Skip to content

What To Wear In NYC In Winter

By Charlotte Dow & Jessie Festa. This post contains affiliate links to trusted partners we think you’ll love!

Wondering what to wear in NYC in winter?

There are plenty of options, as you’ll see in this post. 

Now, one of the best things about living in New York City is that we get to experience all four seasons.

We get beautiful springs full of blooming trees and mild temperatures, long summer days to hang at the beach, falls full of colorful foliage, and magical snowy winters.

Moreover, we get our fair share of extreme weather — tropical storms, blizzards, and heatwaves — and sometimes we experience all four seasons in one week.

This unpredictability naturally makes packing for a trip to New York complicated, regardless of when you’re visiting.

Despite our ever-changing weather, there really is no offseason when it comes to tourism in New York.

Winter is a great time to visit the city and check out world-class museums, unique restaurants, performing arts, and more.

Visiting New York in winter does take a bit more planning when it comes to what to wear, though.

How do you make sure you’re prepared for frigid temperatures, icy streets, and potential storms when you’re exploring the city?

Don’t worry, this post has you covered.

Check out this guide to staying warm while looking cute during your next winter trip to New York City, written by a local. 

📸 Need help capturing the beauty of NYC — with you in the photos? Book a private NYC Photo Journey, a walking tour that includes photos of your group to keep. Or get a styled, custom shoot that tells your unique story through an NYC Influencer Shoot or Professional New York City Shoot. Email [email protected] with inquiries.

What To Wear In NYC In Winter

When it comes to what to wear in NYC in winter, fitted coats work well
A fitted coat is a versatile winter accessory. Photo via NYC Photo Journeys.

Tip #1: Play with colors and fits

Wondering what to wear in New York in January? Here is one of my top suggestions for clothes to wear in NYC in winter:

A fitted coat looks chic and can be changed up with accessories like bright scarves for a pop.

Choose a longer style for extra coverage — a necessity on long, cold days exploring the city.

Accent your look while staying warm with a colorful hat or scarf; the sky may be grey but your outfit doesn’t have to be!

Pro tip: 

Pop into one of the many Instagrammable cafes in NYC to snap a chic seasonal photo for your feed. 

Wear layers when visiting NYC in winter
Play with layers when visiting NYC in winter. Photo via NYC Photo Journeys.

2. Layer up

The weather outside may be frightful, but the radiator heat in many older New York City buildings can have you feeling steamy pretty quick.

Dress in layers so you’re prepared for whatever temperatures you might experience during your adventures.

A breathable, good quality sweater will keep you warm outside while keeping you from overheating indoors.

Thermal tights under a skirt or dress also offer great coverage if you can’t stand another day in jeans.

This also makes it easy to dress for exploration as well as any romantic winter dates in NYC

upper east side in winter wearing boots
Stealing a kiss and looking stylis. Photo via NYC Photo Journeys.

3. Have fun with footwear

You shouldn’t visit NYC without a sensible pair of travel flats

One recommendation: 

Boots have a bit of a monopoly on winter footwear in New York City.

And for good reason.

They’re sturdy, protective, and will keep your legs and feet nice and toasty on cold days.

Tall riding boots are a staple when it comes to New York winter clothes. They’re a chic but sturdy favorite among New Yorkers, while combat boots give your outfit a bit more of an edge.

Whatever shoe you pick, make sure they have lots of traction to keep you steady on icy sidewalks so you don’t end up visiting urgent care during your trip.

4. Choose warm and flashy fabrics

While many people tend to dress in all black during New York winters, you can really make a statement with warm, standout pieces.

Now is the perfect time to break out that metallic coat you haven’t had a chance to wear yet, or those red faux leather leggings you found on sale.

Stay extra warm by adding a turtleneck as your base layer; a chic but cozy staple. This one by Icebreaker is a top pick, as the brand is one of the best for high-quality Merino wool clothing.

woman wearing a scarf shawl on an NYC Influencer Shoot in winter
Enjoying the beauty of Brooklyn Bridge Park on a chilly day. Photo taken on an NYC Influencer Shoot.

5. Choose multipurpose garments

A large blanket scarf — like this stylish option — is a versatile way to stay warm wherever you go.

