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Our Favorite Ski Jackets Reviewed and Compared

last updated Mar 23, 2019
Skiing has always been fairly popular and provides a full body workout that’s difficult to match. Whether you live in an area with lots of opportunities to ski or enjoy more manufactured slopes, you’ll need the right gear.

Skiing happens in areas where it’s cold enough for snow to stay on the ground as long as possible. This is where a good ski jacket can be the difference between sailing down your favorite course and freezing before the lift reaches the top.

Ski jackets will need to be versatile enough to stand up to different types of extreme snow sports. They aren’t just relegated to the sport of skiing, and this changes the criteria we used when reviewing them. Finding the right fit for your needs gives you a great product that can be used whether you’re snowboarding, skiing, running, or taking your weekly trip to the grocery store.

In a Hurry? The test winner after 12 hrs of research

icon
Patagonia PowSlayer
97.4/100 our score
Water Resistance
97
Breathability
98
Comfort
98
Durability
98
Weather Resistance
96
Patagonia PowSlayer
Why is it better?
  • Very waterproof Gore-Tex Pro fabric
  • Comfortable, lightweight and breathable
  • Versatile for all types of skiing
  • Lots of pockets for storage
  • RECCO reflectors
  • Eco-Friendly, made with recycled nylon
In a Hurry? Editors choice:
Patagonia PowSlayer
Test Winner: Patagonia PowSlayer
Amazon Link
Researched Sources
6
Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
2.2k
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
12
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
13
Products Evaluated
Last Updated:
By Sarah Coryell:

For this update, we updated our criteria review sections to ensure you have all the information you need to make an informed decision about which ski jacket is best for your adventuring needs! Be sure to check out the FAQ section and the criteria overview for everything you need to know about ski jackets!

Sorting Options
Water Resistance Breathability Comfort Durability Weather Resistance By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
97.4
Water Resistance
97 %
Breathability
98 %
Comfort
98 %
Durability
98 %
Weather Resistance
96 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Backcountry Link
$419.97
See Deal
Amazon Link
$449.00
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
96.4
Water Resistance
98 %
Breathability
97 %
Comfort
97 %
Durability
95 %
Weather Resistance
95 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
96
Water Resistance
98 %
Breathability
95 %
Comfort
97 %
Durability
95 %
Weather Resistance
95 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$237.60
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.6
Water Resistance
89 %
Breathability
89 %
Comfort
90 %
Durability
88 %
Weather Resistance
87 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Backcountry Link
$199.99
See Deal
Gear Coop
$360.00
See Deal
Amazon Link
$450.00
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86.8
Water Resistance
87 %
Breathability
87 %
Comfort
88 %
Durability
86 %
Weather Resistance
86 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Backcountry Link
$179.97
See Deal
Amazon Link
$344.99
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86.2
Water Resistance
87 %
Breathability
86 %
Comfort
88 %
Durability
85 %
Weather Resistance
85 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84.6
Water Resistance
85 %
Breathability
85 %
Comfort
86 %
Durability
84 %
Weather Resistance
83 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$329.00
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
74.8
Water Resistance
76 %
Breathability
75 %
Comfort
75 %
Durability
73 %
Weather Resistance
75 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$266.75
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
72.6
Water Resistance
75 %
Breathability
73 %
Comfort
73 %
Durability
72 %
Weather Resistance
70 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Amazon Link
$498.95
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
72
Water Resistance
70 %
Breathability
75 %
Comfort
75 %
Durability
70 %
Weather Resistance
70 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (24.08.19)
Backcountry Link
$209.98
See Deal
Amazon Link
$240.20

Our Favorite Ski Jackets

1. Patagonia PowSlayer

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
97.4
Patagonia PowSlayer
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
97
Breathability
98
Comfort
98
Durability
98
Weather Resistance
96
best offer for today
more shops
Amazon Link
$449.00
Backcountry Link
$419.97
See Deal
Pros:
  • Very waterproof Gore-Tex Pro fabric
  • Comfortable, lightweight and breathable
  • Versatile for all types of skiing
  • Lots of pockets for storage
  • RECCO reflectors
  • Eco-Friendly, made with recycled nylon
Cons:
  • Size runs large
  • No insulation

The PowSlayer is a must have for anyone who has a real passion for hitting the slopes and trekking out in the backcountry. It is constructed extremely well, which results in its high performance. It is lightweight, durable, adjustable and comfortable. But arguably its best feature is the amount of weatherproofing it provides. It is made of three-layer nylon ripstop Gore-Tex Pro that makes it highly water-and windproof while still providing the breathability needed for winter sports. It is packed with features like a media pocket and pit zips and is available for both men and women.

