Described as midway between hard-shell jackets and fleeces softshell jackets are a saviour for many outdoor enthusiasts. They can be worn as an outer layer, or as a mid-layer, they can come in 2-layer or 3-layer constructions, with or without insulation. Whether you are skiing, hiking, climbing or just want something warm for the winter we have picked out the best softshell jackets brands to help you out.

Men's and Women's Softshell Jackets

1. Arc'Teryx

Made for climbers, hikers and skiers alike Arc’teryx has developed premium softshell fabrics that are exceptionally durable. 


The Gamma LT Hoody is a great asset to any outdoor lover. Made with a lightweight and durable double weave textile this jacket is wind resistant and water repellent.  The textured backings add a thermal layer to this already versatile jacket, keeping you comfortable in the cold. Extra touches like adjustable hem drawcord and gusseted underarms make it easier to regulate your body temperature.


2. The North Face

One of the best-known outdoor brands in the world North Face’s focus on innovation has made them an industry leader in softshell jackets.  


Our personal favourite is the Nimble Hoodie. Available in both men's and women's ranges the Nimble Hoodie is made from WindWall fabric, so it is wind resistant to protect you from the elements. Another benefit of the WindWall Fabric is that it's lightweight and breathable for the utmost comfort.  But it’s the little details that make this a great purchase. The Nimble Hoodie has an adjustable hem and elastic-bound cuffs to lock in as much heat as possible. 

Men's Softshell Jackets

3. Rab

Describing themselves as “the mountain people” Rab have got your back with great softshell jackets. Rab’s famous Vapour Rise technology combines breathability, windproofing and insulation in a lightweight durable fabric.


The Vapour Rise Guide jacket is one of Rab’s most popular jackets. It is winter-weight with Polartec alpha insulation added warmth and protection. The Pertex Equilibrium outer fabric and stretch panels give you a lot of mobility and protection, ideal for staying warm in cool climes.


Women's Softshell Jackets

4. Mammut

The final brand on our list is Mammut. Revolutionising the mountaineering industry since 1862 they have a made many innovations in softshell materials. 


The best example of the this is the Ultimate Jacket. Using Windstopper technology, Ultimate jackets are windproof, breathable and water-resistant. Depending on what weight you want, they come in 2 and 3-layer constructions, the main difference being in their water resistance and windproofing rating, the more layers the better the ratings typically. 


Related articles