Best Winter Vests 2021

Best Winter Vests 2021

Published: Oct 13, 2020

The winter season can be one of those unpredictable weather seasons, where one day its freezing and suddenly, it becomes a lot warmer in just a few hours. This is where winter vests come in handy.
The right winter vest can give you that quick insulation boost without overheating or restriction of arm movement. It is also flexible enough to be added in a layering system for extra protection. There are a lot of vests out there with different styles and features, like puffer vests, hooded vests, and insulated vests and so on; that is why we've put together a list of the best winter vests so that you can pick out what works best for you.

Best Winter Vest: Our Quick Answer

Go to Comparison Table

Best Overall Vest

1. The North Face 1996 Retro Nuptse Vest

The North Face 1996 Retro Nuptse Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: Polyester, Nylon (Machine Wash)

Weight: 17.1 Oz

Insulation: 700 Fill Goose Down

One of the warmest and most notable winter vests on our list is the North Face 1996 Retro Nuptse Vest. It is guaranteed to keep you cozy through chilly winter days. It is a classic design that is built for both mountain and city life.

What we like

What we like about the 1996 Retro Nuptse vest is that it is loaded with 700-fill goose down to provide lightweight insulation through a wide range of temperature. The North Face also created a Responsible Down Standard to ensure that their down comes from animals that were not harmed during the process, and added a traceability system for you to validate the source of down in their product.
The 1996 Nuptse vest features an exterior that has large baffles for that classic retro look. It is composed of a shiny ripstop fabric in order to withstand the daily wear and tear and a DWR coating to aid in repelling water and other liquids. Additionally, it has a stowable hood that packs into the collar, insulated hand pockets with zipper closures, an internal zippered stash pocket, a VISLON® YKK center front zip and the hem has bungee cords to cinch it tighter and to keep the cold air out. With all these features, this warm vest will surely swaddle you comfortably throughout the day.

What we don’t like

What we do not like about the 1996 Nuptse vest is that it is extra puffy and the boxy design is not really a good option for the more extreme climbing or alpine adventures, because it has the tendency to run large, thus it can restrict movements. However, the overall fit provides comfort and warmth. With all that being said, this down vest is available in men and women’s sizes. It is a good option and can withstand cold weather conditions; it is best used for daily trips, as a mid layer for harsh winter days and also adequate enough for cold-weather hiking.



Best Vest for Kids

2. Columbia Boys Powder Lite Puffer Vest

Columbia Boys Powder Lite Puffer Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: Shell: 100% Polyester, Lining: 100% Nylon (Machine Wash)

Weight: Approx. 8 oz.

Insulation: 150g Polyester Faux Down

This cold-weather vest from Columbia is designed for kids who love to play outdoors. It is designed to fit kids easily, providing a comfortable range of movement.

What we like about the Powder Lite puffer vest is that it is filled with synthetic down insulation, which will retain its insulation even when wet, it dries quickly and is more resistant to moisture.

The vest is composed of a water-resistant fabric called, ‘Storm-Lite DP I,’I that will shed off any liquids and stains, which means that it is also very easy to clean. The vest is lined with 210T nylon taffeta fabric to make it more tough and durable. It features fleece-lined hand pockets, a front zipper closure, and a reflective detail that stands out. This vest has great texture and a trendy design; it is also very packable, which is good for out of town trips.

What we don’t like about the Powder Lite vest is that the sizing is a bit small and long for some children with an average build body type. Although, you should always remember to measure correctly and double check the size chart for a more accurate fit.

In general, this winter vest for kids is a good option for snow plays and chilly hikes.



3. Under Armour Girls' Squad Vest

Under Armour Girls' Squad Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Polyester (Machine Wash)

Weight: Approx. 4.5 oz

Insulation: Unavailable

This Squad vest from Under Armour has that nice sleek design, a lightweight vest, which is portable enough and will not take a lot of baggage space.

What we like about the Under Armour Squad vest is that it is not puffy and bulky; it has a loose fit for optimum comfort and unrestricted mobility. The fabric is constructed with 100% polyester, which utilizes a moisture transport system and wicks away perspiration from the body, it then transports it to the surface and evaporates. This vest features a color blocked design, a short drop tail, an attached hood and a full front-zip closure that comes with a wind guard and zipper garage. It is water-resistant and has a soft, brushed interior liner that traps heat for that all-day warmth and comfort.