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Weatherproofing

Patagonia delivers on just about every feature included in the PowSlayer that makes it the best for skiing and snowboarding. Most notably is its 3-layer Gore-Tex Pro Shell that provides unbeatable waterproof and wind protection. This consists of a multilayer membrane system that is dense and snag resistant while being thin and breathable. There is no water getting through these fibers. To add to its water-resistance is its DWR finish.

It performs very well when it comes to weatherproofing, but is lightweight and thin, so keep in mind that layering is necessary for colder conditions. However, it does include fully sealed seams, a helmet-compatible hood, and a high neck collar. It also has watertight zippers, and a powder skirt that can connect to the company’s snow pants to further ensure no snow is getting inside.

Breathability and Mobility

This jacket is lightweight and very breathable. This makes it great for those milder days when speed skating, trekking up the mountainside or racing downhill at the resort. The PowSlayer has pit zips that release heat and regulate temperature. It is a bit loose when it comes to the fit, but this doesn’t get in the way of movement. It’s designed to allow for free movement across ski types.

Style and Fit

As just mentioned, the PowSlayer as a more relaxed fit that is very comfortable and non-restricting. It has two chest pockets, with one for a smartphone with cable routing. It has an internal stash pocket, two handwarmer pockets just to name a few. And all include watertight zippers. Its powder skirt is adjustable and lies flat when not in use. It’s 2-way adjustable hood has a visor or increased visibility in the rain or snow. And safety comes first since it also includes a RECCO reflector that is concealed but can be life-saving in event of an avalanche.

2. Arc'teryx Sabre

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
96.4
Arc'teryx Sabre
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
98
Breathability
97
Comfort
97
Durability
95
Weather Resistance
95
best offer for today
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Pros:
  • Versatile for many different skiing styles, but dest for downhill
  • Warm and breathable
  • Weatherproof
  • Great fit that is comfortable
  • Durable
  • RECCO reflectors
Cons:
  • Expensive for many buyers

The Sabre jacket is a fan favorite among skiers and snowboarders. Made for going downhill, its constructed with Gore-Tex to make it among the best when it comes to being weatherproof. It features flannel fleece on its back for added warmth, yet is moveable and non-restricting. It has a helmet storm hood for full coverage and drawcords for an adjustable fit. It even has reflectors for increased visibility in case of an avalanche.

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Weatherproofing

The Sabre jacket keeps the cold at bay thanks to its fleece back that is thin enough to not add bulk while keeping the consumer warm without being too toasty when moving around in the snow. It isn't as warm as options like the Helly Hansen Alpha 3.0 but still does its job in milder temperatures. It is constructed with 3-layer Gore-Tex for great weather protection. It performs highly when it comes to its waterproofing and wind-resistance. It also is treated with a DWR finish. Water simply beads up and rolls off the fabric, blocking any moisture from seeping into the material. It has a storm hood that is compatible with a helmet and provides full face coverage without hindering visibility.

Breathability and Mobility

While the Gore-Tex construction aids in its breathability, this jacket also has WaterTight pit zips that chance breathability. It’s construction also allows for freedom of motion, making it great for snowboarding and all kinds of skiing from resort slopes to backcountry explorations.

Style and Fit

One of the best features this jacket has is how well it fits. Described as a relaxed fit, it can be worn as an outer shell or a mid-layer, adding to its versatility. It has a powder skirt with snap closure that attaches to pants to further keep out the snow. It has an adjustable drawcord that requires just one hand for a better fit. Best of all is its RECCO reflector aids in search-and-rescue in case of an accident.

