Best Ski Jacket – Reviews & Buying Guide
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Best Ski Jacket – Reviews & Buying Guide (July 2019)

Updated: January 25, 2019

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket

After 41 hours spent researching the best ski jackets, we think Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket is the best for most people.

This choice is based on several criteria: size, color, fabric, fabric lining, seams, hood, pockets, pockets closure, cuffs, breathable, lightweight, waterproof, windproof, best use, and washing, among other things.

 ProductPriceOverall RatingQualityDurabilityAppearanceMaintenanceValue for Moneysizecolorfabricfabric liningseamshoodpocketspockets closurecuffsbreathablelightweightwaterproofwindproofbest usewashing
Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski JacketSpyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski JacketCheck Price4.85.04.54.55.05.0S to XXL6 colorsPolyester100% polyesterTapedHelmet compatible / removable4 out / 2 inZipperedAdjustableYesYesYesYesSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingMachine wash
Helly Hansen Alpha Ski JacketHelly Hansen Alpha Ski JacketCheck Price4.95.05.05.04.55.0XXS to XXXL10 colorsPolyurethane, polyamide, elastane100% polyesterFully sealedHelmet compatible / adjustable4 outZipperedAdjustableYesYesYesYesSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingMachine wash
Burton Covert Ski JacketBurton Covert Ski JacketCheck Price4.65.04.54.54.05.0XXS to XXL19 colorsPolyester100% polyesterTapedHelmet compatible / fixed4 out / 1 inVelcroAdjustableYesYesYesYesSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingMachine wash
Andorra Performance Ski JacketAndorra Performance Ski JacketCheck Price4.54.55.04.54.04.5S to XL8 colorsPolyester100% polyesterFully sealedMicrofleece lined zip-off / removable3 outZipperedAdjustableYesYesYesYesSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingMachine wash
Wantdo Mountain Ski JacketWantdo Mountain Ski JacketCheck Price4.55.04.54.54.04.5S to XXXL8 colorsPolyester100% polyesterTapedHelmet compatible / removable2 out / 2 inZipperedAdjustableYesYesYesYesSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingMachine wash
Best Ski Jacket

Choosing the best ski jacket is more about focusing on function rather than the latest style or coolest color, although a good look is worth considering, too.

It can take time to find the best ski jacket deals, but it’s totally worth it if you find a jacket that lasts you a number of years.

If you’re a skier, then you know that there are a number of essentials. Ski gloves, a ski mask, and ski pants are absolutely necessary when it comes to ensuring that you stay warm.

Above all else, you want to know that you have the best ski jacket that money can buy. Ski jackets are versatile – you can use them whenever necessary, whether you’re out on your snowboard or you are adventuring with your snowshoes and ski poles.

But, how do you find a jacket for skiing that is as warm as your snowboard boots? Or that is going to make it through a tough trip on backcountry skis? Can you find the best budget ski jackets or are you looking for a deal that includes the best ski pants as well?

You have lots of choices for jackets nowadays, and they are as colorful and unique as your choices for ski socks or ski boots. You just have to search and find what fits you and your needs best.

Finding the best ski jacket is as simple as grabbing your skis or taking your board off of your snowboard wall mount, and hitting the slopes.

Selection Of The Best Ski Jackets

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket
(rated 4.8 / 5)
Quality
Durability
Appearance
Maintenance
Value for Money
Check Price

A ski jacket maximizes your day on the slopes, keeping you warm and dry enough to keep shredding long after the sun goes down and temperatures do the same.

The various styles can also make you look pretty good (or bad), too.

If you visit the same resort and groomed runs, one jacket may get the job done.

The right jacket for you manages the kind of conditions you could encounter on the mountain. Colorado’s climate is different than the winds you’ll face on a chairlift in Maine.

A warm resort jacket that can handle a wide range of temperatures sure comes in handy.

Information

Gore-Tex fabric, one of the best known in waterproofing, is used in the construction to keep water from slipping through the jacket and sweat from staying in.

Ski jackets are typically insulated and waterproof to keep you dry, warm and comfortable, which are all important if you want to have a fun day skiing. The way it performs depends on more than the material it is made of. A jacket’s performance also depends on how you’re going to be using it on your ski adventures.

The Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket is a fantastic option for skiers who aren’t afraid of a little cold. Filled with 60g of Thinsulate with extra warmth, its insulation mimics that of down or feathers. It traps your body heat inside but is still pleasantly light.

You will remain dry with this ski jacket. Gore-Tex fabric, one of the best known in waterproofing, is used in the construction to keep water from slipping through the jacket and sweat from staying in. Gore-Tex material has pores larger than sweat molecules, but smaller than water molecules. This means the fabric is also breathable and good at regulating your body temperature.

sizeS to XXL
color6 colors
fabricPolyester
fabric lining100% polyester
seamsTaped
hoodHelmet compatible / removable
pockets4 out / 2 in
pockets closureZippered
cuffsAdjustable
breathableYes
lightweightYes
waterproofYes
windproofYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine wash

Besides the high tech materials, there’s an anti-abrasion overlay that keeps the jacket from being scratched. It also boasts a number of features you’d expect from a quality jacket; the hood is adjustable and removable, internal pockets are zippered and the goggle pocket has mesh lining to keep lenses from scraping.

For those who love a little flare on the mountain, the asymmetrical design features colors like Turkish Sea and Acid and Cloudy Distress to choose from.

Available in men’s sizes small through xx-large, this is a rock-solid jacket with style, performance and quality worth checking out.

