It’s time to consider adding a poncho to your wardrobe.
Ponchos are somewhat hard to place in the fashion and gear world because, to be honest, they’re a bit odd. You’ve probably seen them on stylish bohemian dudes, hippies, sports fans and even businessmen in rainy cities. But the poncho’s oddity is also its strength. Ponchos are versatile, varied and surprisingly easy to work into any personal style.
The best ponchos come in several forms including rain ponchos, classic Mexican ponchos, loungewear ponchos and hardcore camping ponchos. In other words, there’s guaranteed to be a poncho to fill that hole in your wardrobe.
Rain ponchos are the most common and the most convenient. They’re thin, packable and easy to throw over any outfit if you get stuck in a storm. This means you can drape it over a suit in the summer just as easily as you can pull it over a non-waterproof jacket in the winter. Obviously, ponchos’ packability also makes them ideal for camping or hiking when the weather is uncertain.
The other types of ponchos — loungy, Mexican, etc — are all worth considering for different needs. Below are several variations of the shape-shifting poncho. Chances are you’ll want (or need) at least one before the rainy season ends.
1. SaphiRose Rain Poncho
We love these rain ponchos from SaphiRose because they offer the convenience of a packable poncho while also adding some style to your outerwear collection with a wide variety of eye-catching patterns. We like the versatile navy blue shown below, but you can also get more adventurous with camo, retro colorblocks or bright orange. Despite a low price tag of $22, the quality is also impressive with heat-sealed seams and a zip-up front (which you don’t see very often). The poncho’s ratings are also very assuring; 4.5/5 stars and more than 3,000 reviews.
2. Hagon PRO Disposable Rain Ponchos
If you’re just looking for emergency rain gear (and you don’t often encounter surprise showers) go for this 5-pack of rain ponchos for $15. They’re ideal for one-time uses such as concerts, hikes, fishing trips, theme parks and so on. The ponchos are lightweight and slightly oversized to fit over backpacks. They’re also neatly packaged individually, so we suggest keeping one in your car, another in your daily bag and a couple at home. Unlike our other picks for the best ponchos, these won’t do your style any favors — except in protecting your clothing from the rain.
3. Anyoo Waterproof Rain Poncho
BEST RAIN PONCHO
Dedicated rain ponchos are fantastic for almost anyone. They can be stuffed in a business briefcase, backpack or car glove box and broken out when unexpected rain comes along. If you just need a reliable, no-frills rain poncho, this is one from Anyoo is your best bet. It’s very affordable at $17, but it’s made from a tough polyester with gluing on the seams to prevent any leaking. The poncho features a long brim to keep your eyes dry, a drawstring for especially nasty weather and even grommets on the tips for tarp use during an impromptu picnic.
4. Coofandy Hooded Poncho
BEST FOR LOUNGING
Ponchos are also a great option for staying cozy year-round. Cotton ponchos such as this Coofandy offer an upgrade over regular lounge hoodies with a more roomy fit. If it’s chilly, you can use the poncho like a blanket to wrap up. And if it’s hot, let the thing hang loose for an airy feel. This one also features pockets for your phone or lazy day snacks.
5. Virblatt Baja Poncho
BEST MEXICAN PONCHO
Ponchos have been a staple of South American style for centuries. Now you can spot the blanket-sweater hybrid on stylish dudes around the world, as well as film icons such as Clint Eastwood’s Man With No Name. If you want to channel some of that relaxed South American style, try this Baja poncho from Virblatt. It showcases a look that’s equal parts modern and classic, and it’s reversible for different vibes.
6. Slowtide Surf Changing Towel
Ah, the beloved surfer’s poncho. If you’re a surfer or swimmer, check out this towel poncho for changing at the beach. It makes changing out of your wetsuit or swimsuit much easier, all while keeping you toasty during chilly mornings and evenings. The poncho is made of 100% winter-weight cotton terry that traps heat while absorbing water and features pockets to warm up your hands. Plus, a button snap front and drawstrings let you get cozy or air out depending on the weather.
7. Therm-a-Rest Honcho Poncho Blanket
This Therm-a-Rest Honcho Poncho is a God-send for outdoorsmen, sporting event-goers or anyone else that finds themselves out in the elements. The poncho is water-resistant with a lightweight eraLoft insulation to keep you warm. Reviewers are impressed with the Honcho Poncho, saying it’s great as a campsite blanket as well as a warm poncho.
8. Gamboa Poncho
BEST ALPACA PONCHO
Want to upgrade your Poncho game? Go alpaca. Alpaca wool is a premium material used for more authentic (and cozier) ponchos. Besides looking nicer, alpaca is warmer, lighter and softer than regular cotton. We like this alpaca poncho from Gamboa because it’s not too expensive and features a low-key look that adds some bohemian vibes to your wardrobe without being too bold. Wear it around the house with slippers and sweats, to the market, or sport it with crisp dark jeans and boots for a unique going out look.