3. Marmot KT Component

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
96
Marmot KT Component
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
98
Breathability
95
Comfort
97
Durability
95
Weather Resistance
95
best offer for today
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Amazon Link
$237.60
Pros:
  • Very versatile for all kinds of weather conditions
  • Waterproof and durable
  • Comfortable fit
  • Removable hood
Cons:
  • Not as light as other options when worn both layers together

This versatile jacket goes from a completely insulated jacket to just a lightweight shell. It provides all the main features skiers are looking for when hitting the slopes. It has a removable liner that offers insulation for warmth, is water- and windproof to ward off the winter elements, and is breathable so working up a sweat isn’t a problem. It has pit zips for breathability and a high collar for further neck and face protection. Complete with lots of pockets and a removable storm hood, this jacket is also very comfortable.

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Weatherproofing

This ski jacket features Thermal R synthetic insulation via its removable liner. This helps to keep the body warm for those colder days spent on the slopes or when exploring around the backcountry. Its shell provides protection against the elements, with fully sealed seams and a 2-layer MemBrain fabric. This fabric is water- and windproof while also keeping the jacket breathable.

Breathability and Mobility

The Marmot MembBrain tech reduces condensation caused by sweat internally, making it a very breathable option. And because the inner layer can be removed, when things start to heat up, simply take it off and have the weather protection needed without working up a sweat. The KT Component has pit zips for added ventilation and a hood that zips off. This jacket isn’t as stretchy as the Helly Hansen Alpha 3.0 but isn’t restricting wither.

Style and Fit

It does fit better than the Alpha 3.0, tailored for those who prefer a more relaxed and comfortable fit. Added features include water-resistant zippers, hand warmer pockets, a chest pocket, and inner media pocket.

4. Helly Hansen Alpha 3.0

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.6
Helly Hansen Alpha 3.0
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
89
Breathability
89
Comfort
90
Durability
88
Weather Resistance
87
best offer for today
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Amazon Link
$450.00
Backcountry Link
$199.99
See Deal
Gear Coop
$360.00
See Deal
Pros:
  • Very insulated with enough breathability
  • Waterproof and windproof
  • Great look that is packed with features
  • Comes with RECCO Advanced Rescue system
Cons:
  • Tighter fit not loved by all
  • Pricey

An upgrade from the company’s best-selling ski jacket, the Alpha 3.0 is stylish, is packed with features and performs well. With 2-layers of fabric and 80 grams of Primaloft synthetic insulation, this ski jacket is warm and toasty. It is stretchy and form-fitting and is weather-resistant to keep the body dry when exploring in the snow. It has a detachable helmet hood, wrist gators with thumb holes and internal pockets for storage.

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Weatherproofing

This ski jacket features Primaloft synthetic insulation to keep the consumer warm for those windy downhill descents. And it really does retain heat well for a synthetic jacket, performing slighter better the Spyder Leader Jacket in this category.

It is made of a 2-layer waterproof membrane that consists of Helly Tech Professional fabric and has fully sealed seams. This does a great job at preventing water from penetrating through, performing similarly to the Arc'teryx Sabre Jacket here.

In short, the Alpha 3.0 is fully insulated in the body, sleeves, and the hood is waterproof and windproof.

Breathability and Mobility

This jacket performs just fine when it comes to breathability, but doesn’t knock it out of the park here. Of course, more customizable options like 3-in-1 jackets offer more ventilation because of removing layers, plus this jacket really is warm. That limits the amount of ventilation. With that said, it does have H2Flow System meshed pit zips to regulate temperature and get some air in and out.

Where it shines better is its mobility. It has a great stretchiness to it, a 4-way stretch to be precise that allows for that free range of motion.

Style and Fit

This jacket has one of the most body-hugging fits on this list, which could be a pro or con depending on preference. It has a snap away powder skirt, wrist gators with thumb holes, and internal pockets for storing a smartphone and goggles. It has water-resistant zippers and RECCO Advanced Rescue system in case of an emergency. It also has a detachable and adjustable hood that allows for a helmet.

