Best Waterproof Jackets For Women 2022 - Outdoors Magic

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Waterproof Jackets

Best Waterproof Jackets For Women 2022

Here are the waterproof jackets for women that have impressed our team of testers the most...

When looking to choose the right women’s waterproof jacket it’s important to consider the type of activity or activities you’ll be needing it for and the environments and seasons you’ll be using it in. For Munro bagging in the Highlands for instance, the best waterproof jacket for women will be one that’s tough and able to cope with very wet weather and cold temperatures, whereas if you need something for trail running in Spain during summer, then you’ll want something that’ll keep the rain out but that will be light and packable as it will probably remain in your bag for the duration. In assessing the suitability of a particular jacket, the main factors you want to consider are weight, packability, durability and most importantly, the levels of weather protection and breathability.

There are three different types of waterproof protection to consider: membrane lined, PU coated and wax proofed. They all have various advantages and disadvantages over each other, particularly when it comes to breathability, but the most popular form tends to be membranes which will offer good waterproof protection while still providing a level of breathability. Check out our Buyers Guide to Waterproof Jackets for more on the differences between these.

Related: Best Down Jackets for Women

Related: Best Women’s Walking Boots

Technical features worth considering, and that we have addressed in these reviews, are how well the hood holds (if it lifts off at the slightest bit of wind it can be useless), pocket options and whether any of them will hold an OS map, how the zips are protected (if they’re not waterproof is there at least a storm flap?) and also adjustment options on the hem, neck and cuffs.

There’s also the fit. Baggy and loose means ventilation and also gives the options for layering underneath whereas a close trim can be more aerodynamic in strong winds and can also offer a lower weight overall.

Best Waterproof Jackets for Women in 2022

  • Halti Next Generation DryMaxx Shell – Best In Test Waterproof Jacket
  • CimAlp Performance 3F
  • Berghaus Changste
  • Columbia OutDry Ex Reign
  • Arc’teryx Beta LT
  • OMM Kamleika
  • BlackYak Caracu
  • Klattermusen Allgron
  • Patagonia Dual Aspect
  • Patagonia Storm Racer
  • Rab Valiance
  • Gore ShakeDry
  • The North Face Apex Flex FutureLight

 

BEST BUY: Halti Next Generation DryMaxx Shell

Price: £249
Weight:
600g
Best for:
Countryside and hill walks
Key attributes: Eco-friendly, great quality

If you’re after a good-looking, well-made jacket for countryside rambles and three-season hillwalking, Finnish brand Halti’s Next Generation shell would be a good choice. Not only is the jacket made using PFC-free recycled materials but it’s also fully recyclable and can be easily repaired (whether that’s by the user or by Halti), with the zips, tabs and panels all easy enough to remove and replace if they happen to wear out. That makes it a very sustainable garment.

It provides plenty of coverage in wet weather too, with a longer hem, an adjustable hood, a hem drawcord and Velcro cuff tabs. The main zip has double storm flaps to prevent leaks.

Full Specifications

Women’s sizes: EU 32-48 (also available in a men’s fit: XS-4XL) / 2L Polyester DryMaxx Ultimate Pro fabric / Fixed hood with roll down packing / Adjustable hem and cuff flaps / Large pockets / All seams taped / Reflective details and Halti branding / Perfluorocarbon (PFC) free

Read our full Halti Next Generation Women’s DryMaxx Shell review.

BUY NOW: HALTI.COM

 

CimAlp Performance 3F Jacket

Price: £137.99
Weight:
530g
Best for:
Hiking, general outdoor use
Key attributes: Versatile, practical, comfortable

CimAlp’s Performance 3F jacket is a versatile, practical and great value everyday outdoor/hiking jacket. It employs CimAlp’s own fabric technology, namely 3-layer HardShell with a windproof nylon face fabric and a waterproof-breathable membrane. Construction is commendably eco-friendly, employing organic dyeing, bluesign-certified manufacturing and a PFC-free DWR Teflon EcoElite treatment derived from renewable resources. That’s a tick in the sustainability box then.

The 3-layer fabric is very comfortable, with a pleasant next-to-skin feel compared to most 2.5-layer jackets. It’s well-made and finished nicely, so we’d also expect this jacket to be more durable than lighter alternatives. You get plenty of features, including water-resistant zippers, ventilation zips under the arms, two handwarmer pockets, two inside pockets and an adjustable hood and hem. Our favourite feature is the adjustable cuffs, since they have a little stretch for a tighter fit to lock out chilly gusts. It means they fit snugly over wrists but also over gloves without the sleeves riding up and exposing any skin.

Full Specifications

Women’s sizes: XS-XXL / 3L HardShell fabric / Ventilation zips under the arms / 2 handwarmer pockets / 2 inside pockets / Adjustable hood / Adjustable cuffs / Windproof stretch cuff at wrists / Adjustable hem.