What we don’t like about this cold weather vest for kids is that it runs a bit large and it does not have a lot of color options for kids to choose from, but in general, this is an affordable vest, which is sufficient enough to be added in a layering system and also flexible enough for short hikes and winter walks.



4. Mallimoda Boys Girls Lightweight Down Vest Puffer

Mallimoda Boys Girls Lightweight Down Vest Puffer

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Polyester (Hand Wash and Dry Clean)

Weight: Approx. 8 oz

Insulation: Down

What we know about the Mallimoda brand is that it is a European trademark that mostly manufactures casual wear and outerwear for women and children. Although it is not a household name, their products are beautifully made and they are fashionable.

What we like about this kid’s vest from Mallimoda is that it can be used for both indoor and outdoor activities, whether for a day in school or for a cold-weather adventure, this is one of the best down vest options for children, that will provide warmth and comfort throughout spring, autumn and warm winter seasons. It is also suitable to be added into a layering system for colder winter days. It features a full front button-closure, hand patch pockets and a high neck design for keeping the cold out and for that extra protection.

What we don’t like about this Mallimoda down vest is that the button closure is not very durable, so you have to be careful snapping them on and off. The sizing may also run a bit large for toddlers, but overall, this is a good lightweight and affordable option that is suitable for winter school days and is very packable for travelling.



Best Vest for Women

5. The North Face Junction Vest

The North Face Junction Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% recycled polyester

Weight: 10.32 oz

Insulation: 100 g Heatseeker™ Eco

The Junction vest is one of the more sustainable options from the North Face brand. It is designed simply but with sufficient features that are versatile enough for a wide range of weather conditions.

What we like about the Junction vest is that it is made with recycled polyester. This polyester is constructed with the same material that is used in plastic bottles, which is recycled and created into fabrics instead of dumping it on the landfill. The lining, solid print and heather is all made of recycled polyester with a durable water-repellent (DWR) finish. It is filled with 100g of Heatseeker Eco insulation, a high-performance, hypoallergenic and tough insulation that is also made of recycled polyester fiber. The Junction vest features a high collar for additional warmth and protection, a zip-up front closure and zippered hand pockets, both of which utilizes durable VISLON® zippers from the YKK Fastening Products Group. This sustainable vest is suitable for cold-weather activities and will provide additional warmth into a layering system.

What we don’t like about this cold weather vest is that it is a bit thin; however, this can mean that it is very packable and lightweight for travel. This North Face Junction vest is a sustainable option for light winter activities, it is water-resistant, provides ample warmth and it fits true to size.



6. Columbia Women's Heavenly Vest

Columbia Women's Heavenly Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Polyester

Weight: Approx. 14 oz

Insulation: Synthetic Down

The Columbia Heavenly vest for women is designed with a body skimming fit that does not cling and will not restrict any movement. It is a stylish vest that you can pair with any pants or leggings and can be easily layered over sweaters or underneath jackets.

What we like about the Heavenly vest is that its synthetic down insulation is combined with Omni-Heat thermal reflective technology to provide warmth to your core. Its inner lining is comprised of a metallic dot pattern, to retain heat while the breathable fabric works to wick moisture away from the body and evaporates through the outer fabric. The shell of the vest is Storm-Lite DP 100% Polyester, where the water beads and rolls off, making it resistant to water.

This heavenly vest features two zippered hand pockets, a hidden stash pocket in the interior, front zipper closure, and a classy lined full collar that goes high enough for extra warmth around the neck and is flexible enough to lay flat. It has contoured torso seams that give this vest a very athletic vibe and a sleek look.

What we don’t like about the Columbia Heavenly vest is that the amount of insulation is thin and is not suitable for wearing alone when it gets a lot colder; however, they made the outer shell a little bit thicker that it blocks the cold wind and allows your core to stay warm. The inner lining also adds to the warmth but hinders its breathability.

In conclusion, this Heavenly outer vest is a lightweight option that will give you a very stylish look, will add warmth to your layering system and will also be comfortable during winter walks or for running errands.