5. Spyder Leader

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86.8
Spyder Leader
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
87
Breathability
87
Comfort
88
Durability
86
Weather Resistance
86
best offer for today
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Amazon Link
$344.99
Backcountry Link
$179.97
See Deal
Pros:
  • One of the warmest jackets on this list
  • One of the most breathable options
  • Comfortable with lots of mobility
  • Stylish
  • Durable and very water-resistant
Cons:
  • Fit can run big
  • A bit pricey

Spyder is known for its high-quality products, and the Leader Jacket is no exception. It is warm thanks to its 3M Thinsulate Insulation, yet allows for the mobility needed for skiing. It is durable, waterproof and is full of features worth buying this jacket for like a snap back powder skirt, velcro adjustable cuffs with gussets and lots of pockets.

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Weatherproofing

This jacket has 3M Thinsulate insulation to trap and retain body heat for those colder ski sessions. Its amount of warmth is comparable to the North Face Initiator Thermoball Triclimate, actually being a tad bit warmer.

It performs well when it comes to its water-resistance. It has a waterproof rating of 20,000mm, which rates moderate to high on the waterproof scale when comparing it to other options. Wearers can expect to stay dry this jacket. Falling down also isn’t a concern because of its other weatherproofing features. This includes a powder skirt, velcro adjustable tabs, stretch cuffs with gussets and thumb holes and an adjustable helmet-compatible hood. It also has an anti-abrasion film that increases with durability.

Breathability and Mobility

Despite being a very warm jacket, it ranks very well in the breathability department. This is part of the reason why it is such a great buy for all kinds of skiers. It allows the consumer to stay dry inside the jacket, no matter how toasty things get. It has a breathability rating of 20,000g, which is high for those unfamiliar. It also has underarm pits for added ventilation.

Its exterior material is made of stretch polyester so it does provide the mobility needed for skiing.

Style and Fit

The Spyder Leader jacket has a regular fit that isn’t too relaxed and not too tight. It has a great look, with the iconic logo and athletic appearance. It has reflective details which increase visibility in low light situations and includes lots of pockets such as an internal mesh pocket for holding goggles and a chamois lens wipe.

6. Arc’teryx Rush

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86.2
Arc’teryx Rush
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
87
Breathability
86
Comfort
88
Durability
85
Weather Resistance
85
best offer for today
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Pros:
  • Extremely waterproof
  • Durable
  • Comfortable and very breathable
Cons:
  • No insulation makes it not that warm to be worn without layers

This is a reliable ski jacket when it comes to braving out the intense winter weather. It has 3-layer Gore-Tex fabric that makes it waterproof, with fully-taped seams. It has a helmet-compatible StormHood, pit zippers, and accessible pockets. It’s also available for women as the Arc’teryx Shashka Jacket.

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Weatherproofing

This ski jacket features the holy grail of waterproofing fabrics, Gore-Tex. This offers 3 layers of protection, and as a result, it holds very well against rain, snow, sleet, and winds. Water just slides right off of the fabric. It has fully taped seams that seal off the ability for water to penetrate through and also has waterproof zippers. And while it features pit zips, even this feature has the company’s WaterTight technology. Needless to say, the skier is staying in dry when wearing this jacket.

Breathability and Mobility

Despite its durable and super protective Gore-Tex shell, the Rush Jacket is actually quite breathable and comfortable. It isn’t the lightest and most ventilated option compared to the others, but with pit zips, the consumer can better regulate their temperature. It also doesn’t feature any insulation, so it isn’t the best for really cold weather.

Style and Fit

This jacket looks exactly how a ski jacket should be. It is saltish, yet almost minimalistic and lets its high performance steal the show here. It fits well and even has a powder skirt. It has a high collar that completely covers the neck, with a contoured helmet-compatible hood. It has velcro cuffs to keep the sleeves in place over gloves. There is a left arm pocket, a small internal chest pocket, side pockets and one large mesh pocket inside.

7. The North Face Initiator Thermoball Triclimate

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84.6
The North Face Initiator Thermoball Triclimate
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
85
Breathability
85
Comfort
86
Durability
84
Weather Resistance
83
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$329.00
Pros:
  • 3-in-1 jacket makes it versatile
  • Warm, yet option to wear shell for milder temps
  • Available for men and women
  • Works great for alpine skiing
Cons:
  • Heavier than other options on this list.

This 3-in-1 ski jacket is versatile, warm when the temperatures drop, yet is ideal also for milder conditioners with the shedding of its inner layers. Its shell is waterproof and windproof, has a helmet-compatible hood and underarm vents. It has lots of pockets and has a fit that is made for alpine sports.

