The Best Patagonia Jackets: Your Guide to the Best of the Best

by | Dec 11, 2020

I‘m a big fan of superlatives. The biggest, the greatest, the coziest—all a part of my daily lexicon. As you could imagine, the union of my enthusiasm for the most and the Patagonia line of jackets feels all too perfect. The most perfect, in fact. Thus, it is my great honor to share with you this guide to the Best Patagonia Jackets.

(Which actually makes these jackets the best of the best because Patagonia is the best. So. You’re probably going to want to bookmark, frame, or otherwise immortalize this review.) 

Shall we?

Really, they need no introduction. But since this entire post features products from Patagonia, I might as well start with one. Founded by the fantastically curious Yvon Chouinard in 1973, Patagonia’s beginning, present, and future is built solidly on a foundation of sustainability. 

Yvon, was the original. The original climber and surfer and van lifer and recreation-enthusiast. His adventures were tireless, fueled by a pure, burning love for all things outdoors. (And occasionally by cat food and ground squirrels. A completely irrelevant but very interesting fact.) 

He continued to be an original as head of Patagonia. The company became the original 1% For The Planet member. The first California company to become a Certified B Corp. A founding member of the Fair Labor Association. A 40-year champion for environmentally minded grassroots organizations. 

Patagonia decided early on that they were going to do things right, and they have. They’ve given back, stepped up, and innovated their guts out. They’re creating the extra, most bestest jackets, and they’re doing it in the most green way possible. 

Truly—from fabrics to factories, pre-consumer to post-consumer, Patagonia is committed to using their platform for good. 

As conscious consumers, we sure appreciate that. Now let’s talk jackets.

1. The Nano Puff: The Best For On-The-Go Warmth

patagonia nano stuff

  • Casual, insulated jacket ideal for cold weather activities 
  • Super packable and compressible
  • Synthetic PrimaLoft Gold insulation 

If Patagonia outerwear is even remotely on your radar, then you probably have heard of the Nano Puff jacket. A cult classic, the Nano Puff pairs down jacket warmth with insane packability. 

It relies on hyper-lightweight 60g PrimaLoft Gold Insulation Eco to provide an impressive warmth-to-weight ratio and sports a windproof, water-resistant, DWR finished shell for added weather protection. It’s simple—yet stylish—and excellent as a stand alone jacket or a cozy layering piece. 

Of all Patagonia’s jackets, this one stands out for its versatility and portability. Weighing in at under 12 oz with an incognito stuff sack pocket, the Nano Puff is the perfect addition to any adventure. 

It can fit in your backpack, your carry-on, or your bike pack with ease. It’s great as a baselayer while snowboarding or for a casual night out with friends. 

Basically, it’s a closet staple that can get you through any type of unsavory weather, during any type of event. Intrigued? I thought you might be. Satisfy your every curiosity about this small-but-mighty jacket with our detailed Patagonia Nano Puff review

Get Your Nano Puff at Patagonia.com.

2. Down Sweater Jacket: The Best All-Around Down

patagonia down jacket

  • Warm, casual and timeless 
  • 800-fill-down traceable duck and goose feather insulation
  • Best for dry, cold weather 

Another stronghold in the lightweight down jacket game, the aptly named Down Sweater Jacket is a toasty midlayer stuffed with 800-fill-power traceable down. Although similar to the Nano Puff in many ways, the Down Sweater Jacket has a few notable differences that set it apart. 

Where the Nano Puff leans packable, the Down Sweater goes stylish. The 800-fill-power Advanced Global Traceable Down means real deal goose down over synthetic Primaloft Gold. It’s a bit loftier—a trait only amplified by the sleek, horizontal quilt lines.

Although it weighs just a few ounces more, it has got a bit more ‘puff’ to it. A trait I quite like in a puff jacket, to be honest. It isn’t quite as compressible as the bite-size Nano Puff, but it will indeed pack down. 

The water repellent finish adds a touch of water resistance, but the true mission-critical feature here is the warmth. The 800-fill-power down packs some major heat, making this your best friend in dry and cold conditions. 

Find Your Down Sweater Jacket at Patagonia.com.

