Trust me, I have 3 of ’em | my Burberry Trench Coat Review

Over the last decade, there is 1 coat that I consistently wear.

… well, 3 to be exact — my Burberry trench coats.

In 2010 and 2011, I bought a stone Burberry trench coat (the Kensington) and a black Burberry trench coat (the since discontinued Harbourne).

They were both “reasonably” priced at ~$800 USD each and each purchased at the 57th st. Burberry boutique in New York.

Old Burberry trench coats in black and stone

At the time, Burberry had, like, 10 different lines… ok that’s a huge hyperbole — in reality, they had 3:

Burberry Prorsum (runway), Burberry London (their iconic trench coats & accessories), and Burberry Brit (contemporary/casual clothing).

and they were still producing garments in America.

In 2016, Christopher Bailey (then CEO and Chief Creative of Burberry) said:

“The behavior of the luxury customer is evolving, their style is more fluid and this is reflected in the way they shop.
The changes we are making allow us to serve this new behavior more intuitively. By unifying our three lines under one label we can also offer a much more consistent experience of Burberry’s collections.” 

Today all the brands are unified under one Burberry label and all garments are Made in England.

New Burberry tag

The solo-brand and local manufacturing is what allows Burberry to charge so much more for their trench coats today.

A Burberry trench coat is the kind of coat that you only need to buy once in your life.

I only bought a new one because my original ones are from 10 years ago under the retired “Burberry London” brand.

Old Burberry London tag

… and in order to give you the most accurate information in this review, it’d need to include at least one their latest trench coats.

With that said, let’s take a look at what today’s Burberry trench coats are like, including sizing & current quality…

For the sake of this review, I will not be including the now-discontinued Harbourne black trench coat, since it’s totally no longer available.

Instead, I will be sharing details on my 2011 Burberry London Kensington mid-length trench coat and my newest Burberry Waterloo trench coat.

Burberry Trench Coat Sizing

For reference, I’m 5’5.75” and weigh 115-117 lbs.

For comparison, here are some sizes I normally take:
-US 2, in HVN or Reformation
-Small, in T-Shirts
-FR 34-38, in Isabel Marant or Rouje

The main thing to remember, is that Burberry is a British brand, so they primarily use UK sizing.

If you use their automatic “size conversion,” you will likely, and inevitably, get the wrong size.

To get the right size, consider that a 9 times out of ten, a UK 6 = a US 0.

Going up by two, you can get to the size you need or want.

It can feel like, “but I’m a US 2, haven’t eaten a piece of bread in a year, and don’t want to take a size EIGHT,” however, it really doesn’t matter.

With that said, onto sizing reviews for the Burberry Kensington and Waterloo trench coats…

Burberry Kensington Trench Coat Sizing

My Burberry Kensington Short trench coat (from 2011), in Stone, is a size UK 8 (or for USA orders, it would be a size US 6).

Showing how the Burberry Kensington trench coat fits

With a standard fit, this trench coat is best for t-shirts and thinner sweaters.

In the following videos in this review, I’m wearing it with a thicker wool sweater.

… and you can definitely see a bit of bulging from the bulk of the sweater.

If you want a little more space, consider sizing up.

In all honesty, and for what it’s worth, I’m happy with the UK 8 fit.

Burberry Trench Coat Fits

Burberry makes three classic trench coats.

The Waterloo, Kensington, and Chelsea.

Burberry trench coat fits

Each trench coat style have different fits and comes in different lengths (Short, Mid-length (regular), and Long).

The Waterloo is now classified as a “regular” fit, but for the longest time it was an “oversized” fit.

I believe it’s still an oversized fit, so I disclosed it as such.

The Waterloo is also the only one of the three that does not come in a different length.

Photo showing difference in lengths of Burberry Kensington trench coat and Waterloo

Kensington in what’s considered now “short” length vs. Waterloo length

The Kensington is a normal fitting coat and comes in the three different lengths.

While the Chelsea is a slim fit that doesn’t work as well with bulky knits, but also comes in three lengths.

The different fit and lengths are ideal for folks with different statures.

Burberry Waterloo Trench Coat Sizing

My Burberry Waterloo trench coat, in Honey, is a size UK 10 (or, in Burberry’s fake US size world, a size US 8).

Burberry waterloo trench coat sizing

This coat is oversized, however I wanted an even more oversized fit.

If you want a closer fit, get your usual UK size (which for me would be an 8).

