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Carhartt vs. Berne vs. Dickies vs. Duluth: Which Brand Wins the Workwear Showdown?

Carhartt vs. Berne vs. Dickies vs. Duluth: Which Brand Wins the Workwear Showdown?

    Nothing beats a reliable and comfortable outfit at work or on the go.You must have to choose sturdy clothing that is ready to take some serious beating. Pants, overalls or jackets that will keep you warm even when it’s more than cold outside.When people discuss the best workwear, Carhartt is one of the first brands mentioned.The brand is popular for their high-quality work boots, jackets, and pants, suitable for various job conditions.They have clothed generations of working men and women.But no brand is perfect, and Carhartt isn’t the only option out there for high quality workwear, safety gear, and rugged apparel that looks great and performs even better.What is the best alternative to Carhartt?Who is Carhartts main competitor?What is better than Carhartt?A couple of other names stand out, Berne,Dickies and Duluth are at the top of the list.All of them are iconic brands in the industry, known for their robust and high-quality clothing.However, each has its own unique selling points and drawbacks, making it a tough choice for consumers.

    What's the difference between Carhartt and Berne?What is the difference between Carhartt and Dickies?What is the difference betweenDickies and Duluth?Berne vs. Carhartt vs. Dickies vs. Duluth:what is the best workwear brand?In this Carhartt vs. Berne vs. Dickies vs. Duluth comparison, I'll discuss each brand in detail so it’s easier for you to pick AMONG them. Let’s begin!

Cover Photo:Carhartt Facebook
 

  • Carhartt

Carhartt History and Origin

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Source:carhartt.com

Dating back to 1889, founded by Hamilton Carhartt, the Carhartt brand started its legacy just like any startup company.Carhartt has been a titan in the world of workwear for well over a century.The brand is known for its rugged durability, stylish designs, and an array of options to cater to various professions and weather conditions.The brand’s mantra is: “Born from the railroad. Built for any rugged task.”

Carhartt started expanding in 1910, both domestically and internationally. It had workshops in Georgia, Dallas, and several other places. Carhartt also included mills in Liverpool, Vancouver, and Toronto.Carhartt reached far enough to create innovative designs for military wear by studying soldiers and railroad workers to figure out their needs and priorities.His market research showed the care and effort that went into his designs, helping the company stand out.

Carhartt Product Range

Carhartt initially focused on producing workwear for railroad workers but have since expanded their product line(including shirts, jackets, pants, overalls, and more) to cater to a wide range of industries and outdoor activities. 

Aside from the line of work clothing, the Michigan-based company has an extensive product list that includes boots (for work, hiking, and casual use), PPE essentials (including scrubs, high-visibility, and flame-resistant gear), and accessories such as hats, gloves, and thermals. There’s also a dedicated line of kids’ apparel and accessories, offering the same remarkable quality and performance for the young. The range of products features premium materials and designs that offer long-lasting performance in various environments, making them great investments that don’t disappoint regarding durability and function.

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Source:Carhartt Facebook

Carhartt Materials and Manufacture

Carhartt use top-notch materials and advanced (proprietary) technology resulting in rugged styles and remarkable durability to take on challenging weather and tough conditions promotes ease of movement and are available in big & tall sizes.

One material that Carhartt is famous for is its Duck fabric that was first launched in 1915. It was known for its durability and breathability among railroad workers.However, Duck fabric is easily damaged by the absorption of water, so it must be paired with moisture-wicking or water-repellent materials for use outdoors. Carhartt has created different versions of the Duck fabric for various needs and requirements.Carhartt also heavily employs the Force Extremes 37.5 Technology in their wares. It can help keep you at a comfortable temperature, resist odors, and dry more quickly than other fabrics.

The company implements several technologies, including:

  • Force: Fights odors and sweat stains.

  • Rugged Flex: Increases the stretchiness of the clothing.

  • Storm Defender: Waterproof, breathable fabric.

