Last Updated: July 8, 2020

10 Best Rain Jackets in 2020

A rain jacket is, as we’re sure you know, a vital piece of equipment to have at home and in your backpack for any adventure in the outdoors. You never really know when the weather is going to turn and it’s becoming more and more unpredictable in this day and age. There is nothing worse than being caught short on a lovely hike and having to shiver your way back home to get dry.


At A Glance: Our Top 4 Rain Jackets


Finding the right rain jacket for your needs isn’t easy. There are quite a few different types ranging from hiking and daily use rain jackets to performance and trail running jackets. It’s often quite difficult to discern one from another making finding the right rain jacket for your needs a little tricky.  In this article, we have reviewed some of the best rain jackets across all the different types in order to give you a holistic view of what’s available and to help find the one that suits your needs best. 

Top Product Overview

PreCip Eco Jacket (Medium, Arctic Navy)
Best On A Budget
  • Excellent quality build
  • Great value
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Arc'teryx Zeta SL Jacket Women's | Superlight Waterproof GORE-TEX Shell Jacket for Hiking | Robotica, Medium
Best Allrounder
  • It's great looking for daily use
  • Great for use when hiking
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Black Diamond Men's Liquid Point Shell Midnight L
Best For Skiing & Climbing
  • It fits beautifully
  • Excellent performance in weather
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Outdoor Research Men's Helium II Jacket
  • Super light and packs down small
  • Great weather protection
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Marmot Women's Minimalist Jacket, Black, Medium
  • Looks great with a sleek design
  • Great weather protecting
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Black Diamond Men's StormLine Stretch Rain Shell M
  • Water-repellent zips so no rain gets in
  • Helmet-compatible hood
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Columbia Men's Watertight II Rain Jacket, Black, Medium
  • Incredibly inexpensive
  • A huge amount of color options
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Outdoor Research Men's Interstellar Jacket, Glacier/Baltic, Medium
  • Excellent durability and weather protection
  • Perfectly balanced for performance
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The North Face Apex Flex GTX Jacket - Men's TNF Dark Grey Heather Medium
  • It's very comfortable and soft on the skin
  • Tough and durable on the outside
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Arc'teryx Norvan SL Hoody Men's (Black/Robotica, Medium)
  • Best rain jacket for intense exercise
  • It's extremely light
SEE ON AMAZON →

Best Rain Jackets


Best On A Budget

Marmot PreCip Eco

PreCip Eco Jacket (Medium, Arctic Navy)

Marmot are a company that has got the formula for rain jackets down to a T. The Marmot PreCip Eco is one of their most popular rain jackets on the market and for good reason.

The PreCip Eco is made from polyester and recycled nylon, hence the Eco in the name. It uses 2.5 layers of NanoPro and fully taped seams to create a jacket that’s excellent at dealing with the rain.

The hood provides full protection during a downpour and neatly stuffs into the collar for when it’s not needed and the jacket comes with pit zips for breathability. It’s also been designed with angle wing movement to ensure you have maximum mobility without letting any water or cold in, making you even more protected. And it neatly folds into its own pocket for easy storage in your backpack.

The fit is quite slim but spacious enough for some layers underneath. There’s a drawcord at the base to stop it riding up and letting any cold air in, plus two hand pockets.

The best thing is, you get all of these great features and materials for under $75, that’s incredible value. Overall, it’s one of the best rain jackets you can find on a budget.

Pros

  • Excellent quality build
  • Great value
  • Good freedom of movement
  • Stuffs into its own pocket for storage
  • Great 2.5 layer waterproofing
  • Excellent breathability plus pit zips

Cons

  • It can get a bit sweaty when being very active

Product Information

  • Weight: 10.1 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 2.5L NanoPro
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Best Allrounder

Arc'teryx Zeta SL Jacket

Arc'teryx Zeta SL Jacket Women's | Superlight Waterproof GORE-TEX Shell Jacket for Hiking | Robotica, Medium

The Arc’teryx Zeta SL Jacket is one of the best looking rain jackets around. It’s ideal for daily use and for use in the mountains while hiking or camping in the outdoors.

