ain mac, anorak, parka… Whatever you call it, a waterproof jacket is an absolutely essential bit of kit to have in your wardrobe – especially with the unpredictable UK weather. And whether you want to make a style statement on this year’s festival circuit, look sharp on your next camping trip or just make it to the office without getting your suit soaked, there’s a waterproof jacket for everyone.
Of course, your choice should be based on what you will wear the most often, and what will go with your existing wardrobe, but there are a few things to consider when buying a waterproof jacket. Firstly (and this may seem obvious, but it can be surprisngly hard to tell), check that your coat of choice is actually waterproof. This means looking out for rubber rain macs and shells with water-resistant properties – Gore-Tex is usually a safe bet here – or you’ll end up damp and dissatisfied once the heavens open.
Secondly (and this is more important if you’re planning to wear yours year-round), opt for a breathable shell which can be worn over warm base layers in winter, rather than a padded down jacket that will leave you sweltering once temperatures rise. Those with vents and detachable or hidden hoods work especially well for all-year use as they offer you the option to increase airflow and stay cool while keeping you sheltered from the elements.
Luckily, there’s never a shortage of practical waterproof jackets ready for Brits to buy, and with the growth of Gorpcore – an aesthetic characterised by a penchant for functional outdoor wear – in the street style consciousness, they’ve never been more stylish. So where to start? Read on for our pick of the best waterproof jackets for men to buy now and wear all year.
66ºNorth Skaftafell jacket
B Corp-certified Icelandic outerwear brand 66ºNorth has been keeping its countrymen warm and dry since 1926 with its durable wind-resistant and waterproof jackets (which the brand pledges to repair, no matter how old they are). Cut from Gore-Tex Infinium complete with two chest pockets, adjustment points at the hem, hood and cuffs for added weatherproofing and a visor for added protection, the breathable, all-seasons Skaftafell is 66ºNorth’s most versatile jacket. It’s available in navy blue and slate grey, but this sunshine yellow shade is our pick for retro raincoat vibes.
Alexander McQueen shell waterproof jacket
If you’re hoping to avoid looking like an over-enthusiastic geography teacher when you step out in your waterproof jacket, opt for Alexander McQueen’s edgier take. Made in Italy from a midweight waterproof shell, with snap-fastening tabs, it features cherry red contrasting panels and trims, and a drawstring hem. More Carnaby Street than the Cairngorms, this hooded jacket also features two side slit pockets, front zip closure and snap-fastening cuffs.
And Wander ripstop waterproof jacket
Aiming to capture their shared adoration of nature and the mountains in a collection of high-performance outerwear that looks as good on city streets as it does on hiking trails, designers Keita Ikeuchi and Mihoko Mori founded And Wander in 2011. Blending comfort with utility, this moss green and grey waterproof jacket is cut from a durable ripstop and features cooling underarm vents, three spacious pockets and adjustable drawstrings for extra weather-proofing.
Burberry reversible waterproof jacket
Burberry’s lightweight waterproof jacket is made using at least 70 per cent recycled materials. Featuring an enlarged vintage Burberry check, this versatile jacket can be reversed and worn in all-black, appliquéd with the British heritage house’s logo on the left breast. Drawcord adjustments at the hem and hood provide added protection from the elements, while concealed press-stud welt and zip pockets ensure your valuables are kept safe and dry.
Cotopaxi Cielo waterproof anorak
Based in Salt Lake City, USA, Cotopaxi was founded in 2014 with the aim of making sustainably-crafted outdoor apparel and promoting positive global change by pledging a percentage of its revenues to environmental non-profits. Putting a stylish spin on the classic, square anorak, this lightweight pullover waterproof jacket in a bold clashing colour block is made from 100 per cent recycled polyester and recyclable materials. Featuring a spacious pouch pocket, drop-tail hem, Velcro adjustable cuffs and a roomy hood, this is one waterproof that will make you feel as good as you look.
Descente Allterrain Gore-Tex waterproof jacket
One for the minimalists, this all-white waterproof jacket from Descente Allterrain (the outerwear diffusion line from Japanese sportswear brand Descente) exemplifies the brand’s knack for clean lines, pared-back silhouettes and innovative textile technology. Breathable, yet windproof and waterproof, this jacket is cut for a relaxed fit from Gore-Tex and recycled materials, and with its detachable hood, high neck and adjustable cuffs, it makes the ideal companion for any outdoor adventure.
Norbit by Hiroshi Nozawa x Throwing Fits convertible waterproof jacket
Designed in partnership with James Harris and Lawrence Schlossman (co-hosts of the cult menswear podcast Throwing Fits), this convertible waterproof jacket by Japanese gorpcore brand Norbit by Hiroshi Nozawa, epitomises the functional, hybrid clothing the label has become renowned for. Featuring two concealed zips at the rear, which expand to fit over a backpack, as well as a large front pocket which can be removed to be used as a separate bag, this boxy retro-inspired jacket is as functional as it is fashionable. Exclusive to Mr Porter, this muted navy shade is our pick.
The North Face Seasonal Mountain waterproof jacket
Designed in 1985 to offer mountain climbers the same level of protection from extreme weather as skiers, The North Face’s Seasonal hooded waterproof jacket has been worn worldwide by esteemed mountain athletes and climbers, so you know you’re in safe hands here. Crafted from a water-repellent shell, with an elasticated hood, hem and cuffs for added protection and comfort, this lightweight jacket can be easily packed away into its own pocket, so you’re not left lugging it around once the clouds clear.