As for manufacturing, Carhartt makes its products mainly in Asia and Mexico, with some products that are still made in the USA.

Carhartt Pros and Cons

Pros
Cons
  • Longstanding reputation for producing reliable and durable workwear.

  • Broader range of products.

  • Rugged style.

  • Made from high-quality materials.

  • Premium construction.

  • Clothing line has more advanced technology.

  • More suitable for tough conditions.

  • Available in big & tall sizes.

  • Promotes ease of movement.

  • Superior durability.

  • Higher price points.

  • Limited options for a slim fit.

  • Only some people prefer the rugged look featured in most Carhartt pants and outerwear.

Where to Buy Carhartt Workwear?

Carhartt (1.5%-2% cash back)

Dungarees (3%-4% cash back)

Home Depot (6%-8% cash back) 

Moosejaw (5%-6% cash back)

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  • Berne

Berne History and Origin

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Source:bernedirect.com

Berne is no slouch when it comes to creating a rich history.In 1915, the Berne company formed in Berne, Indiana. At the time, Berne, Indiana was a community of Swiss immigrants and the Berne bear, taken from the Swiss coat of arms, is still associated with the brand. The founders of Berne may have been immigrants, but they were Americans, and the brand they created reflected those details.

Berne Apparel has been in business for over 100 years, and they have supplied busy, hard-working Americans with the workwear they demand – workwear that is made right, made to work and made affordable.From the beginning, Berne brand clothes could stand up to everything the Swiss Alps had to throw at them while being tough enough to stand up to the Rocky Mountains—put simply, they were made to withstand the most demanding conditions.

The corporation is chasing a specific target audience: the labor force. The brand name is so prominent among employees that they are unaware it is a brand name. In comparison to its competitor Carhartt, which also caters to urban consumers.

Berne Product Range

Berne is a classic workwear brand, and a great alternative for anyone who loves the quality and durability of Carhartt jackets and overalls, but wants another option for prices, colors and styles. Their products include insulated outerwear (jackets, coats, bib overalls, coveralls), pants, shirts, sweatshirts, and accessories, plus Safety, Flame Resistant, and Concealed Carry product lines. They offer farmwear, hi-vis apparel, warm outerwear, and of course, their best-selling cotton duck jackets, which might just offer the best fit on the market, even when compared to a comparable Carhartt coat.

Bern has clothing for everyone. Such as extra-large men’s sizes, children’s sizes, and even women’s outwear. 

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Source:bernedirect.com

Berne Materials and Manufacture

Berne has a particular character. It’s composed of thick canvas, and the colors are always vibrant. These are not clothes that you throw in the laundry after wearing them. That’s because the color will gain character after washing due to removing filth salt and some dye. Their insulated items feature warmth options for every cold-weather situation, from arctic insulation to lightweight flannel lining. Their basics lines are year-round workwear staples -- tough enough for grueling jobs and comfortable enough for all-day wear. 

The company was founded in the small Indiana community of Berne, Indiana and is currently located in Ossian, Indiana.Berne does not exclusively produce an American product, however, the brand remains a brand sold mostly in America.

Berne Pros and Cons

ProsCons
  • Provides for big and tall sizes.

  • More affordable.

  • Tough enough for grueling jobs.

  • Comfortable enough for all-day wear. 

  • It offers an extensive assortment of workwear for men, women and youth. 

  • Their flame-resistant clothing safeguards employees from being cold and from getting too heated.

  • You may personalize them with your logo, title, and name.

  • It might just offer the best fit on the market.

  • Berne Apparel is heavier than expected and more constricting than clothes from other companies.

Where to Buy Berne Workwear?