Pros

There are no bells and whistles, but solid construction, an active fit, warm insulation and good waterproofing makes it a high quality, high performing jacket that is reasonably priced.

Lighter than you’d expect and good at keeping you warm, to a certain degree, this jacket has the basics covered. In the process of getting the basics done, the Spyder Chambers jacket gets a few other things right too.

  • Stay dry in multiple weather conditions: The durable water repellent makes the drops of water roll right off the surface of this 20,000mm waterproof rated jacket. The fully taped seams keep moisture from finding its way in. You’ll stay dry in rain or heavy, wet snow.
  • Good temperature control: This Spyder men’s ski jacket is equipped with underarm ventilation systems that keep you from feeling gross and sweaty after a full day riding the slopes. Though a hardshell design, the high breathability rating of 20,000g lets you know the technology works.
  • Packed with resort features: This is a solid resort ski jacket Spyder has created. Featuring anti-abrasion overlay, this jacket can take some hard scrapes, and has an integrated goggle wipe for easy goggle clearing. Pockets a plenty can be stuffed to take anything on the chairlift.
  • Warm: Synthetic Thinsulate insulation mimics the warmth of down feathers when dry, but when wet it is warmer than down. Adjustable hem and cuffs with thumb holes allow you to keep air from entering as well. Powerfully warm, you’ll outlast frigid temperatures easily.
  • Good bang for your buck: There are no bells and whistles, but solid construction, an active fit, warm insulation and good waterproofing makes it a high quality, high performing jacket that is reasonably priced.
  • Aggressive styling that makes an impression: The ski jacket styles available feature some wild color combinations sure to turn heads on and off the mountain. Great to show your personal style off, or perfect for those who hate fitting in. With this jacket on, you’ll be impossible to ignore.

Cons

By no means the ultimate best ski jackets, men’s Spyder Chambers jackets are far far away from being the worst either. The basics are covered here: good waterproofing, breathability and warmth. Getting the job done well, it doesn’t do much else. Then again, maybe that’s a problem for you.

  • Almost good for backcountry…but almost doesn’t count: The jacket is light enough to pack up easily and get moving on the next uphill climb, but that’s really about it. Insulation and waterproofing alone just aren’t enough to choose it over similar jackets you can take into the backcountry.
  • Layering is strongly suggested: Its insulation traps heat well, making it a good ski jacket for everyday use, but it doesn’t provide enough warmth when faced with some of the more frigid mountain temperatures. You’ll want to add extra layers before leaving the house.
  • Polarizing design: An asymmetrical design, colors that can be seen from halfway across the world and some pretty wild designs (that come in matching pants) can turn you off from the quality of the jacket. Those unfamiliar with Spyder’s aesthetic may want to look elsewhere.

Comparison

 

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski JacketSpyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket

Helly Hansen Alpha Ski JacketHelly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket

Burton Covert Ski JacketBurton Covert Ski Jacket

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
sizeS to XXLXXS to XXXLXXS to XXL
color6 colors10 colors19 colors
fabricPolyesterPolyurethane, polyamide, elastanePolyester
fabric lining100% polyester100% polyester100% polyester
seamsTapedFully sealedTaped
hoodHelmet compatible / removableHelmet compatible / adjustableHelmet compatible / fixed
pockets4 out / 2 in4 out4 out / 1 in
pockets closureZipperedZipperedVelcro
cuffsAdjustableAdjustableAdjustable
breathableYesYesYes
lightweightYesYesYes
waterproofYesYesYes
windproofYesYesYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine washMachine washMachine wash

Summary

The polyester hardshell offers good movement and it’s packed with features, like the goggle wipe integration that on-piste skiers will appreciate.

Highly breathable and waterproof, the Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket will keep you comfortable while skiing in some pretty rough weather conditions. The polyester hardshell offers good movement and it’s packed with features, like the goggle wipe integration that on-piste skiers will appreciate.

60g of 3M Thinsulate insulation will keep you warm without overheating as long as the outside temperatures aren’t too low. The design and color options offered are unique. People will either hate or love them, but one thing is for sure; the styling is not boring.

Though it doesn’t have the versatility to be a one quiver ski jacket, the quality of this Chambers jacket cannot be denied. This is a competent midrange option if you find yourself on resort chairlifts more often than in the backcountry.


Helly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket

Helly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket
(rated 4.9 / 5)
Quality
Durability
Appearance
Maintenance
Value for Money
Check Price

A ski jacket, at the minimum, should keep the snow and cold air from finding their way inside while making sure the heat and moisture your body creates while skiing escape.

Warmth and comfort when skiing is necessary, everything else is optional.

The conditions you find you ski in most often will help determine what kind of jacket is best for you. Backcountry skiing will require jackets that are built for situations that won’t happen on the resort.

Maybe you hate choosing and want a jacket that can work in more than one weather condition.

Some jackets really can do it all.

Information

The best ski jackets are versatile and the Helly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket does not disappoint.

The terminology and features you’ll run across can make buying a jacket a hassle, but picking just any jacket would be a big mistake. Some are made for dry, cold conditions and others are made for wetter and warmer climates. If you’re not sure the kind of conditions you’ll be skiing or if they will vary widely, a jacket that handles both is a good option.

The best ski jackets are versatile and the Helly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket does not disappoint.

