Best Carhartt Bomber Jackets for Winter [Discussing Options]


When we think of traditional bomber jackets, we think of zip-front jackets that have a cuffed waist and a fit through the shoulders that isn’t too loose or baggy. If you are shopping for Carhartt bomber jackets, there are a few things to understand.

First, most Carhartt bomber style jackets have an attached hood. This may or may not be a deal breaker for you. These hooded jackets still have a fitted waist, with a zip-front, and match, loosely, what many think of with a bomber jacket.

Carhartt does offer a traditional bomber jacket for women, which is linked in the list below. For men, Carhartt offers the hooded bomber-style jackets linked below, and they also have some jackets without hoods that are similar to the bomber style, which I have also linked below.

*This page contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. (info)

These are our choices for best Carhartt Bomber Jackets:

  1. *Men’s Hooded* Carhartt J140 Duck Quilted Flannel Lined Jacket (click here to view)
  2. *Men’s Hooded* Carhartt J130 Washed Duck Insulated Jacket (click here to view)
  3. *Men’s Hooded* Carhartt J131 Duck Thermal Lined Jacket (click here to view)
  4. *Men’s No Hood* Carhartt Blanket Lined Detroit Jacket (click here to view)
  5. *Men’s No Hood* Carhartt Weathered Duck Detroit Jacket (click here to view)
  6. *Women’s* Carhartt Women’s Crawford Bomber Jacket (click here to view)
  7. *Women’s Hooded* Carhartt Weathered Duck Wildwood Jacket (click here to view)

The three men’s hooded Carhartt jackets at the top of the list are all what Carhartt calls “Active” jackets. All three have a very similar design, with a fitted waist, attached hood, and zip-front closure. How do these jackets differ from each other?

The outer shell fabric and the insulation lining will differ between these jackets. Carhartt does not offer a temperature rating on their products, but based on my experience, I think the Carhartt J140 is the warmest out of those three options, and the Carhartt J131 is the most mild.

The Carhartt J140 and J131 will have a firm duck canvas shell that will be stiff at first, but break in over time. The Carhartt J130 shell is also duck canvas, but it is pre-washed to break it in. If you prefer a worn-in feeling for your jackets, the Carhartt J130 might be the best bomber-style jacket for you.

In this article let’s take a closer look at these Carhartt bomber jackets so you have a better idea how they differ from each other. I will use photos of the jackets that I own to give you a better understanding. If you are interested in Carhartt jackets and want to explore other options, visit our article about the best Carhartt winter jackets.

My Favorite Carhartt Bomber Jackets

Carhartt J140 Duck Quilted Flannel Lined Jacket

The J140 flannel lined canvas jacket is my favorite Carhartt bomber jacket. Again, unfortunately at this time Carhartt does not make a true “bomber” jacket for men. But this jacket has a zip-front with a cuffed waist to give it a similar design to that of a traditional bomber jacket.

In fact, other workwear companies will, on occasion, refer to this type of jacket design as a “bomber”. Whether or not you agree, obviously that is up to you. But, yes, there is an attached hood. If you don’t want a hooded jacket, I would suggest going to the next section where I discuss the Carhartt Detroit jacket (the jacket that Matthew McConaughey wears in the movie Interstellar).

This J140 jacket uses a firm duck 100% cotton canvas outer shell (best Carhartt duck jackets). Yes, it will be a bit stiff at first, but it breaks in just fine with time. This is Carhartt’s toughest cotton outer shell fabric and one of their warmest linings (quilted flannel). Overall, this is a very durable and warm winter jacket.

Again, Carhartt does not assign temperature ratings to their jackets. Here is my opinion based off wearing this jacket for years: this jacket will be warm enough to handle winters in most all continental US states (yes, there may be some extreme exceptions). But it also will likely be too warm for mild winters in the southern US.

This jacket has a loose fit, but I order my normal sizing. The extra space gives me room to layer. My jacket does shrink a little bit, but not much. To read more about sizing, visit my article about how Carhartt jackets fit.

If you like the design of this jacket, but are afraid it will be too warm for your climate, I would suggest the Carhartt J131 jacket linked at the top of the article. That J131 jacket has the same design, but with a milder lining.

