The Best Après Jackets of 2016
Toasty layers for wild and urban adventures
We love high-performance outerwear (see our lists of the best resort and backcountry jackets of the year). But we also love the street-smart looks of these hoodies, shakets, and midlayers, which make them ideal for urban adventures once the ski and snowboard boots come off.
Berghaus VapourLight Hydroloft Reversible Hoody
Most reversibles give you two distinct styles and not much else. Not so the eight-ounce VapourLight. Wear the dual-tone fabric on the outside for increased wind protection, or flip it around for a bump in breathability. Perfect for high-output bike commuting or hiking the steeps.
Fjällräven Ovik 3 in 1
The Ovik is the warmest jacket here, with a detachable down-blend puffy liner tucked under a recycled-polyester and cotton shell that’s weather resistant but not waterproof. Adjustable hem and cuffs combine with an elastic collar to keep the heat in on cold days. Come spring we split it up, using the insulated piece on early-morning hikes and the light outer layer for kicking around town.
Kitsbow Alpha Snap
Leave it to Bay Area–based, style-conscious Kitsbow to make a shacket we actually want to wear. The Snap is formfitting with a subdued style: the only flourish is the color blocking on the elbows and forearms, where the designers added extra-durable fabric. Breathable Polartec Alpha insulation makes it much warmer than it looks.
The Stratocloud boasts features found on jackets costing twice as much. Take the PrimaLoft Silver Down Blend insulation, a mix of ultrafine synthetic and natural fill; the water-resistant nylon exterior, which stands up to howling winds and light drizzles; and the articulated stretch cuffs. But we really knew this was a sweet rig when our tester refused to give it back.
United by Blue Drummond
For most guys, vests are flair enough. Which is why we appreciate the simplicity of the Drummond. It’s got some solid technical bona fides, too: a wool and recycled-polyester shell insulated with 500-fill duck down keeps you toasty, while a snap-button flap over the chest zipper blocks snow. The chambray liner is soft enough to wear against bare skin (but please don’t).
It’s built for the city, but thanks to its PrimaLoft Gold synthetic insulation, this jacket is still warm enough for the mountains. Testers liked the abundance of pockets (nine), while the chilled-out matte finish and refreshing lack of logos made it an après go-to.