This jacket was one of our favorite pieces of streetwear in our 2020 Winter Buyer’s Guide. We love the Lightning’s toasty PrimaLoft Gold insulation and front snap closures. The synthetic fill isn’t as warm as traditional down, but it still traps heat when wet.
These Cyber Week Gear Deals Are Still Rolling at REI
In our 2019 Summer Buyer’s Guide, the Inspire HR Fitness Tracker was one of our favorite pieces of wearable tech. The touchscreen watch has 24/7 activity and sleep tracking, guided workouts, and VO2 max measurement. Plus, it’s water-resistant up to 50 meters, so you can track swimming as well.
Quality insulation doesn’t have to be expensive. Case in point: the REI Co-op 650 Down jacket. It weighs just 10.5 ounces and packs into its own pocket when you don’t need it. It’s a perfect midlayer for colder winter pursuits, thanks to the 650-fill down insulation, and it’s lightweight enough to be a good stand-alone piece in milder weather.
In our 2018 Winter Buyer’s Guide, we picked the Descensionist as one of the best jackets for splitboarding. It “has a soft-shell feel with hard-shell performance,” we wrote. The durable water repellent finish protects you on stormy days and the three-layer construction helps keep you warm while getting up the mountain on cold mornings.
We love this chair because it’s easy to fit in a car camping kit and it’s incredibly comfy to sit in. It folds up easily and packs down to 15 inches long, so it doesn’t take up much room in your trunk or pack. We especially like the small mesh pocket which can hold a snack, book, or phone.
This dog bed is a cozy cabin essential for pups. The microsuede top is easy to clean and the recycled polyfill inside is warm and insulating. The Mt. Bachelor Pad is ideal for car camping or cabin trips because it packs into a compact roll for simple transport.
We recommended this merino base layer top as a worthwhile splurge item for hiking the PCT. “Having a set of dry, relatively clean clothes to sleep in will keep you warmer and your sleep setup from getting dirty,” wrote PCT hiker, Taylor Gee. Plus, the naturally odor resistant merino wool will keep you feeling clean after long stretches on the trail.
If you run cold, this pair of silk long underwear is what you want this winter. “I've thrown this pair of long underwear around for a couple years now and they're surprisingly rugged,” said our tester. The thin, lightweight fabric also makes them easy to wear under additional layers.
We included Oiselle’s Roga in our roundup of the best women’s running shorts. The Roga has a thick, flat high-rise compression waistband and roomy legs so they comfortably stay on, but are more spacious than other options. The shorts also have a large zippered waist pocket to store essentials.
These rain pants are pro hiker Wesley Trimble’s top choice pants for winter hiking. The recycled ripstop nylon is flexible and allows total range of motion. Trimble adds a midlayer under the Rainier Rain Pants to keep him toasty even on snowy, winter hikes.
REI’s boxers are an affordable performance underwear choice for those who don’t want the slim fit of a boxer-brief. “Their poly/spandex blend dries fast, and they’re looser than the other skivvies on this list, leaving plenty of room in the legs and nethers for a full range of movement,” writes contributor Graham Averill.
We love the Howler Brothers fall collection and the Kameron Hoody is one of our favorite pieces in the lineup. The cotton blend fleece has a mega-comfy, fuzzy interior, and a discreet zippered stash pocket in the lower back.
We featured the Rounder in our selection of the best puffy vests. It melds classic western style with modern materials, like a water-resistant, rip-stop outer shell and Primaloft One insulation. “We like the touch of corduroy on the shoulders and the front snap pockets,” our tester wrote.
This performance flannel looks classic, but has a modern twist with its cotton-polyester blend. The shirt’s relaxed fit and brushed cotton feels cozy, while the 30 percent polyester helps wick moisture and offer stretch. We especially like the pearl snaps that add a classy touch.
Last spring, our Gear Guy tested five different fleeces and the Tekno Ridge came out on top. “It excelled during every activity and looks so good that my wife stole it from me,” he wrote. This hoodie is close-fitting for easy movement, sturdy enough to fend off 15-mile-per-hour headwinds, and has side-seam zips to dump heat.
After six months of testing the Capilene Cool Trail shirt, our Gear Guy loved it so much he wrote an ode to it. “I love this tee because it quietly does everything I expect from a technical layer extremely well while still looking good,” he wrote. The shirt boasts a soft, moisture-wicking fabric, odor control, and a flattering fit.
We included the Dart in our 2020 Winter Buyer’s Guide as one of the best pieces of men’s running gear. “This single-bottle holster sits comfortably around the waist, thanks to mesh and an adjustable belt,” we wrote. The included water bottle is 1.3 liters and the main zippered pocket can hold your phone and keys.
The Micro Puff was our favorite jacket of 2018 because there’s a lot to love about this warm, super-light piece. “The PlumaFill is tacked between sheets of ten-denier nylon fabric in long strands, so it won’t shift and create cold spots,” our tester wrote.
The Little Black Dress of fleeces, the Denali is as essential as it is simple. The fleece is inspired by the 1988 design, but it's been updated in a few ways in the sustainability department: the Denali is now made with recycled material, and you can track the fleece's journey from factory to gear shop.