7. Kari Traa Women's Rothe Vest

Kari Traa Women's Rothe Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Polyester (Machine Wash)

Weight: Unavailable

Insulation: Duck Down

Kari Traa is a champion freestyle skier who won several Olympic medals. Her hobbies include knitting beanies and customizing her own ski attire. She then decided to turn these into business in 2002, and so the Kari Traa brand was created. A brand for girls, by girls.

What we like about the Kari TraaRothe Vest is that it can keep you warm during cold weather temperatures. Its insulation ratio is 60/40 down, which means that you’ll stay comfortable at around 3° to 4° Celsius. For extremely cold temperatures, you can layer this over a sweater or underneath your winter jacket. It features a fixed hood for extra protection and is wide enough for wearing a beanie. The collar is also high enough to be able to add warmth and to protect your neck from the weather elements. It also has hand warming pockets, a back placket that comes with a zip garage, a ribbed hem and is equipped with YKK zippers.

The Rothe vest has a stylish printed inner lining and with regards to the overall fit, it is designed with a slightly long and slim fit, which is snug and comfortable.

What we don’t like about the Rothe vest is that it may run a little bit small for women who have larger physiques, and that means it can restrict movement and there will be no adequate space for layering underneath. We are also not quite sure if you will love the main front zipper that goes all the way up, past the mouth and levels with the nose, although it can keep you warm during hikes and long runs but most might feel it's too much.

All in all, this Kari TraaRothe vest does a good job at keeping you warm and has a stylish look that most women will love and it is lightweight enough for outdoor activities.



Best Vest for Men

8. Arc'teryx Men's Atom LT Vest

Arc'teryx Men's Atom LT Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Nylon (Machine Wash)

Weight: 5 to 8 oz

Insulation: Coreloft™ Synthetic Insulation

One of the best insulated men’s vests comes from the Arc’teryx brand. This vest is very versatile, it can be used as a winter work vest for the office, for cold-weather runs and is excellent for all day wear during hiking.

What we like about the Atom LT vest is that it is very lightweight at just around 5 ounces in small sizes and up to 8 ounces in men’s large size. It gives a snug fit over a base layer and has fleece-lined stretch panels at the sides for extra layering underneath. It also has the ability to be compressed into its own pocket and is small enough that it would not take up too much space in your backpack. The Atom LT features Coreloft insulation, which is made up of synthetic fibers and offers a good amount of warmth while still being breathable. It is also quick drying and compressible. The outer shell is constructed with a ripstop nylon fabric that stretches and adds to its flexibility. The outer layer is also water-resistant because of its Tyono 20 face fabric that is treated with DWR finish. The stretch side panels are made with Polartec Power Stretch with fleece lining for insulation enhancement and for allowing a wide range of movement, making this vest suitable for any strenuous activities.

This men’s winter vest features fleece-lined zip pockets, an inner pocket, and an insulated baffle to prevent cold spots. It also comes with a collar that has a fleece backing for additional warmth, and an elasticized hem and armholes to minimize the loss of heat and to keep the cold air out.

What we do not like about the Arc’teryx Atom LT vest is that the YKK zip does not lock out and has the tendency to slip down whenever it’s only zipped half way. The inner pocket zip is not reversible and may be tricky to open and close. Additionally, its collar is hard to keep down when unzipped.

All in all, this is still one of the better choices for men’s outdoor vests; it has a simple design, it is lightweight and packable enough for travelling.



9. The North Face ThermoBall Eco Vest

The North Face ThermoBall Eco Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Polyester

Weight: 14.1 oz

Insulation: SyntheticPrimaloftThermoball Eco

The North Face ThermoBall Eco is still one of the best men’s vests out in the market. Its design has been updated recently and being eco-friendly makes it more outstanding.

What we like about the ThermoBall Eco vest is that it uses 100% post-consumer recycled polyester for its insulation, the fibers in this type of insulation mimic goose and duck down but traps heat efficiently without additional weight. Its insulation is equivalent to a 600 down fill power, which means that this synthetic alternative can keep you warm during cold winter days. Additionally, it retains its insulation even when wet. Its outer shell is made with durable nylon and polyester, which is treated with a DWR coating. It can withstand the daily wear and tear and is resistant to water and stains.

