A ski jacket is your first line of defense against Mother Nature and all of her elements. A good ski jacket will keep you warm on bone-chilling winter days, insulate you from rain or heavy snow, and breath on a bluebird day.
Ski jackets have evolved over the years as manufacturers searched for the perfect combination of warmth, waterproofness, breathability and fit. Skiers can choose from shell jackets, insulated jackets and 3-in-1s. Technology and new innovations have made ski jackets better than ever and more tailored to skier’s needs.
If you’re going to invest in the best ski jacket on the market, then make sure to pair it with the best skis in the industry. Renoun is the first ski manufacturer to use HDT™, a non-newtonian polymer which adapts instantly to snow conditions and ski style. Check out Renoun’s line-up of award winning skis.
Now that we have a better understanding of ski jackets and what to look for, let’s take a look at this year’s best ski jackets for men.
Awarded the “Skier’s Choice Award”, the Environ is a workhorse — but we love it for it’s simplicity.
Made with a 3-layer waterproof & breathable layers and carefully placed zip vents, it'll keep you cool for the out of bound hikes or that early morning skin up the ridge. Close everything up, and it becomes a trusty resort jacket with plenty of storage where you need it (and none where you don’t).
Stio uses a material called Dermizax - a polyester based fabric with 3-way stretch that moves incredibly well, yet somehow still keeps the wind and wet out. The Environ has plenty of adjustments around your waist and hood to seal in the heat on those cold days and has all the bells and whistles you’d expect out of a more premium (and pricer) jacket.
Headquartered near the iconic Jackson Hole mountain, Stio is one of the most successful new outdoors brands in recent years. We’ve been a fan of their gear since we stopped by their headwaters in 2014. Inside secret: Stio's fonder once dyed her hair green for a product launch - a bird used it as a perch for an hour.
Three Layer Anorak Men’s Jacket by Holden
Holden is based in Venice Beach, California. The company was created by a snowboarder who wanted to bring urban fashion to the outdoor industry. For those who want swag and style while skiing, Holden ski jackets may be the best choice. But don’t think style limits functionality. Holden has taken steps to insure that their jackets perform well in all conditions.
The Men’s three layer Anorak infuses urban lifestyle with the functionality of a high-end ski jacket. It looks great and will keep you warm and dry. The jacket features a 20k/20k waterproof rating while insuring good breathability.
Ascensionist Alpine Jacket by Patagonia
One of the best known companies in the outdoor industry is Patagonia. They design products to high performance standards while maintaining sustainable manufacturing practices.
The Ascensionist Alpine Jacket is a favorite amongst avid skiers and I have found it very enjoyable to wear. The shell is as light as a feather, only 13.1 ounces. But it does a fantastic job of preventing dampness from seeping into the mid and base layers. Patagonia uses GORE-TEX, an industry leader in breathability and waterproofness, so you will never complain about the weather again.
This ski jacket creates the perception of weightlessness and invites you to ski aggressively.
Cosmic Jacket by Trew
Founded in the Hood Mountain region, Trew creates products to rock the backcountry lifestyle. These jackets perform with style in ways that excite. The Cosmic Jacket is Trews top pick for a back country shell jacket. It provides straight, sleek lines and great features.
Trew uses 3L PNW fabric for this jacket so it breathes when you exert yourself high in the Hood Mountain range. Equipped with Aquaguard VISLON waterproof zippers with fully taped seams, there’s little chance of precipitation reaching your skin.
According to one customer, “The Cosmic Jacket is my go-to shell for sleddin' and shreddin'! It's simple, burly, and stylish”. Trew’s Cosmic Jacket delivers a stylish option that doesn’t sacrifice functionality.
Alpha Lifaloft Jacket by Helly Hanson
Helly Hansen is a Norwegian company that has been a leader in outdoor apparel since 1877. The Alpha Lifaloft Jacket is Its most popular choice for those looking to stay warm and comfortable on the ski slopes.
The fit of this jacket is true to the shape of your body. LifaLoft technology makes it one of the warmest and lightest on the market. It performs so well that it was selected as the official jacket of the Swedish Ski Team.
The Alpha Lifaloft uses four way stretch fabric and Life pocket + with Aerogel. High quality insulation and other features make it and excellent choice for passionate skiers.
Thermoball Eco Snow Triclimate by North Face
The men's Thermoball by North Face is a versatile, high-performance option for committed skiers. It’s a 3-1 ski jacket so you can use it as a shell, stand alone insulated jacket or a combination of the two.
On cold January days you'll want that extra layer to keep you warm. But it's a big advantage to shed a layer on warmer spring days. The Thermoball has you covered for a range of conditions.
Cham Jacket by Strafe
Weight and breathability are the top design priorities with this backcountry jacket. With its 3L waterproof, air-permeable fabric, this jacket will keep out water while providing good breathability. The jacket is equipped with underarm vents for warm days on the mountain.
The Strafe Cham Jacket was created by two brothers in Aspen, Colorado. They wanted a jacket that could keep them dry all day long but also make sure they would not overheat.
Strafe Cham Jackets are made for skiing hard. If you are looking for the perfect backcountry ski jacket to run laps all day long, then Strafe has you covered.
Utility Jacket by O’neill
O’neil started by making gear for surfers to flow on the world's best waves. Today, O’neill has a strong presence in the snow adventure space as well.
With their Utility Jacket, O’neill has combined urban style with highly functional skiwear. This model employs a 10K-10K waterproofing agent called O'neill Hyperdry. And you’ll stay warm on cold days thanks to 80/60 Thinsulate.
O’neil’s Utility Jacket doesn’t have the highest rating of the models in this article. However, at a list price of just $230, it is a strong contender for the best value.
Black Forest Shell Jacket by Oakley
Oakley was founded in 1975 and is based in Lake Forest, California. Oakley is known for sports eyewear but it has a comprehensive line of ski apparel to boot.
The Black Forest Shell Jacket uses FN Dry, 15K fabrication and hydrophilic lamination to keep skiers insulated against the elements. It’s a great line of defense against many of the weather patterns that you will face atop the mountain.
Pit zips under the arms allow you to regulate temperature. The Black Forest includes an oversized front pocket so you will have plenty of space for ski accessories.
Quantum Pro Jacket by Flylow
Flylow has made a solid case for being one of the best ski apparel brands in the world. Time after time they have created some of the best gear on the market. From their famous Baker Bib to their Lab Coat, Flylow is a brand to reckon with.
The Quantum Pro is a three layer shell that uses a 20K/20K waterproof, breathable membrane to keep you dry. It provides an adjustable hood, a removable powder skirt and a sleeve pocket for your ski pass.
The Quantum Pro is a high-performance backcountry shell that will make you look great at any ski resort.
Arc'teryx Sabre AR Jacket
Arc’teryx has been at the top of the jacket world for a long time. The jackets they produce are world class and customers are rarely disappointed with their gear.
The Sabre AR Jacket is an Arc’teryx hardshell masterpiece. Fabricated with three layer Gore-Tex fabric, the jacket is very waterproof and wind resistant. Although most hardshells have little to no insulation, the Sabre includes a layer of flannel on the inside of the jacket to keep you warm.
This ski jacket is one of the best choices to protect you from backcountry weather conditions.
Good luck choosing the best ski jacket for your needs.
Ski hard and stay warm!