Your Guide To Finding The Best Rain Jackets In Australia For 2024

We’ve all been there, on top of a mountain when the skies decide to open up and dump an unfair amount of rain on our heads. It’s in these moments that our rain jackets are put to the ultimate test. 

And if you’re here reading this post, I’m guessing your rain jacket didn’t quite cut the mustard! 

But never fear, because we have spent hours scouring the internet and putting several of our own rain jackets through intense testing to compile a list of the best rain jackets in Australia for 2024.

In this post, we will discuss the many factors that come together to produce the best rain jacket before providing you with a list of all the best rain jackets in Australia for 2024. Feel free to skip down to the quick facts or rain jacket comparison list from the table of contents below. 

Now, let’s get started! 

Hiking at night in a Tasmanian Rainforest in my best XTM rain jacket

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How To Choose The Best Rain Jacket

As with most hiking gear that defend us against the wrath of the weather gods, a rain jacket has many components that need to be factored in before choosing the best rain jacket for you and your adventure style. 

Unfortunately, obtaining the best of each component will cost a pretty penny and quite frankly, isn’t worth the money unless you’re planning to utilise the rain jacket in the most extreme circumstances. Much like choosing the best down jacket or sleeping bag, balance and compromise ultimately take precedence.

Hiking up Stacks Bluff in the snow wearing some of the best rain jackets on the market

Understanding the conditions you’ll face and deciding how intensely you’ll be using the jacket will ultimately point out the features and factors that are of most importance and the ones you can live without. 

So let’s take a closer look at the components that make the best rain jackets and what they really mean.

Crossing a tight swing bridge above the Franklin River on the Frenchmans Cap walk

The XTM Tarkine, Our Favourite Rain Jacket For Australia

  • Highly breathable
  • Impressive Performance
  • Super cheap
  • Awesome orange colour

A great all-round jacket, perfect for Australia! Plus all profits go directly to the Save The Tarkine Foundation 🙂

Rain Jacket Ratings

Manufacturers will generally rate jackets by using two numbers, for example – 10k/15k.

The first number illustrates how water resistant the rain jacket is, which is measured in millimetres. The second number relates to how breathable the jacket is, which is indicated in grams. 

Basically, what we can take from the above information is that the higher the numbers, the more water-resistant and breathable the rain jacket will be. It’s always beneficial to have the highest waterproof rating, whereas high breathability is of most importance when you will be continuously exerting yourself and producing sweat.  

Here is a table for you to refer to when choosing which rating you’ll need.

Rain Jacket Rating Table

Water Resistance

RatingRecommended Use
0-10KDesigned to withstand light rain for short periods of time
10-15KMade to handle moderate showers for a long period of time
15-20KSerious shells designed for heavy downpours over a prolonged period

Breathability

RatingRecommended Use
0-10KAdequate for your everyday use where little to no exertion is required
10-15KSuited for moderate activity where the chance of sweat build-up is high
15-20KBest in breathability, designed for serious activity to mitigate unavoidable sweat

Most often, these ratings won’t be found on the rain jackets, instead, they will have a waterproofing technology that has a standard rating for each. 

Waterproofing Technology

You’ve no doubt heard the term Gore-Tex being thrown around in the outdoor world and that is because it’s the market leader in waterproofing technology. Gore-Tex is a waterproof, windproof, durable and breathable membrane that makes up the main construction of a rain jacket. You will also find Gore-Tex in the best hiking boots.

While Gore-Tex has previously been the only contender in its league, many brands are bringing out their own trademark waterproofing technologies – such as Patagonia’s H2No and The North Face’s FutureLight – that are matching the quality of Gore-Tex. 

The key takeaway here is to purchase a rain jacket that has reputable waterproofing technology. While Gore-Tex might be the best, the competition is building rapport within the outdoor community – the closest of which is Pertex who make the best breathable technology for summer rain jackets.

To be sure the technology stands up against the likes of Gore-Tex, you can google search the specific membrane that’s stated in the rain jacket’s product details and make sure they match the specifications found on Gore-Tex products of a similar price. 

Walking down a staircase made from logs on Frenchmans Cap Tasmania

DWR (Durable Water Repellent Finish)

Have you ever noticed the water droplets beading up on your jacket and rolling right off? It’s not magic, it’s the DWR coating! 

The term DWR stands for durable water repellent finish and is basically the first line of defence. The coating is applied to the exterior of most rain jackets and prevents moisture from absorbing into the jacket’s fabric. Similarly, DWR coatings are the protection you’ll find on a lot of hiking backpacks to provide basic water resistance.

Unfortunately, this coating traditionally uses perfluorocarbons which have been linked to health and environmental issues. PFC free coatings are being transitioned into the market, but are yet to be as efficient which causes the longevity of the rain jacket to be compromised. To understand more about this issue, take a look at Patagonia’s article here

Hiking to the summit of Frenchmans Cap Tasmania with a never ending mountain range in the backdrop

Fabric Layers

Fabric layers refer to the design and construction of rain jackets, specifically the way in which the material used is bound together to create the shell. Fabric layers are divided into three main categories; 2-layer, 2.5-layer and 3-layer. 