This vest features an exposed Vislon center front zip, an internal chest pocket and  covered hand pockets, both with zipper closures, and a hem cinch-cord for adjusting the fit. It is very warm, comfortable and surprisingly compressible, as most synthetic insulated vests are not usually compressible, this vest can be packed down into its own pocket. It can be used as an outer vest during fall and spring and as a midlayer for activities done during more harsh winter temperatures.

What we do not like about the ThermoBall Eco is that it is a bit heavy and is not really suitable for backcountry use and although it does not have a lot of features, this vest can still be one of the best winter vest options for your layering system, it is eco-friendly and warm enough for outdoor use.



10. Marmot Men's Zeus Vest

Marmot Men's Zeus Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Polyester (Machine Wash)

Weight: 10.01 oz

Insulation: Goose Down

The Marmot brand has been around since 1974, founded in Colorado by a local resident and two university students, who shared a common mindset of making their own equipment for mountaineering. Marmot is now globally distributed and is one of the reliable brands for outdoor gears.

What we like about the Marmot Zeus vest is that it is insulated with high-quality goose down that has an 800 fill power and is treated with Down Defender. This Marmot Down Defender offers an extra degree of moisture protection; it stays dry ten times longer and dries 30% faster than untreated down. This treatment is said to be extremely durable that it allows the down to repel water over 20 washes; it also helps to prevent down from losing its loft, thus, it increases the vest’s ability for keeping you warm and comfortable, it also makes this vest last longer. The vest is also designed to be packable as it allows you to stuff it in its own pocket.

Other features of the Marmot Zeus vest include zippered hand and interior pockets, an elastic drawcord hem for a more secure fit and a collar that rises up to the chin for full neck warmth and protection.

What we don’t like about the Zeus vest is that the hand pockets do not have any fleece lining, which can be a good feature for keeping the hands warm especially on colder days, although the down fill on the outer fabric of the pockets still provides adequate warmth but having fleece-lined pockets would be better. There is also a flap on these pockets that may get caught in the zipper if you are not careful. Other than that, this insulated men’s vest is great for layering, it is very packable and it is light enough for hikes and out of town trips.



Best Heavy Winter Vest

11. Filson Down Cruiser Vest

Filson Down Cruiser Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% cotton shell; 100% nylon lining (Spot Clean)

Weight: 30 oz

Insulation: Goose Down

The Filson brand or the C.C Filson was founded in 1897 in Washington. The founder moved to Seattle, Washington in the 1890’s and opened a small loggers’ outfitting store, and then ventured to make clothing and blankets for the influx of consumers who passed through Seattle to Klondike Gold Rush. After the gold rush ended, the company shifted to supplying gear for outdoor activities. The Filson Down Cruiser vest is one of their heavy winter vest options in their line of ultra-premium products.

What we like about the Down Cruiser vest is that it is well-built and it is functional. It is filled with 650 fill goose down that is ethically sourced and traceable. The shell is made of Filson’s Oil Finish Cover Cloth and its pockets and lower back is reinforced with Oil Finish Shelter Cloth, which is 100% cotton that is densely-woven and soaked in a paraffin-based wax; it is tightly woven to make it more wind resistant and water-repellent and to withstand the daily wear and tear. This heavy winter vest weighs around 30 ounces and it features a ripstop-nylon lining with mechanical stretch, a button-front closure that comes with a standing collar, drop-tail hem for extra coverage. It also comes with flannel-lined hand warmer pockets, snap-flap chest pockets and a slotted utility chest pocket. This vest can be worn on its own in cooler temperatures or underneath a jacket when it gets a lot colder.

What we do not like about Filson’s Down Cruiser vest is that it is a bit on the bulky side and does not pack very well. You also cannot wash it in the machine, because it breaks down the Oil Finish. You also cannot professionally dry clean it or spot clean it with soap and water as it may lose its water-repellency or change in color. For this type of fabric, it is advisable to wipe it with a damp cloth or brush away the dirt with a scrub brush.

Overall, this Down Cruiser is a good outer vest for camping, walking around town, snowshoeing and is suitable enough as a winter work vest because of its durable fabric construction and its plentiful pockets.



