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Barbour Wax Jacket Buyers Guide




 This guide deals only with the core range of traditional Barbour jackets that have been established favourites for many years

from the Barbour 'Classic' or 'Sporting' ranges.

Barbour Border Jacket Barbour Classic Bedale   Barbour Classic Durham  Barbour Bedale


   Barbour Beaufort      
Barbour Bushman Barbour Beaufort Barbour Classic Beaufort Barbour Classic Northumbria Barbour Stockman



The most popular jackets are based around three styles: the Bedale, Beaufort and Border so we'll deal with those first. The main difference between the 3 styles is the length (see below for measurements).

The Bedale is a short equestrian style jacket, the Beaufort is mid length and the Border is longer again. The images below show the three different jackets (all the same size) on the same model so you can compare the length. If you are horse riding or cycling you may want a Bedale cut so you don't end up sitting on the lower part of the jacket. If you want fuller protection afforded by the longer length or often walk through deep undergrowth you may go for a Border cut. If you want a standard length jacket that is long enough to cover a suit jacket you may go for the Beaufort. It may be that for you, it just comes down to which one you like the look of. It should be noted that the shorter jackets are lighter, for the obvious reason they contain less cloth.

 The Bedale / Classic Bedale cut shown in size 44" (model is 44" chest and 5'11" tall)  The Beaufort / Classic Beaufort cut shown in size 44" (model is 44" chest and 5'11" tall)  The Border / Classic Northumbria cut shown in size 44" (model is 44" chest and 5'11" tall)

When you have decided what length you want, the next decision to consider, and one of the most common questions we are asked about, is what fabric you want. These three styles come in two choices of fabric - Traditional Waxed Cotton or Sylkoil. The images below show both kinds of fabric and attempt to show the differences between the two but it is far better if you can look at the fabric in person to really appreciate the difference. For directions to our store please click here.

Sylkoil has a drier feel, is more flexible and tends to have rich variations of colour and finish. Traditional wax tends to look slightly shinier and the fabric feels a little stiffer. If you want the traditional image of a Barbour then traditional wax is the way to go. Also, if you want the jacket in any colour other than green then you will need traditional waxed cotton as Sylkoil is now only available in Olive. The Border comes in Sage or Navy and the Bedale and Beaufort comes in Sage, Navy, Black or Rustic.

The jackets in Sylkoil are prefixed by the term 'Classic' in the product name. So the Bedale, Beaufort and Border are traditional waxed cotton and the Classic Bedale, Classic Beaufort and Classic Northumbria are made from Sylkoil (think of the Classic Northumbria as a 'Classic Border'). So which is better, i hear you ask? I'm afraid we can't give a definitive answer. In terms of waterproofness, thornproofness and durability they are effectively the same. It basically comes down to which style you prefer the look of - and only you can decide that.

The 3 main styles also differ in the arrangement of their pockets and some other design qualities, and for some people this can be an important factor in deciding which style to choose. The following pictures illustrate some of the features and the table below shows which jackets have which features.


 Lower Bellows Pockets Handwarmer Pockets Inner pockets
Large volume pockets on the lower front. You'll be surprsied how much you can fit in here. Has drainage holes. Moleskin lined pockets on the upper front to keep your hands warm. A very practical feature for British winters! Pocket inside ideal for storing your wallet, mobile, camera etc. The Beaufort pocket is zipped, the Bedale is velcro fastened and the Border / Northumbria has one of each

The bellows pocket on a Barbour Beaufort.   The fabric is waxed cotton.

The handwarmer pockets on a Beaufort jacket.  The inner pocket on a Barbour Beaufort. The Border also has this pocket.
The same pocket on a Barbour Bedale. The fabric is sylkoil. A closeup of the moleskin lined handwarmer pockets  The inside breast pocket on a Bedale jacket.  This is velcro fastened.


Poachers Pocket Game Pocket Storm Cuffs
A large pocket on the rear of the Beaufort, accessed by external zips. Originally designed to carry game and the nylon lining is easy to clean. Two removable nylon pouch pockets on the inside of the Border / Northumbria. Large capacity and ideal for wet / dirty items as the pockets can be completely removed and swilled under the tap. To tighten cuff ends and prevent wind and rain going up the sleeve. Note the outer sleeve has been pulled back a little to show the cuff - it is not usually this visible when wearing the jacket.
The large zipped rear poachers pocket, shown here on a Beaufort One of the game pockets on a Barbour Border The rib knitted cuffs on the Bedale
Another view of the poacher's pocket on a Beaufort The game pocket partially removed so you can get an idea of the size   The velcro fastened nylon storm cuff on Beaufort's / Northumbria's and Border's


A summary of which features appear on which jackets is as follows;