Berne Apparel

Walmart (up to 4% cash back)

Lowe's

  • Dickies

Dickies History and Origin

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Source:dickies.com

C.N. Williamson and E.E. Dickie got their start in the "vehicle and harness" business in Texas before they founded the renowned workwear brand Dickies.Also, prosperous business people, the cousins had spent the previous quarter century selling hats in Texas's southwest territory.In 1918, they decided with some friends to start the U.S. Overall Company, thus entering the workwear market. In 1922 the company was renamed “Williamson-Dickie Manufacturing Company”.Williamson-early Dickie's success was stunted only by the Great Depression, and the company made millions of uniforms for the U.S. military during World War II. After the war, Williamson shifted to civilian production and began a policy of nationwide expansion, opening factories, distribution centers, and sales offices all over the United States. 

The brand later expanded to include international markets. Dickies entered both the European and Middle Eastern markets,the latter through oilmen who presented the brand in those places.Until the 1970s, Dickies only offered men's workwear. At the start of the 1980s, however, the company made the strategic decision to expand into the female and juvenile markets. The 1970s’ logo and the current logo are quite similar. The Dickies logo still holds the brand’s name in a blue or white-colored stylized rectangle with a horseshoe in the background.

The brand gained a ton of momentum after starting to make military wear for soldiers. This spread the company’s popularity, making it nationally renowned.Now, the company creates outdoor and workwear for not only men but women and kids as well!

Dickies Product Range

Their products include insulated outerwear (jackets, coats, overalls, coveralls), work uniforms,pants, shirts, sweatshirts, and accessories.They come in various cuts, colors, and materials, catering to different style preferences.

The company continues the tradition of manufacturing workwear with straightforward styles, offering superior function without unnecessary details. In addition, the no-nonsense designs of Dickies apparel have made them versatile enough to be used at work and as streetwear staples, as influenced by the Southern California style and hip-hop culture.

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Source:dickies.com

Dickies Materials and Manufacture

Dickies clothes use an excellent blend of polyester and cotton. The cotton gives their clothes a soft and luxurious feel while still maintaining durability by adding polyester to the mix.The brand’s textiles combine flexibility with breathability, which enable the wearer to work and be active outdoors without worrying about unpleasant odors.Moreover, their cotton-polyester blends are resistant to sweat stains.

Dickies employs cutting-edge technologies and materials for their workwear, including water-resistant fabrics. The brand's fabrics are highly adaptable and breathable, so you can work and play outside without feeling restricted or worrying about sweaty, musty odors.Dickies also uses Temp-IQ tech, which helps with temperature regulation. The sophisticated technology sustains a person’s temperature no matter how cold or hot it might be outside.

Dickies still manufactures in Texas. However, a large majority of their products are made in southern Asia, the Middle East, and Mexico.

Dickies Pros and Cons

ProsCons
  • Affordability.

  • Lightweight designs.

  • Durable construction.

  • Versatile styles.

  • Available in big & tall sizes.

  • Easy to maintain: Dickies are known for their wrinkle-resistant and stain-free features, saving you precious laundry time.

  • Ideal for normal (non-cold) work and weather conditions.

  • Comfortable built.

  • True to size.

  • Dickies may not endure extreme working conditions as well as Carhartt or Duluth.

  • Less suited to demanding conditions.

  • Some customers find the fit a bit stiff, particularly when new.

Where to Buy Dickies Workwear?

Dickies (6.5%-8% cash back)

Walmart (up to 4% cash back)

Amazon

  • Duluth Trading Co

Duluth History and Origin

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Source:duluthtrading.com

Duluth Trading Co.,the most recent brand among the four.They aimed to provide workwear solutions that were both functional and comfortable. Duluth gained popularity by introducing innovative features and designs to their products, appealing to individuals who prioritize mobility and flexibility without compromising on durability.

Originally founded by two brothers, Bob and Dave Fierek, as Portable Products, Inc. in 1989, the company then primarily focused on those working in construction and a tool accessory known as the "Bucket Boss". The business grew to incorporate more tool accessories and storage equipment in a catalog, under the Portable Products banner, with the first headquarters being established on a barge in Duluth, Minnesota soon after. By 1993, the catalog was expanded and entitled Duluth Trading Co.