You will find this referenced on nearly all weatherproof jackets on the market in the form of 2L, 2.5L and 3L. In many ways, this rating is the best indication you have to determine the overall performance of a rain jacket.

2-Layer Fabric

As you may have guessed, the 2-layer fabric is used for entry-level rain jackets that are suitable for urban and non-technical use. They consist of a waterproof and breathable membrane joined to an outer-face fabric. 

While they are the cheapest option, their low breathability and bulk (due to a mesh liner that’s needed to protect the inner coating) cause them to be an inappropriate option for hiking. 

2.5-Layer Fabric

The 2.5-layer fabric is the most common in the outdoor world. They are quite affordable while still offering sufficient breathability, durability and weight for adventurers. 

These rain jackets are made with an outer-face fabric joined with a waterproof and breathable membrane. An inner coating shields the membrane from abrasion and sweat, oil and dirt from your body that can affect the performance of the jacket. 

3-Layer Fabric

The 3-layer construction is quite similar to the 2.5-layer, however, the inner coating is made of a more substantial fabric that increases the moisture-wicking capabilities and improves durability. 

Rain jackets with a 3-layer fabric can be a touch bulkier than the 2.5-layer jacket, but you’ll receive a better next-to-skill feel and a tougher jacket all-round. But these jackets do come with a high price tag so it’s important to decide how often you’ll be circumstances that will warrant such a beast of a rain jacket. 

Watching the sun rise over Lighting Ridge from our cliff side campsite on the Mt Anne Circuit Tasmania

Denier

Denier refers to a rain jacket’s density. Basically, the higher the number, the thicker the fabric and subsequently, the stronger the jacket will be. A jacket with a high denier is important for adventurers who often find themselves cosying up to rough objects such as boulders and trees. 

Unfortunately, the denier isn’t often stated on a jacket. But when it is, you want this number to be higher than 40D. A hardcore rain jacket will have a rating of 70 – 80D. 

Sometimes brands will quote the weight per square metres of the fabric (100g/m2) instead which can also give you an understanding of the durability. A rating of 100g/m2 is the standard for most mid-range rain jackets. 

Landscape Print of sunrise of the Gordon Wild Rivers National Park from the Summit of Frenchman's Cap in Tasmania

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Weight

The weight of your rain jacket can tell you a fair bit about its durability and waterproof levels. A lighter jacket will often be less durable and waterproof but offer better breathability and comfort. And a heavier rain jacket is usually designed to thrive in unpredictable and harsh environments, but comes with the obvious downfall of being heavy to lug around. 

However, it’s not always that easy because some of the best rain jackets have incredible lightweight properties. The best way to gauge a jacket’s performance is to compare weight and price. 

If a jacket has a higher price tag and a low weight, it will generally perform just as well as a cheaper and heavier rain jacket. For most applications, finding a sweet spot in the middle is usually the best idea. Jackets anywhere from 250 to 500 grams are great all-rounders for most outdoor activities. 

Walking through the Dense rainforest at the beginning of the Frenchmans Cap Hike in Tasmania

Fit

Just like any other piece of essential hiking gear, the fit is as important as it is controversial. Finding a jacket that suits your body shape and sits comfortably for your adventure style is sometimes more difficult than it needs to be.

The two biggest factors to think about regarding fit are length and size. 

Length

We’ve noticed that loads of designs are made short as a trendy fashion – especially for women…

Come on guys, this is not ideal for staying dry in the mountains! 

A rain jacket should be long enough to overlap your rain pants generously, but not too long that it hinders any movement. A longer back is beneficial to cover your butt when sitting on damp ground. 

Size

It’s important to decide how fitted you would like your rain jacket to be. Will you be wearing a thick fleece jacket underneath? Or will you be sticking to summer adventures where a lightweight hiking shirt will suffice?

We often hike in the alpine in winter and therefore, I always buy my rain jackets at least one size larger than I need so that I can fit many layers comfortably. 

Hiking to Mt Victoria Summit at sunset in North East Tasmania

Durability

As we discussed earlier, the durability of a rain jacket can generally be related to the thickness of a jacket and the type of fabric layer, where 3L is the most durable. On top of these factors, you may also see the word ‘ripstop’ thrown around. 

Ripstop is a fabric (usually nylon) that is woven in such a way that makes it more resistant to tearing and ripping. This type of woven fabric is becoming quite popular in rain jackets and other outdoor gear such as hiking sleeping mats.

Basically, your hobbies will determine how durable your rain jacket should be. If you engage in extreme activities such as rock climbing or mountaineering, then durability is of the utmost importance.

Many high-end performance jackets are designed with the intent of harsh conditions in ever-changing environments and are built to withstand relentless punishment. But these jackets are overkill for many of us.

For most of us, a 2.5L jacket with an all-round design is a great compromise on durability and affordability.

Hiking to Hanson's peak from Scott Kilvert Hut in Cradle Mountain National Park

Breathability

In my opinion, breathability is the most important factor for a hiker. Purchasing a rain jacket with low breathability can cause sweat to pool inside your jacket, dampening your clothes and causing you to freeze once you stop moving.