Lower Bellows




 Inner pocket





Storm Cuffs   Rear Vents

 Bedale / Classic Bedale

 Yes, 2 Yes, 2  Yes, 1  No  No  Knitted   Yes

Beaufort / Classic Beaufort

Yes, 2  Yes, 2  Yes, 1  Yes  No  Nylon  No 

Border / Classic Northumbria 

Yes, 2  Yes, 2  Yes, 2  No  Yes  Nylon  No 


All of the Bedale / Beaufort / Border styles also have some other great design features;


Top quality brass zip front Interactive zip for extra liners Quality Barbour branded press studs
 Brand leading YKK zips with an extra large ring puller that can be used without having to take off gloves or mittens. The zip is two way - once zipped up the bottom part of the zip can be pulled up - opening the jacket from the bottom. This makes it more comfortable when you're sitting down  Seperate liners can be purchased (see section below for details) and they zip into the jacket using these quality zips. If not using the liner, the zip is discretely hidden.  The storm flap fastens over the front zip using top quality black Barbour branded poppers. The poppers also fasten the bellows pockets and vents (if present)



To choose the correct size jacket, you need to know your chest measurement. You should do this just over the skin or a thin shirt. Take the measurement around the fullest part of the chest, ideally using a flexible fabric tape. Whatever measurement you get (in inches) is the size you should order.  If you measure 42 inches select the size 42" from the dropdown size choice. If you measure between two choices e.g. 41" then we usually suggest rounding up although you would also be OK to round down if you prefered the jacket to be a closer fit.

You do NOT need to add any extra to allow for undergarments or room for movement as this is already taken into account. Each jacket has what is referred to as 'chest tolerance' or 'ease allowance' which is the extra amount left for movement and other clothing layers and all the jackets we're discussing here have 9 or 10" of chest tolerance. This means that a 40" jacket will actually measure 49" or 50" all the way round the chest area. This is fairly generous, but not overly so - it is typical for outer overcoats to have a tolerance of of at least 8". If you want to see the exact sizes we got when measuring actual garments see the table below.


We measured the garment laid flat from:

A = under the armpits from the side seam to give the chest measurement.

B = under the armpit from the side seam to the hem of the sleeve to give the sleeve length.

C = the seam under the collar to the base of the garment hem to give the full length measurement.

N.B. These measurements were obtained by measuring actual stock of the garments and is intended as a guide and is NOT an exact technical specification.


Bedale / Classic Bedale Beaufort / Classic Beaufort
 Size A B C  Weight Size A  B  C  Weight
34  21.5"  19.5"  29.5"  1140g  34  21"  20"  32.5"  1240g
36   22.5"  19.5" 29.5"  1190g   36 22"  20"  32.5"  1280g 
38  23.5"   19.5" 29.5"   1230g 38  23"  20"  32.5"  1300g 
40  24.5"   19.5" 30"   1270g 40  24.5"  20"  32.5"  1350g 
42  25.5"   20" 30.5"   1290g 42  26"  20"  32.5"  1400g 
44  26.5"   20"  31"  1360g  44  27"  20"  33"  1440g 
46  27.5"  20"  31"  1340g  46  27.5"  20"  33.25"  1460g 
48  28.5"   20.5"  31"  1360g  48  28.5"  20"  33.25"  1490g 
50  29.5"  20.5"  31.5"  1385g  50  30"  20.5"  33.5"  1530g 
52  30.5"  20.5"  31.5"  1420g  52  31"  20.5"  33.5"  1560g 


 Border / Classic Northumbria Classic Durham 
 Size A B C  Weight Size A  B  C  Weight
 34  22"  20"  36"  1440g  34  21"  20"  32.5"  1240g
36  23"  20.5"  36.5"  1460g  36  22"  20"  32.5"  1280g 
38  24"  20.5"  36.5"  1490g  38  23"  20"  32.5"  1300g 
40  25"  21"  37"  1520g  40  24.5"  20"  32.5"  1350g 
42  26"  21"  37"  1550g  42  26"  20"  32.5"  1400g 
44  27"  21"  37"  1620g  44  27"  20"  33"  1440g 
46  28"  21"  37"  1640g  46  27.5"  20"  33.25"  1460g 
48  28.5"  22"  37.5"  1680g  48  28.5"  20"  33.25"  1490g 
50  29.5"  23"  38"  1700g  50  30"  20.5"  33.5"  1530g 
 52 30.5"  23"  38"  1730g  52  31"  20.5"  33.5"  1560g 


Stockman Coat Bushman Jacket
 Size Weight   Size Weight 
 S  22"  20"  36"  1440g  S  21"  20"  32.5"  1240g
23"  20.5"  36.5"  1460g  22"  20"  32.5"  1280g 
24"  20.5"  36.5"  1490g  23"  20"  32.5"  1300g 
XL  25"  21"  37"  1520g  XL  24.5"  20"  32.5"  1350g 
XXL  26"  21"  37"  1550g  XXL  26"  20"  32.5"  1400g 




Unsure which liner to buy for your Barbour Jacket? Below is a guide for the core men's styles.

