Insulated Jackets for Every Type of Weather
Choosing the right puffy is challenging. We’re here to help.
Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
We’ve all been there: shivering because our jacket isn’t warm enough, or sweating buckets because it’s too thick. Well, there’s good news—puffies just continue to get better. They’re toastier on one end of the spectrum and more breathable, but still cozy, on the other. These are a collection of our top picks from this winter season that will serve you well for years to come.
Aether Launch ($425)
A true trail-to-town crossover, the Launch (and women’s Senna, $375) fuses technical materials with urban design. The bomber jacket’s fit is as stylish as it is effective at sealing in heat at the cuffs and hem. Meanwhile, interior seams with elastic binding and a 16 percent spandex blend in the shell allow for superior stretch when adjusting snowshoe straps and planting ski poles. The 800-fill goose down makes this garment warmer than you’d expect given the low-bulk silhouette. (Men’s XS–XXL, 1.2 lbs; women’s XS–XL, 1 lb)
Columbia Bulo Point II Omni-Heat Infinity Down ($250)
Cloudlike baffles stuffed with 700-fill goose down conform to your chest like a gentle hug, while supple reflective gold lining amplifies your body’s natural heat. Flurries bead on the DWR-treated shell—made of recycled polyester in the hood and shoulders, and nylon elsewhere—to keep you dry on chairlift rides. It breathes capably enough, but without vents it’s better for the parking lot at the end of the day. (Men’s S–XXL, 1.6 lbs; women’s XS–XXL, 1.6 lbs)
Fjällräven Visby 3-in-1 ($550)
Named for a coastal Swedish city notorious for its fickle weather, the Visby is designed for maximum versatility. It pairs a waterproof-breathable hip-length shell with a zip-out synthetic-insulated midlayer that can be worn alone when the weather breaks. Fjällräven boosts its sustainability cred by cutting the coat entirely from recycled materials. (Men’s XS–XXL, 2.8 lbs; women’s XXS–XL, 2.8 lbs)
Patagonia Downdrift ($299)
Heritage styling isn’t the only thing the Downdrift brings back. It’s insulated with 600-fill down that’s recycled from bedding, and the shell material is made from nylon nets salvaged from South American fishermen. The exterior isn’t only durable but also protected by a PFC-free DWR coating, which makes the Downdrift equally at home on job sites, chairlifts, and city streets. (Men’s XS–XXL, 2.3 lbs; women’s XS–XXL, 1.8 lbs)
Marmot WarmCube Novus Hoody ($250)
The Novus Hoody is the indispensable layer: a fantastic wet-weather insulator when paired with a hard shell, and a stand-alone soft shell for the skin track. Cube-shaped baffles of synthetic insulation along the back help trap warm air against the body, augmenting an already impressive warmth-to-weight ratio. The 20-denier ripstop nylon shell can take a thrashing, but it’s stretchy and breathable enough for the most rigorous climbs. (Men’s S–XXL, 1.3 lbs; women’s XS–XL, 1.2 lbs)
Ortovox Swisswool Zinal ($370)
Stuffed with fleece made from the wool of Swiss mountain sheep, the Zinal is an eco-friendly alternative to puffers filled with petroleum-based insulation. We liked the wool’s natural odor-fighting properties, but we really loved this exceptionally warm and supple parka when the temperature dropped to single digits. Details like a buttery-soft merino-wool chin guard and adjustable cuffs make it comfy, and giant chest pockets are positioned well above your pack’s waist belt—and double as vents when you warm up. (Men’s S–XXL, 1.4 lbs; women’s XS–XL, 1.3 lbs)
Norrøna Trollveggen Superlight Down 850 ($349)
Here’s the truly featherweight down puffy you’ll wear year-round: it’s wispy enough for climbers, skiers, and hikers who insist on the lightest loads. Credit the filmy-thin, seven-denier recycled nylon, which allows maximum loft in the 850-fill down by limiting compression. Those baffles make the Trollveggen shockingly warm, given the scant weight and pack size (it scrunches into its own pocket). (Men’s S–XL, 7 oz; women’s XS–L, 6 oz)
Daehlie Winter Run 2.0 ($170)
This aerobic insulator is the mullet of puffy jackets, combining baffles of ultralight synthetic insulation up front and laser-cut perforated ventilation in the back. The result is an excellent piece for high-output running, nordic skiing, and fat biking. Four-way-stretch polyester won’t hold you back, no matter how ungainly your form. One zippered lumbar pocket keeps a phone or fuel secure. (Men’s S–XXL, 11 oz; women’s XS–XL, 9 oz)