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Weatherproofing

This jacket will keep the consumer warm and cozy during winter sports. It is insulated with PrimaLoft ThermoBall insulation that doesn’t make the jacket bulky. While this is great for blustery weather, it means it is a heavier jacket compares to more lightweight options like the Outdoor Research Skyward Jacks and Strafe Cham 2. While the inner layer provides the warmth, the outer layer is all about waterproofing functionalities. Its shell is water-and windproof, with fully sealed seams.

Breathability and Mobility

When worn together, this jacket really is warm enough to keep the chill away when going downhill or when in wet conditions. Remove the insulating layer for milder days and increased breathability. It has underarm vents for added airflow and a snap-down powder skirt.

Style and Fit

This jacket is designed for both skiing and snowboarding, with a fit that put alpine-specific mobility in the forefront. This means the consumer gets lots of freedom to move. It also has lots of storage, with dual chest pockets, hand warmer pockets, internal mesh pockets, a media pocket, goggle pocket and wrist pocket.

8. Marmot Whitecliff

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
74.8
Marmot Whitecliff
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
76
Breathability
75
Comfort
75
Durability
73
Weather Resistance
75
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$266.75
Pros:
  • Performs well in snow and rain
  • Lots of pockets
  • Removable hood
Cons:
  • Powder skirt doesn’t zip off

This 2-layer waterproof shell is great for the slopes because it is waterproof and breathable, with fully taped seams to keep the wet weather away. It is also breathable with vents to allow for airflow. It has an adjustable fit, a removable hood and is available in a few color options.

Read more

Weatherproofing

This ski jacket has a 2-layer construction that has fully taped seams. It is made of MemBrain polyester material, a technology that offers weather protection while still being breathable. This finish keeps its waterproofness long-term, with and gas a 10,000 mm minimum. it has water-resistant zippers, and a zip-off storm hood, complete with a brim to keep the snowy rain mix out of the eyes and face. Its powder skirt adds to its warmth and makes sure no snow gets inside after taking a tumble.

Breathability and Mobility

As mentioned above, the laminate provides lots of breathability without sacrificing on its water-resistance. The marmot MembBrain tech reduces condensation caused by sweat internally, so the wearer won’t catch a chill when speed skating through the snow. It also has core vent to release heat when going uphill or really working up a sweat.

Style and Fit

This jacket has a regular fit and has a look that allows it to be worn every day in the winter. It has slapped chest pockets, as well as zippered hand pockets and a zippered sleeve pocket. It also has a separate pocket with mesh for googles and a ThemoCell phone pocket for holding a smartphone. The cuffs are adjustable via velcro and it has an elastic drawcord hem for a tighter fit.

9. Strafe Cham 2

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
72.6
Strafe Cham 2
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
75
Breathability
73
Comfort
73
Durability
72
Weather Resistance
70
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$498.95
Pros:
  • Lightweight and packable
  • Breathes well
  • Extremely waterproof
  • Stretchy fabric that moves well
  • Looks great
Cons:
  • Might be too light for those look for extra warmth

This is one of the lightest ski jackets on the market. Lightweight and packable, this is a great option for alpine touring in the Rockies. The jacket has a minimalistic design, with a great fit. It is all about the movement, so wear this when hiking in the backcountry. It is also waterproof and breathable, with features that include a helmet-compatible adjustable hood.

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Weatherproofing

This ski jacket has fully sealed seams to keep moisture away. It is made with Polartec NeoShell fabric that makes this a high-performance ski jacket when it comes to its waterproof function. The Cham 2 has the same amount of waterproof capability as a rain jacket. It has an adjustable and removable powder skirt that consists of a lycra stretch panel and elastic that further keeps the cold, snow, rain and wind away. It has a built-in helmet-compatible hood that has 3 points of adjustment and a moldable visor to keep the neck and face protected from the elements.

Breathability and Mobility

The Cham 2 is perfect for backcountry skiing because of how well it moves. it is lightweight, stretchy and ranks pretty high in the breathability category too. That’s thanks to its breathable Neoshell fabric, but it also has put zips that further aids in ventilation.

