Surrender to the elements? We don't plan on it. When Mother Nature tries to bully us back inside, we arm ourselves with a Title Nine womens jacket and take charge of our own microclimate. Whether we need a lightweight hooded raincoat that performs double duty as a windbreaker for wet weather running outings, or an insulated parka that keeps the cold air out, we've got the versatile winter jackets women need to keep going even when the temps drop.
How to choose an insulated winter jacket?
Whether we're climbing boulders, hiking trails, or strolling through urban streets, we need womens insulated jackets that keep up with our winter adventures. But with choices that range from down jackets to lightweight puffers and quilted fleece coats, it's hard to know how to choose the right winter coat to face the cold. Here are a few things to consider when shopping for womens winter jackets, from fur-trimmed anoraks and parkas to midweight womens puffy jackets.
Insulated jackets aren't all the same—and you can't always tell a coat's warmth from its thickness. The key is to look at the insulation type. Each type has its own pros and cons, so it's important to find the right insulation for your activity.
- Down Insulation is made from the tiny feathers of ducks and geese, and is a great, natural insulator. Pros: Down jackets are super warm, lightweight, and packable. Cons: Goose down is slow drying and not great at sweat wicking, so down jackets and parkas aren't a great coat choice if you're planning on doing a lot of sweating or encountering any rain, sleet, or snow during your outing. Synthetic Insulation What is it?
- Synthetic insulation comes in a ton of different types—from ultrawarm premium options, like PrimaLoft, to budget materials that don't always keep us warm. Don't be fooled by a puffer coat's thickness—many of the warmest synthetic fills use superfine fibers that keep our coats and parkas slim while we stay warm. Pros: Synthetics are quick-drying, moisture-wicking, and still perform when damp. They can also be a more budget-friendly option than down jackets. Cons: Synthetic insulation is heavier, less packable, and doesn't last as long as goose down.
From down-filled insulated puffer jackets to waterproof raincoats and high-performance parkas, we have workout jackets for women who move. But with so many different features, it's hard to know what coat or parka will fit your winter workout best.
- Hoods: Hoods can give women extra protection from cold air, but can also be an unwieldy extra piece of workout clothing when doing high-impact workouts like running. Our favorite winter jackets have removable hoods that can be zipped or snapped on or off depending on the forecast and our workout.
- Waterproof construction: Waterproof outer shells, often made of Gore-Tex or other water-resistant materials make great raincoats when wet weather hits.
- Zippers: Whether you choose a pullover windbreaker or a full-zip jacket like a zip-front parka, zippers are key. A two-way zipper on a winter coat can let you adjust your coat from both the top and the bottom, while a zip-off hood can give you more options. Waterproof winter coats like raincoats often have a water-resistant zipper that keeps moisture out of nooks and crannies.
- Pockets: Different pocket types serve different purposes, from hand-warming kangaroo pouches and hand pockets to zippered pockets of all different sizes. Interior pockets can be great for stashing valuables we want to keep close.
- Weight and Compressibility: Two key components of a must-have puffer coat are how well it warms and how small it packs. Finding the perfect balance means we need to know what we're doing and where we're going. Budget-friendly ultra-warm puffer jackets tend to be on the heavier, less packable side, while puffer coats made with premium fibers like PrimaLoft deliver bigtime insulation in pack-it-anywhere styles.
- Shell materials: The outer layer of your winter coat makes a huge difference in how and when you'll wear it. Consider factors like rain protection, windproof materials, breathability, durability, comfort, and activity when choosing a jacket or parka.
What jacket features are best for active outdoor workouts?
From skiing to running and everything in between, there are different types of coats to consider when finding your perfect winter workout jacket.
- Shell Jackets: Our go-to outerwear choice when we're planning a serious winter adventure. Built to go over other layers or workout gear, such as a quilted vest
or puffer jacket, shells are built to withstand the elements: wind, rain, snow, and sleet. What they lack in insulated warmth, they make up for in packability, versatility, and layerability.
- Softshell Jackets: The perfect choice for shoulder season, or as a mid-layer during winter, softshell coats usually include a balance of warmth from cold air and protection from wind and wet weather. Softshell coats are usually highly breathable, which makes them a great addition to activewear collections for athletic women.
- Insulated Jackets: From down-filled performance coats to knee-length puffers, insulated jackets are a great choice for everyday use when the temps get cold. How warm an insulated coat is depends a lot on its fill power, so make sure you find the insulation type that works for you.
- Fleece Coats and Jackets: Ultra-soft and oh-so-snuggly, fleece and sherpa lined jackets and vests make a great top layer for fall and spring weather or the perfect insulated mid layer for cold-weather activities. Layer them on top of a base layer or under a down coat or other insulated jackets for full protection from winter's temps.
- Casual Coats: From hooded jackets and shackets to hoodies and track jackets, casual coats can be almost anything at all. We like to have a few different choices to keep our options open when we're heading out the door for another cold-weather adventure.