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5 Top Men’s Autumn/Winter Active Apparel Trends for High Performance


The outdoors seem to be more popular with consumers in 2022. Fortunately, the fashion industry is not lagging. Most active wear now prioritizes durability and lighter layering pieces to give men the ultimate, high-performance outdoor experience.

But performance is not all these activewear trends have to offer. Consumers can look stylish with high-tech, multi-use, and innovative designs to take warmth to the next level as the autumn and winter seasons approach.

This article will explore five trends for the autumn and winter seasons of 2022/2023. But first, let’s take a look at the market size.

Table of Contents
Overview of the men’s active apparel market
5 durable, multi-use men’s active apparel for A/W 22/23
Closing words

Overview of the men’s active apparel market

The market size of men’s activewear reached US $390 billion in 2021, with a fast-growing compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.5% from 2017. Experts estimate the market will reach US $779.9 billion in 2032, from US $421.2 billion in 2022. They also project a 6.4% CAGR from 2022 to 2032 for the market.

The increasing need to adopt activewear as casual clothing among men is one of the factors that are fueling this market’s expansion. Other key factors include more men wanting the benefits of activewear, like quick-drying, breathability, static resistance, thermal resistance, and chemical resistance.

Retailers can leverage this increased growth and stock up their inventory with the A/W 22/23 trends explored in this article.

5 durable, multi-use men’s active apparel for A/W 22/23

Peak-performance shorts

Man wearing white double-layered shorts

Most consumers want to work out in shorts during the fall or winter seasons, but can’t stand the chilly weather. That’s where peak-performance shorts come in. This trend incorporates a double-layered short that offers high performance, warmth, and comfort in one bundle.

Peak-performance shorts get inspiration from the minimalistic aesthetic trend. They combine two materials to make one piece of apparel: an inner layer and an outer layer. The inner layer fits snugly on the thighs, while the outer layer is looser and more relaxed. 

Consumers can enjoy moisture-wicking, compression, and an antibacterial inner layer with innovative fabric developments. In addition, the base layer can be infused with healing properties, like CBD or aloe, that boost active recovery.

But that’s not all. The outer layer features perforated elements that enhance ventilation. Men can also enjoy a knit, elastic, or flat waistband that they can adjust to fit their preferences. In addition, these high-performance shorts have waterproof bonded pockets for consumers to store valuables safely during activities. Men can access these pockets easily by lifting the loose-fitting outer shorts.

Materials like elastane and spandex are popular for base layers, while materials like polyester mostly make up the outer layer. Consumers can get these shorts in colors like gravity gray, bright red, neon, black, and many more. Men who love contrasting colors can opt for different colors on the inner and outer layers.

This trend also features patterns, like camouflage, for the inner or outer layers, or both. In addition, some variants come with extra pockets and zippers for more storage.

Man wearing camouflaged double-layered shorts

Hi-tech insulated mid-layer

Man wearing a blue sweater and gray shorts

Active apparel for the outdoors is never complete without a mid-layer. This apparel is what consumers wear on top of a base layer and under an outer layer if necessary. And what better way to rock these insulated shells than the hi-tech insulated mid-layer trend?

Consumers can opt for the practical mid-layer option for their outdoor pursuits. In addition, they can explore several possible combinations with this ensemble. At the heart of this apparel is a lightweight, bio-based insulation that won’t hinder movement.

The ensemble’s paneling focuses insulation on specific areas, maintaining its lightweight feel. In addition, consumers can enjoy soft-touch fabrics that keep the heat from escaping. These fabrics also have waterproof qualities to keep consumers hot and dry.

Man wearing an army green high-tech insulating mid-layer jacket

The fishing trouser bib

Man posing with fishing trouser bibs

Nothing says dry than a fishing trouser bib. Starting as a way to keep anglers dry, these hyper-functional outer layers have made their way into the men’s active apparel industry and are here to stay.

The stylish salopette is multifunctional as consumers can use them as hiking trousers and get added coverage from the fishing bib. They can also enjoy excellent adaptability to different outdoor activities and conditions.

The fabric on this ensemble, like polyester, is waterproof and breathable, so consumers don’t feel choked up while staying warm. Other materials offer military-grade protection from tear and wear.

Some variants have zip-off legs and proper seam vents, making it easy for consumers to transition between outdoor activities and settings. Layering is also possible with the apparel’s oversized silhouettes that don’t restrict movement. Fishing trouser bibs work great for rainy conditions during autumn and winter.

Man wearing camouflage-patterned fisherman trouser bib

Cargo-style fishing trouser bibs provide multiple pockets with enough space for consumers to carry essentials. The apparel comes in different multi-colored and patterned designs. Consumers who prefer going mono can find single-colored variants.

Modular utility jacket

Man wearing a brown utility jacket

Utility jackets have been a workwear staple since the early 20th century. Now, many male consumers consider them a must-have in their wardrobe. They work well for layering during winter and may not look dressy or casual.

However, modular utility jackets take things further by introducing zip-off sleeves. This added aesthetic allows consumers to transform their clothing from outerwear to a layering utility gilet for versatile and functional styling.

Sustainable fabric developments, like the traditionally waxed and organic cotton, are an excellent fit for this trendy utility jacket. Other materials that make this attire include the showerproof eco-coating and recycled polyester.

These transeasonal jackets have multiple pockets for storage on the go. They also offer a classy way for consumers to tap into the #TheGreatOutdoors trend.

Since the early 20s, utility jackets have moved on to newer designs. As a result, consumers can find multiple options in different cuts and shades. Though the recent styles retained the boxy shape, modular utility jackets come in various bright colors. Men who don’t fancy the bright and shiny can opt for neutral color palettes.

Man posing in a gray sleeveless utility jacket

Bio-pile fleece

Man in a fleece jacket and a fedora

What happens when outdoor activewear meets the streetwear aesthetic? The bio-pile fleece trend! This magical apparel has made its way into the hearts and wardrobes of consumers venturing out in the cold seasons.

Softness, comfort, and breathability are the driving forces behind this insulating jacket. Instead of the regular synthetic blends, this trend uses bio-based synthetic materials like recycled wool to design the eye-catching bio-pile fleece.

The bio-pile fleece comes in many styles, including half and full zips, crew tops, quarter zips, hoods, and hoodies. There are also cardigans and wrap variants. Additionally, consumers can get this attire in different colors and patterns, like navy blue, black, stripes, multi-colored, and camouflage.

The bio-pile fleece is a crafty way of adding a playful dash of colors into an outfit. Consumers can rock a ski-inspired look with color blocking. Donning fleece jackets with contrasting shade panels (like blue and red) paired with pale jeans or neutral chinos would make a stylish off-duty look.

Men who love the oversized silhouette trend can recreate the look with the big-collared bio-pile fleece jacket. They can layer it over a white hoodie with some tapered joggers for more warmth and aesthetics.

Man wearing a gray bio-pile fleece

Closing words

2020 and 2021 blurred the lines between apparel for home, activities, and work, and outerwear, leading to the reemergence of athleisure-inspired looks.

Outfits that easily shift between all areas of consumers’ lives will have more value as durability, comfort, and multi-functionality become high priorities.

If sellers want to boost their sales for A/W 22/23, peak-performance shorts, hi-tech insulated mid-layers, fishing trouser bibs, modular utility jackets, and bio-pile fleece are the way to go.

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