10 Best Rain Jackets
We chose the top 10 we thought our readers would enjoy, and ranked them according to their water resistance, features, fit, and style. We hope you enjoy this buying guide and find the perfect rain jacket for you.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 16 hrs of research
- Charles River
- Marmot Precip
- Helly Hansen
- Marmot Minimalist
- Outdoor Research Helium II
- Criteria Used for Evaluation
- Other Factors to Consider
- Frequently Asked Questions
10 Best Rain Jackets
1. Charles River
Some customers find it costly
This jacket has been designed with pure polyurethane material. For easy maintenance, you can easily hand-wash the jacket when necessary.Read more
The jacket has reflective stripes at the back and front part so that you would be able to safely travel during the day and night as well without the fear of an oncoming car running you over. The reflective stripes enhance visibility at night.
Wind and Waterproof
This jacket is designed in such a way that it would protect you from the strong winds and the rain. It is fitted with heat sealed seams that would help in ensuring that you also stay warm in this jacket.
Cost and Value
Regardless of the price at which you would be required to acquire this item, its value makes it worth buying. It is lined with grey mesh for improved air circulation and the sleeves are structured in such a way that the jacket would be easy to have on and off. The underarm vents also allow for easy air flow in and out of the jacket thus making it comfortable.
If you want something that is both waterproof and breathable then this is the type of rain jacket you need. It is designed with quality nylon and polyester materials to serve your needs for the longest time possible.Read more
This jacket has been designed with high-quality water-repellent materials that would not only keep you safe from the rain but its material is also machine washable thus making it easy to care for or maintain.
This exceptional quality rain jacket has a front-zip closure with an internal drawcord hem that would enable you to ensure that the jacket fits perfectly when you have it on.
Cost and Value
Although you would find this brand slightly overpriced compared to other cheaper designs found on the market, this jacket has a majority of convenient features that make it worth buying. It has adjustable cuffs, a hood you can easily hide away when not required, and zippered pockets that are designed to keep water out. It is designed with pure nylon on the outside something that makes it waterproof hence safe to use in the rain.
Large storage pockets
Inconsistencies in its quality every year
This is a classic male jacket designed with nylon material to offer adequate protection from rain. It comes fitted with two large hip pockets that have flaps to enable you to store any item that you may need to carry with you wherever you go that would equally be protected from the rain.Read more
The vent at the rear part of the jacket has been integrated with the intent to ensure that you would remain aerated and dry at the same time when outdoors during the rain.
The jacket can easily be enclosed using a high-quality zipper. This jacket also has a storm flap on the inside that guarantees adequate protection from the rain.
Cost and Value
At its affordable price, this exceptional quality jacket guarantees you protection from the strong winds and the rain. Its cuffs are elastic thus making it a comfortable fit for any person. The hood has a drawstring that you could use to fasten the hood in place when necessary.
Portable and compact
This brand has been designed with pure polyester material. It is made of a waterproof and eco-friendly material that is quick drying and yet breathable. Therefore, buying this jacket assures you of improved comfort and adequate protection from the rain.Read more
This jacket would effectively keep water out and it dries quickly to ensure that you stay dry, at all times. Besides it being able to keep water out this jacket is also breathable hence making it a very comfortable wear.
Portable and Compact
This jacket is easy to transport and store as it easily fits in the suitcase, handbag, and backpack. As such you would be able to reach your rain jacket easily in case of sudden rains.
Cost and Value
This product would definitely give you value for your money. Its fabric is extremely water resistant, dries quickly and it is breathable. It is soft to the touch and still waterproof. The added hoodie would help keep your entire body dry and cozy.
Protective cap hood
2 zippered pockets
Poor quality zippers
If you want a jacket with the latest waterproof technology then this is the brand to buy for yourself, a friend or family member. It is designed with a pure polyester material that wicks away moisture with the very first contact to leave you dry and comfortable during rainy times.Read more
Fully Sealed Seams
This jacket has been structured in such a way that it would keep rain out. There is also a fully meshed lining on the interior part of the jacket that enhances its breathability quality thus improving comfort for the final consumer. Excess heat and moisture would easily escape from the jacket given the breathable design of this jacket thus allowing you to carry on with any activity that you may have planned.