The Alpha works to keep you warm, cool, dry, happy, sad, whatever you want. The outer shell is coated with a durable water repellant that keeps the material dry.

sizeXXS to XXXL
color10 colors
fabricPolyurethane, polyamide, elastane
fabric lining100% polyester
seamsFully sealed
hoodHelmet compatible / adjustable
pockets4 out
pockets closureZippered
cuffsAdjustable
breathableYes
lightweightYes
waterproofYes
windproofYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine wash

The inside combines insulation with a breathable Helly Hansen body mapping system that regulates your body’s temperature. You’ll never get too hot or too cold even while exerting a lot of energy on an uphill climb.

Available in sizes ranging from XX-small to 5X, the jacket is designed to hug your body but still manages to be lightweight, warm and comfortable. If style is your thing, choose one of the brighter colors for an extra pop on the mountain. Basics like black and white can be found but livelier hues such as Olympian Blue, Sweet Lime and Flag Red are much more interesting.

The stretchy material provides ultimate freedom and doesn’t restrict your body like many other jackets do. When the sky darkens and the temperature drops, you’ll feel just as prepared in this jacket as if it were a warmer winter day.

Pros

This ski jacket fit is true to size and features a light, stretchy two-way fabric that runs from the lining to the shell, allowing the jacket to move with your body.

Any ski jacket Helly Hansen makes will be known for its wet weather performance and the Alpha is no different. This jacket is found on the backs of serious skiers who love the backcountry and must be prepared for the harshest conditions.

  • Pouring rain cannot touch you: This jacket has a high ski jacket waterproof rating of 20,000mm. The two layered membrane has fully sealed construction at the seams, effectively keeping moisture out. Now, throw in a detachable hood and waterproof zippers. You are not getting wet.
  • Insulation that makes you all warm & fuzzy inside: Primaloft insulation keeps the right body parts warm. The insulation is complemented nicely by a form-hugging fabric that keeps heat in, providing a comforting warmth closer to a hug from your grandmother rather than of a jacket for the slopes.
  • Smart fabric that keeps the dreaded swamp pit at bay: The well-insulated ski jacket fabric could easily overheat very active skiers, but the very high 20,000g breathability rating says otherwise. The venting system accurately regulates your temperature, shedding heat quickly during intense activity or trapping heat when outside temps are lower.
  • A good fit that doesn’t restrict: This ski jacket fit is true to size and features a light, stretchy two-way fabric that runs from the lining to the shell, allowing the jacket to move with your body. Bonus articulated arms and elbows give you greater range of motion.
  • Built for the backcountry but can easily handle resort adventures: Its close fit reduces the overall weight, keeping it light and pack-friendly for backcountry skiers. The overall breathability and waterproofing material makes it a good option for many weather conditions. The ski pass pocket is also a pretty big hint.
  • Well-designed tech features for serious skiers: Ski jackets with RECCO systems, storage pockets, fleece hand warmers, a goggle wipe and a battery preserving pocket for your device must be hardcore right? Right! This is the jacket you want with you on your best and worst ski days.

Cons

With so many useful features and a well-thought out design, it is hard to ask this jacket of much else. The small issues it has are really going to come down to personal preference or if your natural body temperature is much higher or lower than average.

  • A little length could go a long way: Stopping around the hip, the length is a bit shorter than some would prefer. If you naturally run hot or neutral, it keeps snow and cold air out. If you run cold, you may have to put more under it to stay toasty.
  • Snug, form hugging fit may throw sizing off: The body-hugging fit is a hit with most, but others find themselves in the Goldilocks situation, stuck in between too small and too big. Your best bet is to try it on in the store before buying it, if possible.
  • Understated style or style challenged? Face it, loose fitting clothes inspired by snowboarders dominate the market, making this jacket feel out of place. The overall look is very neutral, like an egg-shell colored wall. Finding some of the brighter colors offered may help a bit.

Comparison

 

Helly Hansen Alpha Ski JacketHelly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski JacketSpyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket

Burton Covert Ski JacketBurton Covert Ski Jacket

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
sizeXXS to XXXLS to XXLXXS to XXL
color10 colors6 colors19 colors
fabricPolyurethane, polyamide, elastanePolyesterPolyester
fabric lining100% polyester100% polyester100% polyester
seamsFully sealedTapedTaped
hoodHelmet compatible / adjustableHelmet compatible / removableHelmet compatible / fixed
pockets4 out4 out / 2 in4 out / 1 in
pockets closureZipperedZipperedVelcro
cuffsAdjustableAdjustableAdjustable
breathableYesYesYes
lightweightYesYesYes
waterproofYesYesYes
windproofYesYesYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine washMachine washMachine wash

Summary

Completely waterproof, this piece of gear keeps you dry and the soft material feels like your favorite hoodie or sweatshirt instead of a ski jacket.

For the skier who seeks thrills but takes no chances in the backcountry, the high tech Helly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket packs in some serious features for when the going gets tough. It is also a great choice for hitting groomed runs at the resort. It never needs to see the backcountry if you don’t want it to.

Completely waterproof, this piece of gear keeps you dry and the soft material feels like your favorite hoodie or sweatshirt instead of a ski jacket. The active fit doesn’t restrict the movement you need to crush the slopes.

Warm, protective against all conditions and light, you’ll want to keep it with you on any adventure the ski day may take you on.


Burton Covert Ski Jacket

Burton Covert Ski Jacket
(rated 4.6 / 5)
Quality
Durability
Appearance
Maintenance
Value for Money
Check Price

It’s easy to get caught up in all the tech a ski jacket can offer nowadays.

Once you remember that all it needs to do is keep you warm, dry and happy, you begin to see new choices and have options.