As mentioned above, the breathability of a rain jacket comes down to the type of fabric it’s constructed with. The two main specifications that depict breathability are the second number of the overall rain jacket rating (15k/20k) and the type of fabric layer. 

For hikers or someone engaging in intense activities, you will benefit from a jacket with an extremely high breathability rating (15K or above) as high levels of exertion will lead to excessive sweat and ultimately, wet base layers.

Standing on dolerite rock while hiking Mt Victoria in Tasmania wearing a rain jacket

Packability

This refers to the size that the jacket compresses down to and how easily you can fit it in your pack. Many jackets come with nifty designs that allow you to roll the jacket into its own pocket, but this isn’t completely necessary. 

Weight is the best measure for the packability of a rain jacket, but just remember that the most packable rain jackets generally have to compromise somewhere. The most common compromise is less durability or lower waterproofing properties. 

Here’s a tip for stuffing your rain jacket into a bag: Even if your jacket isn’t equipped with a stash pocket, roll it up into the hood so the inner lining of the jacket is protected by the outer shell.

Features

The best rain jackets will often come with features that enhance their efficiency. It’s important to check whether these features align with the needs of your jacket. 

Hoods

Sliding the hood of a rain jacket on while getting sprayed with water at Halls Falls Tasmania

A hood needs to have full coverage of your head without falling in front of your eyes and obscuring your vision. Finding a hood with a built-in peak that is constructed of a harder self-supporting material is best to combat this issue.

If you’re a climber or mountaineer, be sure to check that the hood can expand enough to fit over your helmet. A high level of adjustability at the rear of the hood often results in the most comfortable fit and will cater for most activities. 

Pockets

The factors to consider about pockets on a rain jacket is the placement, amount and whether the zippers are water-resistant. 

Many people forget to think about the location of the front pockets, but as a hiker or climber, you’ll want these pockets to be located higher to allow for a harness or the waist strap of your backpack to sit underneath them. 

An internal chest pocket is also a highly valuable addition to protect sensitive things such as your phone. 

Some high-end jackets will also have waterproof zippers for further protection and fleece-lined pockets to keep your hands warm. 

Vents

Vents are an extremely important feature for hikers and other adventurers that will inevitably work up a sweat. There are a few different methods of ventilation and each has its positives and negatives. 

Pit zips are zippers that undo the side of the jacket under the armpit, exposing a vent. This method of ventilation is the best for breathability but it does add extra weight and a slight decrease in waterproofness.

Some manufacturers are scraping the pit zips altogether, and are doubling a pocket liner as a vent instead. This is beneficial to remove the negatives that come with a pit zip, but it does mean less security for your valuable items and lower breathability. 

Moody Golden Sunrise on top of Stacks Bluff overlooking Tranquil Tarn

Waist and Hem Adjustment

Rain jackets that feature a hem adjustment offer the best chance of sealing out the weather by eliminating a gap between your pants and jacket. 

A waist adjustment is less common and not as important. This feature allows you to draw in the jacket at the waist to provide a closer fit, and subsequently create more warmth. 

Most waist and hem adjustments are achieved by using an elastic cord and clamp for ease of use and adjustability.

Climbing to the precarious peak of Mount Eliza on the fallen dolerite rock trail

Sustainability

As we move on through the course of time, the world is finally opening its eyes to the importance of sustainability and fair work conditions. While brands may not be perfect in either of these fields, it does feel good to be able to do our part in supporting brands that are trying to make a difference.

The factors that need to be considered in relation to sustainability and ethical practices are:

What Materials Are Being Used

While it’s not always easy to determine whether the materials used to make our beloved products are sustainable, there are a few words we can look out for. 

Obviously, anything that states it’s recycled is a big win, as is a product with a Bluesign Approved label. 

Fair Trade 

Fairtrade refers to the promise that traders in developed countries are ensuring the producers in developing countries are being paid and treated fairly. This is an extremely difficult metric to figure out as in many cases, even the brands trying to do the right thing in supporting fair wages and conditions have no idea what the factories are actually doing. 

Durability and Longevity

Durability is another massively important factor in sustainability. Even if a jacket is made with sustainable materials in an environmentally conscious way, if the quality of the rain jacket is poor then this results in a short life span which adds to waste and over-consumption. 

Don’t forget the age-old saying – you get what you pay for!

Company Policies

Company policies, such as repairing faulty or damaged products, can make a huge impact in sustainability. Many of the companies at the forefront of sustainability will offer a lifetime repair warranty and when the jacket becomes unrepairable, they will take the jacket off you to recycle it and provide you with a discount for a new purchase.

Waterproof vs Water-Resistant Rain Jackets

Let’s make one thing clear, very few rain jackets are completely waterproof. If they were designed in this way there would be zero breathability. So as a compromise, rain jackets are made as close to waterproof without sacrificing breathability.

However, for ease of explanation, we call rain jackets that have a built-in laminate layer like Gore-Tex or 2.5 – 3 layer fabrics, waterproof. Generally, a waterproof jacket will also have taping along the seams on the interior of the jacket for added protection. 

