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The 12 Best Men’s Rain Jackets For Any Situation

Best Rain Jackets 0 Hero

As the rain begins to fall more following the summer months, you’ll need to arm yourself with a quality rain jacket. Needless to say, the market is flooded (pardon the pun) with so many options it’ll make your head spin. There are plenty to choose from, but not all of them are worthy of your money, and many of them aren’t even waterproof.

Compared to puffers and parkas, rain jackets achieve more utility and versatility. And because of that, people are earnestly looking for guidance through the torrential deluge of options. Whether you’re commuting, hiking, biking, or anything in between, this article will guide you through the ever-changing storm to help you find the best rain jacket for any and all of your needs.

Best Rain Jacket Breakdown

Waterproof Vs. Water-Resistant

Knowing if something is waterproof or water-resistant is important, especially when it comes to a piece of gear that’s made to combat water. If something is water-resistant, it can resist moisture on some level, usually through thick materials that are inherently water-resistant, like nylon or polyester, or water-repellant fabric treatment like DWR.

Waterproof jackets, on the other hand, are largely due to their construction. Rain jackets will be typically made with polyester or nylon, yes, but will also be bolstered by GORE-TEX lining (which is waterproof), impenetrable zippers, or taped seams, where heat is used to fuse thermoplastic tape to the seams.

There’s no real regulation on waterproofness, but there is an IP rating that some products use. In those cases, the higher the last number is, the more waterproof it is.

What Is DWR?

DWR stands for “durable water repellant” and is often used as a treatment on jackets and other gear to bolster their water-resistant properties even further. Heavy downpours won’t be phased, but DWR will work nicely in lighter conditions. Also, the coating can wear off over time but can be maintained to keep it fresh. It’s also important to note that DWR finishes have a history of using perfluorocarbon (PFC), which can be harmful to our health and that of the environment. Look for PFC-free coatings.

What to Look for in a Rain Jacket

Weight: Your use will determine how lightweight you want your jacket to be. If you’re hiking or running, you won’t want to be weighed down all that much. However, if you’re going to be in colder weather or commuting, you may not want something too light in weight.

Breathability: The last thing you want to do when evading moisture from up above is experience moisture from within (sounds gross, but it’s true). Make sure your jacket is breathable so you won’t be sweating a whole lot, especially if you’re on the move. Be on the lookout for materials like GORE-TEX, which is waterproof AND breathable, and vents in the pits or backside.

Packability: If you’re going to be wearing your jacket on a longer trip, you might want to check to see if it packs well. Some options will compress all the way into a tiny sack that’s often made from one of its own pockets.

Pockets: Since you’re going to be wearing this outside in wet weather (most likely), it’s important to not only have enough pockets for your gear but ones that are well-protected, either with zippers, buttons, or flaps. Also, interior pockets are helpful.

Hood: This may seem obvious, but you’ll want a hood (or at least the option for one) on your rain jacket to keep water off your head and face.

Patagonia Torrentshell 3L

Patagonia Torrentshell 3L
  • Good price
  • Stowable hood is two-way adjustable
  • Fleece-lined neck
  • Lots of color options
  • Versatile style
  • No chest pocket

Best Overall: Not only is patagonia’s flagship Torrentshell 3L rain jacket stylish but it performs really well — and at an exceptional price point. Able to handle outdoor treks and serve as a nice commuter jacket, the coat boasts the brand’s famed commitment to function and sustainability. The name refers to the three-layer build that consists of a 100% recycled nylon ripstop with a DWR finish, a 13% bio-based polycarbonate PU membrane, and a tricot backer. Adding even more protection and comfort, the stowable hood is two-way adjustable and the neck is lined with warm fleece.

Shell Material: 100% recycled ripstop nylon
DWR Finish?: Yes
Weight: 14.1oz

REI Co-op Rainier Rain Jacket 

REI Co op Rainier Rain Jacket
  • Cheap
  • Lots of color options
  • Wind-proof
  • Zippered pit vents
  • Runs large

Best Sub-$100 Rain Jacket: Not the most stylish jacket of the bunch, but this affordable rain jacket from REI benefits from the brand’s outdoor gear expertise. Available in six colorways, the Rainier gives you complete waterproof protection thanks to the weather-proof zipper in front and the Peak 2.5-layer ripstop nylon shell which also provides protection from winds up to 60mph. If the breathable laminate weren’t enough, the jacket sports zippers in the armpits as well for added ventilation. For a trimmer look, the adjustable three-piece hood can be easily stowed away.