Can a snowboard company make a jacket for skiing? Of course they can!

This Burton jacket may be designed for a boarder but it looks so much better on a skier. It also does the same job every other skiing jacket does.

The only question is, are you willing to see past their name and actually take a look at the jacket itself.

Information

Ergonomically designed, the Covert has the good looking design typical of Burton ski jackets.

Have you ever looked at a jacket in the snowboard section and thought of how good it would look on you as you skied downhill? You’re not alone.

You’ll be warm and toasty zipping down the hill in a Burton Covert Ski Jacket thanks to two layers of Dryride fabric filled with Thermolite insulation. The insulation traps just the right amount of body heat inside and releases the moisture that has built up on the inside. Taffeta lining increases the amount of breathability and is strategically placed to add warmth to the most needed parts of the body.

Burton does its best to reduce its carbon footprint on the environment when it can. 40% of the Thermolite insulation used in each jacket is recycled, and the whole jacket is Bluesign approved (it has met strict standards to minimize negative any impact on you and the world).

sizeXXS to XXL
color19 colors
fabricPolyester
fabric lining100% polyester
seamsTaped
hoodHelmet compatible / fixed
pockets4 out / 1 in
pockets closureVelcro
cuffsAdjustable
breathableYes
lightweightYes
waterproofYes
windproofYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine wash

Additionally, this jacket is also waterproof and has enough pockets to take anything on the hill with you. It has enough extra features to keep you discovering new things.

Ergonomically designed, the Covert has the good looking design typical of Burton ski jackets. Men should be happy about this. But be warned, you may leave the mountain with someone you didn’t come with.

Chic, warm, waterproof and loaded with useful features, the affordable price may be the most shocking aspect. This jacket is versatile and a nice one to take skiing even if it may be from a snowboarding company.

Pros

Hand warmer pockets are deep, the powder skirt is removable and there’s a media pocket that is easily accessible on the hill.

More than just a pretty face, this piece of ski gear from Burton does not compromise on its performance in cold weather. You’ll be surprised at how much it has to offer. This is not a case of style over substance.

  • Great for the casual resort rider: This Burton jacket doesn’t need bells and whistles to give resort skiers everything they need. With loads of pockets for necessities and more than warm enough to make bracing the lift a breeze, for the undemanding, average skier, it’s perfect.
  • Simple, yet stylish look and design: The Covert flaunts its snowboard jacket fit in Bog Heather, Pelican’s Tusk and at least 10 other colors. Loose and slightly longer in the back, you’ll get major style points – and possibly phone numbers – on the mountain. It looks that good.
  • Can get you through some pretty cold days: There is 80g of insulation in the body and 60g in the sleeves and hood. Waist gaiters seal against cold and the contoured hood protects your face. Plan on using it in cool to cold conditions at the resort for a warm and comfortable ski day.
  • Features for inbound play abound: Hand warmer pockets are deep, the powder skirt is removable and there’s a media pocket that is easily accessible on the hill. A mesh dump pocket lets you carry lets you carry any other gear you think you’ll need for the day.
  • Will keep you dry for a while: The major seams of the jacket are critically sealed and the waist gaiters repel water. For jackets in this price range, the 10,000mm waterproofing rating is on par, and is certainly enough to deal with wet snow when you have to.
  • Overall value makes the price ridiculously fair: The amount of insulation, waterproofing and stylish design makes the high performing Covert one of the best budget ski jackets. Specialty gear is always going to cost more than its everyday counterpart, but your jacket doesn’t need to cost as much as your skis.

Cons

For how and why it was designed, the Burton Covert jacket handles itself quite well in cold, wet conditions. On a closer look, there’s still not enough wrong to really complain about, but enough to understand why serious skiers may want something else.

  • Breathability that could use some improving: How well the jacket’s fabric breathes goes a long way in regulating your body temperature. The 5,000mm breathability rating on this jacket is low. You’ll get a bit of relief but sweat may make you cold when you stop moving.
  • Fake pockets will always be enraging: Non-functional pockets should be illegal. The two on the front are purely for style, instead of for actual stuff. Not sure how it happened, but the jacket is missing an arm pocket to make getting your ski pass less annoying each time.
  • Overall fit can be frustrating for some: The Covert is available in xx-small to xx-large, which is a broad range but the ski jacket sizing runs big. More than that, though, it can be a bit all over the place for some. The arms are long and the increased insulation in the torso makes it fit tighter in that area, restricting mobility for some body types.

Comparison

 

Burton Covert Ski JacketBurton Covert Ski Jacket

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski JacketSpyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket

Helly Hansen Alpha Ski JacketHelly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
sizeXXS to XXLS to XXLXXS to XXXL
color19 colors6 colors10 colors
fabricPolyesterPolyesterPolyurethane, polyamide, elastane
fabric lining100% polyester100% polyester100% polyester
seamsTapedTapedFully sealed
hoodHelmet compatible / fixedHelmet compatible / removableHelmet compatible / adjustable
pockets4 out / 1 in4 out / 2 in4 out
pockets closureVelcroZipperedZippered
cuffsAdjustableAdjustableAdjustable
breathableYesYesYes
lightweightYesYesYes
waterproofYesYesYes
windproofYesYesYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine washMachine washMachine wash

Summary

It looks great and comes in enough colors to never run into someone with an exact match.

Having a few Burton ski jackets in your collection can’t be a bad idea. The Covert is a well-built ski jacket that is great for cooler temperatures and can also keep you nice and warm in the full out depths of winter. For those that get cold fast, layers can easily fit underneath.