Best Vest for Winter Work

For office:

12. Smartwool Hudson Trail Fleece Vest

Smartwool Hudson Trail Fleece Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 45% Polyester, 45% Wool, 5% Nylon, 5% Other Fibers (Machine Wash)

Weight: 12.6 oz

Insulation: 45% recycled wool

Another Smartwool product on our list is the Hudson Trail Fleece vest. Smartwool mainly produces their products with the use of treated merino wool, and is marketed as performance apparel.

What we like about the Hudson Trail vest is that it is composed of merino wool with fleece integration, making it stylish and warm enough for the cold weather. The recycled wool fleece is soft against the skin and keeps you insulated. It is odor-resistant and has antimicrobial properties, so it would not require as much washing. This vest features two front pockets with welts covering the opening of each pocket, and it also has a zippered chest pocket.

This vest is versatile and roomy enough for layering during colder temperatures, but it is also slim enough and suitable for winter errands, wearing at the office or even just for walking around town.

What we don’t like about the Smartwool Hudson Trail Fleece vest is that the wool in its fabric construction is only 45 percent. Wool is best for warmth and durability, so most may expect more wool integrated in this vest.

Overall, this winter vest has that casual look for indoor and outdoor ventures, it is lightweight and not bulky, and it is warm enough and comfortable.



For outdoor work:

13. Carhartt Men’s Duck Vest Arctic Quilt Lined V01

Carhartt Men’s Duck Vest Arctic Quilt Lined V01

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% ring-spun cotton duck (Machine Wash)

Weight: 15 oz

Insulation: Synthetic Polyester

The Carhartt brand has been one of the most respected manufacturers of American workwear. The company is family-owned and was founded in 1889 in Michigan. They are known for using robust fabrics and for their high quality construction. The V01 Duck vest is one of their rugged quilt lined arctic vest.

What we like about the Carhartt V01 Duck vest is that its shell is forged with a tough ring spun cotton duck fabric along with Carhartt’s warmest arctic-weight synthetic insulation, making this vest excellently durable and warm. It is also wind-resistant and water-repellent.
The vest features heavy-duty triple stitched seams; a drop tail, two large front pockets and an inner pocket with hook and loop closure. It also has a brass center-front zipper that is big enough to work with gloves on. This main zipper closure has an inside storm flap for preventing cold spots.

The vest also features a 100% nylon quilted polyester lining and rib-knit collar to make it a great layer underneath your jackets and coats, and that’s not all, this vest also has elastic side tabs at the waist and a kidney flap. The Carhartt V01 Duck vest will surely be your go-to workwear for outdoors during winter. It will keep you warm and will not restrict your movements. It is made with quality materials that are durable enough to be able to resist work elements.

What we do not like about this vest is that it is a bit stiff and needs time for breaking in. If you opt to break in your vest faster, Carhartt suggests to try and wash it a few times, following their care instructions, without the use of any bleach and fabric softener. This vest is also designed for repeated treatment after subsequent washings to be able to maintain its water repellency.

Overall, this winter work vest is one of the good options for working outdoors. It is tough and rugged and has adequate features suitable enough for a workwear.



Best Vest under $100

14. Therm Kids Hydracloud Puffer Vest

Therm Kids Hydracloud Puffer Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Nylon Shell; 100% Recycled Polyester Lining (Machine Wash)

Weight: 6 oz

Insulation: Ultra-fine Poly Padding

The Therm brand was founded in 2015 in New Zealand. It is committed to producing quality and functional outdoor gears for kids. Their mission is to make versatile products that are suitable enough for a wide range of outdoor adventures.

What we like about the Hydracloud puffer vest is that it has a waterproof nylon outer shell with a 3,500mm rating, which means that it can resist heavy rain and light to substantial snow. Its yoke is constructed with 100% recycled polyester Bedford shell that has a 10,000mm rating for waterproofness and wind resistance. This vest is insulated with ultra-fine polyester padding and soft mesh lining that is comfortable and soft against the skin, providing warmth and breathability.

The Hydracloud features front zipper closures, zippered pockets with fleece lining, reflective details on the front and back and a high collar for extra protection and warmth.

