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Whether you’re in the kitchen or workshop, having a reliable apron is a must. Not only does an apron protect your clothing from splashes, spills and potential tears, but many aprons have pockets, making them a handy way to store your most-used tools.
Many of our favorite heavy aprons are made from cotton duck, waxed canvas or even denim. You’re probably familiar with denim, as it’s the cotton twill fabric used to make jeans. Cotton duck is a densely woven type of canvas, and it’s notable for being abrasion-resistant enough to be used for tents, and it was historically used for making sails. As the name suggests, waxed canvas is a type of cotton canvas that has been treated with wax — this helps with water resistance. These kinds of aprons are great for the wood or machine shop, as well as gardening and other DIY projects. However, if water resistance is your paramount concern, you may want to skip cotton altogether.
Whether you work in a restaurant kitchen or you’re just prone to make messes at home, a heavy-duty vinyl apron will ensure you stay dry. These are typically associated with restaurant kitchens, but they can also come in handy for any messy and wet projects, ranging from pet care to recreational fishing. The major drawback of vinyl aprons is flexibility and comfort. A canvas apron will be more breathable, allowing you to move around as needed. Whichever you choose will depend on the kind of work you’re doing, which is why we’ve rounded up some of the best heavy aprons available right now, including pocketed canvas options and sturdy vinyl picks.
1. Hudson Durable Goods Heavy Duty Waxed Canvas Work Apron
This apron from Hudson Durable Goods is made out of waxed canvas, making it a sturdy and water-resistant option. It has a single, small chest pocket and roomy pockets at the waist. There’s a small kangaroo-style hand pocket, plus two large patch pockets for tools. The straps go over the shoulders and across the back, and they’re tied together at the back of the waist.
Pros: Sturdy option for all kinds of shop work. Convenient pockets, including sideways hand pockets and large patch pockets. Rivets and grommets at pressure points.
Cons: Tying the straps behind your back can be tedious.
2. Texas Canvas Wares Heavy Duty Shop Apron
This apron is made from heavy-duty waxed canvas, meaning it’ll be water and spill-resistant. Waxed canvas also tends to take on a rich patina as you use it, similar to leather, meaning it’ll look better with age. It has cross-back straps and a waist tie, so it won’t sit heavily on your neck when you wear it. This heavy-duty apron has a large chest pocket and two riveted waist pockets, each of which has a flap to keep things in.
Pros: Stylish retro design. Durable and water-resistant waxed canvas. Flaps on waist pockets help to keep debris out.
Cons: Like all waxed canvas products, it cannot be machine washed.
3. Aulett Home Waterproof Rubber Vinyl Apron
If you need a heavy-duty apron for the kitchen, whether that’s at home or a restaurant, then this apron from Aulett is a good option. It’s made from a sturdy vinyl-coated material that repels water. The size and shape of the apron adds to the protection. The apron wraps around your sides, rather than just sitting on the front of your body. Plus, at over three feet long, it should adequately cover your legs, and the top of the apron sits high on the chest.
Pros: Convenient buckle on the neck strap makes it easier to take off. Water-resistant material.
Cons: Material could be thicker.
4. Bucket Boss Canvas SuperShop Work Apron
This stylish and simple work apron has several features that make it a convenient and protective option. It’s made from unwaxed canvas, which may be better for some projects. This apron has a chest pocket with a pen slot and one large, asymmetrical waist pocket for carrying essential tools. Padded shoulder straps make it more comfortable to wear. Unlike some others on this list, this apron uses a plastic buckle, so you don’t have to manually tie it.
Pros: Convenient plastic buckle, instead of manual ties. Padded and adjustable shoulder straps for long-term comfort.
Cons: Some may prefer having more pockets than the two on this apron.
5. ARAWAK BRAVE Denim Apron
While now mostly seen as a casual fabric, denim was favored by laborers for its hard-wearing properties. That’s why it’s still a great fabric for an apron. This denim apron has ample pockets — there’s one small chest pocket, two hand pockets and two large waist pockets. It has a convenient clip on the back, making it easy to put on and take off without worrying about tying the straps. It’s designed with BBQers in mind, but the apron also works for other projects ranging from casual shop work to gardening.
Pros: Ample pockets, machine washable. Classic denim look. Convenient buckle for putting it on and taking it off.
Cons: May not be ideal for those with larger waistlines.