Selected for our Outdoor 100 2021/22. Read our full CimAlp Performance 3F Jacket review.

BUY NOW: CIMALP.CO.UK

 
 

Berghaus Changste Jacket

Price: £145
Weight: 375g
Best For: Hiking, backpacking, climbing Key attributes:
Key attributes: High-spec Gore-tex fabrics, great stretch and durability

Berghaus have used a total of three different Gore-tex fabrics on this jacket, and the result is something that’s extremely technical, protective and functional. It features a helmet-compatible good, arm articulation, two-way zip plus useful pocket options and has clever vents tucked away throughout it to prevent you from getting clammy. “I couldn’t believe how light this is considering how well it coped with the heavy rain I wore it though,” said Outdoors Magic gear tester, Anna Blackwell. “It’s incredibly breathable and I particularly like the stretch fabric at the cuffs.”

Full Specifications

Also available in a men’s version / Featuring Gore-Tex PACLITE PLUS, Gore-Tex Active Shell and Topo Stretch / storm vent on shoulders / two-way zip with button at the base / elasticated sleeves / YKK Aquaguard zips / bluesign approved.

Read our full Berghaus Changste Jacket review.

BUY NOW: BERGHAUS.COM

 

Columbia OutDry Ex Reign

Price: £155
Weight: 380g
Best for: Hiking and backpacking
Key attributes: Clever waterproof tech that never ‘wets out’, good eco-creds

This is the latest and lightest jacket in Columbia’s innovative OutDry range of jackets. Its cleverly made waterproof membrane is on the outside of the jacket instead of being sandwiched between an inner and outer layer as is the common practice. By getting rid of that outer fabric, they’ve completely removed the risk of the jacket’s shell wetting out and causing the waterproof membrane to lose its breathability. The added bonus is that with this is that it’s very eco-friendly method.

“It offers some excellent weather protection,” said our tester Hannah Morris. “It’s so good to have that constant beading when moisture hits it. I like the amount of ventilation potential as well.”

Full Specifications

Available for men and women / OutDry waterproof membrane / 100% nylon ripstop, 100% polyester mesh / adjustable hood with visor / mesh handwarmer pockets / drop tail.

Read our full Columbia OutDry Ex Reign Jacket review.

BUY NOW: COLUMBIASPORTSWEAR.CO.UK

 

Arc’teryx Beta LT

Price: £350
Weight: 315g
Best for: Climbing, mountaineering, hiking and backpacking
Key attributes: Quality build and durable, breathable materials

Lightweight but still durable, waterproof but still breathable, the Beta LT couldn’t be much better. Canadian brand Arc’teryx are specialists in mountaineering, climbing and snow sports, so you can expect plenty of features designed to help you through the rough stuff – features like a helmet compatible storm hood, protective water-resistant zips and glove-friendly cord locks. It’s top-level stuff and unsurprisingly comes at the top-level price of £420.

Full Specifications

Available for men / Gore-Tex Pro 3L Shell / helmet compatible, fully adjustable storm hood / Cohaesive cordlocks / harness friendly / chin guard with microsuede / drop tail / adjustable hem / handwarmer pockets / internal chest pocket with zip.

Read our full Arc’teryx Beta LT Jacket review.

BUY NOW: ARCTERYX.COM

 

OMM Kamleika

Price: £190
Weight: 225g
Best for: trail and ultra running
Key attributes: Stretchy, breathable and quiet fabric

This offering from the mountain marathon specialists is made from a waterproof fabric that’s lightweight and that also has a bit of stretch to it. We’ve tried it out in a number of jackets that use it and it’s never failed us. One for the runners, OMM’s jacket has a practical design to help you comfortably and quickly cover ground in bad weather. It has an aerodynamic close fit, pockets that double up as vents, thumb loops to stop the sleeves from riding up and a hood that holds closely and comfortably.

Full Specifications

Available in a men’s version / 20,000mm hydro head / 4-way stretch – YKK Aquaguard zip / fully adjustable peaked hood / reflective detail / adaptable cuffs / zipped hand pockets / reflective detail / drop tail / available in black red or purple.

Read our full OMM Kamleika Jacket review.

BUY NOW: THEOMM.COM

 

Black Yak Caracu Jacket

Price: £235
Weight: 285g
Best for: Hiking, trekking, summer climbing
Key attributes: Lightweight, packable, protective

The Black Yak Caracu is a lightweight but fully-featured mountain shell that is easy to stash in a pack but protective enough to fend off everything from light drizzle to a full-on downpour. It’s the quintessential outdoors all-rounder; a versatile multi-activity shell for three-season hiking, trekking, mountaineering and climbing. The Gore-Tex Paclite Plus waterproof-breathable membrane works well whether you’re out in cold, dry conditions or trekking in hot and humid weather.