Water-resistant jackets are only suitable for light showers and short exposure to rain. These jackets are often called spray jackets or softshells and are not suitable for most outdoor activities.

Summer Vs Winter Rain Jackets

When talking about summer verse winter rain jackets, we are mainly talking about the jacket’s breathability. Summer rain jackets are generally lighter, more breathable and come fitted with extra ventilation.  

Winter rain jackets are made with greater protection for cold temperatures. These are designed to withstand harsh environments and provide additional warmth. Most winter jackets will have a 3-layer fabric and in some cases, they will also have a removable insulated liner.

Wearing my Mountain Designs rain jacket ehile hiking in the snow at Ben Lomond Tasmania

Rain Jackets With Built-In Stretch

Traditionally, the only way to get an outer layer with built-in stretch was to invest in a softshell jacket at the cost of lowered waterproofing abilities. But as technology advances, we are beginning to find more and more ‘stretchy’ rain jackets becoming available for purchase.

The advantage of a rain jacket with built-in stretch is better mobility for activities such as rock climbing and more intense hiking. If you purchase a higher quality stretchy jacket, you won’t need to sacrifice waterproof and wind-resistant levels. 

Buyers Guide For Hiking Rain Jackets

  • A rating of at least 15K/15K
  • Gore-Tex or equivalent Membrane
  • DWR coating or sustainable equivalent
  • 2.5L Fabric or higher
  • Weighing between 250 and 500 grams
  • A loose fit to allow for layering underneath
  • A self-supported hood
  • Pockets cleverly positioned to avoid impeding your hiking pack waist straps
  • A high level of ventilation and breathability
  • Sustainably made

As you can see, there are loads of things to take into consideration when choosing your next hiking rain jacket. The best way to decide is to be honest with yourself about your needs and the places you’ll be wearing the jacket most.

While we all want the best of all the components, sometimes it’s not worth the higher price tag! 

Below is a list of the best rain jackets for a variety of different categories.

13 Best Rain Jackets For 2024

Rain Jacket Comparison Table

Rain JacketPriceDWRConstructionWaterproof RatingVentsWeight*Sustainable
Patagonia Torrentshell 3L$230Yes3L H2No 10-20K/12-15KPit Zips352gYes
The North Face Chamlang$800Yes3L Futurelight18K/75KPit Zips486gYes
XTM Tarkine$180Non-PFC DWR2.5L Nylon Ripstop15K/10KPit Zips215gYes
The North Face Dryzzle FutureLight$450Non-PFC DWR3L Recycled Polyester18K/75KAir-permeable membrane320gYes
Macpac Traverse$530 $320Yes (C6)3L Pertex20K/20KPit Zips270gNo
Marmot PreCip Eco Rain Jacket$180 $1612.5L Recycled Nylon Ripstop10K/17KPit Zips247gYes
The North Face Venture 2$230Non-PFC DWR2.5L Recycled Nylon Ripstop15K/12-15KPit Zips320gYes
Mammut Crater HS$630Yes3L Gore-Tex28K/15KPit Zips479gYes
Macpac Lightweight Prophet$650 $450Yes (C6)3L Pertex20K/20KPit Zips460gNo
Mountain Designs Stratus$380Yes2.5L Pertex20K/20KPit ZipsYes
Marmot Minimalist Rain Jacket$380Yes2.5L Recycled Gore-Tex28K/15KPit Zips359gYes
Montane Pac Plus XT$4502L Recycled Gore-Tex28K/15KPit Zips330gYes
Rab Kangri GTX Jacket$6653L Gore-Tex28K/17-25KPit Zips468gYes
* Average weight is for women’s version

1. Patagonia Torrentshell 3L Jacket

Best Overall Rain Jacket

The Patagonia Torrentshell 3L rain jacket offers superb protection against the elements while keeping a low price point. The 3-layer design is simple yet functional and will keep you comfortable in any condition that’s thrown your way.

There are a few things we would change on this jacket, such as the addition of an internal chest pocket and higher positioned waist pockets. But we do love the micro-fleece lined neck and handwarmer pockets!

Price: $230 AUD
Size: Women’s: 2XS – 2XL| Men’s: XS – 3XL
Denier Count: 50D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 10-20K/12-15K (specifics unknown)
Material: 3-layer 100% Recycled Econyl nylon H2No Performance Standard shell
Polycarbonate PU membrane with 13% biobased content
DWR: Yes
Weight: 352 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two handwarmer waist pockets
Colours: Women’s: black, navy, white, blue and green | Men’s: black, red, green, blue and navy
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: Year-round, suitable for stormy conditions

Patagonia Torrentshell rain jacket

Patagonia Torrentshell 3L Features

  • DWR coated snag-free front zipper with internal and external storm flaps
  • 2-way adjustable peaked hood that can be stowed with a simple cord and hook design
  • An adjustable hem with a drawcord
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • Pit zippers with mesh lining
  • Two handwarmer waist pockets 
  • The rain jacket can be stuffed into the left zippered pocket with a carabiner clip-in loop 
  • Recycled fabric
  • Fairtrade certified sewn and Bluesign approved
  • Tricot backer for next-to-skin comfort

Positives

  • Sustainable and Fairtrade sewn approved
  • Great next-to-skin feel
  • Performs well in stormy weather
  • Affordable

Negatives

  • Waist pockets aren’t compatible with a harness
  • A little heavier and bulkier
  • No longer hem at the back

2. The North Face Summit Series Chamlang Futurelight Rain Jacket

Best Performance Rain Jacket

For the ultimate mountaineering and technical hiking rain jacket, you can’t beat The North Face’s Summit Series Chamlang Futurelight jacket. This beast is designed with unmatched breathability and a highly durable 70D shell to protect you from whatever the trail throws at you.