3. Lightweight Synchilla Snap-T Fleece Pullover: The Best Work-From-Home Uniform

synchilla patagonia jacket

  • Super cozy and comfy pullover fleece
  • Lightweight jacket for mildly cold temperatures
  • Comes in a ton of fun colors and patterns

The Synchilla Snap-T is the radical, older brother of the cotton hoody. It went to college. It dabbled in marijuana. It got involved in politics. It learned to be unapologetic about the things it believes in. And the Synchilla Snap-T? It believes in comfort.

Every detail is there to prove it. The oversized, pullover fit—comfort. The soft, 100% recycled polyester fleece—comfort. The stand-up fleece collar with pleasantly simple snap closures. All. of. it. COMFORT. 

As a fleece jacket should be, it’s simple, it’s cozy and it’s a cold-weather champion. It’s a socially acceptable pajama top. It’s a blanket with sleeves. It’s a fireplace and apple pie candle on a cold morning. It is comfort, in all the ways. Plus, it comes in dozens of colors, from discreet black-on-black to festive prints and patterns. 

P.S.—If you’re here looking for a fleece jacket, I vote the Synchilla over the always popular (and perfectly splendid) Better Sweater. Why? Because I like a pullover. But both are great, cozy options. 

Get Your Synchilla Snap-T at Patagonia.com.

4. Houdini: The Best Lightweight Windbreaker

houdini patagonia jacket

  • Technical, lightweight windbreaker 
  • Best for cool, windy conditions, or as a layering piece 
  • Windproof and water-resistant 

As the name suggests, this Houdini jacket will have you ready for a quick escape at the first sign of wind or wet. Designed with a 100% recycled nylon shell and durable water repellent finish, it’s the ultimate windbreaker in a lighter-than-air package. 

Perfect for backcountry backpacking trips, biking to work, and everything in between, the Houdini is supremely light and compact. Weighing less than 4 oz with a zippered stuff sack hidden in the chest pocket, it’s one of the most compressible weather warriors on the market. 

Stash it away in your camping kit or make it the pièce de résistance in your daily commuter bag. It’s equally happy doing either. And you’ll be happy too—it’s so light and compact that surprise weather will never again get you down. 

One thing to note: because it’s so good at keeping weather out, it’s not great at letting air in. If you’re looking for an all-terrain, high-octane windbreaker, you’ll want to pick a more breathable layer from this list. 

Find Your Houdini Jacket at Patagonia.com.

5. Torrentshell 3L: The Best Rain Slayer

torrentshell patagonia jacket

  • Hyper-waterproof rain jacket
  • ​Performance shell perfect for layering on top of a down jacket
  • 3-layer shell for added breathability in high-aerobic activities

Rain, rain, go away? More like rain, rain, let’s freakin’ dance man, because I’m wearing a Torrentshell Jacket from Patagonia, and you can’t touch this. But seriously, this 3-layer waterproof jacket more than earns its right to become your rainy day go-to. 

As Patagonia’s answer to gore-tex, the H2No® Performance Standard shell offers long-term waterproofing and reliable durability. Fortified with a 50-denier ECONYL® 100% recycled nylon ripstop face and DWR finish, it is seriously no match for any rain storm. 

But any good rain jacket should be able to handle wet weather. Where the Torrentshell moves from good to great is in the 3-layer shell and intelligent storm-ready features. 

The advanced technology shell gives epic breathability with no compromise to the waterproofing, while the adjustable hood, laminated visor, venting pit zips, and durable water repellent coated zippers keep the elements at bay. They’ve really thought of everything.

Get Your Torrentshell Jacket at Patagonia.com.

6. Topley Jacket: The Best Men’s Jacket

patagonia jacket topley

  • Great active or casual jacket for cold & wet weather
  • Waterproof shell and down insulation liner
  • Men’s only style

Have you ever wondered if there was more to life, other than being really, really, ridiculously good looking? Then you already have something anchoring you to the Topley Jacket.  

Albeit hardy and high-quality, with a H2No® Performance Standard shell and 700-fill-power recycled down lining, it’s hard not to talk about the Topley’s looks. I don’t want to be that shallow, I really don’t. But it’s just hard not to think about. 

I mean, yes, it’s tough and sensible. It has a durable waterproof shell that’ll last season after season; is insulated with recycled goose down; has storm flaps, an adjustable hood, and waterproofed zippers. And yet, here I am just thinking about how nice it looks. 