Style and Fit

This ski jacket is among the best because of how light, yet durable it is. It fits well, with a hem drawcord providing that extra amount of customization in how it hugs the body. It has a chamois fleece-lined collar and chin guard for added comfort and seamless shoulders. There is a pass pocket on the upper sleeve, along with a media mesh pocket, and chest pockets for lots of storage. It comes in three different two-toned color options that look stylish and sporty.

10. Outdoor Research Skyward

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
72
Outdoor Research Skyward
Amazon Link
Water Resistance
70
Breathability
75
Comfort
75
Durability
70
Weather Resistance
70
best offer for today
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Pros:
  • Weatherproof, yet breathable
  • Lots of pocket space
  • Stretchy with a full range of motion
Cons:
  • Two-way zipper easily gets caught on fabric

One of the best things about this ski jacket is the amount of flexibility it has. Allowing for a free range of movement, this soft-shell is lightweight and very breathable. It doesn’t have any insulation, so it's not the best for those really cold days, but works well as an outer layer. It offers weather protection, made of AscentShell fabric that performs well. It has an internal front storm flap, two-way zipper and hooks-and loop sleeves for the thumbs.

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Weatherproofing

The Skyward Jacket is made of AscentShell fabric performing just as well as options made of Gore-Tex when it comes to keeping the consumer dry. It has fully taped seams so no water is getting through. It’s best used for downhill skiing, with features like a drawcord hem and elastic cuffs that keep the snow out.

Breathability and Mobility

This ski jacket has the perfect mix being weatherproof while providing enough stretch to actually be free to move. Its fabric has a nice stretch to it that provides great rang elf motion, complete with articulated elbows. The AcentShell is a breathable material in its own right, but it also has core vents that provide ample airflow and temperature regulation.

Style and Fit

This is a nice looking jacket, available in multiple colors, and comes to hip-length with its relaxed fit. It has a wire-brimmed hood that stays put and is compatible with a helmet. It includes a two-way zipper and hoop-and-loop straps that go around the thumbs at the sleeves for extra coverage. It has easy access side pockets that sit above a hip belt pack. It has a chest pocket that is big enough to store gloves, as fellas tow large internal pockets. This makes it a storage dram for backcountry skiers.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Water Resistance

A good running jacket is one that will help you stay dry in rainy and wet conditions!

When you are out in the cold weather of winter, snow and ice are to be expected. And this means you will likely get wet, either from natural melting or from the snow ad ice melting as it is exposed to your body heat. The last thing you want is to get dusted with snow from your skiing just to have it melt and soak through your layers leaving you cold for the rest of your outing! Having a ski jacket with good water proofing and a durable water-resistant design is the best way to keep yourself warm and dry on those winter ski excursions!

The skier wants to stay dry, free from wet snow caused discomfort and a chill. That’s why having water-resistant capabilities is of the utmost importance. it’s a good idea to look for options that include a DWR coating to repel water.

For the most part, all ski jackets (especially the ones on this list) are water-resistant. It’s also important to consider other features that help keep the consumer dry. This includes a hood, high collar, and adjustable cuffs—all features that protect against gusts of wind as well.

Breathability

Having a ski jacket with moisture wicking properties and breathable materials can keep you comfortable while you run!

While most runners and hikers think about warmth and insulation when looking for their jackets and winter gear, they often forget to consider the importance of breathability. There is such a thing as being too hot and if you are getting soaked with sweat while out skiing you are not going to have as much fun as you could. Breathable fabrics allow you to maintain good body heat retention while still allowing cooler air to penetrate to a small degree so you do not over heat. Good breathability ensures you stay comfortable during your skiing adventures!

When a person exerts a lot of energy, their body heats up and triggers a sweat response to help keep them cool. In cold weather, athletes still sweat when they’re working hard and exerting a lot of effort. The difference is that in cold weather this sweat can cause the body temperature to drop dangerously and too quickly as the person cools down.

Having a ski jacket with moisture wicking properties and breathable materials can keep this issue to a minimum. All of the jackets that made our list provide superior ventilation and features that increase breathability.

Comfort

Without a comfortable fit is that compliments your workouts, no jacket will be worth much at all!

