The waterproof jacket is one of the most essential pieces of clothing for anyone who ventures in to the great outdoors.
Fairweather walkers venturing around their local woods may only need a simple lightweight jacket that can be easily stowed, only to be brought out when an unexpected cloud appears over the horizon. More seasoned walkers covering long distances in the hills and mountains will require the superior properties and design of a much more sophisticated jacket.
A few essentials to look out for are:
Hood - All jackets have a big hole in the tip where you head pokes out. A hood that is not up to the conditions encountered will greatly reduce the effectiveness of the jacket. Good hoods have a peak that protrudes and shelter your face and the bigger the peak the better its performance as the rain gets heavier and the wind stronger. Hoods should also adjust in volume to "attach" it to your head whatever the headgear you need to wear whether that is a beanie hat or a climbing helmet.
Arms - Many people who try on a good waterproof for the first time complain that the arms are too long, but they are designed to be like that. With the cuffs undone the arm should easily cover the back of the hand, even where the jacket is worn over thick layers. It is sometimes also useful to tuck in your hands out of the wind and rain to keep them warm even without wearing gloves. Cuffs can be done up around the wrist when you want your hands uncovered.
Under-Arm ventilation - Otherwise known as "pit zips". They are not an essential feature, and do add to the cost and bulk of a jacket, but if you are doing something very active, such as running or mountain biking, then no matter how breathable the fabric it may sometimes not keep up with your own "output". Openings in the jacket add extra ventilation for comfort. Sometimes front pockets on jackets are also designed to be used a ventilation.
Weight - You may want the lightest and most compact jacket, but will it perform well, or be robust enough, for how you are planning to use the jacket. Heavier jackets will be likely to be more suited to extended wear in bad weather, as well as having more/better pockets and a bigger hood. Reinforcements to resist wear from a heavy pack or while climbing all add weight, but mean a jacket can last much longer.
Women's Waterproof Jackets - Big selection from lightweight waterproof jackets, through to stylish long ladies waterproof coats. All of our Women's waterproof jackets are chosen with fit and function in mind. We stand by what we choose, all of our Ladies Waterproof Coats we would buy and wear ourselves. In fact we frequently do!