It’s made from 2 layers of Gore-Tex with Paclite Plus making it pretty much weatherproof. It’ll handle rain and wind with ease while still being breathable, although, it’s not as breathable as others in the same price range, you’re not going to overheat.

The outer layer is made from a 40D shell, making it tough and able to take a beating. This jacket will outlast most others thanks to this and even though it’s tough, it’s still super light and packs down to a small size to fit in your backpack.

Once you put the jacket on, you’ll notice how nice it feels against the skin, something rain jackets can struggle with. The hood is also excellent and provides full coverage and protection from the elements.

If you’re looking for an allrounder rain jacket that’s good for walking the dog, going to the mall, and climbing mountains, this is one to seriously consider.

Pros

  • It's great looking for daily use
  • Great for use when hiking
  • Has a durable 40D outer shell
  • Light and packs down small
  • It has a great fit and is comfortable

Cons

  • A bit expensive
  • Not so breathable

Product Information

  • Weight: 10.9 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 2L Gore-Tex with Paclite Plus
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Best For Skiing & Climbing

Black Diamond Liquid Point

Black Diamond Men's Liquid Point Shell Midnight L

The Black Diamond Liquid Point is one of Black Diamond’s top rain jackets and it’s easy to see why. Designed with style in mind, this rain jacket has all the features you need for the trail and all the great looks you want in town.

Made from GORE-TEX Paclite, it’s excellent at blocking wind and rain from getting inside. Couple that with fully taped and water repellent zippers, and you’re going to be dry no matter the weather. 

The fit is excellent, it’s not too baggy but slim while still having enough space for layers underneath, this makes it ideal for climbers, hikers, and skiers, especially considering the helmet-compatible hood.

It comes with three pockets, two for your hands, and one internal chest pocket for any valuables you want to be protected too. And the pit zips help you regulate your temperature while being active.

Overall this is a super lightweight jacket that’s excellent for anyone who wants to be active in harsh conditions. The big hood may get a little annoying when you don’t need it, but you’ll be happy it’s there when you do.

Pros

  • It fits beautifully
  • Excellent performance in weather
  • Has 3 pockets for great storage
  • Breathable with pit zips for extra ventilation
  • Looks good for daily use as well as outdoors

Cons

  • A little expensive
  • Helmet-compatible hood can get in the way

Product Information

  • Weight: 13.9 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 2.5L Gore-Tex Paclite
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Best Ultralight

Outdoor Research Helium II Jacket

Outdoor Research Men's Helium II Jacket

The Outdoor Research Helium II Jacket is designed as an ultralight rain jacket. Weighing just 6.5 oz, you’ll expect to lose a few key features, like pit zips, but it’s still impressive what they have managed to pack into this super light rain jacket.

It’s made from 2.5 layers of Pertex Shield 2.5 L, 100% Nylon, and a 30D ripstop body to give you excellent weather protection, breathability, and durability. Combine that with the AquaShield YKK zippers, fully taped seam and you’re going to be fine during a storm.

Being just 6.5 oz, it packs down very small and you’ll barely notice it in your backpack. It’s ideal for use as an ultralight rain jacket whilst camping or hiking, or any outdoor activity for that matter. 

Overall this is the best ultralight rain jacket in our eyes, plus it priced very reasonably.

Pros

  • Super light and packs down small
  • Great weather protection
  • Durable thanks to the 30D outer layer
  • Handy chest pocket
  • Made with great materials

Cons

  • No pit zips for temperature control
  • No hand pockets

Product Information

  • Weight: 6.5 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 2.5L Pertex Shield Diamond Fuse
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Marmot Minimalist Jacket

Marmot Women's Minimalist Jacket, Black, Medium

The Marmot Minimalist Jacket is another great all-rounder from Marmot that’s priced exceptionally well. It’s ideal for daily use in winter or on hiking trips when you know rain and weather are a guarantee.