It’s also light and packable enough to be a good ‘just in case’ jacket on day hikes or multi-day trips, but protective enough to fend off wild weather from spring through autumn. Tipping the scales at 285g for a women’s medium, it offers a high level of weather protection with only a small weight penalty. As such, it’s a viable choice for lightweight backpacking and alpine climbing too.

In terms of features, there’s a large, helmet-compatible hood with three-point adjustment and a laminated brim to keep rain from dripping down onto your face. The two-way main zip is a highly water-resistant YKK Aquaguard reverse coil design, as are those that are used for the two hand pockets. There are also two-way pit zips to help you dump heat fast. The rear of the jacket has a pronounced drop tail for added rear coverage, while the hem and cuffs are all adjustable.

Full Specifications

Sizes XS-XL / 2-layer Gore-Tex Paclite Plus waterproof-breathable membrane / Helmet compatible hood / Three point hood adjustment / Laminated hood brim / YKK AQUAGUARD Reverse Coil Double Slider Centre Front Zip / Double Slider Underarm Ventilation Zippers / Drop tail design / Two hand pockets with laminated YKK AQUAGUARD zipper closure / Adjustable hem.

Selected for our Outdoor 100 2021/22. Read our full Black Yak Caracu Jacket review.

BUY NOW: GLOBAL.BLACKYAK.COM

 

Klättermusen Allgron 2.0

Price: £450
Weight: 625g
Best for: Climbing, mountaineering, hillwalking, hiking
Key attributes: Eco-friendly, high-spec, well-built

This jacket is aimed at mountain-loving climbers, with features designed for technical use. This includes RECCO reflectors in case of avalanche, while the pockets and main zip, for example, have been deliberately positioned so as to not interfere with a climbing harness and the arms are articulated to allow high, unhindered reaches. You also get a 3D-adjustable peaked hood and underarm ventilation. The sleeve cuffs feature adjustable toggles and elastic sleeve ends, so they can be worn over the wrist or as little thumb loops to help the sleeves stay put.

The Klättermusen Allgron 2.0 is made from Ultramid Biomass Balanced Polyamide, which is a more sustainable way to produce synthetic fabrics. It also has a PFC-free durable water repellent coating. The fabric has a slight bit of stretch to it but it also feels hardy – you can sense it’ll stand up to most abrasion and ultimately last a long time.

Full Specifications

Unisex XS-XXL / 3L Cutan made from 50% Ultramid Bio-Mass Balanced Polyamide and 50% Polyamide / bluesign approved fabric / PFC-free / water column rating: 20,000 mm, MVTR: > 20,000 g/m/24h / fixed adjustable peaked hood / venting zips underarms / RECCO reflector.

Read our full Klättermusen Women’s Allgron 2.0 jacket review

BUY NOW: KLATTERMUSEN.COM

 

Patagonia Dual Aspect

Price: £450
Weight: 465g
Best for: Technical assaults, stormy weather, alpine climbing
Key attributes: Eco-friendly, fully-featured, protective, stormproof 

In an era of so-called ‘green-washing’ by many consumer brands, it’s refreshing to think that Patagonia walks the walk as well as talking the talk. The latest Dual Aspect jacket is a case in point, employing a 3-layer H2No Performance Standard fabric made from a 100% recycled nylon ripstop face with a slick jersey backer, a waterproof/breathable PU-based membrane and a PFC-free durable water repellent finish. The garment is also Fair Trade Certified sewn in Vietnam, with the membrane supplied by Toray industries in Japan. Both factories are audited and monitored for their ethical standards.

All the details that you’d expect in a technical mountain shell are present and correct. That includes a helmet-compatible hood with a laminated visor and reinforced brim, plus two-way adjustment. There’s a two-way main zip, two chest pockets with storm flaps; two watertight handwarmer pockets, two-way pit zips for ventilation, engineered underarm gussets, low-profile Velcro cuffs, a hem drawcord and a built-In RECCO avalanche reflector. All that in a shell that tips the scales at under 500g.

Full Specifications

Eco-friendly brand / 3-layer H2No Performance Standard fabric made from 100% recycled nylon ripstop face / waterproof-breathable PU-based membrane / PFC-free DWR finish / Fair Trade Certified / helmet-compatible hood / laminated visor / two-way main zip / two chest pockets with storm flaps / watertight handwarmer poackets / two-way pit zips / underarm gussets / Velcro cuffs / hem drawcord /built-in RECCO avalanche reflector / 30-denier ECONYL nylon face fabric. 

Selected for our Green Gear Guide 2021/22 – Read our full Patagonia Dual Aspect jacket review. 