Wrap it around your neck and tuck it under your coat to protect your skin from cold winds.

Another idea:

Use it as a shawl indoors to keep warm in heavily air-conditioned restaurants and movie theatres.

They’re even perfect for travel when you want to take a quick train or plane nap.

With so many ways to style a blanket scarf, you’re sure to find one that best fits your look.

Bonus:

You’ll be glad you packed this when you head out into the snow for some winter photography in NYC!

6. Invest in gloves with a smart touch 

A smartphone is a key tool for any trip and you’ll definitely want to keep yours handy while exploring New York City.

Make sure your hands stay toasty while you scroll with smartphone-friendly gloves.

The classic fingerless styles will usually do the trick, but there are plenty of fashionable touchscreen gloves that will allow you to use your phone while keeping your full fingers covered.

From faux leather to wool to ski gloves, there are plenty of options out there to fit your personal style. Personally, I love the Glider Gloves brand.

Color coordinated outfits are a great pick for what to wear in NYC in winter
Play with colors for fun winter fashion! Photo via NYC Photo Journeys.

7. Coordinate your colors

Just because it’s cold out doesn’t mean you can’t plan for the perfect photo opp with your travel companion. 

If you’ll be taking photos, consider what vibe you want the pictures to have. Colors next to each other on the color wheel have a more harmonious quality, as shown above, while colors across from each other tend to stand out and pop for a more energetic quality. 

New York Packing List For Winter

Wondering what to pack for New York in winter in terms of cozy essentials? 

Here are Jessie’s favorite seasonal staples. These are what she recommends as a local and tour guide who spends a lot of time walking around outside:

It’s easy to feel a bit constricted by the weather when dressing for winter in New York.

But with a little creativity and a few fun, warm items, you can really stand out as you navigate the city streets.

Just remember to carry cash for coat check!

Need help capturing the beauty of NYC — with you in the photos? Book a private NYC Photo Journey, a walking tour that includes photos of your group to keep. Or get a styled, custom shoot that tells your unique story through an NYC Influencer Shoot or Professional New York City Shoot. Email [email protected] with inquiries.

what to wear in nyc in winter
Stay warm and stylish during a New York winter. Photo: freestocks.org via Pexels.

Top New York City Winter Tours

Throw on your most stylish NYC winter outfit and explore the city through one of the following top-rated tours:

New York Catacombs by Candlelight

Chinatown & Little Italy Food Fest

Secrets Of Grand Central Walking Tour

New York in One Day Guided Sightseeing Tour

Best of Brooklyn Half-Day Food and Culture, Bus and Walking Tour

New York at Night Bus Tour

Click here for a full list of tours in New York City.

NYC Travel Insurance

When visiting New York City — or anywhere else in the world — it’s wise to get travel insurance.

One of the best travel medical insurance for travelers is SafetyWing as they’ve got a large network and offer both short-term and long-term coverage — including coverage if you’re traveling for months as well as limited coverage in your home country.

Additionally, SafetyWing is budget-friendly and offers $250,000 worth of coverage with just one low overall deductible of $250.

Click here to price out travel insurance for your trip in just a few clicks.

Share your tips for what to wear in NYC in winter below! 

Enjoyed this post? Pin it for later!

About Charlotte Dow

Charlotte Dow is an NYC-based writer and communications professional specializing in digital storytelling. She is a recent graduate of the M.S. in Public Relations & Corporate Communication program at NYU's School of Professional Studies.

Jessie Festa standing in front of grafitti wall

Hi, I’m Jessie on a journey!

I'm a conscious solo traveler on a mission to take you beyond the guidebook to inspire you to live your best life through travel. Come join me!

Blogging Courses

Want to live your best life through travel?

Subscribe for FREE access to my library of fun blogging worksheets and learn how to get paid to travel more!

.

2 Comments

  1. Kimberly Vilson on at 12:39 am

    Thank you!

  2. soffiobrand on at 2:24 am

    In NYC winter, dress in layers with a warm coat, hat, gloves, and scarf. Opt for insulated boots and cozy sweaters. Don’t forget a sturdy umbrella for snowy or rainy days. Visit Soofio.pk if you wish to purchase high-quality winter clothing.

Leave a Comment