It’s made, like a few of the others, from 2.5 layers of Gore-Tex Paclite which is sealed with a durable water repellent coating. This provides excellent protection from wind and rain, plus it’s breathable so you won’t overheat, and if you do, there are pit zips for some extra ventilation.

The minimalist is a little heavy as rain jackets go and doesn’t pack down small. You might be a bit annoyed if you carried it around for 4 days in the blazing sunshine, so it’s better taken along when rain is pretty much guaranteed, then you’ll love having it.

The main downfall of the jacket is that the main zipper is not water-repellent/waterproof, meaning moisture will ooze in. This should not be the case at this price.

Pros

  • Looks great with a sleek design
  • Great weather protecting
  • Priced well for the quality
  • Hood has a large bill for protection
  • Good freedom of movement

Cons

  • A bit on the heavy side
  • Doesn't pack down small
  • The main zipper isn't waterproof

Product Information

  • Weight: 14.9 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 2.5L Gore-Tex Paclite
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Black Diamond Stormline Stretch

Black Diamond Men's StormLine Stretch Rain Shell M

The Black Diamond Stormline Stretch is packed full of features and technology and is incredible value considering what’s been packed in there for the price.

Made from 2.5 layers of BD.dry material, the Stromline is windproof, waterproof, breathable, and stretchy to boot. This gives you excellent weather protection, durability, and freedom of movement making this a great choice for more active users who love to climb, ski and more. The material is soft to touch and comfy as hell to wear.

It comes three pockets, an adjustable helmet-compatible hood, a water-repellent main zipper, and water-repellent pit zips, to ensure you stay dry but don’t overheat. It packs all this in and still weighs under 10 oz. Amazing!

The only place it loses marks is in the fit, it’s a little baggy which is fine for wearing over down, but a little loose over base layers.

Overall an awesome rain jacket that’s worth every penny.

Pros

  • Water-repellent zips so no rain gets in
  • Helmet-compatible hood
  • Comfortable and feels good against the skin
  • Great weather protection and breathability
  • Stretchy, durable shell fabric
  • Good value for the quality

Cons

  • A bit of a baggy fit for performance wear

Product Information

  • Weight: 9.9 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 2.5L BD.dry
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Columbia Watertight II

Columbia Men's Watertight II Rain Jacket, Black, Medium

Columbia specializes in making pretty good budget outdoor gear and they are better than most at it. If you’re looking for a casual rain jacket for daily use like walking the dog and don’t plan on getting stuck in a torrential downpour, then the Columbia Watertight II is a great choice.

As well as its friendly price point, it’ll give you ample protection in light rain and wind, perfect for daily use. It’s made of 2 layers of Omni-Tech with well-sealed seams and a good build that’ll ensure it keeps you warm and dry in light weather and lasts a relaxed lifestyle.

The jacket comes in a huge range of colors, looks good, and is perfect for wearing in town or having as just in case extra layer for when the weather turns.

Overall a solid budget rain jacket for casual daily use.

Pros

  • Incredibly inexpensive
  • A huge amount of color options
  • Great for daily use in light rain

Cons

  • Low-quality materials and design
  • Buy one size down

Product Information

  • Weight: 13 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 2L Omni-Tech
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Outdoor Research Interstellar

Outdoor Research Men's Interstellar Jacket, Glacier/Baltic, Medium

If you love outdoor activities and need a rain jacket that suits them all, the Outdoor Research Interstellar is probably your best bet.

It’s been made with three layers of Ascentshell combined with a 20D mechanical stretch ripstop face with 100% polyester 12D backer. What does this mean? It means you get a highly durable rain jacket that’s stretchy, breathable, and excellent in rough weather. 

And for you all adrenaline lovers, it comes with a helmet-compatible hood, large pockets that fit a harness, hand pockets and it’s light at under 12 oz. Plus it looks awesome.

The only drawbacks are that its expensive and how performance-orientated it is. The extra-large hood and pockets will get in the way during daily use.

