A Dozen Great Black Friday Sales — Die, Workwear!

You used to have to muscle your way into stores and stand in long lines to take advantage of Black Friday promotions. Nowadays, everything is online, so you can shop from the comfort of your own home. The difficulty, of course, is that you’re then swamped with possibilities, making it impossible to know what to buy. To make the landscape a little easier to navigate, I round up some of my favorite Black Friday promotions every year and post them here, along with a selection of notable picks at each store. These guides are designed to cover almost every budget—from relatively affordable basics to designer items—so there’s something for everyone. Here’s this year’s list organized by increasing order of price with a smattering of miscellanea at the end. 


In 2020, when J. Crew filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, I wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post about how this preppy brand plays an important role in the menswear market. For many guys, J. Crew is their entry point into building a better wardrobe. The company’s prices are relatively affordable, and the designs are fairly classic. The company sells things such as chambray work shirts, field jackets, and flat-front chinos—things that look good on almost everyone. However, the departures of Jenna Lyons and Frank Muytjens in 2017 casted a shadow of uncertainty. Speculation surfaced about plans to transform J. Crew into a version of The Gap, potentially distributed through Amazon. So it was a relief when the company ousted the old management and design team, replacing them with Brendon Babenzien, the new Creative Director, who has steered the company clear of such a fate, injecting renewed vitality into this iconic label.



J. Crew continues to be a place for solid, unassailable basics. This Wallace & Barnes blanket-lined chore coat (on sale for $145) is one of the best budget-friendly outerwear options this season. Made from rugged denim, custom donut buttons, and a contrasting corduroy collar, it feels like an Americana upgrade from the popular French bleu de travail. I also love the spade-shaped pockets. The company has other great affordable outerwear options this winter, such as a raglan-sleeved raincoat and quilted puffer jacket, both of which would look great with one of the company’s 14 oz sweatshirts, Fair Isle sweaters, or brushed wool knits (a more affordable version of J. Press’s iconic Shaggy Dog). I’m pretty sure the sweatshirts are identical to something that used to be sold through Wallace & Barnes. I bought one a few years ago, and it’s one of my favorite staples. The material is stout and densely knitted, making it practically windproof, while the fleece interior is kitten-soft. Grey is classic, but black is surprisingly useful

It’s also worth checking out J. Crew’s selection of chinos and button-ups. Their Giant Chino (which, coincidentally, is my OK Cupid profile) made a big splash last year, as many saw it as a bellwether for pant trends. I think it’s great, but if you want a toned-down version, try the classic cut, which is easy through the hips and thighs with a slight taper below the knee. I also like their shirts in needlecord, chambray, denim, flannel, and chamois. The chamois shirts are made from a slightly heavier material than LL Bean’s version, making them cozier, but they work a little better on their own than when layered under outerwear. Still, if you want to feel like the surface of a billiard table, there’s nothing better.




On the topic of affordable basics, Taylor Stitch offers great value. I became impressed with their shirts after seeing them a few times on my friend Peter Zottolo (who co-hosts a menswear podcast with me now on Blamo). Peter is a union electrician in San Francisco who wears his workwear on actual work sites. He tells me that his Taylor Stitch shirts hold up just as well as his more expensive pieces. I admit that I can neither confirm nor deny, as the only thing I’ve worked on is myself. But I think the shirts are a good value at ~$135 and even better on sale. 

There are two noteworthy models. The Yosemite is made from a midweight 7 oz organic cotton chamois. It’s heavy enough to be used as a shirt jacket in fall and spring weather, but also light enough to tuck into trousers and wear under outerwear (Peter is wearing an older season’s Yosemite shirt above). The Ledge is a slightly heavier 8 oz organic cotton flannel that has been put through a washing process for a softer, lived-in feel. Taylor Stitch has them in appealing colors, such as dusty peach, sun-faded brick, and navy with plum. Wear them over one of these waffle-knit Todd Snyder henleys, but with the top two buttons unfastened. The henley will provide a bit of warmth, while the placket will peek out from beneath your shirt in an appealing way. 




Moving up the price scale, if you have a little more money to spend, Todd Snyder specializes in the same American basics found at J. Crew and Taylor Stitch, but with more variety, better materials, and a little more willingness to experiment. For a large, corporate brand, I’ve been impressed by how well they ride the line between mass-market appeal and doing things for enthusiasts. For example, this season’s collection is full of amazing outerwear, such as shearling aviator jackets (available in brown or black), suede truckers (with a useful contrast leather collar to prevent your neck from staining the suede), padded balmacaans, Donegal raglan-sleeve overcoats, quilted parkas, and a tan double-breasted overcoat (not quite a polo, but close).

