Having a packable rain jacket with you at all times no matter where you go is one of the best things you could do for yourself, especially when you travel. When rain forecast has been declared, it would be smart to bring umbrella or raincoat. However, if weather forecast doesn’t say that it’s going to rain, would it be smart to bring raincoat and umbrella with you all the time? Instead, carrying the best packable rain jacket would be the best solution.
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Many people like keeping these rain jackets where they can easily access them like in bag pockets. This is convenient because you never know when it is going to rain especially when you are on the road. But how would you choose the best packable rain jacket for your trip? We know that this can be a tricky task, so in order to help you, here are some considerations when choosing the right packable rain jacket for you.
Features to Consider
There are packable rain jackets that are made of fabrics that are coated or covered with a hard-wearing water-repellent surface that will endure heavy rain but might not perform properly in a persistent, heavy precipitation. Some of the common fabrics like polyester and nylon aren’t necessarily 100% waterproof and will be drenched through if you stay in the rain for a long period of time.
Unlike water-resistant feature, this means there will be no water that is going to get inside you no matter how hard the rain is. Rain jackets that are waterproof are usually made of special fabrics that don’t absorb water. Depending on what brands you are looking to, manufacturers use unique technologies for the gear to perform the necessary task.
Since construction needs a lot of seams, a good rain jacket should be entirely seam taped to it to be entirely waterproof. Because all waterproof jackets are constructed like this, what you just need to consider is how well the seams are made.
Another consideration is how well the zippers are placed. It is important that the zippers used to construct the rain jacket will not let water to sip through it. Coated zippers or also known as laminated zippers are more difficult to open and close. They also require a cover in order to protect the small opening towards the end of the track of the zipper.
Usually, hoods have brims and design that allows you to adjust it on the sides which allow you to modify the opening size. Jackets that don’t have those adjustments are made for more casual use. There are also rain jackets that have detachable hoods.
Since even the most breathable rainwear could get overwhelmed throughout strong rain activity, most backcountry rainwear comes with pit zips. There are even jackets that take it to a new level by adding mesh liners in torso pockets which also give ventilation.
Of course, who doesn’t like their gears to have pockets where they can put their stuff in? It is better for the rain jackets to have at least two pockets on the side. But then again, the more pockets the better.
It is important that your rain jacket is lightweight and portable in order to make sure you can easily pack them while you are on the go. Some jackets go even further and design a pocket to also stand as a pouch for storage.
In order to protect yourself from the rain, the membrane of your jacket is inserted with extra layers. An external layer stands up to scrape and prevents rain, while an innermost layer defends against both wear-and-tear and natural body oils.
There are three types of construction used in the best packable rain jacket and they are the following:
2-Layer: The Quietest
The membrane layer is put within the outer fabric layer to create one piece of material. A loose-floppy liner is put within in order to protect the wearer. Since it is quieter or makes less sound when you walk, 2-layer construction is usually used for jackets designed for urban wearers.
2.5-Layer: The Lightest
Similar to the previous layer mentioned, 3-layer constructions has a special feature, and that is it’s very lightweight. The second “layer” is basically made of polyurethane laminate to put on more durability. Last, of all, a protective print is used on the second layer.
3-Layer: The Most Robust
There is no coatings are used in the 3-layer jackets, only a membrane firmly inserted between a liner and rough face fabric. Usually, the most breathable and durable construction, 3-layer designs are used in rain jacket meant for the strictest backcountry settings. These jackets are also going to cost a high-quality price.
Our Top Picks for 5 Best Packable Jackets
Because it is made of 100% polyester, you can expect for this rain jacket to wick away moisture in order to keep you dry no matter how rainy it is. An easy to use string-adjustable hood is very convenient to cover the face. There is also a Velcro zipper flap to help in preventing water from getting in through the zipper.
Gioberti Men’s Waterproof Rain Jacket is a coat which has a state-of-the-art waterproofing technology that will keep the body of the wearer dry. Furthermore, even though this is waterproof, it’s extremely breathable which guarantees effective moisture wicking. Furthermore, to strengthen its skill to repel water penetration, the seams are completely sealed. Because the internal lining is vastly breathable, you can guarantee that you would not accumulate sweat on hot days. The front zipper closure is protected with Velcro flap that will keep water away during rainy days. It has protective cap hood that offers you a reliable head protection and better adjustment control.
Editor's Rating: 98/100
Price On Amazon: from $24.99
This is another great packable rain jacket you need to consider. It is very lightweight, packs up really small, and offers a spacious fit. It is not plastic such as an actual raincoat but it is water resistant and enough to keep you dry from mild to a medium rain shower.
Pulling this rain jacket on and off is so easy that you can do it without yanking up the clothes you have already on underneath. I love the material used, which is more like a simple clothing fabric than your usual rain gear. It has a very roomy hood that is enough to hold to keep hair no matter how long it is. I just don’t like the noise this windbreaker makes: a simple movement can make a loud swishing sound! People will definitely know when you’re there when you are wearing this.
Editor's Rating: 97/100
Price On Amazon: from $18.97
Another item from our list of the best packable rain jacket you can use is this Baleaf Unisex Packable Outdoor Waterproof Rain Jacket. Designed for unisex use, the jacket will look good on both men and women impeccably while giving a total protection. It is made of tough quality materials that are water resistant, so you can make sure that you are going to be dry no matter what the condition of the day is.
Furthermore, this jacket is very lightweight mainly because of its full polyester construction, so, carrying it would be a lot easier. Cuffs are flexible to keep your clothes dry at all times. It also has reflective logos that help you improve your safety when you are riding bicycle or motorbike.
Editor's Rating: 95/100
Price On Amazon: from $20.99
The Columbia OutDry Ex Diamond Shell is a waterproof shell that is made of a groundbreaking design to keep you dry but at the same time keep your body breath. The Columbia OutDry Extreme is the first type of rain jackets to carry a membrane on the jacket exterior.
Overall, it is a phenomenal jacket. It works as it should. While this can be quite expensive, you can tell that this is also the best packable rain jacket. You can assure that this rain jacket is very durable and it would probably last for many years.
Editor's Rating: 93/100
Price On Amazon: from $180.00
The Red Ledge Thunderlight jacket offers breathable protection against the rain. This rain jacket is also advertised at many shops as "Red Head." This is very effective in keeping you dry all the time from the rain.
The Thunderlight jacket is designed for warm you up from the cold weather. It has a lightweight waterproof shell that worn other layers of insulation. You can simply wear it over a puffy down jacket so you are not only protecting your body but also your clothing. It’s entirely waterproof and as comfy as any jacket could be during wet weather. All in all, this offers outstanding bang for the buck and worth every penny you spend on them.
Editor's Rating: 90/100
Price On Amazon: from $38.50
Weather can be extremely unpredictable. That’s why it is important to be ready before you decide to leave the house for an adventure. Using the best packable rain jacket is important to keep you safe from the rain. Now, in terms of getting protection from the rain, people normally get confused whether they should use a jacket or a raincoat. But with the convince offer by rain jacket, they definitely the better option.
Rain jackets are made from different materials to let them perform their job brilliantly. Some of the common materials used include Tyvek, Gore-Tex, and nylon. Whether you are purchasing men’s rain jacket or for one suitable for women, it is necessary to look one which is not going to compromise both style and comfort.
Hopefully, this article helped you find are at least started with your search in finding the best packable rain jacket suitable for your needs and preference. Again, make sure to know your priorities and your needs and you will not have a problem in choosing the right one.
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