Overall, it’s an awesome jacket for both weather protection and outdoor activities, plus it’s worth the investment.

Pros

  • Excellent durability and weather protection
  • Perfectly balanced for performance
  • Great for every outdoor activity
  • Good storage options
  • Lightweight for what you're getting

Cons

  • A bit technical for daily use and hiking
  • It's pretty expensive

Product Information

  • Weight: 11.8 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 3L AscentShell
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The North Face Apex Flex

The North Face Apex Flex GTX Jacket - Men's TNF Dark Grey Heather Medium

The North Face Apex Flex is a serious rain jacket that is about as heavy as they get. It’s not made for being active in but more for 100% all-round protection that you could just wear over T-shirt, depending on how cold it is.

It’s ideal for sports where you’re standing still a lot, like fishing or hunting. It’ll stop the weather from getting in and keep you warm whilst being inactive.

It’s made from a triple layer of Gore-Tex, making it exceptionally weatherproof and pretty warm for a rain jacket. The inside is soft to touch and comfortable while the outside is bombproof.

The jacket comes with three handy pockets, pit zips, velcro cuffs, and a big hood that cinches closed. It’s not going to pack down small, but if you’re going to throw it in the car and pop it on for a walk down the river, then it’s ideal.

Pros

  • It's very comfortable and soft on the skin
  • Tough and durable on the outside
  • Great for daily use in terrible weather
  • Excellent weather protection
  • Great pockets

Cons

  • Very heavy and bulky
  • It's pretty pricey

Product Information

  • Weight: 25.6 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 3L Gore-Tex
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Arc'teryx Norvan SL Hoody

Arc'teryx Norvan SL Hoody Men's (Black/Robotica, Medium)

If running down a mountain in the rain is your thing then the Arc’teryx Norvan SL Hoody rain jacket is the one for you. This has been specifically designed for trail running and ensures you stay protected from the weather, have freedom of movement, and don’t overheat.

It’s made from two layers of Gore-Tex with Shakedry and once you get your hands on it you’ll notice how light and thin it is. It weighs just 4 oz and is one of the most breathable rain jackets on the market. You might think the thin layers and breathability compromise its water resistance but it doesn’t. This jacket is very waterproof.

The only downsides are the lack of pockets, the high price, and the thin fabric is rather delicate. Considering how expensive it is, you wouldn’t want to catch a branch and rip this.

Pros

  • Best rain jacket for intense exercise
  • It's extremely light
  • Made to be very breathable
  • Great freedom of movement
  • Solid weather protection

Cons

  • The thin fabric is not so durable
  • It's very expensive

Product Information

  • Weight: 4.2 oz.
  • Waterproofing: 2L Gore-Tex with Shakedry
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What To Look For In A Rain Jacket

Types Of Rain Jacket

There are five main categories of rain jackets on the market and it’s important to choose the right one for your needs. Here we’ll explain a little bit about each of them.

Casual Use 

Causal or daily use jackets are made for those of us who live in wet areas where it rains a lot. They’re made to look good, be comfortable, and have useful features like hand warming pockets. They are usually a little less expensive than other jackets a bit heavier, as their not made for hiking on the trail or carrying in your backpack.

Hiking 

Hiking rain jackets are made to be light and easy to store in your backpack. They’re ideal for popping in your bag before going on a little adventure, knowing that if the weather did turn, you’d be safe from the wind and rain it might throw at you. They are a middle ground when it comes to technology and are semi-breathable but not much in comparison to performance jackets.

It’s also worth having a pair of waterproof pants on hand for when the weather really gets out of control. That way you can arrive in camp at the end of the day and not be completely soaked through on the bottom!

Performance

Performance rain jackets are built to withstand serious weather with tougher and more breathable materials and bigger hoods. They are a lot more expensive and only worth buying if you really need them. They include little tech add ons like large pockets that fit harnesses in them and helmet-compatible hoods. If you love to be active and climb, ski, mountain bike, or anything like that, a performance jacket is the way to go.