There are also some great knitwear options, such as chunky shawl collar cardigans, ribbed turtlenecks, Inis Meain Arans, and Kanata Cowichans (which practically function like outerwear). These featherweight tile-motif scarves would nicely replace a tie if you’re wearing casual suits or sport coats. Like J. Crew and Taylor Stitch, Todd Snyder also offers some great shirts. I like the ones made from needlecord, flannel, and Japanese chambray. They would look great with a pair of these moleskin carpenter pants and some New Balance hiking boots or 55o sneakers




No Man Walks Alone is a sponsor on this site, but as I’ve mentioned in the past, it is also one of my favorite stores. Whereas most shops specialize in either tailored clothing or casualwear, No Man Walks Alone does both, helping guys build a more well-rounded wardrobe. Founder Greg Lellouche used to work as an investment banker on Wall Street, where he regularly wore bespoke suits and handmade ties. He knows his way around a tailored wardrobe, but from years of experience, he also has a strong eye for casualwear. At his shop, you can find hard-to-find Japanese labels, French shoes, and even some avant-garde. 

There are a few notables here, such as the orange Kaptain Sunshine Walker coat, a lighter, looser version of the company’s popular Traveler. That would look great with jeans and this chunky Chamula flag sweater, which has a more handmade feel than the iconic Ralph Lauren version. I also love the variegated texture on this tweedy Blue Blue Japan topcoat, the funkiness of these Tryolean shoes, and everything at Wythe. Designed by Peter Middleton, a Texan transplant currently living in NYC, with a professional background at Ralph Lauren, Wythe excels at making Westernwear that easily slots in with the workwear, Americana, and Ivy Style that may already be in your wardrobe. All clothes are made from custom-woven fabrics, which is how they can develop beautiful plaid, snap-button shirts like this. I only wish this balmacaan was part of the sale.

For guys trying to find an alternative to tailored clothing, I’ve yet to see a better option than the Valstarino. It’s a classic jacket from the 1930s, although it was popularized in the post-war period. The design is a citified, Italian version of the rugged American A-1 bomber. Made with a slightly slimmer, less rounded silhouette but retaining the high collar, button front, and two hip pockets, it works surprisingly well in lieu of a sport coat. You can wear it with jeans, chinos, or tailored trousers; fine knits or sweatshirts; suede chukkas or minimalist sneakers. There’s something refined about the jacket, particularly in suede, that allows it to work well with things such as these GRP turtlenecks and X of Pentacles scarves. I also love this season’s Valstar down vest, which looks like something someone would have worn in the 1970s at a Colorado ski resort. Layer it over chunky knits or trucker jackets.




A couple of years ago, a viral photo showed Oscar Isaac sitting cross-legged on a Tiffany blue cushioned bench, wearing olive-brown cords, New Balance sneakers, and a distinctive, half-placket knit in a color that sat halfway between grey and lavender. Isaac’s salt-and-pepper curls, touseled to one side, and scruffy beard contrasted with his highly soft-looking garments. The photo, which first appeared on costume designer Miyako Bellizzi’s Instagram, has garnered nearly 50k likes. Hundreds of people showered praise; The Cut’s Emilia Petrarca wrote, “I would marry these photos.”

On first blush, the clothes seem innocuous—an Asian friend of mine asked if I thought Americans understood this was just “Japanese normcore.” But there was also some ineffable quality about the clothes, apart from their proximity to Isaac’s good looks. They were soft and drapey, hung at the right places, and came in unique hues that whispered “expensive.” This is how I think of the clothes at Namu Shop, a Texan boutique that specializes in clothes I usually only see on well-dressed Asians on Instagram.

On their site now, you can find oversized Document overcoats made from nubby tweeds, which would look great with Hatski jeans or tailored trousers, coupled with a French Merino Auralee knit. This brushed Fujito sweater hints at the mid-century knits from Iceland known as lopapeysas without being just a replica. I also like the rounded Document parkas, Paa polo sweatshirt, and Fujito fleece




Canoe Club represents a new approach to casualwear, where stores aren’t just carrying things with a singular point of view but reflect the eclectic tastes of their customers. Twenty years ago, most casualwear stores specialized in a “look”—the minimalism of Helmut Lang, the ruggedness of Levis, or the smart-casual looks of Loro Piana. But as more men have become comfortable dabbling in different aesthetics and building wardrobes where rare Nikes sit comfortably alongside shell cordovan Aldens, stores such as Canoe Club have gained a lot of ground. The store’s eclectic mix of casualwear represents what the company’s employees are currently interested in. It’s a mix of streetwear, workwear, hard-to-find Japanese labels, and time-tested stand-bys. I often find myself tempted by things here from RRLOrslowKapitalLemaireEngineered Garments, and Wythe.