Click here to buy this Carhartt J140 jacket available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). To read more, visit my article about the Carhartt J140 jacket.

Carhartt Blanket Lined Detroit Jacket

Looking for a men’s Carhartt bomber jacket that doesn’t have an attached hood? I think this is your best option. This Carhartt Detroit jacket has sort of bomber style with a zip-front design that finishes above the waist. This jacket has a corduroy accent collar.

This is a rugged casual jacket that can be worn both on and off the clock. Although it has been around for many years, it has gained popularity in recent years because it was the jacket that Matthew McConaughey wore in the movie Interstellar (source).

It’s probably fair to describe this jacket also as a trucker style jacket or maybe even a mechanic style jacket, so it may not fit perfectly what you are looking for in a bomber jacket, but if you are shopping for a Carhartt bomber-style jacket without a hood, this is the closest you will get.

At one point, I think this jacket was made in the USA, although I’m not entirely sure it still is. It has a blanket lining for insulation. In my experience, this blanket lining can work for mild to moderate winter conditions.

If you are outside in extreme conditions, you will probably want a heavier insulation. I’d describe this blanket lined jacket as warm, but not extreme. This Carhartt work jacket is a nice option for those of you who want a jacket that looks good even off the clock.

My jacket has a 12-ounce firm duck cotton canvas outer shell, but you can also buy this jacket in a weathered shell version. The weather shell version is linked in our list at the top of the article if you’d like to check that version out.

Click here to buy this Carhartt Detroit Jacket available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). This jacket has a standard fit. It will finish near the waist for most people, but the waist is not cuffed on this jacket.

Other Men’s Carhartt Bomber Jackets to Consider

Carhartt J130 Washed Duck Insulated Jacket

size-carhartt-active

This J130 jacket was updated in recent years and is now referred to as style 104050 (Carhartt J130 vs 104050). This jacket combines a pre-washed canvas shell, meaning it is pre-washed to help break it in. It has a quilted nylon lining with 80 grams of 3M Thinsulate for insulation.

This is a Carhartt “Active” Jacket, which means it is designed similarly to the J140 we discussed at the top of the article. What is the difference? This jacket has that pre-washed shell (the J140 is firm duck), and this jacket has a different type of insulation.

Carhartt doesn’t put temperature ratings on their jackets, so it’s hard to make guarantees. All I can do is give you my opinion, and I think the J140 we discussed at the top of the article is warmer. But this jacket is still warm, I’d just say in my experience it is best for moderate conditions (but not extreme).

Just like the J140, this may not be a true Carhartt bomber jacket. Yes, it has that attached hood. But the zip-front combined with the fitted waist mimics the design of a classic bomber jacket.

Click here to buy this Carhartt jacket available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). In my experience, this jacket fits true to size, but has a loose fit.

Carhartt J131 Duck Thermal Lined Jacket

The Carhartt J131 Duck Thermal Lined Jackets has a design that is very similar to the J140 and the J130 we discussed first, but this jacket uses what is, in my experience, a more mild lining. This is a nice option for those of you who experience mild winter conditions.

Here’s what this Carhartt J131 jacket looks like:

This is another Carhartt “Active” Jacket, meaning it will have a similar design to both the Carhartt J140 and the Carhartt J130 that we already discussed. And if you are shopping for a Carhartt bomber jacket, this jacket may not be a perfect match for the bomber style, but just like the other Carhartt Active Jackets we’ve discussed, this jacket has a cuffed waist and zip front. But it also has the attached hood.

This jacket has a thermal lining, which sounds very warm, but in my experience this is one of the mildest linings that Carhartt has. I would recommend this jacket for mild to maybe moderate winter conditions. If you need something warmer, I’d stick with the J140.

Click here to buy this Carhartt jacket available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). In my experience, this jacket fits true to size, but has a loose fit.