It looks great and comes in enough colors to never run into someone with an exact match. The material is waterproof but the breathability could use some beefing up. Nonetheless, the price is more than affordable for such a high-performing jacket.

At first glance of the price, you may not expect much, but be prepared to be blown away by the quality, style, functionality and simplicity of the Burton Covert Ski Jacket.


Andorra Performance Ski Jacket

Andorra Performance Ski Jacket
(rated 4.5 / 5)
Quality
Durability
Appearance
Maintenance
Value for Money
Check Price

When looking for a ski jacket, brand loyalty can get in the way of the actual jacket’s overall performance. If it locks in heat and keeps you happy, it’s a winner.

You may be overlooking perfectly good jackets simply because the logo isn’t recognizable.

Many jackets built for the slopes come with the latest tech trends and have features that only very serious skiers need.

For the average skier, a jacket that gets the job done and doesn’t need to be replaced often is more than enough.

If you find yourself caring more about what you actually need on the slope instead of what you want, you’ll save money.

Information

Feature-heavy and perfect for the groomed runs on-piste, this jacket has many pockets that let you easily and securely store necessities and any extras you feel you need to make it through the day.

Well-known ski jacket brands get the benefit of the doubt many times. It’s easy to assume they are going to make a jacket that keeps out cold and water the best, look the best and have the best features. But the smart skier knows that as long as a jacket keeps you warm, dry and comfortable, everything else is optional.

The Andorra Performance Ski Jacket is made for the smart skier.

The powder skirt helps maintain full insulation on the inside of the jacket and a reflective liner adds more comfort for the long days you may find yourself skiing. The hood doesn’t obstruct your sight and is removable for warmer days when it’s not necessary, or when you need to save some space in your ski bag.

sizeS to XL
color8 colors
fabricPolyester
fabric lining100% polyester
seamsFully sealed
hoodMicrofleece lined zip-off / removable
pockets3 out
pockets closureZippered
cuffsAdjustable
breathableYes
lightweightYes
waterproofYes
windproofYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine wash

Feature-heavy and perfect for the groomed runs on-piste, this jacket has many pockets that let you easily and securely store necessities and any extras you feel you need to make it through the day. The location of the pockets is designed nicely and you can reach just about anything fast.

Let’s hope you don’t spend too much time in the snow, but if you do, this one protects you from the wet stuff. It is waterproof and nothing will get inside of it. The moisture wicking material removes sweat. At the end of the day, your legs may hurt and you may be tired, but you’ll be dry.

This Andorra jacket has a combination of style and performance that just about anyone can get behind.

Pros

The relaxed fit, low profile pockets and various colors – like Aspen Pike, Binary Heather and Himalayan Shades – make this a great looking, stylish jacket.

Sometimes a ski brand you’ve never heard of can make a product that does everything you need it to do. This jacket may not have the latest waterproofing tech or the most detachable items, but you won’t find yourself caring.

  • No insulation ratings, no problem: The thermal liner helps retain and circulate body heat to keep you cozy. Adjustable cuffs seal wind and water out. You won’t find any ski jacket warmth ratings on this coat, but that doesn’t mean it won’t keep you warm on the mountain.
  • Water and snow roll right off: Expect to stay dry, even if you find yourself in the snow more than on top of it, thanks to the waterproof coating on the outer shell. The seams are critically sealed to further protect you from water creeping in.
  • Included features are resort ready: Outer arm and chest zippered pockets are ideal for money and keys. The inner mesh pockets keep your goggles and phone safe. A detachable hood gives you coverage without reducing your peripheral vision. Everything you need for a worry-free day of skiing.
  • Looks really good: If you’re into ski jacket fashion, this is a winner. The relaxed fit, low profile pockets and various colors – like Aspen Pike, Binary Heather and Himalayan Shades – make this a great looking, stylish jacket. It gives you confidence to shred and turn a few heads.
  • Made for skiing, but great for daily use: Light enough to wear in 40 degree weather yet flexible enough to retain your body’s natural movement, and stylish, you can wear this jacket daily. The ski jacket vs. winter jacket debate may never end but this one undoubtedly can be used as both.
  • Affordable but still a good value: This is an excellent jacket that includes many of the same features found on much more expensive brands. The ski jacket materials are durable and tough enough to last longer than you’d think possible. Getting just one full ski season makes this one worth it.

Cons

Though there is much to love about this Andorra jacket, adding a few things could make your day more enjoyable on the hill. Depending on how frequently you find yourself skiing, they may be easy to overlook for the value.

  • Tight fit can make it harder to layer: The length of the body and arms is a bit short and the shoulder area can be tight for those with broad shoulders. Order a size or two up to make sure you can fit extra layers beneath for colder days. Sizes run from men’s medium to xx-large.
  • Body temperature regulation might be a problem: Dry wick material in the back absorbs moisture to keep you dry but the material isn’t breathable to allow moisture out. It also has no zippered openings to cool down. You’ll have to unzip the entire jacket for relief.
  • You get what you pay for: Don’t expect the same quality construction and materials you’d get from a more expensive brand. The ski jacket zippers feel cheaper and the outer shell material, though nice, isn’t as capable of holding up against snags and spills like high end Gore-Tex.