Shell Material: Peak 2.5-layer ripstop nylon
DWR Finish?: Yes
Weight: 13oz

Nike Sportswear Storm-FIT Legacy

Nike Sportswear Storm FIT Legacy
  • Great pockets
  • Very stylish and versatile
  • Made from recycled plastic bottles
  • Questionable availability
  • No DWR

Best Day-to-Day Rain Jacket: A daily rain jacket should be both stylish and functional. This Storm-FIT Legacy Jacket from Nike has a large zippered pocket in front for your keys, wallet, and phone, and has a versatile silhouette that can go with pretty much anything in your wardrobe. As far as protection against downpours, the lightweight coat sports a 2.5-layer polyester shell made from recycled plastic bottles and an adjustable hood.

Shell Material: 2.5-layer polyester shell made from recycled bottles
DWR Finish?: No
Weight: N/A

Lululemon Outpour StretchSeal Field Jacket

lululemon Outpour StretchSeal Field Jacket
  • Vented backside
  • Articulated for movement
  • Lots of large pockets in front
  • Longer fit good for covering seat
  • Previous model was a bit longer

Best Commuter Rain Jacket: lululemon recently added a below-waist waterproof coat to its lineup, called the Outpour StretchSeal Field Jacket, with a longer fit to protect your pants from wet bus stop benches or bicycle seats. Favoring a shorter wear time, with hidden vents strategically placed on the back to prevent heating and a looser, articulated fit for more comfort amidst the hustle and bustle, this rain jacket is built with waterproof Glyde nylon fabric and adjustable cuffs and hood for deflecting moisture at a whim. Likewise, the four large pockets on the front are great for keeping your key gear dry during your commute.

Shell Material: Waterproof Glyde nylon with elastane
DWR Finish?: No
Weight: N/A

Mountain Hardwear Exposure/2 GORE-TEX Paclite

Mountain Hardwear Exposure2 Paclilte
  • Very lightweight
  • Durable shell
  • Lots of pockets
  • Harness-compatible hand pockets
  • No vents

Best Rain Jacket for Hiking: A good hiking rain jacket favors durability, stretch, and lighter weight. This 100% nylon coat from Mountain Hardwear definitely gets the job done at just 9oz, becoming the first to benefit from GORE-TEX’s newly-engineered Paclite material, which boasts the brand’s same durable waterproof-breathability while coming in lighter on the scale. There are plenty of pockets on the front to keep your gear dry while traversing the trails — including harness-compatible hand pockets. 

Shell Material: Nylon with GORE-TEX Paclite
DWR Finish?: No
Weight: 9.6oz

The North Face Summit Series Superior FUTURELIGHT

The North Face Summit Series Superior FUTURELIGHT
  • Very lightweight
  • Triple-layer shell
  • Stows into its own pocket
  • 360-degree reflectivity for low light
  • Not as versatile for day-to-day
  • No pockets

Best Rain Jacket for Running: Running jackets, like hiking jackets, need to be flexible, breathable, and lightweight. The Summit Series Superior FUTURELIGHT from The North Face checks all the boxes and weighs in at just over 7oz despite having a triple-layer recycled polyester shell. Optimal for those looking to pound the pavement before or after work, the jacket stows away in its own mesh pocket and the 360-degree reflectivity keeps you visible in low light. However, the lack of side pockets makes this less favorable as a day-to-day coat.

Shell Material: 100% recycled polyester ripstop with triple-layer waterproof-breathable FUTURLIGHT lining
DWR Finish?: Yes
Weight: 7.4oz

Rapha Core Rain Jacket II

Rapha Core Rain Jacket II
  • Reinforced shell on the sleeves
  • Longer arms keep you covered with stretched arms
  • Long rear to protect pants in back
  • Wind-resistant
  • Zipper difficult with one hand

Best Rain Jacket for Cycling: It’s incredibly important to stay dry while cycling. Rapha is among the most revered brands in the cycling world, and for good reason. Among its impressive range of rain jackets is the Core II, a versatile pick for any type of bicyclist. Sporting a YKK AquaGuard zipper in front for waterproof and wind resistance, the coat’s shell is built with 2.5 layers of lightweight nylon and hydrophobic membrane, with 3 layers in the sleeves. The longer arms are optimal for riding and the longer rear hem protects your pants from any tire spray.