This vest appeals to a lot of parents because of the sustainable materials in its construction, such as the rPET fabric that is produced from 100% recycled plastic. This fabric construction makes this vest durable and surprisingly comfortable.

What we do not like about this puffer vest is that it only comes in two colors, deep violet and navy blue. A lot of kids like to choose brightly colored clothing and for picky dressers, this might not be a good option. However, this is one of the more eco-friendly choices for a kids winter vest; it is warm and extremely resistant to wind and water, which is suitable for snow plays and winter outdoor activities.



15. Columbia Women's McKay Lake Down Puffer Vest

Columbia Women's McKay Lake Down Puffer Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Polyester (Machine Wash)

Weight: 8 oz

Insulation: Duck Down

The Columbia Women’s McKay Lake is one of the more affordable women’s winter vests on our list. It comes from a reputable company, which has been creating innovative outdoor equipment since 1938.

What we like about the Mckay Lake vest is that it is equipped with Columbia’s Heat Seal technology, which eliminates baffled stitches to be able to prevent cold spots and to seal in warmth. The filling consists of 80% duck down and 20% duck feather that is RDS certified, which means that the down and feathers are from animals that were not harmed during the process. The insulation has 650 fill power, which is considered to be good quality to provide you warmth throughout the day. The shell and the lining is 100% Polyester, which is lightweight and water resistant.

The McKay Lake vest features a front zip closure, chin guard, zippered hand pockets and a binding at the armhole and hem to ensure zero cold spots. It is designed to have a body-skimming fit with plenty of room for layers underneath and has an adequate length that does not restrict any movement.

What we do not like about the Columbia Women’s Mckay Lake puffer vest is that it does not come in a lot of color options; it is a body-skimming fit so it may run small for most, especially for full-figured women. Other than that, this vest is a good buy for women who want something lightweight and not bulky and that provides optimum warmth during the cold days.



16. Caterpillar Men's Arctic Zone Vest

Caterpillar Men's Arctic Zone Vest

Click to view on amazon.com.

Material: 100% Polyester (Machine Wash)

Weight: 9 oz

Insulation: Synthetic Polyester

The Caterpillar brand (CAT) is a Claifornia-based, Fortune 100 corporation, founded in 1925. It started as a tractor company and sells machinery, and engines and is known to be the world’s largest construction equipment manufacturer. To this day, they also now sell clothing and workwear boots.

What we like about the Caterpillar Arctic Zone vest is that it is insulated with a heavy weight polyester insulation and polyester lining. Its outer layer is constructed with micro-peach polyester fabric with a water resistant finish, making this vest durable enough to withstand cold and wet weather conditions. This vest is built with a front zip closure that has an inside storm flap and beard guard. It features inner zippered breast pockets with a slot for an earphone or headphone wire to pass through; it also has two low reach-in hand pockets with zipper closure. Additional features include an insulated stand up collar, adjustable draw cord and cord locks at bottom sides and spandex bound armholes for keeping the cold out. With regards to the fit, it gives ample space for layering underneath and the length is just below the belt line, which means it does not ride up and expose your belly from the cold, it also allows full arm mobility.

What we do not like about the Arctic Zone vest is that it runs a bit large, this gives room for layers but some may still choose to size down for a more snug fit, even with layers underneath.

But overall, this vest offers a proper amount of insulation without being too bulky; it has functional features and it is a good option for low impact outdoor activities during the cold weather season.




Best Winter Vest Comparison Table

FotoWinter Vest Material Insulation Weight
The North Face 1996 Retro Nuptse Vest

1. The North Face 1996 Retro Nuptse Vest

Polyester, Nylon (Machine Wash)700 Fill Goose Down17.1 Oz
Columbia Boys Powder Lite Puffer Vest

2. Columbia Boys Powder Lite Puffer Vest

Shell: 100% Polyester, Lining: 100% Nylon (Machine Wash)150g Polyester Faux DownApprox. 8 oz.
Under Armour Girls' Squad Vest

3. Under Armour Girls' Squad Vest

100% Polyester (Machine Wash)UnavailableApprox. 4.5 oz
Mallimoda Boys Girls Lightweight Down Vest Puffer

4. Mallimoda Boys Girls Lightweight Down Vest Puffer

100% Polyester (Hand Wash and Dry Clean)DownApprox. 8 oz
The North Face Junction Vest