In the mid-1990s, the company switched hands, purchased by Fiskars. In 2000 it was sold again, this time to Gempler's, and moved its headquarters to Belleville, Wisconsin. The company created a successful line of shirts called "Longtail T Shirts" in 2002 which were designed to get rid of plumber's crack. Gempler's was sold in 2003 to Lab Safety Supply and the owners retained Duluth Trading Company.During the retail apocalypse of the mid-2010s when many physical stores were closing, Duluth Trading Company had outperformed their own expectations and continued to open new locations throughout the United States.

Duluth Product Range

Duluth Trading Co. primarily focuses on workwear but also provides a wider variety of casual clothing and accessories at reasonable and – in some cases – even quite low prices, making it a more versatile option for everyday wear. They carry everything from work jackets and carpenter pants to loungewear and boxer shorts, so it’s a good place to turn if you’re looking for a one-stop shop where you can buy an entire outfit (or wardrobe). 

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Source:Duluth Trading Company Facebook

Duluth Materials and Manufacture

Duluth Trading Co. also emphasizes durability but incorporates lighter and more flexible materials, ensuring comfort and ease of movement while maintaining robustness.

While not every piece at Duluth Trading Co. is crafted in the USA, that doesn't mean one should shy away from their Best Made “Made in the USA” collection.

Duluth Pros and Cons

ProsCons
  • Strong, long-lasting materials with comfort-focused design features.

  • Comfort and mobility-focused design, more relaxed fit.

  • Duluth offers a “No Bull Guarantee” which covers the lifetime of their products.

  • Wide catalog range.

  • Outstanding durability.

  • Some customers have noted stock issues with popular styles and sizes.

  • Duluth tends to be more expensive than both Dickies and Carhartt.

Where to Buy Duluth Workwear?

Duluth Trading Company

Carhartt vs. Berne vs. Dickies vs. Duluth: Comparison Side by Side

1. Durability

While all four brands offer durable workwear, the extent of durability and the material quality varies.

Carhartt is often praised for its resilient and long-lasting products, which some users feel outweigh Berne’s offerings.The brand often utilizes heavyweight fabrics like duck canvas and sandstone twill, which are known for their toughness. Their products are built to withstand abrasion, tears, and harsh environments. 

Berne also offer high-quality products made from materials which almost beg for punishment—natural fibers and synthetics matched in perfect pairings. They feature triple-reinforced seams, bolted together with rivets where necessary.Most experienced purchasers will swear that Berne workwear is softer than Carhartt.

Dickies provides durable options at an affordable price, but these may not withstand the same level of abuse as Carhartt,Berne or Duluth.

Duluth also offers strong, long-lasting materials, but their key selling point lies in their design features that boost comfort and mobility.

However,people have different preferences so they have different perspectives of quality. What one person feels is a measure of high-quality, a stiff, heavyweight fabric, for example, may indicate of poor quality to someone else.

2. Price

Generally, Carhartt items are priced higher, reflecting their long-standing reputation and the quality of their products.Taking into consideration the high-quality material, technology, and effort put into the clothing, Carhartt’s products are definitely worth the price.

Berne delivers good quality work apparel at a significantly lower price than Carhartt, making it an attractive alternative for budget-conscious consumers.

Dickies offers the most affordable range. If you’re budget-conscious but still want a reliable pair of work pants, Dickies is a great choice.

Duluth tends to be the most expensive of the three, but they justify their price with unique design features and a lifetime guarantee.

3. Size and Fit

Carhartt caters to various sizes but is known for its roomier designs.While generally comfortable, Carhartt has received mixed reviews about their fit. Some customers have reported that their sizing can be unpredictable.

Berne also caters to all, including the big and tall sizes not always covered by other brands.

Dickies offers a broad array of colors and styles, ensuring you find a fit and design you like, but some users find them somewhat stiff, especially when new.

Duluth focuses heavily on comfort and mobility. Their Apparel generally offer a more relaxed fit.

You’ll have to wear these clothes and to know which fit will work better for you. For this reason, you’ll want to try on many sizes of each brand.