BUY NOW: EU.PATAGONIA.COM

Patagonia Storm Racer

Price: £220
Weight: 173g
Best for: Trail running, fast and light hiking
Key attributes: Durable, waterproof, useful features

This jacket has been designed with trail runners in mind, but it would also be a sensible choice for a fast and light hiking trip.  The reasonably tough face fabric and impressive waterproof qualities mean that the Storm Racer can deliver the goods even with a heavy pack on (unlike other running-specific jackets). We took this jacket on a range of trips, both hiking and trail running, and it performed impressively.

We particularly liked the unusual, two zipped design. By throwing this jacket on when wearing a trail vest, the two zips allow you to fold down the front collar of the jacket, improving ventilation and providing access to your hydration flasks.

Full Specifications

Women’s sizes XS-XL, men’s XS-XL / Featherweight H2No recycled nylon ripstop / double-zipper entry / adjustable hood / adjustable, low-bulk elastic cuffs / integrated stuffsack / Fair Trade certified sewn.

BUY NOW: EU.PATAGONIA.COM

 

Rab Valiance

Price: £320
Weight: 615g
Best for: Climbing, hiking
Key attributes: Waterproof and warm

We’ve thrown something a bit different into the mix here. This isn’t a conventional hard shell. Instead, you get two-for-one with the Rab Valiance: a down jacket that also happens to be a fully waterproof shell. It uses an 800 fill power quality down which is housed within a fully waterproof construction involving a smart Pertex Shield outer and fully taped seams. It’s not the most packable of jackets but it’ll prove very handy for wet and cold evenings at camp, or for long and cold days where the rain just won’t go away.

Full Specifications

Available in a mens version / Pertex Shield outer / 100% nylon inner / 800 Fill Power European Goose Down (160g) / Nikwax Hydrophobic treatment / synthetic filled helmet compatible hood  with wired peak / 2 hand warmer pockets / internal valuables pocket / drawcord adjustment on hood and hem / stuffsack.

Read our full Rab Valiance Jacket review.

BUY FROM  

 

Gore ShakeDry Jacket

Price: £260
Weight: 118g
Best for: Running
Key attributes: Super light and breathable

ShakeDry by Gore features an impressive new form of waterproofing that gets rid of the problem of your jacket ‘wetting out’. That is to say they’ve done away with the outer shell fabric you normally see on a waterproof and left the membrane exposed on the outside. As well as giving you permanent moisture beading, this development also makes for a very light and very breathable jacket that’s absolutely ideal for wearing during wet weather runs.

Related: Best Waterproof Overtrousers

“I wore this in the Brecon Beacons while it was bucketing down and it was very impressive,” said our tester Nic Hardy. “You could see the moisture beading right off it and it was also noticeably very breathable and without any issues on that front.”

Full Specifications

Available in a men’s version also / close fitting hood / Gore-Tec Active membrane / reinforced and elasticated hem / front zip pocket doubles as a stow-away pocket.

Read our full Gore R7 ShakeDry Jacket Review

BUY NOW: GOREWEAR.COM

 

The North Face Apex Flex FutureLight

Price: £270
Weight: 450g
Best for: Three-season hiking, hillwalking and scrambling
Key attributes: Comfortable, innovative

The FutureLight part of this jacket’s name refers to its membrane, which is rather special. In fact, The North Face have called it the most breathable waterproof fabric ever created and they might just be right there. We’ve tried a number of products that feature it over the past year, and we’ve been very impressed. It really is breathable – and it gives a nice bit of stretch to boot. There’s plenty to like from an eco perspective as well. It’s produced in solar-powered factories, is made from over 90% recycled materials and there are none of those nasty PFCs used either.

The Apex Flex Futurelight has been designed for hiking, hillwalking, scrambling and general mountain adventures anytime from spring to autumn. It is breathable, waterproof and comfy enough for all-day use. Everything you’d expect from a waterproof is present. You get sealed seams, a fully adjustable hood, Velcro wrist cuffs, an internal front zip stormflap to keep wind and rain at bay, hem cinch-cord, drop-tail hem (for coverage over your backside), two hand-warmer pockets and an internal zippered pocket for valuables.

All in all, this is an impressive jacket that will keep you dry from the outside, and, from what we’ve seen, drier on the inside than standard waterproof jackets, all thanks to that Futurelight membrane. It’s durable, comfy, more eco friendly than plenty of other jackets out there and it has all the right features, So, ultimately, there’s plenty to like.

Full Specifications

Sizes XS-XXL / 50-denier and 55-denier Futurelight fabric, with 91.2% recycled polyester and 8.8% elastane with a recycled polyester backer and DWR finish / Fully adjustable hood /  Velcro wrist cuffs / Internal front zip stormflap / Hem cinch-cord / Drop-tail hem / Two hand-warmer pockets / Internal zippered pocket.

Selected for our Outdoor 100 2021/22. Read our full The North Face Apex Flex FutureLight Jacket review. 

BUY NOW: THENORTHFACE.CO.UK

 

Images: Chris Johnson

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