Ultralight

Ultralight rain jackets are more for emergencies than anything else, they’re not designed for walking through rain for hours on end. They are made to be super light, store easily in your backpack, and be there when you need them. The fabrics are much thinner and thus less waterproof and prone to rips than casual or hiking jackets.

Trail Running

Trai running jackets are exactly that, for trail running. They’re made to be waterproof, extremely breathable, and are super thin and light. They are expensive and lack durability due to their thin material but if you need a jacket to run in, these are the ones to get.

Waterproofing

How waterproof a rain jacket is depends on a lot of different factors from the materials and the seams to the zippers. No jacket will ever be 100% waterproof but some are a lot better than others. Some light jackets are labeled as being water-resistant, so they protect you in light rain but under prolonged rainfall, they will start leaking.

Waterproof jackets block moisture from getting in, are sealed along the seams, and have waterproof zippers. They use materials like Gore-Tex to ensure moisture stays out, to an extent.

Layers

Waterproof rain jackets are built with layers in order to create waterproofness and breathability. They come in either 2, 2,.5, or 3 layer options. The more layers the more expensive the rain jacket but also the more durable and breathable it will be. It’s best to stick around the 2.5 layer option unless you want something really robust, and in which case go for the 3 layer option. 

Breathability

Breathability is ket in a waterproof rain jacket and having a breathable jacket will ensure your comfort no end. Breathability comes down to the fabric used and Gore-Tex is one of the best when it comes to letting moisture out and stopping rain from coming in, so bear that in mind while shopping around.

Some rain jackets aren’t breathable at all while others are great at it. It’s true that the more you spend the more breathable your jacket will be.

Packability

Most of the time, you’ll be packing your rain jacket in your backpack to head on out on an adventure. You’ll want it to pack down to small size for convenient storage. Some rainjackets pack into their own pocket, others are made from fabrics that stuff down to a very small size. It’s quite hard to tell how well they’ll pack down when looking online, the best thing to measure it against is the weight. The lighter the rain jacket, the smaller it’ll pack down.

Our Favourites

Here are our top choices from the review.

The best rain jacket on a budget is the Marmot PreCip Eco. This rain jacket is full of features that you’d expect in more high-end jackets, is durable, and provides excellent weather protection. You can’t ask for much more at under $75.

Sale
PreCip Eco Jacket (Medium, Arctic Navy)
  • Attached, adjustable hood that can be stowed in a stand collar. Long sleeves taper to adjustable hook-and-loop cuffs.

The best rain jacket that can do it all is the Arc’teryx Zeta SL Jacket. It’s comfy, soft, weatherproof, looks good and it’s durable as hell. If you’re looking for an allrounder that’s going to last, this is it.

Arc'teryx Zeta SL Jacket Women's | Superlight Waterproof GORE-TEX Shell Jacket for Hiking | Robotica, Medium
  • GORE-TEX - Waterproof, windproof and breathable textiles that offer fully protective environmental shelter.
  • HIKING & TREKKING - For technical hiking, trekking, durable and protective designs for remote and varied conditions.

The best rain jacket for skiing and climbing is the Black Diamond Liquid Point. This jacket will give you all the protection you need but where it comes into its own is the fit. It’s very athletic and provides enough room for layering and great freedom of movement, plus it has a helmet-compatible hood, ideal for both sports.

The best ultralight rain jacket is the Outdoor Research Helium II Jacket. It’s reasonably priced, super light, durable, and provides excellent weather protection.

Sale
Outdoor Research Men's Helium II Jacket
  • ULTRALIGHT RAINCOAT: Weighing a mere 5.5 ounces, this hooded jacket offers supreme protection. Whether you are cycling, running, camping, hiking, fishing, or just in need of incredible weather protection, choose the Helium II Jacket.
  • WATERPROOF AND WIND-PROOF SHELL: If staying dry and comfortable is your top priority, the Helium II Jacket has you covered.  Fully seam-taped and built with YKK AquaGuard zippers, this provides maximum storm protection while staying breathable.