But the hip length and slim-fit, sleek colors, and patch pockets deserve as much credit as the more practical features. It is built for hardy, outdoor activities as much as it’s meant to look good on a crisp, November city stroll. 

Intrigued by this handsome fella? Check out our full review of the Patagonia Topley Jacket.

Find Your Topley Jacket at Patagonia.com.

7. Down With It Parka: The Best For Bitter Cold

patagonia parka

  • Knee-length, recycled goose down parka
  • Great for casual or low-impact activity in extra cold conditions
  • Lightly water-resistant
  • Women’s only style

Ah, the Down With It Parka. Where to begin.

This 600-fill-power, 100% recycled down jacket is a personal favorite of mine. Our love affair began on a December day in Berlin. We were there to visit the Christmas Markets (highly suggested) in 40-degree weather. 

Long story short: the glühwein was warm but my Down With It Parka was warmer. 

A knee-length jacket with superpower warming strength, the Down With It has a 100% recycled polyester shell and DWR finish. It can handle snowflakes or a light drizzle with grace. 

However, it is the recycled goose and duck down insulation that locks this one in as my all-time fave. Down, in all its splendor, is uniquely temperature regulating. It’s ultra-warm when you’d otherwise be cold but rarely will leave you overheated. This holds true with the Down With It.

I could stroll through Tiergarten or ride the U-Bahn in it comfortably. (Did this just turn into a Berlin travel guide? That’d be fun.) Plus, it’s surprisingly packable and makes a great pillow. 

Get Your Down With It Parka at Patagonia.com.

8. Powder Bowl Jacket: The Best Ski & Snow Jacket

patagonia powder bowl

  • High-performance snow shell with GORE-TEX exterior
  • Wear it alone for wet-weather protection or layer in for added warmth
  • Tons of powder day friendly features

Everyone’s got their own style when it comes to the mountain, but for me, it’s all about layering. We’re talking merino wool base layers, a lightweight jacket (hi, Nano Puff & Micro Puff) as a mid-layer, and a durable, tougher-than-nails shell to lock out the elements.  

Patagonia’s Powder Bowl is the perfect ski shell. Built with an 100% recycled polyester GORE-TEX face fabric exterior, it’s totally wind and wet proof. Helloooooo, powder days! There’s no insulation, but I like that. It gives you the flexibility of using the same ski shell for different conditions. And in terms of a shell, this one does it all. 

All the smart additions you’d enjoy in a ski jacket are there. Pit zips and a helmet-compatible, adjustable hood. An internal drawcord that you can adjust from within the handwarmer pockets. Six waterproof, zip-secured pockets, and a built-in reflector. There’s even a media pocket and key clip. Really, all you have to bring is the stoke. 

Get Your Powder Bowl Jacket at Patagonia.com.

9. Tres 3-in-1 Parka:  The Best Any Elements Jacket

tres 3-in-1 parka

  • A knee-length, two-piece parka for three specific uses
  • Detachable waterproof shell for wind and rain resistance
  • Separate goose down parka for super cold weather
  • Attach both together for very cold and wet conditions

So, you made it through the list and are still wondering… which Patagonia jacket is the jacket of my dreams? Well, dear indecisive one, it’s time we introduce you to the Tres 3-in-1 Parka

When wind, rain, and cold are a constant in your life, opt for the mystical, magical, extra most versatile 3-in-1, full-spectrum, well-rounded piece of outerwear that exists. (This list welcomes superlatives, remember?) 

This fantastically practical combination of an entirely waterproof, H2No® Performance Standard polyester shell rain jacket and 700-fill-power recycled goose down parka make this a near perfect jacket. You get the warmth of an insulated jacket, the storm-silencing power of a waterproof jacket, and the superhero strength of the two of them together. 

Smart features like a two-way full-zip, handwarmer pockets, a snap-off hood, and above-the-knee length all add an extra layer of cozy. Use the outer shell when wind and rain pairs with warmer temps, or wear the down parka solo on cold but dry days. When conditions combine, bring the duo together for stubbornly tough, all-weather protection. 

It’s quite simply the ultimate winter jacket. And I’d say that even if this wasn’t a superlative list.

Find Your Tres 3-in1 Parka Jacket at Patagonia.com.

Patagonia Jackets, The Best of The Best

This seems like a good time for an analogy. 