It is important that the ski jacket you choose is comfortable when you put it on as well as when the time comes to take it off. You do not want to be struggling with a poor fitting of uncomfortable jacket while you are out on the slopes. A jacket is only as good as the way you wear it and if your ski jacket is not comfortable you are not going to want to wear it and that means it will not do you any good. We made sure to consider the features of each jacket on our list to find the ones that are the most comfortable and also considered key questions to help with the selection process!

How well does this jacket fit? Is it comfortable to wear? The jacket needs to be flexible and stretch well so that movement isn’t restricted. Many ski jackets include features that are customizable and adjustable such as removable hoods, adjustable waists, and wrist gussets. These all add to the value and comfort of the jacket.

Durability

The best ski jackets are built to last and are designed to help you get the most out of your activities.

Of course, if you are going to invest your hard-earned money into ski gear you want it to last and perform as it is meant to. Durability is one of the most important factors to be considered when searching for ski jackets that will hold up to the wear and tear of your outdoor adventures. Both in the fabrics used and style designs used you will want to make sure your ski jacket is durable and will last you for a long time to come. You get what you pay for so remember that investing more money upfront often means getting better quality and durability from the start!

The best ski jackets are built to last. And since many are costly, it better be made of high-quality materials and includes things like ripstop fabric to prevent rips and tears and add to its overall durability. The jacket should last well beyond one season.

There are many that are available for a more affordable or mid-range price, so don’t think that the more expensive ones mean it is better for performance and quality. However, sometimes this is the case. But this also means the jacket is more durable and long-lasting, so it becomes a worthy investment for those who ski regularly and throughout the year.

Weather Resistance

It’s important to find gear that can protect you against the harsh climate while staying light enough to allow for full mobility.

One of the biggest issues facing avid skiers is the brutal temperatures they often can encounter while climbing that mountain and enjoying that thrilling ride back down. Jackets are the first and primary line of defense to protect you against cold temperatures and the harsh weather that may come your way. Ski jackets are designed for these kinds of situations but you still need to make sure you find ones that have the best cold protection available. That is what we wanted to help you find with this guide to the best ski jackets on the market!

Most skiing is done in the winter and at higher elevations—meaning that it’s going to be brutally cold at times. It’s important to find gear that can protect you against the harsh climate while staying light enough to allow for full mobility. We looked at jackets that used superior forms of insulation to keep the heat in and the cold and moisture out.

Primaloft was a popular choice, as it provided the most protection while still remaining lightweight and allowing for full mobility. Synthetic materials are usually preferable, and many of the jackets on this list take advantage of their superior durability and protection.

Expert Interviews & Opinions

Most Important Criteria (According to our experts opinion)
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Water Resistance
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More than a Winter Jacket

Ski jackets have many features that set them apart from regular winter jackets. Good quality jackets have features such as waist skirts and wrist gaiters to keep wind and snow out, especially if you happen to go down while skiing. They are designed to keep you warm while allow you to let out some of your body heat if you get warm, through ventilation zippers.

A quality Ski Jacket will keep you Dry

A good jacket should be moisture resistant if not completely waterproof. Whether you are skiing, snowboarding, or doing any other winter activity, you will at some point be exposed to the snow. Your jacket needs to keep you dry so you stay warm and can endure the elements.

Value over cost always

If there is one thing seasoned skiers know it is the importance of a quality gear- especially a good quality jacket. If you are able to, you should seriously consider investing as much as possible into your ski jacket from the start. You get what you pay for so you will want to start off with the best jacket you possibly can afford so it will last longer and keep you warm and dry! Buying the cheapest jacket to save money upfront will actually cost you money when you replace it sooner and when it doesn't keep you as warm either. So always consider the value of your jacket and invest in quality upfront!

Other Factors to Consider

Style

Ski Jacket Style

There are different skiing styles that call for different ski jacket needs. The popular style jacket styles include shells (soft or hardshell), insulated jackets and 3-in-1 jackets. Your preference may be influenced by the type of sport you plan on participating in. Some jackets will be made to accommodate helmets, and others will be designed with other gear in mind. A style with multiple layers can also mean a more customized ski jacket that can last well into other seasons.

Shells

The most common ski jacket for resort skiing and hitting the slopes is a hardshell. These options are known for its waterproof capabilities. They are breathable and great as an outer layer, but uninsulated. This means bundling up with warm base and mid-layers for colder days. They are generally flexible, breathable and lightweight.