For me, the standout piece this season is this shearling Marigela five-zip. It has been a perennial in the company’s collection since the early 2000s and rides the line between classic and contemporary. You can wear it with something as simple as jeans, a t-shirt, and some side-zip boots, or pair it with tailored trousers and a designer knit. Canoe Club also has the more versatile black lambskin version. The Frizmworks Kara Koram-styled parka, Lemaire shearling, patchwork Engineered Garments fatigues, Orslow chore coat, and suede Fortela trucker also look really good. I’m also still into Kapital’s bandanas and trucker caps cause I’m a sucker. 




If you’ve been interested in men’s style for any period of time, you probably know that Mr. Porter is basically the emporium for high-end clothing. They carry everything under the sun from nearly every brand from all corners of the earth. As such, wading through their massive inventory during sale season can be daunting, especially since things move quickly at this popular store. My best advice is to make use of the filters on the left-hand side. Check the boxes to narrow in on what you’re looking for: garment type (e.g., bomber jackets or jeans), size (e.g., 38 chest, 30 waist), and designer. 

Some of my favorite labels here include Norbit by Hiroshi Nozawa (funky Japanese outdoor gear), Snow Peak (Japanese outdoor gear, but less funky), And Wander (medium funk), William Lockie (unsurpassed Scottish knitwear), Yuketen and Epperson Mountaineering (from the mind of the man who brings you Monitaly), Valstar (sophisticated Italian outerwear), Native Sons (very cool eyewear), Roa (hiking boots that say “I like rap music”), Lemaire (clothes for Belgian artists who listen to lo-fi proto-dream-pop instrumentals by Deux Filles), RRL (you’ve been to Jackson Hole), Kaptain Sunshine (American classics made cooler), Howlin (Scottish knitwear for a younger crowd), Remi Relief (you fancy yourself as a beach bum, a young spirit that can not be contained), Kapital (apocalyptic hobo clothing), SMR Days (1970s beach sleaze), and Anderson & Sheppard (you use the word “sartorial” without any irony and say “commission” instead of “buy”). 

I have a pair of these Karu Research patchwork shorts, which are made from kantha fabric. They have a heavy interlining—almost like a canvas in a suit jacket—which makes them cushy and comfy. They’re some of my favorite shorts in the summer months and are available in lounge pant form. Personally, I think they would go great with a Lady White tee, a Remi Relief sun-faded hoodie, or a shirt from SMR Days. Finish it off with some Yuketen huaraches or Cleverley horsebit loafers. Mr. Porter also has some discounted Carhartt WIP double-knee pantsUniversal Works turtlenecks, loose Isabel Marant knits, and chunky Lemaire sweaters. For some particularly good deals, check the company’s in-house Mr. P label. That line often has some designer aspects seen in other parts of the store but is available at a more accessible price point. 




If you’ve ever wanted to get a pair of cowboy boots but were hesitant to splurge on a style you weren’t sure you would wear for a while, try Tecovas. They’re a relatively new upstart that makes cowboy boots from better materials than you’ll get at popular entry-level brands such as Tony Lama, but won’t cost what you’ll pay at Rios of Mercedes. I bought my first pair a few years ago. And while I was initially skeptical of the direct-to-consumer model—a pitch that usually spells trouble—I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how much I like my boots and how they’ve held up. I think of them as the Meermin of cowboy boots. 

Tecovas’s boots are made in León, Mexico, one of the world’s bootmaking capitals, rather than in more expensive places such as Spain (where Ranch Road is produced) or the United States (home of Lucchese). As a result, they can offer Goodyear-welted, lemonwood pegged boots at prices starting around $250—a price high enough where they can meet quality standards but not so high that you’ll feel the sting of regret if cowboy boots end up being an embarrassing phase. I mostly like them because they pair well with slim jeans, snap-button Western shirts, and trucker jackets, which have become part of my regular rotation.