Comparison

 

Andorra Performance Ski JacketAndorra Performance Ski Jacket

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski JacketSpyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket

Helly Hansen Alpha Ski JacketHelly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
sizeS to XLS to XXLXXS to XXXL
color8 colors6 colors10 colors
fabricPolyesterPolyesterPolyurethane, polyamide, elastane
fabric lining100% polyester100% polyester100% polyester
seamsFully sealedTapedFully sealed
hoodMicrofleece lined zip-off / removableHelmet compatible / removableHelmet compatible / adjustable
pockets3 out4 out / 2 in4 out
pockets closureZipperedZipperedZippered
cuffsAdjustableAdjustableAdjustable
breathableYesYesYes
lightweightYesYesYes
waterproofYesYesYes
windproofYesYesYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine washMachine washMachine wash

Summary

Water slides right off the outer shell’s coated fabric and the seams are critically sealed to keep anything from an unwanted chill slipping through.

You’ll enjoy the next ski trip you’re on if you have the Andorra Performance Ski Jacket on your back. Not purely because of its impeccable style and fit, but also because it is great at keeping you warm and toasty all day long.

This ski jacket is waterproof. Water slides right off the outer shell’s coated fabric and the seams are critically sealed to keep anything from an unwanted chill slipping through. Its many pockets are easy to access and perfect for the resort enthusiast to take anything they need and still have room left over.

Use it for daily protection too. Light and flexible, it provides a great blend of comfort, warmth and weather protection in wet, cold conditions.


Wantdo Mountain Ski Jacket

Wantdo Mountain Ski Jacket
(rated 4.5 / 5)
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Durability
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A ski jacket should keep you on the slope performing at your best. Though they protect you from snow and cold, some do it better than others.

How well, and how much, you need to be protected is up to you.

Any ski gear that seems too affordable brings the skeptic out of any smart skier, because ski equipment is typically costly.

Ski jackets are no different. But when you know what an affordable product can and can’t do, you can make an informed decision.

That way, you’ll be completely prepared for the tradeoffs you face.

Information

To seal out the elements you’ll find the classic cuffs, waist gaiters and numerous features that keep the wind from sneaking into the warm cocoon of a jacket.

The Wantdo Mountain Ski Jacket is not the first or last jacket Wando has created. They specialize in outdoor designs so take comfort in the fact that though you may never have heard of them, they know how to do their job pretty well.

This particular jacket is warm, featuring a teddy fleece lining that people seriously rave over and polyester fibers that guarantee to keep the heat next to your body where it belongs. Nothing should keep you from going outside to ski in the snow. This jacket makes sure you have no excuses to stay indoors.

Made to fight water just as it fights the cold, this jacket repels water to keep you dry and when it does get a bit wet, the material is constructed to quickly dry.

sizeS to XXXL
color8 colors
fabricPolyester
fabric lining100% polyester
seamsTaped
hoodHelmet compatible / removable
pockets2 out / 2 in
pockets closureZippered
cuffsAdjustable
breathableYes
lightweightYes
waterproofYes
windproofYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine wash

Designed to resemble a softshell, it is highly resistant to wind. To seal out the elements you’ll find the classic cuffs, waist gaiters and numerous features that keep the wind from sneaking into the warm cocoon of a jacket.

Perfect for the resort, you will stay comfortable and warm for a long time before you have to call it quits on the hill. You’ll also find it contains features you’ll appreciate and that are useful within the functional design.

For those that don’t need to spend very much money on a jacket to ski, this is a great option. It is chic, comes in eight different colors (blue, red, grey, two different greens, coffee, khaki and black) and performs admirable for a jacket in this price range.

Pros

Ski jackets for men can cost a lot of money. This one provides features found on higher end jackets but a price tag that doesn’t require a second job.

You may be missing out on a decent product if you have never heard of Wantdo before, or haven’t given the brand a chance. Their niche is outerwear and this jacket admirably handles itself in the cold and wet weather you’ll find yourself in when skiing.

  • Soft, warm and comfortable: Velcro fasteners are located on the cuff and wrist gaiters (aka ski jacket thumb holes) protect your hands. Lined with teddy fleece and insulated, this jacket is cozy and keeps the heat next to you so you never have to stop skiing.
  • Designed with the resort in mind: The insulation is too light for backcountry but perfect for resort skiing. Side pockets are lined to warm your hands and outer pockets are secured with zip closures. The large design of the toggles can be grabbed easily without removing gloves.
  • Keeps you relatively dry: The front is closed with a storm flap covered zipper to prevent rain or snow from reaching your body. The outer material repels water and dries quickly. The outer seams are sealed to improve the waterproofing abilities of the jacket.
  • Versatile enough to wear on or off the slope: The design of the jacket focused mainly on keeping people warm in the winter. This jacket has it all and only has 3 small logos, instead of one huge logo, making it perfect for everyday use. Its ski jacket reviews say it all.
  • Nice looking jacket: Men’s ski jackets don’t have to be boring or muted in color. Wantdo has made a jacket with added touches, like fleece lining, that make it all the more appealing. Found in Sky Blue, Red and more, you’ll look good in it.
  • An affordable price: Ski jackets for men can cost a lot of money. This one provides features found on higher end jackets but a price tag that doesn’t require a second job. You’ll stay warm and have a few extra dollars to show for it.

Cons

Though this jacket gets more than a few things right, there’s no denying it leaves some things to be desired for those who require more protection on the mountain. High performing, affordable items usually come with a tradeoff that’s relatively easy to deal with.