Shell Material: 2.5-layer nylon with hydrophobic membrane
DWR Finish?: No
Weight: 4.5oz

Tentree Nimbus Rain Jacket

  • Really soft and comfortable
  • YKK AquaGuard zippers
  • Fully-taped seams
  • Phone-specific pocket
  • Runs short and slim

Best Sustainable Rain Jacket: Valuing its full transparency, Tentree is a brand that prides itself on 100% sustainability, especially in an industry that often uses non-degradable materials and chemical DWR. Its Nimbus rain jacket features a non-toxic, PFC-free DWR coating, 150D twill weave with recycled yarn, and a 75% recycled TPU membrane. Performance-wise, the coat is equipped with waterproof YKK AquaGuard zippers, fully-taped seams, and a specific pocket dedicated to protecting your phone in any condition.

Shell Material: 150D twill weave with recycled yarn and TPU membrane
DWR Finish?: Yes
Weight: 12.3oz

Outdoor Research Helium Jacket

Outdoor Research Helium Jacket
  • Lightweight
  • Really packable
  • Not super breathable
  • No hand pockets

Best Ultra-Lightweight Rain Jacket: At just over 6oz, the hip-length Helium Jacket from Outdoor Research would be considered a windbreaker if it weren’t for its 2.5-layer Pertex Shield waterproofing, which also provides resistance to abrasions without weighing you down in the process. Another good workout jacket, though not as flexible as the Flight Lightriser from TNF, the Helium is equipped with a drawstring hem and lets you carry around some gear, with a zippered chest pocket, a carabiner loop, and a key clip.

Shell Material: Nylong with 2.5-layer Pertex Shield Diamond Fuse membrane
DWR Finish?: Yes
Weight: 6.3oz

Fjällräven Skogsö Jacket M

Fjallraven Skogso Jacket M
  • Incredibly warm
  • Fjallraven’s G-1000 is one of the best proprietary materials around
  • Extra reinforcement in hood and shoulders
  • Breathable
  • Heavy
  • Pricey

Best Heavy-Duty Rain Jacket: If you want some of the most durable, mountain-ready outdoor gear, look no further than Fjällräven. For the past 60 years, the Swedish firm has built its clothing to withstand the tundra it inhabits. Not the heaviest coat from Fjällräven, the Skogsö Jacket M is still dense compared to its rain jacket contemporaries, utilizing the brand’s G-1000 Lite, with standard G-1000 for reinforcement in the hood and shoulders. The breathable shell also sports several pockets for gear storage and a longer rear hem to protect your pants from moisture.

Shell Material: Fjallraven’s G-1000 Lite with G-1000 reinforcement in hood and shoulders
DWR Finish?: Yes
Weight: 21.5oz

Stone Island GORE-TEX Jacket

  • Shell made of GORE-TEX
  • Sllim fit
  • Italian made
  • No hood
  • Crazy expensive

Best Low-Profile Rain Jacket: While not necessarily the best rain jacket of the bunch, this style-forward GORE-TEX coat from Stone Island is a case of form over function, with a streamlined aesthetic and trim fit. At this hefty price point, you still get some quality performance thanks to the waterproof and breathable polyester material with a two-way zip enclosure, elastic cuffs, and a bungee-style drawstring at the hem to block out strong winds. There’s no hood, but the spread collar provides some additional protection.

Shell Material: GORE-TEX polyester
DWR Finish?: No
Weight: N/A

Arc’Teryx Beta AR

ArcTeryx Beta AR
  • Incredibly waterproof
  • Good weight considering heft
  • Really versatile; you can use it for snowy treks or commutes
  • Hood is helmet compatible
  • Expensive
  • May run small

Best Grail Rain Jacket: If money isn’t an issue and you’re wanting a coat that balances supreme durability with a reasonable weight, look no further than the Arc’Teryx Beta AR, which transcends the brand’s typical mountain readiness for more versatility of activities, from snowy treks to daily commutes — and at just 1lb. Built with GORE-TEX PRO and a proprietary material developed in collaboration with GTX, the jacket sports a DropHood that’s helmet-compatible and top-notch RECCO reflectivity for your more extreme adventures.

Shell Material: Triple-layer GORE-TEX PRO
DWR Finish?: No
Weight: 16oz

The Best Waterproof Boots To Beat Back The Rain

Best Waterproof Boots 0 Hero
Photo: Blundstone 584 Thermal Chelsea Boots

If you want to add some versatility to your wardrobe, you’re going to need a good pair of footwear. We’ve got you covered with our guide to the best waterproof boots on the market.