Velcro Seal Flap
The seal flap covers the front zipper so that you would be able to stay dry regardless of the angle at which the raindrops would strike you.
Cost and Value
At its considerable price, I could say that this is the type of rain jacket you would require to secure you from the rain. The zippered pockets that have a flap overlap would allow you to store any item you may require as part of your journey such as wallet well secured from the rain. It has an adjustable hood that would help protect your head from the rain.
6. Marmot Precip
Very reputable company
100% taped seams
Waterproof and breathable
Adjustable hood stores in collar
Very lightweight so you need to be somewhat careful with it
This is a lightweight jacket that is affordable but still offers good performance. With fully taped seams, an adjustable hood, and thoughtful features the Precip keeps users dry while looking good. Most had great experiences but a few users ran into durability issues due to asking too much from such a lightweight product.Read more
All of the seams are well taped and the NanoPro fabric gets good reviews for being waterproof and breathable.
Some of the thoughtful design elements include pit zips, a chin guard, and an adjustable hood that rolls up and stores inside the collar.
This one is sized normally, no worry about ordering up or down. It has a regular cut and is not athletically tapered.
It doesn't stand out in the crowd but still looks good. The word "outdoorsy" comes to mind.
This jacket is designed with a durable high-quality nylon material that would help keep your dry and cozy during times of adverse climatic conditions especially when it rains.Read more
This jacket is easy to maintain all you would need is a workable washing machine to do the work for you.
This rain jacket comes with a hood that would provide you with additional protection on the head in extreme rain.
Cost and Value
Although expensive, this rain jacket is worth buying. It is breathable, durable, machine washable and would adequately protect you from the rain and excessive cold.
8. Helly Hansen
Some consider it pricey
This rain jacket carries every bit of quality you would wish for as part of the protective gear you would require during times of rain or adverse weather. It is breathable, windproof and waterproof with a hood to protect a good proportion of your body from the rain.Read more
Durable Water Repellency (DWR)
This jacket has been designed to provide you with complete weather protection. It easily wicks away moisture from the body and dries quickly to help ensure that you stay comfortable for the entire time you would be outdoors undertaking various tasks.
Breathable and Waterproof
This particular jacket would help keep water out and at the same time, it would allow moisture to evaporate so that you would remain dry and comfortable.
Cost and Value
This product has a fixed hood with several adjustable points that would help in keeping it securely fixed on the head during strong winds and rain. The jacket is well sealed to help keep you warm and dry day after day so that regardless of the high cost at which you would be required to buy this product you would not worry about the cost you would incur.
9. Marmot Minimalist
The fabric is stiff and generates noise during movement
One thing that makes this product worth buying is that it is waterproof and at the same time breathable. The NanoPro fabric that has been used to design the structure of this jacket would help keep you comfortable and dry throughout the activities that you would be undertaking outdoors.Read more
Its reduced weight makes this jacket a perfect accessory when used for activities such as cycling, hiking, climbing and other activities that you may wish to undertake during rainy times.
The taped seams on the jacket offer enhanced protection from the elements by preventing leaks.
Cost and Value
This reasonably priced product is attached with an adjustable hood that you can easily roll and tack into the collar when you do not need to use the hood. The adjustable Velcro cuffs, as well as the drawstring hem, exist for the sole purpose of ascertaining to the fact that you would be in a better position of keeping the temperature under control and preventing any leaks when it rains or water splashes on you.
10. Outdoor Research Helium II
Zippered chest pocket
Stuffs into its own pocket
Needs to be well taken care of because of light weight
Helium is an extremely light gas and the Helium II is an extremely light jacket. It stuffs into its own pocket and has a webbing loop so it's perfect as an emergency rain jacket to keep in your car or for ultralight hikers. It has fully taped seams to keep out the water and nice features such as a zippered chest pocket and reflective trim on the hood. Some users didn't like the shininess of the fabric but it's sporty style looks more understated in certain colors.Read more
It has fully taped seams that do a good job of keeping the rain out.