Women’s Carhartt Bomber Jackets

  • *Women’s* Carhartt Women’s Crawford Bomber Jacket – Carhartt actually does have a true bomber jacket for women. This Carhartt Crawford Bomber is made with a cotton/spandex outer shell that has some stretch to it. It does not have thick insulation, so will be best used as a mild winter jacket. Click here to view this women’s Carhartt bomber jacket available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
  • *Women’s Hooded* Carhartt Weathered Duck Wildwood Jacket – If you are looking for a women’s Carhartt bomber-style jacket that has a hood, this will be a nice option. The hood is actually detachable, and the jacket itself has a style very similar to bomber jackets. It has a cuffed waist and cuffed sleeves, with a zip-front design that isn’t too loose through the shoulders. This jacket is Sherpa lined for winter warmth. Click here to view this Carhartt women’s jacket at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).

Understanding the Warmth of Carhartt Bomber Jackets

Probably the hardest thing to understand about Carhartt jackets is how they differ on warmth. How do you know if “Thermal” is warmer than “Sherpa”? Carhartt currently does not assign a temperature rating to their jackets. I obviously cannot either.

But since I have tried all the linings, I will give you my opinion on how they differ regarding warmth. The Carhartt J133 jacket is, in my experience, the warmest Carhartt jacket I have tried.

Here are Carhartt’s available linings, and my personal opinion on how they rank from lightweight warmth to warmest. Just for reference, I would consider the thermal lining something I’d wear on a mild winter day:

Carhartt LiningWarmth
ThermalMild Warmth
FleeceMild Warmth
BlanketMedium Warmth
Quilted-NylonMedium Warmth
SherpaWarm
Quilted-FlannelVery Warm
Arctic InsulationWarmest

Understanding the Outer Shell Fabrics of Carhartt Bomber Jackets

Buying a canvas bomber jacket can be important for work because it gives you the abrasion resistance you need on the job. But firm duck outer shells also provide a level of wind resistance needed during those brutal winter days.

Sometimes when comparing Carhartt winter jackets, it’s hard to understand the difference in outer shell fabrics. In general, the tougher the outer fabric, the stiffer the jacket will be.

Canvas jackets will break in over time, but the firmer, stiffer outer-shells will take some time. If you do not like stiff jackets, you might want one of the fabrics that is pre-washed to help break it in (best winter work jackets).

Please understand that Carhartt does offer soft-shell jackets too, but no Carhartt bomber jackets use a soft shell fabric, which means all the jackets on this list are canvas jackets. Here are your options for outer canvas fabrics for these Carhartt Jackets:

Outer Fabric DuckDetails
Extremes NylonToughest; Wind/Water Resistant
Firm Cotton Toughest Cotton; Wind/Water Res.
Traditional Cotton2nd-Toughest Cotton Shell
Washed Cotton Tough, but Broken-in Feeling
Sandstone CottonTough, but Broken-in Feeling
Quick DuckLightweight, Flexible Blend

Our list at the top of the page contains both firm cotton duck and washed cotton duck. Washed duck uses a pre-washing process to help break the stiff canvas in so that it has a worn-in feeling on the first wear. But my favorite jacket, the J140, has the firm cotton duck, and in my experience breaks in just fine after a few weeks.

Here’s a look at the firm duck on my J140 Carhartt winter jacket:

carhartt-duck-active-jacket-review-material-2

My Conclusion About Carhartt Bomber Jackets

For women, Carhartt currently offers the Carhartt Crawford Bomber Jacket, which is one of their most popular styles. Unfortunately, for men, Carhartt does not currently offer a true bomber jacket.

Their men’s hooded “Active” jackets do have many similarities to bomber style jackets (fitted waist, cuffed sleeves, zip-front), but they also have attached hoods. This may be a deal breaker for you. Perhaps considering a Carhartt trucker jacket would increase your options.

My advice – If you want a Carhartt bomber jacket that doesn’t have a hood, I think the best option is the Carhartt Detroit Jacket. If you want an attached hood, my favorite bomber-style option is the Carhartt J140 jacket. It is one of Carhartt’s warmest jackets. If you want a hooded jacket that is a bit more mild, I’d recommend the Carhartt J131 jacket.

Paul Johnson

Paul is a lead content creator for Workwear Command. He has had several blue-collar jobs which have provided him a wide range of experience with tools and gear. He also has a business degree and has spent time in business casual office settings.

Recent Posts