The Chamlang has everything you’d expect from a mountaineering jacket, including harness-compatible waist pockets and a design that encourages mobility. But there’s no denying you will pay a pretty penny for this jacket and it will be overkill for many adventurers.

Price: $800 AUD
Denier Count: 70D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 18k/75k
Material: 3-layer Futurelight, 100% recycled nylon
DWR: Yes
Weight: 486 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two harness-compatible handwarmer waist pockets
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: Mountaineering, extreme conditions

The North Face Chamlang Performance Rain Jacket, one of the best rain jackets in Australia and New Zealand

Features

  • Fully seam sealed design
  • Articulated patterning and underarm gussets for increased mobility
  • Helmet-compatible and fully adjustable hood with a stiffened brim
  • No shoulder seams for extra comfort while wearing a hiking backpack
  • Harness-compatible handwarmer pockets
  • Large internal mesh drop pocket
  • Internal hem cinch cord for better water resistance
  • Brushed tricot chin guard for increased comfort
  • Waterproof zippers on centre zip and pockets – the pit zips and waist pockets are flatlock for increased flexibility
  • The cuffs have a hook and loop adjustment to prevent rain from getting in

Positives

  • Unmatched breathability
  • Highly durable
  • Comfortable design tailored for wearing a backpack and technical hiking
  • Sustainably made

Negatives

  • Overkill for everyday wear
  • Expensive
  • A little heavy

3. XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket

Best Budget Rain Jacket

The XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket will keep you toasty dry while also making you feel extremely good about yourself. Absolutely all proceeds from this rain jacket are donated to the Save The Tarkine Foundation.

This jacket is the one Dylan wears every time we head out on a hike and he couldn’t speak more highly of it’s quality and comfort. We’ve most certainly put it to the test with multiple days drenched in the Tasmanian rainforests.

Read our full review of the XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket here.

While it’s not the warmest on this list, it’s highly breathable and perfect to hike in. The only downside is that the women’s version is a touch too short for technical hiking, but you can fix this issue by purchasing one or two sizes up.

Price: $180 $170 AUD
Size: Women’s: 8 – 18 | Men’s: S – 3XL
Denier Count: Unknown
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 15K/10K
Material: 2.5 layer Nylon Ripstop
DWR: PFC-Free DWR
Weight: 215g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets
Colours: Burnt orange and granite
Sustainable: PFC-Free DWR, All proceeds go to saving the Tarkine
Recommended use: Year-round in mild conditions

XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket

XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket Features

  • YKK vislon front zipper with storm flap
  • Fully seam-sealed design
  • 2-way adjustable peaked hood that can fold away
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • Articulated Elbows
  • Full-length pit zippers with mesh lining
  • Two waist pockets
  • All profits will be donated to the save the Tarkine foundation

Positives

  • Very affordable
  • Proceeds go to saving the Tarkine Forests in Tasmania
  • Highly breathable

Negatives

  • No chest pockets
  • Short length on women’s jackets

4. The North Face Dryzzle FutureLight Jacket

Best Breathable Rain Jacket

The North Face Dryzzle FutureLight rain jacket offers far more protection than the name may suggest… 

All jokes aside, this 3-layer rain jacket will keep you warm and relatively dry without compromising on comfort and mobility. The inside of the jacket has a stretch-knit to allow a cosy next-to-skin feel and the best part, it’s made sustainably! 

This rain jacket definitely excels far more in the breathability and durability department compared to its waterproof properties. But as an overall jacket, it will be happily sufficient for most adventures in mild climates.

Check out our review on The North Face Dryzzle Futurelight Jacket after testing it through New Zealand and Bali.

