Winter weather is merciless. While layering is an effective way to keep warm, sometimes you need a little something extra to get the job done—and that’s where a down jacket can become your best friend. The biggest thing to remember when buying a down jacket is the fill count. Essentially, the fill count is a rating on how warm the jacket will be; the higher the number of the fill count, the warmer you’ll be.
While there was once a point in time that you wouldn’t want to wear a down jacket in the rain for fear of ruining it, most modern down jackets have been treated to withstand light rain should you get caught in the middle of something. Otherwise, these jackets are going to be your best line of defense against whatever winter may throw at you. Below, we’ve rounded up ten of our favorites from some of the best brands around to ensure you’re nice and warm, all winter long.
1. Marmot Stockholm Down Jacket
Marmot’s Stockholm down jacket has really gone above and beyond with this coat: A 700-fill synthetic down is some of the warmest rated down around which means it will stand up to even the harshest of conditions. That down has also been treated with the brand’s “Down Defender” which prevents it from clumping together when it’s introduced to water, so you’ll stay warm even in the rain. There’s added versatility too, the hood is removable so you can tailor the jacket to your needs. Plus, it’s at a price point well below the competition. All in all, it’s a well-rounded jacket that won’t fail you, even when the cold is at its worst.
2. REI Co-op Down Jacket
If you’re looking to get warmth for winter that won’t cost you at lot, going with this down jacket from REI’s in-house Co-op line is your best, and smartest, option. Made from 650-fill down, it’s warm enough for the majority of activities you’ll find yourself doing throughout the winter. It’s also got a bit of water repellent coating to it, should you (unfortunately) find yourself caught in a rain or snow storm, while also helping to provide a bit of wind resistance. An all around great option, you’ll be hard pressed to find a jacket with these features for this price.
3. Patagonia Tres 3-in-1 Down Jacket
Just because it’s cold outside doesn’t mean the rain (or snow!) will stop. In order to combat the elements, sometimes you need to reach for something that’s capable of handling the worst of what winter weather throws at you—and that’s exactly where the Patagonia Tres 3-in-1 down jacket comes into play. As evidenced by its namesake, the jacket is three different pieces in one: an outer rain jacket, an interior 700-fill down jacket and then both pieces zip together to created a super warm, water proof down rain coat. The Voltron of winter weather gear, you’ll be prepared for whatever may come your way.
4. Arc’teryx Cerium LT Hooded Down Jacket
BEST HOODED OPTION
The Arc’teryx Cerium LT hooded down jacket is a great selection for those looking for full upper body warmth. Made from a powerful 850-fill down, it’s incredibly warm; the slightly extended body will provide extra coverage in spots that other jackets won’t. Meanwhile, the hoodie portion has an included throat guard (forgoing the need for a scarf) while also offering up an adjustable drawstrings to really keep that warmth from escaping. If you’re a person that’s always chilly or someone living in a brutally cold area, this is your best defense.
5. Fjallraven Greenland No. 1Down Jacket
A down jacket wrapped in a fun, cotton shell, this Fjallraven is our pick for most stylish down jacket. Designed in the brand’s signature orange (with great contrasting white buttons and a pop of navy), it looks like a standard canvas jacket you’d wear as a transitional fall layer, but is instead bolstered with a warm 600-fill down. The cotton shell will do wonders to cut down on wind, while the hood adds another bit of protection. Furthermore, two chest pockets will give you room to store any sort of random knickknack you may need to carry, without you having to fumble around to try and find it.
6. Canada Goose MacMillan Slim Fit Hooded Down Jacket
Canada Goose has become a household name for millennials over the last few years due to both their iconic silhouettes and because they make really, really quality products. This MacMillan slim fit down jacket helps to avoid a lot of that Stay Puff Marshmellow man look that sometimes happens when you slip on a down jacket, opting for a really trim profile that doesn’t skimp on warmth. But it’s other design details stand out as well.
7. The North Face Packable Quilted Down Jacket
BEST FOR TRAVEL
It feels like an understatement to say that weather can be unpredictable, but it’s an absolutely true statement. Hence, it makes sense to invest in something like this packable down jacket from The North Face. Capable of stuffing down inside itself, it’s great to bring on an airplane for when you’re traveling from a warm place to a cold place, cutting down on both space and the number of layers that you’d need to pack. And at 700-fill, it’s more than likely to be up to snuff against the majority of cold climates. Toss it your bag and you won’t need to worry if things take a turn for the bitter cold.
8. Odlo Air Cocoon Down Jacket
BEST FOR HIKING
Just because a jacket is lightweight doesn’t mean that it’s not capable of keeping up with the wilderness. That’s exactly what’s at play with Odlo’s Air Cocoon down jacket: A 750 down fill makes for top-tier warmth, durable water repellent helps keep water away and Pertex Ripstop fabric ensures rough and tough durability. All together it’s a jacket that can handle any outdoor condition, which makes it a perfect pairing for winter hiking or even a ski trip.
9. L.L. Bean Ultralight 850 Down Jacket
THE DARK HORSE
You may not anticipate a down jacket from L.L. Bean to be among one of the highest quality down jackets on the market—but that’s where you’d be wrong. The water resistant and wind proof (!) nylon shell is actually made from a recycled fabric, while the down itself has been treated to keep its warmth and loft even if it comes into contact with water. Meanwhile, the 850-fill puts it as one of the warmest options on this list. But if that wasn’t enough, it will also stow into itself for added portability. Tough as nails features, environmentally friendly, with an excellent price point? Well, that’s one hell of a statement.
10. Columbia Voodoo Falls 590 Turbo Down Jacket
BEST MILD WEATHER
If you’re in an area of the country where it only gets a little cold, or your a naturally warm person, or you’d rather layer up, this Columbia down jacket skews to the light end of the warmth range with its 550-fill. Columbia’s proprietary Omni-Heat technology will help direct your own internal body heat back into itself, helping to keep you warm on top of all the down. As with other options, the shell has been treated to combat rain, so you won’t need to fret too much about it all falling apart if you get caught in some rain. It’s basically the perfect solution for those who live in areas where there are only a handful of really cold days.