Review: My Experience with Marine Layer’s Roll Neck Sweater

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How does Marine Layer’s roll neck sweater hold up? Learn more about my experience in this review.

My Experience with Marine Layer

Marine Layer has quickly become one of my favorite destinations for elevated (if expensive) smart casual clothing for guys.

Entrepreneur Michael Natenshon founded Marine Layer in 2009 after his girlfriend threw out his favorite shirt. The digital native brand has become an omnichannel retailer, opening a series of small, well-appointed stores in major cities and college towns to showcase their laid-back offerings of vintage-inspired, smart casual clothing for women and men.

I’ve come to look forward to receiving Marine Layer’s stellar mail order catalogs, enjoyed diving into their focus on sustainable fashion, and occasionally wander through their shops in Georgetown and Bethesda, Maryland. I’ve also bought several items from Marine Layer in the past: My favorite was their fabulous vintage-inspired Greyson sweater polo, which I picked up from the also-terrific menswear retailer Huckberry and absolutely adore.

My Review of Marine Layer’s Rollneck Sweater for Guys

I love roll neck sweaters.

They take me back to my childhood, when I paraded around high school in chunky J. Crew rollneck sweaters. (I still have those old sweaters in the back of my closet.)

Marine Layer is a great alternative to J. Crew for roll neck sweaters. They’ve released a steady diet of has released a series of roll-neck sweaters for guys over the years. Some of these — from their their spring collection — are made from lightweight linen-cotton-polyester blends. Others have been warmer versions constructed from merino wool.

For Christmas, my family gave me Marine Layer’s Roll Neck Sweater in Chestnut.

First impressions

I love the depth and texture owing to the weave of 100% merino wool. It’s flecked with imperfections and not uniform all over. (The weave reminds me of Donegal tweed sweaters.)


The sweater is warm but much less bulky than those chunky J. Crew rollnecks that I wore growing up. The merino wool is smooth to the touch and not scratchy at all, though it’s also not as supple and luxurious as 100% cashmere sweaters.

A close up look at Marine Layer’s roll neck sweater sleeve.

Sizing and Fit

I’m 5’8″, and often find myself straddling small and medium. Marine Layer’s Small rollneck sweater fits me well. The chest is listed at 36-27 inches, but there is plenty of room in this regular fit sweater.


Marine Layer’s clothing does not come cheap, and their habit of releasing limited edition seasonal capsules creates incentives to buy. I’ve seen a number of items that I’ve coveted sell out in my size way before they got marked down on sale.

At $138, there is no question that my Marine Layer roll neck sweater is more expensive than similar offerings from some of my favorite menswear brands including Bonobos, Huckberry, J. Crew and Charles Tyrwhitt or what you could find at a department store like Macy’s or Nordstroms. That said, the thin, warm and stylish rollneck is a unique offering among men’s sweaters, and its pricing is in line with the cost of sweaters from other premium brands like Faherty, Todd Snyder and Mack Weldon.

Where are Marine Layer’s Sweaters made?

My Marine Layer sweater was “made responsibly in China” according to the label.

What’s Been Your Experience With Marine Layer’s Sweaters?

Have you tried Marine Layer for knitwear? What did you think? Leave your feedback and advice in the comments.

About Jake

Jake is an expert on men’s style and fashion based in Washington, DC. He founded Modern Fellows in 2012 to get to know the entrepreneurs and innovative clothing and lifestyle brands helping men dress sharp in the digital age. He has published hundreds of articles on style and apparel, and regularly interviews small business CEOs and startup founders about industry trends. Jake has written about entrepreneurship, international business and fashion for outlets including Business Week, Forbes, Inc., Details Style Syndicate and Primer Magazine.

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