Waterproof, windproof and breathable, a good outer layer keeps moisture out while simultaneously working with the base and mid layers to maximise breathability and regulate your body temperature to prevent overheating. Jackets with an especially high level of waterproofing will have sealed seams to prevent moisture getting in even in the harshest weather. Available in a wide range of styles and fits, a ski jacket is cut to allow space for your layers underneath and to give you the freedom to stretch and move while on the mountain. There are various types of jacket that all have benefits depending on what style you want, the conditions outside and your level of intensity while skiing.
1. HARD SHELL
An uninsulated jacket, a hard shell jacket offers superior weather protection in comparison with other jacket types. Generally lined with a technical membrane, they are highly waterproof and windproof, making them ideal for use throughout the ski season and in all types of conditions. Slightly less breathable than softshell jackets, they are very lightweight and highly versatile as they allow you to layer up and down underneath depending on the conditions and your level of intensity.
Key characteristics: Highly waterproof, Lightweight, Versatile.
2. SOFT SHELL
Comfortable, warm and versatile, softshell jackets can be used as an outer jacket as well as under a jacket when you want to add an extra layer on colder days. Highly breathable, they are superb at regulating temperature and working with the other layers to wick moisture away during intense activity, also making them especially suited to skiing in warmer conditions towards the end of the season. Able to stretch and move with you, softshell jackets are a great option for intermediate and high level skiers, as well as those who desire a more durable jacket for regular skiing.
Key characteristics: Highly breathable, Stretch fabric, Comfortable.
3. INSULATED OUTERLAYER
Ideal for use in the coldest conditions by all levels of skier, insulated jackets are also suitable for use by beginners and those who are more sensitive to chilly temperatures throughout the ski season. Generally featuring a waterproof outer, what they lack in breathability is offset by supreme heat retention and insulation. Because insulated jackets are super warm and also highly windproof, they are perfect for use towards the start of the season or at higher altitudes where temperatures are colder and some extra insulation is necessary.
Key characteristics: Super warm, Comfortable, Ideal for beginners.