The 43 Times It’s Appropriate for a Man to Wear a Fur Coat

It’s not right, but it’s okay.

Fur coats are as endangered as the animals they used to be made from. Not only was 2014 the warmest year on record, the animal rights movement has gained some serious traction. And that’s fine. To be honest, there are plenty of vintage coats to go around without us massacring any more chinchillas. Still, it seems like nobody is wearing them.

In fact, only 5 percent of fur coats are sold to men, down from 50 percent in the fifties. The opulence and sheen of a fur coat are at odds with where the pared-down, slim-blue-suit wave menswear is riding. And yet, fur coats remain awesome – like wearable bearskin rugs. They make diamonds look workaday and your disastrous haircut look like a statement. There’s a time and a place for this old-fashioned look.

Hell, there’s 43 times. Here’s when to get furry.

  1. When you are in an ice bar.
  2. When you are a furrier.
  3. When you are on a sleigh ride.
  4. When you’ve just inherited a fur coat.
  5. When you are attending an event whose dress code includes the word “swag.”
  6. When you are a Russian oligarch.
  7. When you are ice-fishing.
  8. When you are vacationing at the Red Sea lake house of a Russian Oligarch.
  9. When your ex-wife has a PETA membership.
  10. When you are someone that suffered a traumatic mink attack as a child.
  11. When you are terribly, terribly cold.
  12. When you are Lil Kim.
  13. When you are riding a stallion bareback in the wintertime and you’re otherwise naked and also you stole the stallion.
  14. When you are Iggy Pop.
  15. Where you are not Iggy Pop but have his sculpted and hairless sexagenarian chest.
  16. When you don’t trust synthetic fibers.
  17. When you are walking down 5th Avenue and you feel the need to show up the socialites.
  18. When you buy a fur coat for your mistress and your wife finds it so you shimmy into it like, “Hey, it’s totally mine!”
  19. When you want to look like you have big shoulders.
  20. When you want to look like a Grizzly Bear.
  21. When you want to go undercover as a bear because you’re lost in Alaska and your only chance of survival is being accepted into a pack of lumbering Grizzlies.
  22. When you’re at your High School reunion and you couldn’t scrape together enough dough for a sweet car but, damn it, you could swing a Goodwill fur.
  23. When you are Kanye West.  
  24. When you are a hitman at a furry convention.
  25. When you want to send your dog a message.
  26. When you are in a David O. Russell movie.
  27. When you are a very vain Miami pimp.
  28. When you stumble through a rift in time and you land in Canada’s Hudson Bay trapping region during the 19th century and, well, everyone has one.
  29. When you move into a town in New Jersey that may or may not be overrun by the mob and you don’t want to look like a stool pigeon at your son’s basketball game.
  30. When you are a well-to-do flasher.
  31. When you feel strongly that leather is too punk and down is too preppy.
  32. When you are a bookie and you’re broke but you still have to keep up appearances.
  33. When you are a high school wrestler in Arizona trying to make weight.
  34. When you are a freshman at Macalester trying cast yourself as a quirky guy but you also want people to know that you are rich.
  35. When you are a descendant of Rudolph Valentino.
  36. When you like the sticky feeling of back sweat.
  37. When you go to Aspen and you’re fed up with all the sporty bullshit.
  38. When you have Siberian oil fields that need checking on.
  39. When you are driving a Mercedes G63 6X6 off-road vehicle.
  40. When you’ve just survived a Snowpocalypse.
  41. When you have to babysit North West and Kanye don’t want to ruin the vibe.
  42. When you want to hybernate, but struggle sleeping.
  43. Whenever it feels right.

Photos by Photo: Jack Robinson/Archive Photos/Getty Images