Your running jacket is on the frontlines when it comes to winter running apparel. It determines how much protection you’ll have against the elements you’ll be facing, from a more mild winter day to polar vortex conditions. You certainly don’t want to get caught wearing the wrong jacket for your needs – you should be enjoying your run, not dreading it. For your reference, we’ve compiled some winter running jacket guidance, breaking it down for you based on our favorite picks of the season.
Best for Mild Winter Weather
Patagonia Men’s Houdini Jacket – MSRP: $99.00
When it isn’t freezing cold, yet cold enough to warrant a light outer layer, the Houdini Jacket is a solid choice. The super lightweight fabric is wind and water resistant, helping protect you from any mild breeze and rain. Perfect for long runs (when the weather can change between your start and finish) and for mountain terrain (where the weather changes quickly), the Houdini is perfect for light protection when you need it, and when you don’t, it easily packs away into its own pocket.
Best for Rain
Nike Men’s Hypershield Jacket – MSRP: $300.00
This windproof and waterproof jacket will stand up to an unexpected downpour and help you survive the furious snow flurries and icy gusts as you run. With waterproof zippers, Nike ensures that water creeping in isn’t going to be an issue. The Hypershield is just that – a shield for your upper body that will protect you along your winter run. The full hood helps to shelter your head, which is a must while running in the winter rain and snow.
Best for Sub-Zero Conditions
Sugoi Men’s Firewall 180 Jacket – MSRP: $160.00
Even the most intense cold won’t keep you from your run, so you might as well enjoy it as much as possible. The Firewall 180 Jacket provides the utmost in warmth for your freezing (and below) runs. The thick, brushed fabric helps your body generate the thermal heat it needs to withstand such cold temperatures. The detachable hood provides added warmth and protection for your head, but if you’d rather go without, simply zip it off and leave it behind or stow it in you pocket.
Best for Versatility
Sugoi Men’s Versa Jacket – MSRP: $130.00
It’s a running vest and jacket all in one, which is nice when you’re not sure how much coverage you’ll need along your winter run. The Versa Jacket is built with magnets that hold the sleeves on securely, and the magnetic design makes it very easy to take off the arms (and put back on) while running. Simply stow the sleeves in the pockets when you want to rock the vest. Since the fabric is both wind and water resistant, you’ll feel protected in light wind and rain.
Best for High Visibility
Craft Men’s Brilliant 2.0 Light Jacket – MSRP: $110.00
Made with high visibility fabric panels and reflective design patterns and details throughout, the Brilliant 2.0 Light Jacket is hard to miss. Visibility is of utmost importance when you’re running during the winter months, as the daylight hours are shorter than they are the rest of the year. Craft delivers a wonderfully constructed jacket with wind and water resistance in a lightweight, breathable design.
Shop all Men’s Running Jackets
Rachel runs for fitness. It’s entirely about personal health and mental/emotional wellness for her. She’s one of those weirdos that finds proofreading to be thrilling. As manager and lead editor for the Running Warehouse Blog, THIS is her baby. She also recently started a graphic design business with her husband Ryan as a side hustle.