A wax jacket is a popular garment in the United Kingdom (UK). It's often worn for outdoor activities such as fishing and hunting. Wax jackets are typically hip or thigh length and have many pockets and a detachable hood. Versions of wax jackets are made by various companies in the UK and in other countries. The wax jacket gets its name from its waxed coating, which is designed to make the cotton coat water-resistant.
Mostly available in darker colors such as black, brown and olive, the detachable lining in a wax jacket is usually made from the Scottish plaid fabric called tartan. The soft tartan lining adds warmth in chillier weather and snaps out when only the waxed cotton shell is needed. The hoods of waxed jackets usually detach with snaps and also have a drawstring so that it can be pulled tight around the chin to help keep body heat in and protect the ears from wind. The collars of these jackets almost always have snaps so the collar may stay flat or be worn up to offer extra wind protection on the neck. Wax jacket collars are typically made from corduroy, which is a rugged fabric with textured lines.
The front of wax jackets typically has a flap of the waxed cotton fabric covering snap closures on the left side. This is the British convention of garment making. North American garments usually snap or button on the right. Wax jackets usually have a double zipper which means that it works from the top or bottom to allow the wearer to adjust the fit when sitting or standing. A wax jacket's sleeves tend to fit quite long and some of these jackets feature elasticized sleeves so the wearer can wear them pulled down to partially cover the hands or push them up on the wrists.
Wax jackets are known for having many pockets of all different sizes. Most of the pockets are outer ones, but many wax jackets include at least one inner pocket. The pockets allow storage for hunting and fishing tools and accessories. A wax jacket may even have a large pouch designed for carrying game birds.
Cleaning instructions are included with each jacket and should be followed to avoid ruining the coat. A wax jacket cannot be dry cleaned or washed using detergents. The most commonly suggested method for washing wax jackets at home is to hand wash them or place them in the gentle cycle of a washing machine. Once cleaned, the waxed surface is removed and needs to be replaced. Containers of wax dressing are sold for this purpose, or a wax jacket may be sent to a company specializing in recoating, or reproofing these jackets.