When cold weather hits, you’ll want to bundle up. Thankfully, “bundle up” no longer means having to wear bulky layers that make you feel like the Michelin Man or rain jackets that feel like they’re made of plastic and have you soaked in your own sweat within the first 30 seconds of a run.
Cold weather apparel has come a long way, and jackets in particular have evolved from something you wore just to get through a miserable workout into something you look forward to putting on. While others will be making excuses to stay inside and skip their workouts, you’ll be donning your new favorite jacket and jonesing for a good run. Below, we’ve chosen our favorite jackets to not just get you through but also help you enjoy winter running.
Best Everyday Option
The adidas Pure Amplify Jacket is a do-it-all option that we’re confident you’ll love. For those who live in areas where it won’t be pouring rain or below freezing every day, this is your best bet for an everyday, go-to option. Wind- and water-resistant paneling provides protection from light rain and breezy conditions, while breathable underarm paneling ensures that you won’t get sweaty and overheated. A vertical zipper at the lower back can be unzipped to reveal mesh paneling, providing enhanced ventilation and a more relaxed fit. The hood allows for added protection from the elements, and thumbholes provide added sleeve coverage and security. We also love the wide, stretchy waist, which provides a secure fit that both looks flattering and helps hold in heat. For an everyday option, pockets are a must, and this jacket delivers with two zippered hand pockets and a sweat-resistant envelope pocket within the right hand pocket.
Runner-up: Oiselle Women’s Flyout Jacket
Best for Freezing Temperatures
When it really starts to get frosty outside, the Patagonia Women’s Crosstrek Hoody is our favorite stay-warm jacket. A great option for providing fantastic warmth without excessive bulk, this jacket is constructed from Polartec Power Stretch fleece fabric, which has a stretchy-but-soft exterior and brushed interior. A DWR finish provides wind- and water-resistance, so you’ll be protected on breezy days, or even during light rain or snow. The fitted hood and thumbholes both provide added coverage, and zippered hand pockets provide convenient space to carry essentials.
Runner-up: Altra Women’s Micro-Puff Jacket
Best for Wind
Fully windproof and water-resistant, you’ll be able to run straight through gusty gales in this jacket. Polartec Alpha insulating fabric is utilized on the front panel to help provide added warmth for your core, and there’s a scuba style hood with elastic and an adjustable cinch cord to help keep your head protected. Elastic at the sleeve cuffs and a cinch cord at the waist allow you to get a secure fit that traps in heat, while zippered hand pockets provide protective storage spaces.
Runner-up: The North Face Women’s Isotherm Jacket
Best for Rain
Fully wind- and waterproof, this jacket will keep your upper body dry no matter how hard the rain falls. The hood has a built-in soft bill to help keep water away from your face, and a cinch cord allows you to get a snug fit on your head. It doesn’t make sense to keep the rain water out only to become drenched in sweat, so perforated ventilation under the arms and down the center back helps create a breathable layer that will keep you dry. A zippered chest pocket is available for dry, secure storage.
Runner-up: Salomon Women’s Lightning WP Jacket
For a more thorough review of our favorite rain jackets, check out our Women’s Rain Jackets Buying Guide.
Best for High Visibility
When it comes to high visibility apparel, we want something that will truly shine at night without looking obnoxious during daylight hours. The ASICS Storm Shelter Jacket does just that, utilizing an all-over reflective stripe print that looks classy during the day and really lights up in low-visibility conditions. As an added benefit, this jacket is also fully waterproof, which makes it a great option not only for night runs but also for heading out under dark clouds. A mesh lining provides a comfortable feel, and the hood is optional — keep it on in bad weather, or zip it off if you’d rather head out without it. Internal cuffs with thumbholes, as well as a drawcord at the hem, create a profile that doesn’t let cold air in. Zippered hand pockets are available for secure storage, and an additional media-friendly pocket is available within the chest lining.
Runner-up: Sugoi Women’s Zap Training Jacket
Tracie is a former teacher and a lifelong learner who loves exploring. Most at home in the mountains, she enjoys tearing up and down the trails on her mountain bike, and occasionally leaves the wheels at home for a run through the trees. Having recently earned her personal trainer certification, Tracie thrives on helping others reach their athletic goals.