It stuffs into its own pocket and then has a loop so it can be easily carried from the webbing of a backpack. It also has a zippered chest pocket and reflective trim on the hood to help keep you safe in low-light situations.
Most users felt the sizing was good, although a couple of larger men found it to be too small.
It has a sporty design. Some of the colors are a bit shiny for a lot of people's tastes, but it looks more understated in several of the colors.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Most rain jackets are designed with numerous seams. That is why if you want something quality then you should go for the one that is fully seam taped as that is the only way you would be able to find something that is waterproof to keep you safe from the weather elements. Nevertheless, given the fact that the majority of rain jackets are constructed with this particular quality, you would not have to think much about the seam taping feature when shopping for your rain jacket. Even with this being the case, at no time should you ever assume that the jacket you are about to buy is fully waterproof just because you are able to find seam tape on the shoulders and hood. This is because of the jackets that are seam taped on the hood and shoulders are merely water resistant and not waterproof as some people may have been made to believe. In addition, you should never make the assumption that just because a jacket may not have any seam taping as you may have hoped for it may be of poor quality. Seam taping may have not been used because it might have not been necessary to do so. After all, adding the seam taping may have only increased the complexity of the jacket construction something that would not add any value to the jacket’s intended purpose.
The best quality rain jackets would be loaded with zippers at every opening from the pockets and front opening. The jacket you choose should be able to keep out water regardless of the kind of rain experienced in your area. The best designs that would keep away water from seeping through the zippers is one that would be constructed with a storm flap or rubberized coating. Nevertheless, when making your selection for this particular product, always remember that laminated zippers or coated zippers are often more difficult to zip up and down. The best designs would have a zipper garage or zipper hut that would help shield off the small opening found at the end of the zipper track. You should buy a rain jacket that has been constructed with quality zippers that are easy to operate so that the jacket would not only be easy to use but it would also adequately protect you from the rain and strong winds.
Presently, the price of the rain jacket you would buy from the market would be determined by the types of pockets the jacket has. The ones that fetch for a higher price are designed with pockets that have waterproof zippers so that you would be able to store your valuables without the fear of the items being affected by the rain. Some jackets have numerous storage compartments such that you may be tempted not to carry your backpack when going for your daily runs or adventures. Nevertheless, the best designs for the majority of consumers would be ones that have hand pockets situated slightly above the hip belt since they would be easy to access at any point in time. If you love listening to music on your phone then you should go for the jackets designed with a cord port that would enable you to listen to music with much ease regardless of what you may be doing at the time. The best designs at any given point in time would have storm flaps to adequately protect the contents found in the pockets from soaking wet.
Other than the strings that can be used to adjust the hood of the jacket, you may also be required to think about other important additional features such as the draw cord that is often situated at the bottom of the hem. For those people who may wish to go for longer jackets, what is important to think about in such a case before making a purchase is the presence of a drawcord around the waist area. More protective rainwear should have wrist closures that would be easy to adjust when necessary so that the rain is kept out, at all times. The adjustments that are found at various points in the jacket would play a significant role in helping to keep out wind, rain, and the cold from sneaking in through the openings of the jacket. On the same note, the adjustments on the jacket could also be loosened when necessary in order to improve the overall ventilation of the jacket something that would help in enhancing your level of comfort.
Given the fact that even the most breathable jacket designs are bound to be overwhelmed during strenuous activities of the day, the most viable choice for any person who intends on taking part in more vigorous activities for the day would be a jacket designed with underarm vents or pit zips other than it being breathable. Alternatively, you could choose the one that is both breathable and has mesh liners at the pocket points so as to provide you with adequate ventilation when you would need it the most and still protect you from the rain. Whatever choice you make just make sure that the jacket you end up with would protect you from the weather elements and still remain comfortable during use.
A majority of rain jackets that you would find being sold on the market are designed with brims that have adjustments on the sides and back. The adjustments make it easier for consumers to fine tune the hoods to what would work best for them based on the design of the jacket and the hood as well. If you wish to acquire this particular product for casual uses then you could easily buy a jacket that has no adjustments. For a greater convenience during use, the jacket you buy should be designed in such a way that its hood could easily be zipped off when not needed or rolled in a collar when it is not in use.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
When it comes to rain jackets they can be a bit pricey, you get what you pay for. Breaking it down, basically, you're paying for all the research, quality testing, and most importantly the performance of the jacket.