Inspired by business men in the “olden days,” I wanted this jacket to be larger so that if I wanted, or needed to, I could mimic a business man and throw on my trench coat over a hypothetical suit.

… or at the very least, have plenty of space for a thicker knit underneath.

In a UK 10, the sleeves are long, but, again, I wanted an almost severely oversized fit without looking like I was playing dress up in my 6’2” Dad’s closet.

You might also like this one…

Burberry Trench Coat Quality

Let’s take a look at my Burberry Kensington trench coat that was purchased in 2011 and Made in England…

This trench has been worn on an almost daily basis for the last decade.

Like the Waterloo, it’s an ideal coat that goes with any outfit you can possibly imagine and has two deep pockets.

The only signs of aging are in the leather buckles and some loose threads around the hem cuff buckle-area.

Buckles showing light wear on a 10+ year old Burberry trench coat

… but I like it when my outerwear can tell a story of where it’s gone with me — it adds character and history to an outfit.

Over the last decade+, it has relaxed tremendously, been dry cleaned once a year (or if it got a stain), and, compared to me, has hardly aged.

Is a Burberry Trench Coat Worth it?

Before the 1900’s, there was the “mack,” which was basically a rain-repellent coat made from rubberized cotton.

Aquascutum came onto the scene 4 years before Burberry (in 1853) with their rain coat.

Thomas Burberry followed suit in 1856 and released his new patented textile, “gabardine,” in 1888.

Gabardine is much lighter and breathable and is still used to create Burberry trench coats today.

Like Vogue France says, Aquascutum and Burberry both claim to have created the World War 1 trench coat.

Upperclass people, who could afford them, around the United Kingdom started wearing these trench coats to show their patriotism and solidarity… and people who couldn’t afford them would buy the affordable versions from different companies.

There is a lot of tea as to who was the “first,” but Burberry is steeped in a long history and trench coats have always been stylish.

Me? I’m brand-loyal to Burberry for trench coats and here’s why…

1- Deep pockets

This is probably my favourite feature.

Burberry trench coat pockets fit everything.

… to the point where you don’t even need to carry a bag if you didn’t feel like it.

They can easily fit a 500ml water bottle, full-size wallet, phone, keys, gum, Ventolin, lip balm, and whatever else you could possibly need.

2- Burberry trench coats are always in fashion

Do I really need to elaborate on this point?

Jane Birkin in trench coats

Jane Birkin in her trench coats over the years.

3-Many ways to style it

Dress it up, dress it down, a Burberry trench coat is an elegant blank slate.

Trench coat outfits

4- Transitional

Burberry trench coats are the perfect coat to take you through every season.

When worn with a scarf, a cashmere sweater, a dress with tights or jeans and a sweater, and some boots and it can take you through all the seasons.

Although, you can start shedding the layers when it’s above 10°C/50°F.

… and in the summer when it’s threatening to rain, just throw it on top of shorts and a t-shirt.

Burberry trench coats repel water, but are not water resistant — which is to say that they will wick off droplets, but you should have an umbrella with you in case you get caught in a down pour.

5- Lasts a lifetime

My 10+ year old trench coats are still perfectly wearable.

The Kensington coat has been dry cleaned dozens of times, while it has hardly not shrunk nor has it had significant damage, it is no longer totally rain repellent.

Here’s why…

How Do You Clean A Burberry Trench Coat?

Dry clean, but dry clean sparingly.

When you send your coat to any dry cleaner, without specifying that your coat has a rain repelling coating, there is a risk that the chemicals from dry cleaning will strip them off.

Burberry does offer a reproofing service, but it’s only available at their boutiques

My Kensington coat has been dry cleaned (without any “this coat is special and needs to be mindfully dry cleaned” instructions upon drop off) at least a dozen times and as a result, it no longer repels water — it just gets soaked through.

… I’m also, honestly, unsure if it has shrunk from the many trips to the dry cleaner or if I’ve just gained weight.

If you’re brave enough, you could try your hand at hand washing your Burberry trench coat (!).

Not for the weak of heart, but it could be a better way to freshen up the interior of your coat while maintaining the rain repellent properties.

Burberry trench coats are very very very expensive, I know.

… but, they’re still “it.”

The history, flash of the Burberry tartan lining, and look.

If you’re going to spend on a trench coat and if you can afford it.

… you might as well spend on one that will never, ever go out of style.

Burberry trench coats are available from Bergdorf Goodman, Burberry (duh), Neiman Marcus, Net-a-Porter, Nordstrom, and Saks, among other retailers.

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