5. The North Face Junction Vest

100% recycled polyester100 g Heatseeker™ Eco10.32 oz
Columbia Women's Heavenly Vest

6. Columbia Women's Heavenly Vest

100% PolyesterSynthetic DownApprox. 14 oz
Kari Traa Women's Rothe Vest

7. Kari Traa Women's Rothe Vest

100% Polyester (Machine Wash)Duck DownUnavailable
Arc'teryx Men's Atom LT Vest

8. Arc'teryx Men's Atom LT Vest

100% Nylon (Machine Wash)Coreloft™ Synthetic Insulation5 to 8 oz
The North Face ThermoBall Eco Vest

9. The North Face ThermoBall Eco Vest

100% PolyesterSyntheticPrimaloftThermoball Eco14.1 oz
Marmot Men's Zeus Vest

10. Marmot Men's Zeus Vest

100% Polyester (Machine Wash)Goose Down10.01 oz
Filson Down Cruiser Vest

11. Filson Down Cruiser Vest

100% cotton shell; 100% nylon lining (Spot Clean)Goose Down30 oz
Smartwool Hudson Trail Fleece Vest

12. Smartwool Hudson Trail Fleece Vest

45% Polyester, 45% Wool, 5% Nylon, 5% Other Fibers (Machine Wash)45% recycled wool12.6 oz
Carhartt Men’s Duck Vest Arctic Quilt Lined V01

13. Carhartt Men’s Duck Vest Arctic Quilt Lined V01

100% ring-spun cotton duck (Machine Wash)Synthetic Polyester15 oz
Therm Kids Hydracloud Puffer Vest

14. Therm Kids Hydracloud Puffer Vest

100% Nylon Shell; 100% Recycled Polyester Lining (Machine Wash)Ultra-fine Poly Padding6 oz
Columbia Women's McKay Lake Down Puffer Vest

15. Columbia Women's McKay Lake Down Puffer Vest

100% Polyester (Machine Wash)Duck Down8 oz
Caterpillar Men's Arctic Zone Vest

16. Caterpillar Men's Arctic Zone Vest

100% Polyester (Machine Wash)Synthetic Polyester9 oz

FAQs
Can you wear a vest in the winter?
A vest is best for milder temperatures and for being active during colder temperatures; it is suitable for a lot of winter activities because it keeps your core warm and gives your arms a wider range of movement. When the temperature is much colder, a vest is great as a mid-layer between a base layer and an outer jacket or coat. A vest is a versatile piece of clothing, you can use it on its own for warmer temperatures or as part of your layering system when it gets colder. It is also good to wear a vest in winter because it vents out heat readily, unlike jackets that seal you up. When sleeping during camping trips, a jacket can be uncomfortable and restrictive, thus, a vest is a great inclusion to your sleeping attire in a sleeping bag for added warmth without the feeling of confinement. Vests are also great for winter hikes, bicycling, running, setting up camp or for outdoor work because these activities are vigorous enough to keep your body temperature up. A vest is perfect for those high-impact activities because it gives your arms more freedom of movement and keeps your core warm. In conclusion, you can definitely wear a vest during the winter season, it regulates your body temperature whether you are indoors or out

 

How should a winter vest fit?

Vests vary in fit; it may come short or long and tight or loose. The fit is important to consider especially when you want to use it in your layering system.
A vest should silhouette the overall shape of your body without restricting your movement. It should not be too tight around the armholes so that it would not cut your arm's blood circulation. It is also better to choose a vest that is not too long as it tends to bunch up when sitting, and not too short because it will rise up when you stretch or bend and will create cold spots.
The fit mostly depends on your preference, if you want a thin, thick or puffy vest, you should choose one that is not confining. If you choose to have layers underneath, the vest should have adequate room to accommodate your base layer. You should always keep in mind that a vest should feel snug and not too tight; it should provide you with a wide range of movement.


BUYING GUIDE
There are some things that we have to know and consider when choosing the right vest.
There are vests for a lot of types of activities and having knowledge on what to look for will give you the best value for money. Let us share some tips so that you can find what's best for you.