  • Water resistant is not the same as waterproof: Despite the advertising of the product as waterproof, the actual label says water resistant and the jacket is just that. Water can and will find its way to your chest and arms if you fall in the snow often, or if it rains.
  • Sizing you may not be familiar with: Wantdo ski jacket sizes are hard to understand and even if you think you’ve got it right, you still may need to go up another size. Don’t just go by the small to xxx-large sizes. Read the sizing chart and reviews carefully to see how many sizes you’ll have to order up.
  • A nice jacket marred by an unpolished finish: The stitching isn’t the highest quality, with some reports of ripping after one or two uses. The main zipper takes some time to fully break in, and the lining has a crinkly sound that can annoy the sensitive ear.

Comparison

 

Wantdo Mountain Ski JacketWantdo Mountain Ski Jacket

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski JacketSpyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket

Helly Hansen Alpha Ski JacketHelly Hansen Alpha Ski Jacket

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
sizeS to XXXLS to XXLXXS to XXXL
color8 colors6 colors10 colors
fabricPolyesterPolyesterPolyurethane, polyamide, elastane
fabric lining100% polyester100% polyester100% polyester
seamsTapedTapedFully sealed
hoodHelmet compatible / removableHelmet compatible / removableHelmet compatible / adjustable
pockets2 out / 2 in4 out / 2 in4 out
pockets closureZipperedZipperedZippered
cuffsAdjustableAdjustableAdjustable
breathableYesYesYes
lightweightYesYesYes
waterproofYesYesYes
windproofYesYesYes
best useSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, campingSkiing, hiking, climbing, camping
washingMachine washMachine washMachine wash

Summary

Warm and cozy, this jacket is keeps the cold air out really well but the lack of waterproof materials means it doesn’t do the best job of keeping you as dry as other jackets do.

While definitely not one of the ski jackets by high end brands, the affordable Wantdo Mountain Ski Jacket is for the skier who knows what they need and is not willing to pay top dollar for all the extras.

Warm and cozy, this jacket is keeps the cold air out really well but the lack of waterproof materials means it doesn’t do the best job of keeping you as dry as other jackets do. It you’re a beginning skier, you’ll want more protection than this, but the average skier may not be too worried.

Overall, the price point and the many pockets and cold weather protection this ski jacket offers is hard to turn your nose up at.

Best Ski Jacket Buying Guide

Climate where you ski

The first thing that you need to consider when looking for the best ski jacket is the climate of the area in which you’ll be skiing. Is it dry and mild? Or cold and wet?

Dry and mild ski conditions usually require jackets with more ventilation and less insulation; cold and wet require more waterproofing and insulation. Knowing the conditions you ski in can help you to sort out information about the type of jacket you want to purchase.

Versatile or single use?

There are so many different types of jackets out there to choose from. Do you want something that can only be used on the coldest of days, or do you want a jacket that has multiple layers that you can add as you wish?

Many people swear by the best 3-in-1 ski jackets, which have two layers. The inner layer is insulation and made of down or fleece; the outer layer is a waterproof shell that keeps you safe from the elements. They’re called “3 in 1” because you can wear each layer individually, or zip them together.

Down, fleece or synthetic insulation?

Insulation is important because it helps to keep you warm, even in weather that may give your winter boots a run for their money. But, what insulation do the best ski jacket brands offer?

Down insulation is made from the soft wispy inner feathers of ducks and geese. It keeps you very warm, compresses more easily than other insulation, and is very durable. Fleece and synthetic insulation options are often heavier, but they dry more easily and are more affordable than down options.

Fit of the jacket

You know how your jeans have a particular “fit”? Jackets do as well. You can get slim fit, relaxed fit, or regular fit jackets.

Slim fit are active jackets that fit your form and have tailoring at the shoulders, abdomen, and waist. Regular fit jackets are more “true to size” and tailored just below your waist. Relaxed fit, like their jeans counterparts, are a larger fit that has more space in the chest and shoulders, allowing you to layer clothing more easily.

Flexibility of the jacket

How easily are you able to move around in the jacket? You don’t want it to fit so snugly that it’s hard for you to move around when you’re wearing it.

Try moving around in the jacket when you try it out. Bend down like you’re getting ready to adjust your ski bindings or snowboard bindings and see how easily it moves with you. If it is hard to bend over, you may want to look for a looser jacket.

Jacket length

Skiing and snowboarding jackets come in many different lengths – you can get them with the hem at your waist or have it go all the way below your knee. The length you choose is based on your comfort, how easily you can move around, and what style of skiing you enjoy.

Be sure that it isn’t so long that it impedes your movement on the slopes or trails. A secondary consideration is whether it will fit in your ski boots bag or ski bag when travelling.

Imported or made in America?

If you’re looking at different types of coats, you will find that there are many brands to look at, and they’re from both sides of “the pond”. What’s the difference?

When you look at European ski jacket brands, they are built for skiing in tough winter conditions, like what you would see in Scandinavia and the Alps. American style jackets are a little more versatile, and they often focus just as much on appearance and style as they do functionality.

Breathability

Skiing is a lot of hard work and, even if it’s 10 degrees outside, you’re likely going to sweat because of how much effort you’re putting into it. Skiing is exercise, and you will end up soaking wet after a day on the slopes (which can bring its own problems).

That’s why breathability is a factor. Breathable jackets are made with materials that help to “air out” areas that may sweat a lot, like your armpits, your chest, and your groin.

Combined with ski pants?

Some people will look at their options for an all-in-one snow suit where the jacket and pants are attached. You may be warm, but you will sacrifice some of your flexibility, which can be problematic when skiing.

Sometimes, you can get a good deal on the best ski jacket pants combo, where your ski pants and jacket come as a set. That’s probably a better idea than buying what is, essentially, a snowsuit.

How bulky is it?