A gluten-free baked good seems bulky and dense when compared to a Costco muffin. The muted orange of a farm-raised salmon looks pastel alongside a wild-caught filet. And an O’Douls, albeit golden and malty, is no substitute for the real deal. 

All of this is to say that taking something that isn’t and making it feel, taste, or act like something that is is not a simple task. Yet, Patagonia’s very ethos hinges on the promise of recasting technical materials as sustainable materials, with no cost to performance or function. 

It requires steadfast determination, a tolerance for failure, and quite a bit of science to transform an industry. 

In all these ways, Patagonia delivers. Their muffin, metaphorically speaking, has the tender crumb of a gluttonous, glutenous treasure, but a wheat-free, sugar-free recipe. Cue applause. 

So, where others might see an expensive coat, you see the recycled fabrics, the Fair Trade conditions, the traceable down. Or at least you will, after diving into these micro-level sustainability efforts hidden in the very fibers of your jacket. 

And also, I would like a blueberry muffin please. 

Fair Trade Certified Sewn

fair trade sewnConsumerism can get ugly. Everything from the production to the shipping to the lifecycle has its footprint. With Fair Trade Certified Sewn products—as all of the above jackets are—you can rest easy knowing they came from an ethical workplace. 

Patagonia pays a premium to ensure that the people that make their products are well cared for. Livable wages, worker health, safe conditions and social programs are all a part of the story.

BLUESIGN

Similar to their production programs, Patagonia holds high standards for their fabrics. The BLUESIGN system ensures that every step of the textile supply chain is approved to be safe for the environment and the people they come in contact with.

Apart from ensuring your Patagonia jacket is engineered with the safest technical textiles on the market, BLUESIGN is committed to innovation. They’re always looking to improve the products, and minimize the impact they have on the planet. 

Global Traceable Down Standard

patagonia recycled down When it comes to insulation, Patagonia has a few tricks up their sleeve. If your jacket is one of the rare virgin down jackets in their portfolio, you can rest assured that the down has been traced from parent farm to final processing facility. And that all of the steps it took to get there are clean. 

Recycled Duck & Goose Feather Down

Another common player in the Patagonia insulation game is recycled down. This down has been diverted from a landfill; salvaged from 600-fill-power and 700-fill-power duck and goose down products. 

PrimaLoft Gold Insulation Eco

buyers agent sydneyEngineered by their friends at PrimaLoft, this environmentally-friendly, synthetic insulation is made with 55% recycled content. It’s just as technical and high-performing as its virgin predecessor but its footprint is much, much smaller. 

As a result, millions of water bottles are finding their way out of landfills and into the cozy, quilted lining of Nano Puff jackets. That’s pretty sweet.

​Recycled Polyester & Organic Cotton

Even the good ol’ boys of the fabric industry receive the Patagonia treatment. Patagonia has nearly mastered the art of transforming trash into fabrics. Even in the most basic materials—the classic work horses of the industry—Patagonia has found a way to reduce, reuse or at the very least, demand the best.

​​​​Ironclad Guarantee

patagonia ironclad guaranteeProduction standards? Sky-high. Product quality? Samesies. Product lifespan? Fuhgettaboutit. All of these Patagonia jackets are protected under their Ironclad Guarantee. Basically, if it’s not doing what it’s supposed to, for as long as it’s supposed to, Patagonia will offer a repair, replacement or refund.

These products are built to last. They’re made so you can buy them once, and then never again. (So realllllly think about the color choice, okay.) 

But if you move to Tahiti and never need that damned parka again, you can trade-in (or shop!) used Patagonia products through their Worn Wear program. I swear, these jackets are like cats. Nine lives. Basically immortal.  

—-

Juuuust in case you haven’t caught on yet, I’ll make it simple: Patagonia has an amazing option for every cloud, gust, and precipitation form there is.

From a packable, last-minute warmer like the Nano Puff to an all-weather champion like the 3-in-1 Parka, there’s truly a jacket for whatever climate you’re workin’ with.

Rebecca Cruse

Rebecca Cruse

Grow Ensemble Contributor

Rebecca writes stuff from her home in South Lake Tahoe, CA. Whether it’s the outdoors or travel, ethical brands or local breweries, Rebecca is always excited to share stories about the things she loves.

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