Comparison Table


CarharttBerneDickiesDuluth
Founded1889191519221989
RangeExtensive range of products for various industries,including Flame-resistant workwear.Insulated outerwear (jackets, coats, bib overalls, coveralls), pants, shirts, sweatshirts, and accessories, plus Safety, Flame Resistant, and Concealed Carry product lines.Insulated outerwear (jackets, coats, overalls, coveralls), work uniforms,pants, shirts, sweatshirts, and accessoriesFocus on workwear but also provides a wider variety of casual clothing and accessories
DurabilityExceptionally durable and long-lastingDurable enough for daily useGood durabilityExcellent durability
Size and Fit
Known for roomier designs.Mixed reviews on fit, with some finding sizing unpredictable.Provides for big and tall sizesCan be a bit stiffComfort and mobility-focused design, more relaxed fit
Suitable ForHeavy-duty work, harsh weather conditionsThose on a budget,Heavy-duty work, harsh weather conditionsThose on a budget, light to moderate work conditionsThose who value comfort and mobility, willing to spend more for unique features
PriceMore expensiveMore affordableMost affordableMost expensive

Conclusion: Which is the Best Workwear Brand?

In conclusion, choosing among Carhartt,Berne, Dickies and Duluth Trading Co. ultimately depends on your specific needs and preferences.

Carhartt stands out with a wider range of products, top-notch materials and construction, advanced (exclusive) technology, exceptional durability, and discreet logo placement. Carhartt workwear is more appropriate for tough conditions, features a rugged style, is ideal for challenging weather, is available in big & tall sizes, and promotes ease of movement.If you’re a professional construction worker that requires sophisticated technology, Carhartt would be the perfect investment.

While Carhartt maintains its stronghold on durability and product range, Berne provides a commendable alternative, particularly in terms of price and inclusivity of sizes. 

Dickies workwear is suitable for normal or mild work and weather conditions, lightweight yet comfortable and versatile, has durable designs, and is true to size. If you’re just doing some light work around the house, then Dickies is better suited.

However, if you value innovation, versatility, and clothing that combines durability with comfort and mobility, Duluth Trading Co. is worth considering. 

Either way, you’ll be in great hands whatever your choice may be.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Where does Carhartt make their clothes?

They produce these products in four facilities located in Kentucky and Tennessee. Carhartt also owns and operates manufacturing and finishing facilities in Mexico.

Why Carhartt is not made in USA?

American textile and clothing industries hit hard times in the 1980s and 90s. Many moved manufacturing overseas to keep product costs low, and Carhartt was one of them. When demand for the brand increased and their product line expanded, Carhartt moved most manufacturing and finishing to Mexico.

Why is Carhartt so popular?

The beauty of Carhartt is that they have continuously created the same products they made in their early days. Their chore coats, trousers and beanies were worn throughout the United States from railroad workers to city constructions.

Is Dickies as good as Carhartt?

While Dickies shirts, jackets, pants, and other apparel are durable enough to last with proper care, they're still not as long-wearing as Carhartt workwear, especially if they're used in challenging surroundings.

Are Dickies still popular?

Dickies is still one of the largest manufacturers of workwear in the US and it's very understandable. The clothes they make are cool, masculine and of good quality, and their designs are simple and straightforward, and the colors are classic.

Why are Dickies pants so popular?

Ingrained in American culture, Dickies boasts a rich history as the go-to uniform for blue-collar workers and niche subcultures. But after going viral in 2021 on TikTok, they've found a new, younger, fashion-savvy audience. The Dickies pants have fast become a wardrobe staple for a new generation.

How durable are Dickies?

Dickies pants are made to last. That means tough, durable fabrics and blends that will outlast pretty much everything else in your wardrobe. A side effect of this toughness is that they can sometimes be a little stiff straight from the store.

Does Duluth clothes run big?

Generally, button down shirts and tunics at Duluth run a little big. 

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2023-12-19 19:02691