Whether navigating the city streets or traversing the Continental Divide, a quality down jacket is worth its weight in gold.
Down is the ultimate in lightweight warmth and the options range from casual après pieces to specialized jackets for technical pursuits. This slate of the best down jackets was tested across multiple continents and through a wide range of activities and temperatures. Features such as jacket weight, fill power, fit and shell fabric played an integral role in how we evaluated each jacket.
Patagonia Down Shirt ($199)
Weight: 9.1 oz
Fill Power: 600
The Down Shirt from Patagonia is a minimalist jacket for lightweight warmth and is best suited for active pursuits or as a mid layer when temperatures drop below 20-degrees. Holding firm to the company’s commitment to reduce its impact on the environment, the jacket’s shell and liner are made of 100% recycled polyester while the 600-fill-power is 100% recycled from down reclaimed from used down products.
Both the shell and liner have a DWR (durable water repellant) finish and make the jacket an ideal choice for everyday wear. Two external drop-in hand warmer pockets provide unsecured storage while also doubling as a stuff sack option.
Brooks-Range Down Hoody ($270)
Weight: 14.2 oz
Fill Power: 800
This lightweight and warm Down Hoody from Brooks-Range Mountaineering is perfect for those days that require extra warmth without the weight. This helmet compatible jacket is a budget conscious choice for those looking for a jacket equally suited for a day in the backcountry or an evening around the campfire.
The jacket’s 10d nylon shell is enhanced with Polartec Power Shield softshell reinforced forearms for increased durability. Two zippered hand warming pockets, along with a external zippered chest pocket and two internal mesh storage pockets, round out the features of this jacket.
Weight: 22.6 oz
Fill Power: 800+
The already impressive Floodlight Down Jacket from Outdoor Research just got better. The Pertex Shield+ shell provides a waterproof and windproof barrier to the jacket’s 800-fill-power insulation. Recently, the jacket received an additional 20 percent more down for increased warmth and is slightly longer than previous models for more coverage.
This is the ideal jacket for all weather, winter pursuits. The waterproof shell make it ideal for wet conditions while the 800+ fill down make it exceptionally warm regardless of your activity choice. The jacket is complimented with a wire-brimmed helmet compatible hood, two large hand warmer pockets, two large internal Shove-It pockets and a zip chest pocket.
Weight: 2 lbs 1 oz
Fill Power: 850+
The Icefall Parka from Feathered Friends is designed to withstand the most extreme conditions that Mother Nature has to offer. This jacket is created to be the outer layer and is built to accommodate additional baselayers. Made in the USA, this 850+ fill-power expedition fit jacket is protected by a Pertex Shield XT shell.
Made with traceable, ethically sourced goose down, the Icefall contains a dual zippered system and insulated draft tube to protect you in even the harshest environments. Additional features on this expedition jacket include: detachable/adjustable hood with Velcro-sealed storm flap, large cargo pockets, large hand-warmer pockets and two interior chest pockets.
Arc’teryx Cerium LT Hoody ($379)
Weight: 10.4 oz
Fill Power: 850
This jacket is a truly unique entry in our review. The Cerium LT Hoody utilizes down composite mapping. Arc’teryx placed Coreloft, a synthetic insulation in the areas of the jacket that are typically more prone to getting wet or exposed to moisture (the shoulders, underarms, cuffs and the collar). The areas where warmth is most needed (core and sleeves), is filled with premium down.
This premium jacket is lightweight and is designed for an athletic fit. While intended to be used as an insulating layer in drier environments, the DWR (durable water repellant) finish will protect against light precipitation.
Weight: 16.6 oz
Fill Power: 700+
Started in a country that is deeply rooted in exploration, Helly Hansen has been making quality gear since 1877. While the materials may have changed since their creation almost 140 years ago, the legacy for creating innovative gear has not.
The Verglas Hooded Down Insulator is the perfect liner to any of the CIS (Component Insulation System) compatible shells and 3 in 1 jackets. The DWR treated Pertex microlight fabric creates a lightweight down jacket capable of being used a standalone option as well.
lululemon Stay Puff Parka ($498)
Weight: 1 lb 11oz
Fill Power: 700
While best suited for urban pursuits, the Stay Puff Parka is not light on performance features. Regardless of where your travels take you, you will be protected from the elements by the waterproof Glyde fabric that is seam-sealed to keep you dry.
Other features of note include hand pockets that are insulated on both sides for maximum warmth, an internal pocket for your phone or passport and silicone print along the hem to keep the jacket in place as you move about your day.
Eddie Bauer Downlight Alpine StormDown Jacket ($349)
Weight: 1 lb 7 oz
Fill Power: 800
The Downlight Alpine StormDown jacket is made of a lightweight, durable Pertex ripstop nylon shell with 800-fill StormRepel DWR-treated StormDown insulation to create a warm and dry environment for whatever Mother Nature throws your way.
The jacket features a fully adjustable hood, two interior mesh pockets, two zippered hand pockets and a zip chest pocket.
Weight: 17.3 oz
Fill Power: 800
The Terrex Climaheat Techrock jacket from adidas is designed with the outdoor athlete in mind. This athletically fitting jacket features Climaheat: an integrated system that works together to regulate the body temperature far better than any single fabric technology. Differential baffling covers stitching lines and minimizes cold spots via overlap.
The Techrock features an adjustable hood, security chest pockets, two zip hand pockets, an inner chest pocket and a Pack-it-pocket for stashing the jacket.
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