Some of the jackets above have a number of suitable accessories such as hoods, and liners that zip in for extra warmth. The zip in warm pile lining (Old code A306 / New Code MLI0004BR31) will fit any of the jackets (not including the Bushman / Stockman). The quilted waistcoat / zip in liner is a little more complicated. Technically, any colour will fit any jacket provided they are the same size but you really should make sure you choose the correct colour or the lining of the jacket will not match the lining of the waistcoat. Illustrated below are the Tartans and the table below that shows the correct choices of liner. Make sure you choose the same size - if your jacket is 42" choose a liner in 42". The jacket will usually have the size on the label if you are unsure eg. in this case it would say C42. If you have an older style of jacket with press studs on the inside instead of the zip for the liner, the bad news is that Barbour no longer manufacturer the liner to fit these discontinued jackets.

  = same tartan to match outer garment

O = Interactive Garments

Jackets Colours Code Lining

Warm Pile Lining



Quilted Zip-in Liner

Olive/Classic Tartan


Quilted Zip-in Liner

Navy/Dress Tartan


Quilted Zip-in Liner

Olive/Ancient Tartan


Quilted Zip-in Liner

Rustic/Muted Tartan


Quilted Zip-in Liner

Black/Modern Tartan


 Beaufort  Black MWX0017BK91  Modern Tartan   O O  O  O
  Sage  MWX0017SG91  Ancient Tartan  O  O  O  O
  Rustic  MWX0017RU52 Muted Tartan   O  O  O  O
  Navy  MWX0017NY91 Dress Tartan   O  O  O  O  O
 Classic Beaufort Olive  MWX0002OL71  Classic Tartan  O  O
 Border  Sage MWX0008SG91  Ancient Tartan   O  O  O  O
  Navy  MWX0008NY91  Dress Tartan   O  O  O
 Classic Northumbria Olive  MWX0009OL91  Classic Tartan   O  O  O  O
 Bedale  Sage   MWX0018SG91  Ancient Tartan  O  O  O  O
  Navy   MWX0018NY91 Dress Tartan   O  O
  Rustic   MWX0018RU52  Muted Tartan   O  O  O
  Black   MWX0018BK91  Modern Tartan   O  O  O  O  O
 Classic Bedale Olive  MWX0010OL71  Classic Tartan   O  O  O
 Classic Durham Jacket Olive  MWX0011SG31  Classic Tartan   O  O


As authorised Barbour retailers, all the wax jackets we supply come complete with a 1 year Barbour guarantee of workmanship and materials. You should complete the registration document that comes with the jacket and return it to Barbour, and retain the other part for your records. It is highly unlikely you will need this though as Barbour jackets are contructed to the highest standards and must pass rigourous quality control checks before being sold.

A wax cotton jacket will last for many years, but does need some periodic care in order to retain its' waterproof qualities. If you prefer, you can return it to Barbour's excellent customer service department who will rewax it for you and make any minor repairs necessary. They can also make alterations. It is fairly straightforward to maintain the jacket yourself, and every Barbour wax jacket contains instructions on how to carry this out. 

The most important thing is that wax jackets are not machine washable. NEVER, EVER use hot water or chemical detergents to clean your jacket. You will remove the proofing wax and oils and the jacket will be irreversibly damaged. Only ever clean your jacket by brushing off large pieces of dirt and grit and then cleaning with a sponge using COLD water only.

Once the jacket is clean, you do need to reproof the garment periodically. How often will depend on the amount and type of usage it receives. You should pay attention to any 'dry' areas that may appear. These tend to be in the natural creases of the garment and also where the garment naturally rubs together, such as the sleeves against the sides of the body. These dry areas can be treated as they appear but the whole garment should also treated periodically as follows.

You need a tin of Barbour Thornproof Dressing, a pan of hot water, and a soft cloth or sponge. Stand the wax in the hot water to soften it, as it is a solid at room temperature. Using your sponge or cloth, work the wax well into the fabric. It is important to really work it in, and not to simply 'paint' it on. Pay particular attention the the high wear areas as mentioned above (i.e. creases and rubbing areas). Try to remove any excess once the wax has been worked in. When you have finished applying the wax, for the best finish you should then hang the jacket up on a coathanger and give a blow over with a hairdryer to slightly remelt the wax and give a smooth, even finish. Then leave the coat on the hanger in a warm place such as a boiler cupboard or an airing cupboard.