I think the first time I saw a cowl neck, I thought it was brilliant. This is probably because where I live, it was negative 30 F (about –34 C) and any skin covered seemed like a fantastic idea. Had I seen it summer, I might have thought something mildly snarky involving turtles. But I saw it at the right time, and I do have a sort of affection for the style.
I’ve also noticed that different designers have different interpretations. While many still do the “floppy turtleneck” like you see above, some make it bib style, others almost like shirring at the neck, and in a couple cases, the cowl neck falls to the back of the garment. I think the extreme of the neck depends on the extreme of the weather. If you’re close to the equator, a more subtle cowl neck makes sense. Further from it, honestly, we’re probably not looking at you that close because we’re all trying not to die of the cold ourselves.
Wintery Cowl Necks
Summery Cowl Necks
Whenever Cowl Necks (for purposes of this conversation, consider whenever = can layer it)