Price: $450 AUD
Size: Women’s: XS – XL | Men’s: XS – 2XL
Denier Count: 75D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 18K/75K
Material: 3-Layer – 100% recycled polyester face, 100% recycled nylon tricot backer
DWR: non-PFC DWR
Weight: 320 g
Vents: Air-permeable membrane
Pockets: Two waist pockets and one external chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: purple, blue, black and red | Men’s: black, yellow and navy
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: Year-round in mild conditions

North Face Dryzzle Futurelight Rain Jacket

The North Face Dryzzle FutureLight Features

  • Laminated storm flap with a snap closure at the hem to keep the weather out
  • Fully seam-sealed design
  • Fully adjustable hood
  • Recycled stretch-knit backer that adds extra comfort and warmth
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • An adjustable hem with a drawcord
  • Two waist pockets with storm flaps
  • An external chest pocket
  • Made with sustainable material
  • Long back length for extra protection
  • While there are no ventilation zips, the jacket is air-permeable meaning the air can constantly pass through

Positives

  • Very breathable
  • Stretch-knit backer offers extra warmth and comfort
  • Long back for extra protection

Negatives

  • Not as waterproof as others on this list
  • Getting expensive
  • Pockets aren’t compatible with a harness or backpack

5. Macpac Traverse Rain Jacket

Best Lightweight Rain Jacket

For the ultimate lightweight rain jacket that doesn’t sacrifice on waterproofness, you’ve got to check out the Macpac Traverse. This 3-layer jacket weighs just 270g while providing exceptional protection thanks to the Pertex Shield Pro technology.

The Traverse rain jacket is designed with reinforced shoulders and wrists to combat the highest wear areas but saves weight and increases breathability with a lightweight fabric for the bulk of the jacket. While you wouldn’t choose this jacket if durability was your number one priority, if breathability and weight are your main concerns then you’ve found yourself a winner.

Price: $530 $320 AUD
Denier Count: Unknown
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 20k/20k
Material: 3-layer Pertex Shield Pro, 100% nylon
DWR: Yes (C6)
Weight: 270 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two handwarmer waist pockets
Sustainable: No
Recommended use: Summer and mild conditions, good for ultralight hikers

Macpac Traverse Lightweight Rain Jacket

Features

  • Lightweight fabric for the majority of the jacket with reinforced shoulders and wrists
  • Two handwarmer waist pockets
  • An adjustable hood with a stiffened peak that can zip into the collar
  • Soft tricot brushed chin guard for extra comfort
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment to increase waterproofness
  • Adjustable hem for a better fit

Positives

  • Very lightweight
  • Good breathability
  • Packs down very small

Negatives

  • No pit zips
  • Not sustainably made
  • Not as durable as others on this list

6. Marmot PreCip Eco Rain Jacket

Most Sustainable Rain Jacket

For a budget friendly jacket that also puts the environment first, we bring to you the Marmot PreCip Eco rain jacket. This is a great entry-level jacket that will keep you sufficiently dry in sudden rainfall. 

While it does lack some features, this 2.5-layer rain jacket is a great lightweight option where breathability is the most important factor. 

Price: $180 $162 AUD
Size: Women’s: XS – 2XL | Men’s: S – 2XL
Denier Count: Not specified
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 10K/17K
Material: 2.5-layer NanoPro, 100% Recycled Nylon, Ripstop, 78g/sqm
DWR: Not specified
Weight: 247 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets
Colours: Women’s: grey, dark blue, green, purple, red, pink, navy, blue, grey/blue, dark pink, yellow  and black | Men’s: blue/grey, blue, dark red, red, navy, grey, purple, black and yellow
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: Warmer conditions

Marmot Precip Eco Reain Jacket

Marmot PrecCip Eco Features

  • Storm flap over the front zipper
  • The hood has a 2-way adjustment
  • Fully seam sealed design
  • Articulated elbows for added mobility
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • An adjustable hem with a drawcord
  • Two waist pockets with water-resistant zips
  • Stuff into it’s own pocket
  • Pit zips for ventilation
  • Recycled material used

Positives

  • Very affordable
  • Loads of colours to choose from
  • Recycled material
  • Lightweight
  • Very breathable

Negatives

  • Not as durable as others on this list
  • Not as waterproof as others on this list
  • Waist pockets aren’t compatible with a harness or backpack
  • No chest pocket

7. The North Face Venture 2 Jacket

The North Face Venture 2 rain jacket is another ‘budget’ option for those that occasionally spend time in grim weather and are looking for a jacket from a reputable brand that is sustainable. It still has a price tag of $200 AUD, but compared to many on this list, that’s cheap! 

While it may not be the most breathable or versatile on this list, the Venture 2 jacket does provide a highly durable and lightweight jacket that will protect against a shower or two, or act as a great windbreaker on a mountain top. 

Price: $230 AUD
Size: Women’s: XS – 3XL | Men’s: XS – 3XL
Denier Count: 40D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 15K/12-15K
Material: DryVent™ 2.5-layer -100% recycled nylon ripstop
DWR: Yes (non PCR)
Weight: 320 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets
Colours: Women’s: rose, purple and black | Men’s: yellow/black, taupe green, black and grey/black
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: In mild conditions with minimal exertion

The North Face Venture 2 Rain Jacket

The North Face Venture 2 Rain Jacket Features

  • The front zip is protected by a stormflap that has a velcro closing
  • Presents a seam-sealed design
  • The hood has a 2-way adjustment and helmet-compatible
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • An adjustable hem with a drawcord
  • Two covered waist pockets
  • The jacket has pit zips, although there is no mesh lining
  • It can be stowed in the hand pocket

Positives

  • On the cheaper side
  • Very durable
  • Sustainable

Negatives

  • Not very breathable
  • Not as waterproof as others on this list
  • Pit zips don’t have a mesh lining

8. Mammut Crater HS Rain Jacket

The Mammut Crater HS rain jacket is your go-to when the highest waterproofing is of the utmost importance. The Gore-Tex jacket boasts a waterproof rating of 28k in a tough yet flexible design.