Thankfully, as technology has gotten better, ski jackets are not as bulky as they used to be. They used to be so bulky that you couldn’t even wear a ski backpack on your back without making some major adjustments.

Nowadays, there are some bulky jackets that work well, but you’re better off finding something with a little less bulk. It’ll give you more flexibility while still keeping you as warm as possible.

Waterproofing is crucial

Every jacket has what is called a “waterproof rating” which tells you how long it will take before water will penetrate the jacket. It’s measured in millimeters, and the bigger the number the longer the jacket is able to keep you dry. For example, a coat rated 6,000 to 10,000 mm is great for average use, but if you’re dealing with heavy, wet snow, you want at least 16,000 mm of waterproofing.

Many of the waterproof materials out there nowadays have pores that won’t allow water through them, but that will allow sweat particles to get through, keeping you dry even when you’re sweating.

Seams need to be waterproof, too

This is very directly related to the waterproofing of the jacket. Some jackets have partially taped seams; that is, the seams around the shoulders and neck have a special “tape” (made from cloth) on them to add an extra layer of waterproofing in those areas.

You can also find jackets that have fully taped seams. That means that every single seam has been taped in that same way. This allows for maximum waterproofing and prevents any sort of moisture from getting into the jacket when it shouldn’t.

Does it have additional closures?

Weatherproofing your jacket is vital, especially if you’re going to be out and skiing in rough conditions. Jackets made by the best ski brands will have multiple ways to keep the cold and snow outside of the jacket – where they belong.

These may include options like cinch cords (which pull the bottom of your jacket closed), wrist closures (which use Velcro or snaps to keep water and snow out of your sleeves and gloves), and a powder skirt (which is another way to close off the bottom of your jacket to prevent snow and cold from getting in).

Does it have a hood?

Many of your options for ski jackets are going to include a hood of some sort. Some of the newer jackets out there have detachable hoods that you can snap on and off as you wish.

If you do opt for a hood, it should be adjustable. You want to be sure that, when you have the hood up, your ski helmet is going to fit underneath and that the hood won’t compromise the protection that your helmet provides.

Are there vents?

Many ski jackets will have vents, where there’s a zipper that, when unzipped, reveals an area with mesh. This allows you to unzip the area if you’re skiing on a warmer day or you just find yourself to be a little too warm in your jacket while you’re on your cross-country skis.

If you want the best ski jacket that can be used in pretty much any sort of weather condition, then you definitely want to look for one that has pit zips and venting in order to easily regulate your body temperature.

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket
Our pick for the best ski jacket is: Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket. This choice was made after spending 39 hours researching ski jackets.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is down insulation still used in ski jackets?

Due to how waterproof and warm down insulation is, it’s still a popular (and more expensive) choice. But, many people have concerns about how the down is sourced.

Some jacket producers now adhere to what is called the “Responsible Down Standard”. In short, if a company adheres to the RDS, then they will only source down and feathers from farms that treat their geese and ducks in an ethical manner. You can usually find this info on company sites.

Are there differences between a ski jacket and a snowboard jacket?

You will always see ski and snowboard jackets side by side when you’re shopping for them – and the differences between them are subtle, like what you would find between a snowboard bag and a ski bag.

The biggest difference is the way that these jackets fit. A snowboard jacket is often longer and looser than a ski jacket. For most people, they find that they can use a ski jacket and a snowboard jacket interchangeably with no issues.

Why would you ever just use a shell jacket instead of one with insulation?

During your search for the best ski jacket, it’s likely that you’ve found some that have no insulation at all. There are a lot of skiers, especially professional ones, that prefer the shells over other options.

Why? Mainly, because when you’re out all day on your all-mountain skis, you’re going to be building up a sweat. And, if you’re trying to do tricks or difficult slopes, you want maximum flexibility, and shell jackets can provide that for skiers and snowboarders.

Are there other accessories I should look out for?

When you start looking at the different types of ski brands, you will find that there are all sorts of additional accessories you can find with your jacket.

Some jackets will have a convenient attached wipe for your ski goggles so you can keep them clear. Others may have RECCO reflectors, which can help rescuers find people in an avalanche situation. You also want to consider how many pockets it has for you to store other items.

Can you rent ski clothing?

It all depends on the ski slope that you’re going to visit. Sometimes, you can find discount ski packages that can include all of your ski gear and clothing for an additional fee – you just have to look around!

But, if you want to guarantee that you always have the best ski jacket that fits you well and that keeps you warm, it’s just better for you to go ahead and purchase your own to use all year long.

Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket
Our pick for the best ski jacket is: Spyder Chambers Gore-tex Ski Jacket. This choice was made after spending 39 hours researching ski jackets.

Sources

  1. Thermal Clothing, NASA Spinoff
  2. Sunny Slopes - Ski Safely!, Environmental Protection Agency, Feb 16, 2012
  3. What to Pack for Your North Dakota Visit, North Dakota State Government
  4. Frozen hair and what to wear: A survival guide to winter at Michigan, University of Michigan, Nov 8, 2017
  5. Ski Jacket, Wikipedia
  6. Ski Wear Throughout The Decades, Ohio State University, Oct 31, 2018
  7. When I Start Skiing I Never Want to Stop, Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Jul 30, 2002
  8. Tips for first-time skiers (and instructors of first-time skiers), Harvard University, Feb 2, 1999
  9. Everything you need to know about buying a ski jacket, Telegraph, Sep 5, 2018
  10. How to Choose a Ski or Snowboard Jacket, Backcountry

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