most importantly, warm.

Sold by Amazon

Lacoste Men's Long Sleeve Crewneck Cotton Jersey Sweater

Lacoste Men’s Long Sleeve Crewneck Cotton Jersey Sweater

This cotton crewneck from the French clothier Lacoste is a comfortable classic that can’t be conquered. Available in both neutral and vibrant colors, it’s a great top layer for cool-to-cold weather. 

Sold by Amazon

Apt. 9 Regular-Fit Colorblock Men’s Crewneck Sweater

Apt. 9 Regular-Fit Colorblock Men’s Crewneck Sweater

With its soft Merino wool-blend construction, this attractive sweater is warm, durable and machine wash-friendly. It’s available in a number of contrasting color blocks, making it a versatile addition to the wardrobe.

Sold by Kohl’s

Polo Ralph Lauren Men's Cable-Knit Cotton Sweater

Polo Ralph Lauren Men’s Cable-Knit Cotton Sweater

This is another cable-knit classic, attractive and stylish with a cool derby blue color. It’s a lowkey sweater that works in business-casual occasions and everyday fits.

Sold by Macy’s

Men’s cardigans

Pendleton Men's The Original Westerley Zip Up Cardigan

Pendleton Men’s The Original Westerley Zip Up Cardigan

This sweater boasts a lovely and unique design in a neutral-color lamb’s wool build. It’s got a full-frontal zipper within a heavy and tight cable-knit body, but it might be a bit too heavy for some. 

Sold by Amazon

X-Ray Men's Shawl Collar Cable Knit Cardigan

X-Ray Men’s Shawl Collar Cable Knit Cardigan

A shawl collar adds an extra layer of warmth to the torso, and hidden among the cable-knit diamond and stripe patterns are two “kangaroo pockets” to provide some utility. It makes a great top layer or an extra level of protection from the cold worn under a winter peacoat.

Sold by Kohl’s and Macy’s

West End Knitwear Irish Merino Wool Aran Sweater

West End Knitwear Irish Merino Wool Aran Sweater

This 100% Irish Merino wool sweater is as soft as it is warm. It’s made using different traditional aran stitches combined with more contemporary designs and topped with vintage-style buttons. Imported from the Emerald Isle itself, it’s a perfect comfy-cozy cold weather staple. 

Sold by Amazon

Men’s half-zip sweaters

Polo Ralph Lauren Men’s Quarter-Zip Pullover

Polo Ralph Lauren Men’s Quarter-Zip Pullover

This mock-neck, zip-placket Polo sweater is stylish and smooth with a vented seam and banded cuffs. It’s made with lightweight cotton that has been peached and brushed for a soft feel, but it’s still suitable for chilly autumn nights.

Sold by Amazon

IZOD Men's Harbor River Button Up Sweater

IZOD Men’s Harbor River Button Up Sweater

Made from a near-even blend of cotton and acrylic fabric, this sweater is simultaneously rustic and modern with a warm, soft feel. It’s comfortable, versatile and its button-top makes it great for layering. 

Sold by Amazon

Lands' End Bedford Regular-Fit Ribbed Quarter-Zip Pullover Sweater

Lands’ End Bedford Regular-Fit Ribbed Quarter-Zip Pullover Sweater

If you’re looking for the perfect sweater for both a bonfire and a business-casual environment, this is it. This Lands’ End classic is available in a wide variety of colors, both neutral and vivid, so it’s easy to build an entire outfit around it.

Sold by Kohl’s

 

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

Matt Fleming 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.