Safety Shells: 14 Best Commuter Jackets

Aug 21, 2018

Category: Gear

Among the many perks of urban living these days, the diminished need to drive to and from the office might just be the most impactful – not only on your health but also on the environment. And while the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is a viable reason in and of itself to reduce unnecessary time spent behind the wheel, commuting via foot, bike, or train does leave you exposed to the elements in a way a personal vehicle does not. It’s here where some specialized gear is in order to help mitigate the opportunity cost involved in ditching the horsepower in favor of a more transient transition from the homestead to the workspace.

And by gear, we’re referencing commuter jackets of course. From their inherent waterproof nature to a diverse range of insulating features and everyday carry properties, these aren’t your grandad’s rain jackets. Instead, here we find technical, stylish, and utilitarian options to keep you comfortable and in high spirits come Monday morning – regardless of what the night before might have entailed.

Levi’s Commuter Trucker Jacket

Nothing beats a classic. Even if it’s a new rendition of an iconic wardrobe staple. In this case, Levi’s knocks it out of the park with their traditionally-influenced Commuter Trucker Jacket. Each essential item features a straight fit, lower back hem, and long sleeves for coverage while riding to work. Built clearly for city living, this performance-driven stretch denim jacket is an ideal garment for urban commuters.

Purchase: $70

Rapha Loopback Jacket

Placing comfort as the primary motivator, Rapha has successfully paired the utility of a trucker jacket with the comfort of a t-shirt. It’s all thanks to the likes of lightweight nylon Pertex fabric that offers plenty of stretch and wind blocking capabilities. The Loopback also hosts four pockets up front, cuffs fastened with the brand’s signalcuff system and works to regulate body temperature for those longer hauls.

Purchase: $84

Patagonia Dirt Craft Bike Jacket

Stretchy, lightweight, stylish, and dependent. It’s what defines Patagonia at their core that makes the brand so attractive to outdoorsmen and commuters alike. Here, we have a soft shell outer layer featuring a water-repellant finish and a breathable construction making it ideal for warmer summer showers yet insulted enough for those colder fall morning commutes. Can’t go wrong here.

Purchase: $90

Specialized Deflect Hybrid Jacket

Looking for more than just an ordinary jacket? Specialized has you covered with their Deflect Hybrid Jacket compete with removable sleeves and a wind — and water-resistant construction. In fact, their proprietary stretch-woven fabric allows for enhanced freedom of movement while keeping you protected in the process. Additional noteworthy features include wrist seals, a drop tail to protect against wheel spray, and a packable design for easy transport.

Purchase: $130

The North Face Allproof Stretch Jacket

It’s not all mountaineering gear over at The North Face. On the contrary, the famed brand also releases some mighty fine commuting gear as well. Take the Allproof Stretch Jacket for example. Here, we have a breathable, waterproof, and seam-sealed stretch shell featuring zippered hand pockets, a fully adjustable hood, and pit-zip venting to keep you mobile no matter what the season throws your way.

Purchase: $149

Taylor Stitch The Hackney

Providing a tasteful mix of both form and function, The Hackney jacket is modeled after a vintage beach jacket blended with recycled fabric and impeccable attention to detail. What we’re left with is a lightweight and fully waterproof commuter jacket complete with a YKK 2-way waterproof zipper, snap cuffs, three-piece hood gusseted arm opening, and gunmetal Taylor Stitch snaps. Yet another home run for the California brand.

Purchase: $168

Helly Hanson Coasting Anorak

While most of us associate the common anorak with hiking or mountain trekking excursions, Helly Hanson designed their Coasting Anorak for urban bike commuters. Delivering protection and safety, each piece features a waterproof, windproof and breathable construction, is fully seam-sealed, hosts a quick-dry lining, a full-time adjustable hood, and reflective elements for good measure.

Purchase: $200

Showers Pass Elite 2.1 Jacket

Utilized as a preferred training jacket for professional cyclists, it’s no wonder why the Elite 2.1 jacket is commonly referred to as the gold standard of the Showers Pass lineup. It’s because each offering features Elite™ three-layer ripstop fabrics that are body mapped to maximize breathability, waterproof/windproof protection, seven venting options for when temperatures rise, and long sleeves for full wrist coverage while riding.

Purchase: $259

Maap Block Out Pro

Performance and protection. Any urban commuter will agree these two characteristics are what make a jacket desirable day-in and day-out. And with the Block Out Pro, this is exactly what they’ll get. It’s all thanks to innovative DryTech™ fabric that protects against rain and wind while large reflective graphics help keep the piece visible in low light.

Purchase: $290

Search And State Packable Expedition Jacket

If there’s any downside to commuter jackets, it’s storing them once you’ve arrived at your destination. Not the case here with this Packable Expedition Jacket. Made in New York, each jacket features a handful of durable components in addition to its convenient packable design. We’re talking Riri Aqua zippers, a completely waterproof S1-J construction, drawstring hood to easily fit a helmet, and the entire jacket is lined with a climate membrane to regulate temperature in ever-changing conditions.

Purchase: $365

Outlier Experiment 105

Compete with both merits of form and function, Experiment 105 is a tough yet handsome commuter jacket built from their exclusive Workcloth Doubleweave Canvas. Meaning, the outer face features a durable Cordura-grade nylon while a loosely-woven nylon-poly blend creates a soft interior for enhanced comfort. Additional features include two chest pockets with Black Tapey closures, flat black stainless steel shanks, and a NanoSphere treatment for water, dirt, and grime resistance.

Purchase: $575

Vollebak Graphene Jacket

You may be asking yourself, what is graphene? Well, as the lightest, strongest and most conductive material ever discovered, it’s no reason Vollebak decided to use the Nobel Prize-winning discovery in the construction of their science experiment of a commuter jacket. It’s also completely reversible, features laser cut pockets, and is completely waterproof and breathable.

Purchase: $695

Mission Workshop The Bremen

Functioning as a take on their iconic Mackintosh raincoat, Mission Workshop’s The Bremen boasts a removable hood and dual-position collar design making it ideal for all seasons. It’s what we’ve come to expect from San Francisco-based bike-friendly brand. Each jacket also features a Swiss-made c_change™ fabric complete with a heat-reactive waterproof-breathable membrane to regulate body temperature while two ported hand-warmer pockets keep your fingers from freezing while ported media pockets help facilitate a personal soundtrack for your everyday commute.

Purchase: $765

Arc’Teryx Veilance Arris Jacket

Sleek and slim fitting, the Arris Jacket is one style-forward option that refuses to disappoint in both form and function. Not only does it host the brand’s trademark look, but a waterproof and breathable construction keeps you dry and comfortable during the commute while a micro-seam allowance reduces overall bulk, a taped seam construction ensures longevity, and low-profile StormHood™ with adjustment cords protects and serves you well while in route.

Purchase: $850

The 8 Best Panniers For Bike Commuting

It’s not just your body that needs protection from the elements. Your tech does too. Which is why we put together this list of the 8 best panniers for bike commuting so that prized laptop and camera gear remains fully functional for whatever the day delivers.

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