Living in the Pacific Northwest (Portland, Oregon), I know from personal experience that if I stopped going outside everytime it rained, I may be indoors a lot. Rain is a part of our lifestyle up here but that doesn't stop us from enjoying the beautiful things that Oregon offers. Rainwear is a key to getting out even if it is raining or just sprinkling. Whether I'm golfing, riding a bike, or just walking the dog, I own a variety of rain gear just for the occasion. Taking a lightweight rain jacket along for a walk is easy enough, just wrap it around your waist if the rain stops. For heavier rain, you may need more protective rain gear - say you are planning on playing golf for 4 hours and need to stay as dry as possible. I will admit that there are times when even the best raingear can't keep you from being miserable, but for the most part owning a decent set of rainwear (pants and jacket) is a good idea and well worth the investment if you live in a climate that does get a good amount of rainfall.
What To Consider When Buying Rainwear
- There are a variety of considerations to keep in mind when buying raingear. Of course, as the name suggests, rain gear is intended to protect us from the rain. Before you choose your rainwear, you want to keep in mind what kinds of weather conditions you are likely to encounter. Will you be in warm weather or cold weather? Do you need a jacket that is packable and light? Rain gear also comes at a variety of price points, so decide how much you are willing to spend. If you are backpacking, try your gear on with a backpack and make sure it is comfortable. If you plan to be hiking in mild weather, you really need a lightweight jacket. On the other hand if you are going to be biking in cold, rainy weather, you may either need a warmer raingear or you can try layering your clothing. If you perspire easily, you can get a rain jacket, which has pit zips, venting pockets and even a special zipper. No matter what raingear you choose, definitely make sure your jacket is well ventilated and breathable. You can see some rain gear jackets and hear some tips about buying rain gear for hiking Here
. If you buy the first cheap rain jacket you come across, it is likely to leak. However, there are a variety of materials that have been proven to repel the rain and also keep the body cool through a cooling system. Otherwise, you may have an uncomfortable body temperature. Some choices of raingear material are Gore-tex, eVent, and Sympatex. People typically choose laminated rainproof gear or waterproofing which is bonded to the fabric like Gore-Tex. Gore-tex is one of the leading rain materials and is known for its amazing waterproofing ability. Other kinds of waterproofing jackets are often referred to as "Gore-tex" even if they aren't technically the Gore-tex brand. The actual Gore-tex brand has been around since the 70's. The inside of the jackets have a special coating spread with both special waterproofing as well as breathability. The outside has a special finish, which allows the water to roll right off. With most high quality raingear, you need to maintain the finish with spray ons that you can purchase. You can browse the best selling rain gear online here
We looked at a variety of sources including Outdoor Magazine, Bike Radar and Backpacker Magazine to find the best rainwear including rainwear for men and kids. Rain gear can be purchased in a variety of stores including REI, L.L. Bean, Target, Walmart and also online stores like Amazon. For a biking commute, Outdoor magazine recommends a few lines including Pearl Izumi and Cloudveil. They specifically mention the Pearl Izumi Trifecta Jacket and Cloudveil Switchback Jacket. Another popular choice according to Outdoor Magazine is Gore, which is a line of waterproof jackets and pants made by Gore-Tex. For example, the Gore Bike Wear Xenon II is one of Gore's products and was also recommended by Bike Radar Magazine. The Gore Bike Wear Men's Xenon AS Jacket
- Men's sells for $199 on Amazon. BikeShopGirl's website recommends Gore Power Lady Jacket and Gore Solid Lady Pants for women. For hiking purposes, Trails.com recommends Campmor rain gear. One of the reasons this rain gear is so highly recommended is because of the low prices, and windproof, lightweight nature of the rain gear. Campmore products have 2.5 layers of breathable fabric and an interior microprint which keeps water off the body.
Recommendations for Raingear for Men
When it comes to raingear for men, reviewers at Backcountry.com recommend the GoLite Phantasm, which sells for $180 on Amazon. This jacket, incidentally is also available for women, is waterproof and highly breathable. This Gore-Tex jacket has pit zips and mesh-backed pockets for ventilation. This is definitely the kind of jacket you can wear in a serious downpour. The GoLite Phantasm also has a mini-ripstop nylon and waterproof laminate. Reviewers love the hand pockets, easy portability and versatility of this jacket. Reviewers at BackpackingLight recommend the GoLite Phantom; however, according to our research this jacket may no longer be in production. Backpacker magazine likes the Arcteryx Alpha SL. If you are looking for raingear for men and can spend a bit more money, this jacket is a good choice. The Arcteryx Alpha jacket is about $300 on Amazon. The Arcteryx Alpha is also available for both me and women. Acrteryx is a highly respected brand that focuses on helping people deal with the elements, whether snow, rain or wind. This jacket has vents with breathable Gore-Tex Paclite which keep a good tempature for the wearer. Also the Arcteryx Alpha has two pit zips that run all the way from the elbow to the hem. You can pull it off and over another jacket if you want to wear one for extra warmth.
Best Rain Suit:
Sometimes a jacket isn't enough. After all your legs are going to get wet too if you are in a torrential downpour. Rain Suits are a great option for protecting the whole body. You can see Amazon's collection of Rain suits here
. Of course, for total protection, you want to choose Gore-Tex or a waterproof material from a respectable company. According to Golflink, one of the best rain suits is the Sun Mountain Provisional Rainsuit. This rain suit is particularly good for rainy days on the golf course. They also recommend the Zero Restriction Tour Lite slacks
, which are made from Gore-tex. The Zero Restriction Tour Lite jacket is about $300 and completely waterproof and breathable. According to Backpacking Light, DriDucks Micropore Rainsuit is a good choice. DriDucks Ultra-lite Rain suits are made with microporous polypropylene waterproof-breathable nonwoven fabric. Frogg Toggs and Rainshield also make their rainsuits from this material. DriDucks are particularly good for backpackers. One of the reason that Backpacking Light recommends the DriDucks Rainsuit so highly is that it is extremely cost effective and compact. The Dri Ducks Weight Hooded Rain Suit can be found for only $14 on Amazon. You may not have the most flattering outfit on the trails, but at least you will be dry! If you can spend more money, a Frogg Toggs Pro Advantage Rainsuit is also a good choice. Reviewers say these Frogg Toggs makes some of the warmest waterproof items and they can truly keep you dry in a downpour.
Kids Rainwear Reviews:
Of course, it is important that kids stay dry in the rain too. According to About.com, some of the best kids raincoats are Lands' End Kids Sports Squall Jacket for about $20. This is warm and good for active kids. It has a 3-ply Supplex nylon shell and 360 reflective trim. Also the Land's End Kids Rain Slicker is a good choice. It is soft polyester and has a comfortable Polyurthene shell. For a good everyday jacket, there is the Discover Rain Jacket lined from LL Bean. Marmot also makes its popular Marmot Precip Jacket for kids for only about $45. The Marmot Precip for Kids jacket
is waterproof, breathable and has a lifetime manufacturer's warranty. We suggest that you browse the top selling girls rainwear
or boys rain gear here