Insulation Types
Down
- This is the warmest type of insulation, a high-performance insulator that performs well in extreme cold weather conditions. It comes from goose or duck down and feathers. It is more lightweight and compressible, which allows a manufacturer to add a greater fill. However, down is less breathable that synthetic types and retains more moisture when wet.
Responsibly-Sourced Down
- A lot of outdoor enthusiasts know how important it is to care for the planet and the animals. To acquire down feathers, animals have to be plucked, and this could be a painful and cruel process. Sometimes, they are also force-fed. That is why a lot of manufacturers now have ethical standards to ensure that the clothing that you purchase is sourced from humanely treated animals.
Synthetic Insulation - This type of insulation consists of man-made fibers that only mimics down feathers. They don't have that much insulation power of down but they still retain warmth and are more breathable. They also do not soak up moisture quickly. Synthetic insulation is much cheaper than down and is a more suitable choice for high-impact activities.

Merino Wool - This is a more premium natural form of insulation that comes from a specific breed of sheep called, Merino Sheep. This insulation regulates temperature, provides warmth and it is very comfortable against the skin; it also has the ability to wick moisture and to stay dry. It is popularly used for base layers and is suitable enough for cardio exercises or high-intensity activities.

Fill Power
For down insulators, you can easily measure the quality by looking at its fill power. The higher the number, the lighter and fluffier and the greater the insulation. And if the fibers are lighter, it is more possible for it to be compressed without the additional weight. However, lower fill is still a good quality because down is one of the warmest insulators.
For synthetic insulators, the measurement of warmth comes in grams. Merino wool also makes use of grams or designations like lightweight, midweight and heavyweight.

Weather Resistance
The shell's material and coating determines the level of weather protection that the vest has.
Most vests have a polyester or nylon shell that performs well in repelling light to moderate wind and rain. Some outer shells are treated with DWR (durable water repellent), which allows water to bead up and roll off the vest. Merino repels moisture naturally but will eventually soak through overtime. Look for vests that have the ability to insulate even when wet, but keep in mind that vests cannot be a hundred percent weather-proof because of its sleeveless design.

 

Breathability
Breathability is also important when choosing vests; this measures the ability of a vest to release moisture from your body through the fabric and then evaporates on the surface. This is important because any moisture that is trapped inside the vest may condense and make you feel cold or sweaty, depending on your activity. Look for vests with adequate breathability levels, and vests that come with features that offer venting solutions. Additionally, synthetic insulators have a better breathability level than down insulators. Merino wool is also a good choice for aerobic activities, with regards to its breathability level.

Durability
Most winter vests have polyester or nylon outer shells. These materials resist the daily wear and tear. The polyester and nylon material's thickness is measured in deniers, the thicker the material the more durable and heavier the vest. However, a heavier and tougher vest are more suitable for climbing and hiking trips. Some vests don't have any denier measurements but can still be extremely durable and thick, depending on the fabric construction and the type of technology infused by the manufacturer.

Weight
Weight is another important factor to look out for, especially when travelling, backpacking or hiking. Heavyweight vests are mostly used as workwear and lightweight vests are more for casual occasions or for wearing at the office. However, there are heavyweight vests that are versatile enough to be used in any of the outdoor activities.
It is also important that the vest is compressible enough to be packed for light travels.
Down vests are easily packed down without losing any of their soft insulating properties. Many brands also include a stuff sack for you to be able to easily stash it down on your bag. Additionally, most of the vests pack down into their own pocket, making it easier to carry around.

Fit

Vests do not come with sleeves, thus they are easier to fit in than full jackets. Some vests tend to run large, boxy and puffy while others are designed to have a body-skimming fit. A lot of vests are also stretchy enough to adjust to your form.
We do have to remember that vests are mostly used as layering garments, and if you want your vest to be versatile enough for use in warm to cold weather conditions, you have to choose a size that will give enough room to accommodate your base layers and will not restrict mobility; a vest should fit snug but not confining.

There are a lot of vests out in the market, so you have to choose the best, depending on the type of activity that you plan to use them for. Look out for notable features that you will be needing and carefully assess the size that will perfectly fit your body type. Also remember to follow the manufacturer's guide or care instructions for this will allow the vest to have a longer life span.


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