While you will sacrifice slightly on breathability with the Mammut Crater HS, if your adventures feature wild winter conditions then you’ll be glad you chose the Crater to keep you comfortable and dry.

Price: $630 AUD
Denier Count: 75D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 28k/15k
Material: 3-layer Gore-Tex. 100% polyester
DWR: Yes
Weight: 479 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two harness-compatible handwarmer waist pockets, internal chest pocket
Sustainable: Bluesign approved, Fairtrade
Recommended use: Mountaineering, alpine hiking, winter hiking

Mammut Crater HS Rain Jacket

Features

  • Harness-compatible handwarmer waist pockets
  • An internal zippered chest pocket for your valuable
  • Underarm vents with waterproof zippers
  • Helmet-compatible hood with vertical and horizontal adjustment and a reinforced peak
  • Adjustable hem for better protection from the weather
  • The cuffs have a hook and loop fastener to prevent water from seeping in
  • Mammut’s innovative Georganic 3D technology T shape pattern provides a better fit and optimal mobility
  • Drop hem for increased protection
  • A solution-dyed backer for a more sustainable production

Positives

  • High waterproof abilities
  • Great durability and wind protection
  • High-quality design

Negatives

  • Not as breathable as other alpine-focused jackets on this list
  • Expensive
  • Not completely sustainable

9. Macpac Lightweight Prophet Rain Jacket

The Macpac Lightweight Prophet rain jacket is a serious hardshell designed to accompany you in your alpine pursuits year-round. The durable and thick shell paired with a breathable membrane makes this technical jacket a worthy opponent for hard-core hikers – especially due to its relatively low weight (and price when it’s on one of its many sales) in comparison to the competition.

The only downside to the Prophet is the lack of sustainable material used in its design and multiple complaints about the hand pocket zips letting water in. But hopefully, Macpac will rectify this small issue soon.

Price: $650 $450 AUD
Denier Count: Unknown
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 20k/20k
Material: 3-layer Pertex Shield Pro, 100% nylon
DWR: Yes (C6)
Weight: 460 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two harness-compatible handwarmer waist pockets, internal and external chest pockets
Sustainable: No
Recommended use: Technical hiking, four season use

Macpac Lightweight Prophet Rain Jacket

Features

  • Fully seam sealed design
  • Adjustable helmet compatible hood with a stiffened peak
  • Harness-compatible handwarmer waist pockets
  • An internal and an external chest pocket to protect valuables
  • Gusseted underarms for increased mobility
  • Soft tricot lining on the chin guard for extra comfort
  • The cuffs have velco adjustments to prevent rain from getting in
  • Drop hem at the back for extra protection

Positives

  • Relatively lightweight for a technical rain jacket
  • Very durable
  • Good breathability in comparison to warmth

Negatives

  • Reviews complain about non-waterproof waist pocket zips
  • No hem adjustment
  • Not sustainably made

10. Mountain Designs Stratus Rain Jacket

The Mountain Designs Stratus rain jacket is the new and improved version of the rain jacket I have been wearing for the last two years – the Cumulus. My jacket served me well in many wild conditions that we found ourselves in and it seems that the new Stratus jacket is even better equipped to protect you from the wrath of the weather gods.

What’s more, the Stratus is also constructed with 100% recycled polyester for the shell and 75% recycled polyester for the internal layer! They have also upgraded to a 2.5-layer design and an extra 5k breathability. This is a great option if you’re searching for a relatively affordable jacket for three-season use.

Price: $380 AUD ($250 AUD for club members – free to sign up)
Denier Count: Not specified
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 20K/20K
Material: 2.5-layer Pertex Shield, 100% recycled polyester shell, 75% recycled polyester layer
DWR: PFC-free
Weight: Unknown
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets and an external chest pocket
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: In mild conditions with medium exertion 

Mountain Designs Stratus Rain Jacket

Features

  • The front zip is protected by a storm flap
  • The chin guard is brushed with suede for extra comfort
  • Fully seam-sealed design
  • An adjustable hood with a stiff peak to keep the rain off your face
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • An adjustable hem with a drawcord
  • Two waist pockets with water-resistant zips
  • Waterproof zippered external chest pocket 
  • Articulated elbows increase moveability

Positives

  • Affordable with a club member
  • Very durable
  • Good windbreaker
  • Sustainably made

Negatives

  • Unknown weight
  • The cuffs are very tight, restricting the ability the pull the sleeves up

11. Marmot Minimalist Rain Jacket

The Marmot Minimalist rain jacket is a burly all-rounder that will protect you from the elements without breaking the bank. While this jacket presents an entry-level price, this has little relation to its design. 

This 2.5-layer rain jacket has all the same features found on a more expensive equal, including a longer back and articulated elbows for better mobility. The denier count for this jacket is unknown and some reviews have stated it’s not the most durable when compared with some others in its class. 