There are a few notable models here. The Cartwright is a traditional cowboy boot made with a 1.5″ heel and soft almond toe. It has a toe bug (the funny, decorative stitching near the toe) and cording around the shaft. I think it works particularly well in bourbon calfskin and a dark brown pull-up goat leather designed to show patina quickly. They also have the weather-resistant Jason, the Vibram-soled Bandera, and the suede Johnny. If a full-on cowboy boot is too much for you, you can try a roper, which feels more like a traditional work boot. The Stockton is a chunkier, heavier, weather-resistant roper made from oiled bovine leathers that take on an amazing patina, even after minimal wear. Finally, the Dean is side-zip with a Westernwear vibe. The toe shape is a little more inspired by cowboy boots than the rounder, more casual shape you’d find on a Margiela side-zip. I find it goes better with things such as trucker jackets, Cowichans, and RRL’s shawl collar cardigans than anything too contemporary (e.g., Lemaire). 




I’ve seen so many bare calves this year on people such as NYC Mayor Eric Adams and YouTuber Patrick Bet-David. I beg of you: if you wear tailored clothing, buy a few pairs of over-the-calf socks. You can get them for relatively low prices through Dapper Classics, a company that manufactures theirs at a third-generation, family-owned mill in North Carolina. Their socks are just as good as the dress socks I’ve owned from top-end European brands such as Bresciani and Marcoliani. They’re finely knitted from merino wool or mercerized cotton yarns, and then hand-linked at the toes. However, since the company doesn’t pay for overseas shipping and import duties, they cost about a third less than their European counterparts. Get a few pairs in solid navy—wool for most of the year, and then cotton if you have very hot summers. Then consider supplementing in colors that match your trousers, and perhaps some in conservative patterns such as pin dot and grenadine. Dapper Classics’s prices are very fair at full retail, but this Black Friday, they’re offering 30% off all orders (no code needed). 

Speaking of socks, American Trench is offering up to 30% off, depending on how much you spend. I’m a fan of their Supermerino socks. They’re made from a soft, woolen spun yarn and feature a padded footbed, which makes them supremely comfortable. To be honest, I was a bit disappointed when I first bought them because they fuzzed up quickly in the wash. But over the years, I’ve found they hold up really well—so long as you’re ok with a bit of fuzz. The material never stretches out or loses its elasticity. They’re warm, comfortably fit into boots, and feel like soft kittens hugging your feet. What more can you ask for?




A couple of years ago, I went searching for the world’s best underwear. The most embarrassing part of that process was purchasing a pair of $150 boxer briefs from Zimmerli, a Swiss company commonly hailed as the best producer on various blogs and style boards. Those felt amazing at first, but they lost their softness over time. In the end, the best underwear I found was a pair of $34 boxer briefs from Tommy John, which the company calls their Second Skin.

First, a word about the cut. I think boxer briefs are the best because they give you more support than boxers and look better than regular briefs, which are bad for obvious reasons. Tommy John’s are excellent because they’re made from a non-pilling micro-modal blend. Micromodal is spun from wood pulp. It’s a type of rayon, not unlike the Bemberg material that lines your suits. When mixed with Spandex, as it is here, it’s stretchy, comfortable, and silky. It also wicks sweat from the skin, feels oh-so-cool, and is much more breathable than cotton.

Plenty of companies make micro-modal boxer briefs, but some pill over time, and others lose their softness. I imagine I’ll never find out what makes Tommy John’s material so perfect, but in the eight or so years I’ve been wearing them, they’ve performed the best. Second Skin gives you support where you need it, keeps you feeling dry, and has a “quick draw” opening that allows you to do your business. Shortly after buying my first batch years ago, I threw out all my old underwear and just replaced them with Tommy John.




Every year around this time, I stock up on Kiehl’s products. They’re a bit expensive at full retail, but you can count on them holding sitewide sales twice a year. I love their exfoliating body scrub soaps — ridiculously named “Ultimate Man Body Scrub Soap,” like a WWF wrestler shaking the ropes. They’re a bit more expensive than your basic bar of Dove, but they last forever and come with bits of bran and oatmeal to help you achieve a buffed (read: scrubbed) body. I also like their line of specialized hair care products, which are formulated for different hair types. Since I have dry, coarse hair, I use their “nourishing olive fruit oil” shampoos and conditioners. I’m not sure what they put into them, but they make my hair softer and easier to style in the morning. 

If you find yourself getting chapped lips and dry skin in the wintertime, try Kiehl’s Facial Fuel moisturizer, oil-free moisturizer, or Ultra Facial Cream. The third is one of Kiehl’s best-selling products—and their #1 moisturizing cream—but it lays on a bit thick. I find that it’s the most protective. However, if you have oily skin, like me, you may prefer the Facial Fuel, which is a little thinner. Use those for your face, and then keep a tube of Lucas’ Papaw Ointment for chapped lips. Papaw is admittedly just glorified Vaseline, but the stuff has a cult following for a good reason—it’s instant relief.

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