Whether you are exploring the rain forests of South America or you are going outside on a rainy day, a rain jacket can be your best friend. There are a few qualities that make a rain jacket worth the investment.
The first important quality in a rain jacket is its waterproof shell. This is important when hiking, skiing, or camping to prevent the water from getting on the skin and drawing out an individual’s body heat, potentially causing hypothermia. Another important feature of a rain jacket is the hood. A hood must protect the head from the rain. Lastly, the rain jacket should be a looser fit. This allows an individual to wear more layers underneath and keep their legs dry.
Here is a list of the Top 10 Rain Jackets of 2018, with a few pros and cons of each product:
10. Diamond Candy Sportswear Women’s Waterproof Jacket
- 10. Diamond Candy Sportswear Women’s Waterproof Jacket
- 9. Gioberti Men’s Waterproof Rain Jacket
- 8. Lanbaosi Women’s Lightweight Jacket UV Protect+Quick Dry Windproof Skin Coat
- 7. Columbia Women’s Pardon My Trench Rain Jacket
- 6. Portwest Men’s Classic Rain Jacket
- 5. Columbia Women’s Arcadia II Jacket
- 4. Women’s Switchback II Jacket
- 3. Columbia Men’s Glennaker Lake Front-Zip Rain Jacket with Hideaway Hood
- 2. Charles River Apparel Women’s New Englander Waterproof Rain Jacket
- 1. Columbia Men’s Watertight II Front-Zip Hooded Rain Jacket
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Crafted from 100% nylon, this rain jacket is designed for optimal comfort. In addition to this, the jacket is air permeable, allowing for the wearer to feel fresh. Not only is this jacket waterproof, but it is also windproof, the perfect combination for skiing on windy mountains, or legging it on a forest trail in the rainy fall season.
- Waterproof/windproof material
- Plenty of pockets
- Has a hood (removable)
- Only protects top half of body
- Not as effective in harsher conditions
9. Gioberti Men’s Waterproof Rain Jacket
Being made of 100% polyester, this rain jacket can wick away moisture to keep you dry even in some of the wettest of conditions. A convenient string-adjustable hood helps to sinch around the face for maximum coverage, as well as the velcro zipper flap to prevent water from seeping in through the zipper.
- Velcro zipper flap, extra protection
- Moisture wicking
- Adjustable hood and sleeve cuffs
- Very water resistant, but not “waterproof”
- Water collects in open pockets
8. Lanbaosi Women’s Lightweight Jacket UV Protect+Quick Dry Windproof Skin Coat
Mixing it up a bit, this rain jacket is designed with the intent to be worn in mild to warmer weather. Its breathable design helps to keep you dry and cool in the heat of the summer. What makes this rain jacket special is that the hood actually zips right into the collar.
- Comes in many vibrant colors
- lightweight material
- Hood can be tucked away
- Offers UV protection
- Sizes are slightly smaller than expected
7. Columbia Women’s Pardon My Trench Rain Jacket
Alongside a clever name, this jacket has a few cleverly designed components. First, is the removable belt that helps add some style to the mundane design of most other rain jackets. This product is also double-layered with a protective outer shell, and an inner lining.
- Removable belt
- Double-layered protection,outer shell: 100% Nylon, lining: 100% Polyester
- Adjustable hood with draw cord
- Stylish, not just for rain protection
- Not completely “waterproof”
- A bit more expensive
6. Portwest Men’s Classic Rain Jacket
This is the rain jacket for the frugal shopper who wants to save money while getting the best quality. With two large pockets, a back vent, and adjustable hood, you just can’t argue the unbelievable quality for being essentially the cheapest rain jacket on the list.
- Two large pockets
- Back vent, for air flow
- Cheaper price than many others
- Adjustable hood
- Sizes are typically on the large side
- Tight cuffs on the sleeves
5. Columbia Women’s Arcadia II Jacket
When considering what is most important in a rain jacket, most people think of rain protection, and this rain jacket is build explicitly for that. Every crack and potential inlet has been sealed shut so that there is virtually no possibility of water entering. In other words, it is the Fort Knox of rain jackets.
- Plenty of choices for color
- Zippered pockets, for keeping things safe and secure
- Lightweight material
- A bit more costly than other comparable rain jackets
- Noisy when moving around
4. Women’s Switchback II Jacket
Even on a rainy day it will be brightly lit with the vivacious colors of these rain jackets. One major benefit of these rain jackets is that it stows away into a tiny storage pocket, making it easy to pack in luggage.
- Conveniently fits in storage pocket for packing
- Hood stows away in collar
- Adjustable cuff straps
- No storm flap on zippers
- Slightly noisy material
3. Columbia Men’s Glennaker Lake Front-Zip Rain Jacket with Hideaway Hood
Just about as adjustable as it gets, this rain jacket has a hood that tucks away into the collar, as well as cuffs that can be adjusted for tightness. On top of everything, it has zippered pockets for keeping items safe.
- Hood can tuck into collar
- Zippered side pockets at hip level
- Water-repellent material
- Adjustable cuffs
- Water-repellent, but not “resistant”
- Mesh pockets are not durable
2. Charles River Apparel Women’s New Englander Waterproof Rain Jacket
Not only is this rain jacket waterproof, but it doubles as a windbreaker. Appropriately named, this New Englander is ready for when the weather changes by the minute.
- Windproof and Waterproof
- Zip-front pockets, for securing valuables
- Adjustable velcro cuff straps
- Sizing runs small
- Advised to hand wash, instead of machine wash
1. Columbia Men’s Watertight II Front-Zip Hooded Rain Jacket
This rain jacket should be regarded for its overall quality, because it has everything a person needs in a rain jacket. Not only is this rain jacket waterproof, but it also comes with an adjustable hood, zippered pockets, and above all, lightweight. It may not be enough to keep you warm, but coupled with a nice layer underneath, this is the epitome of a high-quality rain jacket.
- Dual-layer protection, shell: 100% Nylon, lining: 100% Polyester
- Drawstring adjustable hood
- Waterproof, rated well for heavy rain
- Hood can obstruct vision
- Not as breathable as other rain jackets
Overall, it may be obvious that many of the rain jackets featured in this list are similar in what they have to offer. At the end of the day, the difference is in what constitutes a better value in your individual mind, either you are looking for features specific to the activities you plan on doing while wearing the rain jacket, you are looking for a cheap price tag, or you are looking for a rain jacket that may last you years. Regardless of what you are looking for in a rain jacket, these are the best that 2017 has to offer.