But for an affordable all-rounder that can withstand harsh wind and rain, this is your go-to.

Price: $380 $360 AUD
Size: Women’s: XS – 3XL | Men’s: XS – 3XL
Denier Count: Not specified
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 28K/15K
Material: 2.5-layer Gore-tex Paclite Technology 100% Recycled Polyester 99 g/m
DWR: Yes
Weight: 359 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets and an external chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: grey, dark blue, green, red, pink, navy, blue, grey/blue, dark pink, yellow  and black | Men’s: blue/grey, blue, dark red, red, navy, grey, purple, black and yellow
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: Year round, suitable in stormy conditions

Marmot Minimalist Rain Jacket

Marmot Minimalist Rain Jacket Features

  • Bonded flap water-resistant front zip
  • The hood has a 2-way adjustment and a stiff peak to keep the rain off your face
  • Fully seam sealed design
  • Articulated elbows for added mobility
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • An adjustable hem with a drawcord
  • Two waist pockets and an external chest pocket with water-resistant zips
  • Longer back design for extra protection
  • Pit zips with inner mesh
  • Sustainable material used

Positives

  • Affordable
  • Loads of colours to choose from
  • Sustainable

Negatives

  • Not as durable as others on this list
  • Not as breathable
  • Waist pockets aren’t compatible with a harness or backpack

12. Montane Pac Plus XT Jacket

Montane have thought of everything when they put together the Pac Plus XT rain jacket. It comes with all the usual bells and whistles that you would want in a technical outdoors jacket, including two way zips on the pit vents to control how much ventilation you want! 

This 2-layer rain jacket will be your ultimate go-to when breathability and protection are the two main factors. Being only a 2-layer design, the jacket may feel a little clammy against the skin and lacks in the warmth department a little. 

Price: $450 AUD
Size: Women’s: 8 – 16 | Men’s: S – 2XL
Denier Count: 40D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 28K/15K
Material: 2-layer 100% recycled GORE-TEX PACLITE PLUS
DWR: Not specified
Weight: 330 g
Vents: Adjustable pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets compatible with a harness and backpack, one external chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: peach, grey and green | Men’s: blue, orange and slate
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: High exertion, three season use

Montane Pac Plus XT Rain Jacket

Montane Pac Plus XT Rain Jacket Features

  • The front zip is a YKK Aquaguard zip with an internal stormflap
  • Fully seam-sealed design
  • The hood has a 2-way adjustment and helmet compatible
  • The arms are articulated for high reach movements
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • An adjustable hem with a drawcord
  • Two high waist pockets that are compatible with a harness or backpack
  • An external chest pocket
  • Longer back length for extra protection
  • Pit zips come with a two way zip to control the amount of ventilation

Positives

  • Very breathable
  • Harness or backpack compatible pockets
  • Long back for extra protection
  • Sustainable
  • Adjustable pit zips

Negatives

  • Getting expensive
  • Not as nice next-to-skin feel
  • Not as warm as others on this list

13. Rab Kangri GTX Jacket

The Rab Kangri GTX is the jacket you want in your pack when you are about to face some extreme weather conditions! The tough 70D outer layer will withstand the gnarliest terrain and the 3-layer Gore-Tex membrane will keep you dry and warm when the temperature drops. 

However, you will pay a pretty penny for this robust rain jacket so you would want to be sure you’d get the most out of it before laying down the cash. 

Price: $665 AUD
Size: Women’s: XS – XL| Men’s: S – 2XL
Denier Count: 70D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 28K/17-25K ( breathability specifics unknown)
Material: Gore-Tex 3-Layer construction waterproof technology with recycled outer fabric
DWR: Not specified
Weight: 468 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two harness-compatible waist pockets and one internal chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: black, blue, red and maroon | Men’s: black, army green, graphite and blue
Sustainable: Yes
Recommended use: Winter conditions

Rab Kangri GTX Rain Jacket

Rab Kangri Waterproof Jacket Features

  • YKK Aquaguard Vislon 2-way front zipper
  • Fully adjustable mountain hood with a wired peak
  • An adjustable elasticated hem with a drawcord
  • The cuffs have a velcro adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • Extra-long pit zippers with mesh lining
  • Two high positioned waist pockets that are compatible with a harness and backpack
  • An internal chest pocket
  • Fleece-lined chin guard for extra comfort
  • Recycled fabric
  • Long back length for extra protection

Positives

  • Very durable
  • Internal zippered chest pocket
  • Waist pockets are compatible with a backpack and harness
  • Can withstand strong weather conditions

Negatives

  • Very expensive
  • Heavier and not as packable
  • Not as breathable

Final Thoughts

We hope that you have found our guide to finding the best rain jacket has helped ease your decision-making process. Remember to choose your top priorities before being swayed by the best colours or the nicest design and base your decision on those needs.

If you have a rain jacket that isn’t on this list but deserves a mention, please feel free to leave a comment below. Moreover, if you have experience with any of these rain jackets listed, we would love to hear your thoughts and how you would rate them in the real world!

Happy Adventuring 🙂

Last Updated: 31/12/2023

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