Softshells are made of fabric that stretches and like the name suggests, is soft. These are more ideal for milder weather conditions where keeping warm isn’t the main factor. These are lightweight and still, have water-resistant properties. There are also technical shells on the market. These are minimalistic, yet suited for serious skiers because of its fully taped seams that keep moisture out and durable fabrics.

Insulated Ski Jackets
This option is warmer than shells since it is equipped with some form of insulation. Insulation can be options like down or synthetic like Primaloft or Thinsulate. Synthetic insulation is less expensive than the alternative and stays lofty and dry when wet. These are the best for colder, winter conditions.

3-in-1 Jackets

This is the most versatile option, perfect for those who prefer to layer up and remove layers with the changing temperature. 3-in-1 jackets consist of an inner layer that provides warmth, featuring fleece or down. This layer suppers into the ouster shell that has water-resistant properties and wind protection.

Features

Some individuals prefer minimalistic options, whereas others go for the feature-heavy options. It is still worth considering buying a ski jacket that has to stand out features. This includes RECCO reflectors that are integrated into the fabric that allow rescue organizations to find lance victims in case of an accident.

Other features aren’t life-saving but can enhance comfort, warmth, and performance. This includes things like pit zips for added ventilation, wrist gaiters (hand liners that are built-in and have holes for the thumbs that further keep the cold out when worn alone or with gloves), and a powder skirt (or powder skirt) which keeps snow from reaching the back by using an elasticated band in the jacket, loops that attaching to pants, or snaps or zippers that creates a seal.

Bottom Line

There are so many big-name brands on the market specializing in sports gear that it can be difficult to know where to look. Ski jackets come in so many different styles, sizes, and materials. This can be overwhelming, but it’s also fantastic for those who want a more customized product. It’s important to understand exactly what you’ll be using it for. Skiing isn’t all about going downhill in a straight line. There are plenty of variations on the sport than can change the type of gear necessary. A good ski jacket can be an asset in any cold weather activity, but mobility and durability also need to factor in.

We looked at the way a skier moves, the weather that they’re exposed to, and their recommendations when putting together our list of the top ski jackets. The following criteria can help you understand how these products were rated, and why they made the cut.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: Are ski jackets good to use for all winter sports?

a:

Ski jackets are extremely versatile and can keep you warm during a variety of different activities. They aren’t bulky, provide superior insulation, and are durable enough for heavy use. They make a great addition to sports like snowboarding, snowmobiling, cold weather running, and anything else outdoors that requires a full range of motion.

q: Are ski jackets warm?

a:

Some ski jackets provide enough warmth for colder temperatures, whereas other more lightweight and breathable. Look for an option with insulation for warmth. The warmest ski jackets contain insulation, with Primaloft or Thinsulate being the most popular for its warmth, breathability and weather protection. Consider a 3-in-1 jacket for the versatility of insulation that is removable.

q: How do you wash a ski jacket?

a:

Some jackets may be washing machine, but check the product detail or contact the company for confirmation. Use a gentle detergent and wash in cold water. Leave out to dry flat in a well ventilated area.

q: What should I wear under my jacket?

a:

When skiers are out and about it is important that they stay warm and dry but it is also important that they do not get too hot. The best way to ensure good body heat retention and air flow is to dress in layers. Several layers under a ski jacket it a good way to stay comfortable because if you get too hot you can always remove one layer and put the jacket back on and continue on your way. Likewise, bringing along a thin additional layer is also a good idea in case the temperatures drop more than you expected and you need to add a layer under your jacket.

Sources

  1. Cat Weakley , Everything you need to know about buying a ski jacket, News Website
  2. Patrick Law, How to Choose a Ski or Snowboard Jacket, Outdoors Website
  3. PrimaLoft, RIMALOFT® INSULATION THE WORLD'S BEST DOWN ALTERNATIVE, Company Website
  4. RECCO, RECCO Sar The Future Of Search And Rescue, Company Website
  5. Marmot, Marmot MemBrain, Company Wesbite
  6. Gore Tex, GORE-TEX® Pro products Engineered for the extreme, Company Website