Especially if it's a very lightweight model such as the Marmot Precip or the Outdoor Research Helium II, it's important that you realize that the thin shell material needs to be well taken care of. Do your best to avoid snagging it on branches and other obstacles. You don't have to totally baby it but you don't want to throw it around and abuse it either.
Other Factors to Consider
If you would desire something that would be easy to carry along during your travels then you need to go for a jacket with an ultra-light and non-bulky fabric. Such a quality would make your jacket easy to pack and carry. If at all possible, ensure that you buy a rain jacket that has a pocket that can equally serve as a storage pouch when you would not be using it thus making it easy to move from one place to another. Alternatively, you could go for the one that has a separate stuff sack to make work easier for you.
Given the numerous options of rain jackets that are available on the market, it may be difficult to know what you would be required to look for when it comes to selecting a suitable choice. If you do not know where to start or what to look for in such a case, the following guideline would go a long way in helping you to understand some of the exclusive features you would need to consider in buying these kinds of products. Based on the guidelines outlined below, it would be easier for you to peruse through the different designs of rain jackets available on the market in order to choose the quality that would best serve your needs. Whether you would only wish to stay dry when you are out and about or for those people who may be outdoor enthusiasts finding the right type of rain jacket is crucial. A suitable rain jacket would be your best ally during times or extreme weather, more so when it rains so that you can continue your day’s undertakings without any impediments. Overall, you should make sure that you go for a product that would best serve your needs.
When buying this type of product, one place you would need to start is by asking yourself what you would need the raincoat for in order to choose what suits you best. Someone who may require a basic raincoat that he or she may require for dropping kids to school would need a different type of rain jacket from another person requiring something more technical to storm the weather. Subsequently, once you figure out the purpose for which you intend to use your particular raincoat for it would be easier to choose something that would best meet your desires.
Frequently Asked Questions
Most rain jackets would arrive neatly packaged without any wrinkles. However, if your jacket arrives wrinkled like in your case one thing you can do to resolve such an issue is to wash the jacket with cold water after which you can hang it to dry. For most jackets, the procedure that has been outlined above would work well for you.
One way you would be able to resolve the aforementioned problem is by acquiring a jacket with a hood that has a drawstring. As such, you could use the drawstring to ensure that you get a perfect fit on your head when you would need the hood up to protect you from the rain.
A water-resistant rain jacket would only be able to withstand slight rains. However, in heavy rains these types of jackets would not be able to provide you with the sufficient protection you would yearn for. Nevertheless, a waterproof rain jacket, on the other hand, would not allow any leakages through the jacket regardless of the types of rain experienced in your area. These types of jackets would offer full protection from the weather elements. Therefore, if you need a more suitable option when it comes to selecting a rain jacket then you should go for the one that has been designed with a waterproof material.
When you go shopping for these types of products some of the features that you would be required to think about including the size of the hood, where the pockets have been situated, taped seams or laminated zippers, armpit vents, wrist closures or draw cords, ultra-light or packable quality, as well as how well the rain jacket would fit.
One basic way you would be able to see to it that the jacket you choose fits perfectly is by trying it on at the store. Alternatively, you could take your upper body measurements in order to figure out what would best fit for you. This notwithstanding, you could also consult with the attendants at the store you go to help you choose something that would fit well for you. Whichever the case, ensure that you buy a rain jacket that has a viable return policy so that in case you may find the one you buy less suitable or not fitting you can take it back for a replacement or a refund if that applies.
This might seem like a silly question, because doesn't it get washed every time you go out wearing it in the rain? Well, that's sort of true, but it's important that you know how to care for your jacket in case it gets mud or some other foreign substance on it. As always when readers ask us this question we highly recommend that you follow the manufacturer's recommendations that will come with the product when it comes to care instructions. For most of these products that means hand washing them and letting them air dry naturally. This is especially true of the very lightweight products such as the Marmot Precip and the Outdoor Research Helium II.