Best leopard print cardigan

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Generally, the smaller the leopard print, the busier it looks. If you’re partial to a simpler or understated look, opt for cardigans with larger leopard spots.

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Which leopard print cardigans are best?

If you already have plenty of simple sweaters, consider spicing up your wardrobe with a leopard print cardigan. The bold print is easy to style, whether you want to dress it down with leggings or dress it up with a fancy blouse and jewelry. 

Leopard print cardigans are available in a variety of colors, lengths and styles. If you’re looking for a cozy, plush style, the UGG Women’s Phoebe Wrap Leopard Cardigan is the top choice. 

What to know before you buy a leopard print cardigan

Leopard print varieties

There are many styles of leopard print, especially when it comes to clothing. There can be large or small spots (also called rosettes) or an abstract combination of leopard spots that is true to life. Brown, black and white are classic leopard print colors, though many cardigans experiment with bolder colors like blue, pink, yellow or orange. 

How to style a leopard print cardigan

Leopard print cardigans are versatile and among the easiest layering pieces to style. They coordinate well with solid colors and basic pieces, like leggings and jeans, as well as clothing with colors that play off the ones in the cardigan. Beyond that, there are even more ways to style a leopard print cardigan, including the following:

  • Dress up a leopard print cardigan with a crisp white dress shirt with a starched collar.
  • Emphasize your waistline by pairing the cardigan with a skinny belt.
  • Downplay the print’s boldness by wearing minimalist accessories and jewelry.
  • Size up if you’d like to embrace a relaxed cardigan style with plenty of room for base layers.
  • Make leopard spots pop by wearing a solid turtleneck with the same color scheme.

What to look for in a quality leopard print cardigan

Materials

Acrylic, polyester and chenille are popular materials for cardigans. These materials are known for benign soft and cozy, and many of them excel at retaining their shape after repeated wash and wear. Although there are a few wool and cotton cardigans on the market, they are not as common.

Many cardigan styles are composed of fabric blends with stretch materials, like Spandex and nylon, to boost their flexibility and comfort. Stretch materials also contribute to a garment’s shape and color integrity, in that they’re less likely to shrink, warp or fade after washing. As a result, many people prioritize durability and invest in cardigans made of a fabric blend.

Length

Leopard print cardigans are available in several lengths. Shorter styles may be cropped or fall just below the natural waistline, whereas medium-length cardigans have hemlines that may go past the small of the back to the top of the thigh. Longer cardigans may fall mid-thigh, as well as duster styles that graze the knees or reach the floor, depending on the wearer’s height.

Sleeve style

Leopard print cardigans vary considerably when it comes to sleeve style. Classic sleeves, often seen on other sweaters and more formal cardigans, can be fitted and ribbed. Casual cardigans often have raglan, dolman or boxy sleeves. Trendier leopard print cardigans often feature creative sleeve styles, such as bell, batwing or puff sleeves. 

Closures

Cardigans by definition are open-front sweaters, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have closures. Many leopard print cardigans have buttons, hook-and-eye loops or ties. These closures are functional on many styles, while other cardigans simply utilize them as embellishments. Some cardigans, for example, feature ornate buttons that adorn the opening as well as the sleeves.

How much you can expect to spend on leopard print cardigans

Basic leopard print cardigans, including lightweight styles, cost $30 or less, whereas styles with better quality cost $40-$80. Leopard print cardigans made by premium designers, many of which have unique features or are made with high-end materials, usually cost $100-$200.

Leopard print cardigan FAQ

Can you mix leopard prints together?

A. There’s an old fashion rule that advises against mixing prints for fear they may clash, but more recently, designers and fashion lovers have embraced it. When wearing leopard print, some people have matched their clothing pieces with other items featuring understated checks, polka dots or even florals within the same color scheme. If nothing else, it’s a bold fashion choice.

What’s the difference between leopard, cheetah and jaguar prints?

A. Leopard prints have circular designs with a lighter center, whereas cheetah prints feature solid spots. Jaguar spots closely resemble leopard rosettes; however, the outer “ring” of a jaguar spot is disconnected and abstract compared to leopard rosettes that are usually ring- or C-shaped. 

What’s the best leopard print cardigan to buy?

Top leopard print cardigan

UGG Women's Phoebe Wrap Leopard Cardigan

UGG Women’s Phoebe Wrap Leopard Cardigan

What you need to know: Made by a favorite brand, this cardigan has a flowy cut that is both flattering and comfortable. 

What you’ll love: The cozy cardigan is made with a soft, fluffy blend of polyester and nylon. It has a dropped hemline in the front to create a flattering silhouette and add movement to the piece. There are spacious side pockets to hold your essentials. 

What you should consider: The fabric of the sweater has a looser weave and may thin out over time. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top leopard print cardigan for the money

MEROKEETY Women's Long Sleeve Leopard Cardigan

MEROKEETY Women’s Long Sleeve Leopard Cardigan

What you need to know: The popular cardigan has a tapered waistline that creates an hourglass silhouette.

What you’ll love: It’s embellished with antique brass snap buttons, which gives the cardigan more personality. The cardigan is lightweight and soft, making it an ideal layering piece. It’s machine-washable and retains its shape well.

What you should consider: Several wearers say the cardigan looks much different in person, and the colors are slightly off. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Daily Ritual Leopard Jacquard Cardigan

Daily Ritual Leopard Jacquard Cardigan

What you need to know: If you’re looking for a casual leopard cardigan, this style features a relaxed fit. 

What you’ll love: Made with acrylic and nylon fabrics, the cardigan has a luxurious feel. It retains its shape and colors through repeated wash and wear. The front pockets are a cozy touch that gives the cardigan a robe-like aesthetic. 

What you should consider: The cardigan isn’t as soft and cozy as some wearers expected. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Sian Babish writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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