How to Choose a Raincoat

How to Choose a Raincoat

Choosing a raincoat might seem like a simple task but there are a lot of factors to consider before you can buy one that suits all your needs. After all, a sudden downpour can make or break even the best-laid plans. You need to stay warm and dry if you’re going to make it to your next meeting or push through with the important dinner that you’ve been planning for months.

Raincoats are also great for outdoor trips where you know you’ll be exposed to the elements for a long period of time. They offer a lot more freedom than traditional zip-up jackets and can give you both the freedom of movement and warmth that your body needs.

In this article, we’ll be looking at the different factors to take into account when looking for the right raincoat for you. Keep reading as we identify the things that you should keep in mind as you look for your rainy weather survival gear.

1.    Waterproofing

Choosing the level of protection that you need is probably the most important of all these factors. A lot of people tend to lump waterproof fabric, water-repellent fabric, and water-resistant fabric together–but really, they’re worlds apart.

Water-resistant fabric is very lightweight but it won’t survive being submerged in water. This fabric is perfect for a lightweight rain jacket you can wear in the city. It’s also great for outdoor activities in mild weather like hiking during the spring–it will keep you dry against a light shower but not against a storm.

Waterproof fabric, on the other hand, is made of much stronger stuff. The average waterproof fabric can withstand up to 5000 mm of water while more durable fabric can go as high as 20000 mm. These fabrics are perfect for strong, torrential rains and intense hiking in a wet, humid climate.

Water-repellent fabric really refers more to the treatment that goes above water-resistant and waterproof fabric. It’s the coating that causes water to bead up and slide off instead of making contact with the fabric itself. Regardless of whether you choose waterproof fabric or water-resistant fabric, make sure that they’re treated with water repellent coating so that they last longer.

2.    Shape

The shape can affect the way that you move while wearing the garment; your main concern with shape is efficiency. If you get a jacket that’s too short, you might find your legs and pants getting soaked. If you get something too long or too bulky, you might find it too hard to move quickly–which you often need to do in rainy weather.

Look for a raincoat design that is good for your frame. Make sure that it’s roomy enough that you can move properly while wearing it, but also that it’s tight enough that water isn’t in danger of finding its way in through the sleeves or collar.

3.    Purpose

The definition of an effective raincoat all depends on what you need. When you’re exploring different stores for the perfect raincoat, think about the exact situations that you’ll be using it for. This will allow you to prioritize what you want in a raincoat and also weigh how much you’re willing to spend.

If you’re going to be wearing it on a hike during the winter, then definitely go for something longer, waterproof, padded, and insulated with heat tech. You may also want to consider spending a bit more since you can also use it during the other winters to come. If you hike on a regular basis, this might be a good investment to make for future trips too.

However, if you need the raincoat for spring in the city as something that will look stylish over your office clothes, then go for something water-resistant and light. Choose a neutral color that will look great over anything. Also, since this scenario doesn’t involve intense exposure to the elements, you have a little more room to scrimp and choose a budget buy over a super expensive one.

4.    Breathability

This aspect is often overlooked by people when buying raincoats. Breathability is very important because your body radiates heat when it’s insulated. This causes you to sweat inside the raincoat.

This is very dangerous because it can cause your body to overheat, especially in humid but wet climates. Imbalances in temperature and humidity can cause a range of health hazards–from something as minor as cold to something as grave as pneumonia.

Breathability is achieved by incorporating venting into the insulated clothing’s design. To check for venting, look for zippers that open up air pockets in key areas such as the seam of the armpits, along the bodice, and under the hood flap.

5.    Pockets

Pockets are the invisible heroes of any raincoat. They allow you to store valuables like your phone and wallet safely, without the fear of them getting wet or damaged. Pockets also serve as extra hand warmers if you’re caught outside without gloves or if the insulation of your gloves isn’t enough.

Pockets can also double as opportunities for additional venting–especially if they have a zipper or if they have a collapsible bottom that you can seal back up. Some raincoats also have a bigger flap down the back which serves like a pocket that protects your bags. Make sure to check for pockets both on the inside and the outside of your raincoat so you can choose a design with maximum function.

Buying a great raincoat doesn’t need to be difficult–but it does take careful consideration. You need to know what you’re looking for so that you can thoroughly inspect your choices. As a rule, make sure that you invest in quality brands.

Although cheaper options might be tempting, if an offer seems too good to be true then it probably is. It’s better to splash out a little on quality clothing that has top-notch technology so that you can keep your raincoat for a longer period of time. This can also mean savings for you in the long run.

Keep these tips in mind and you’re sure to choose a raincoat that’s effective, stylish, durable, and will last you a long time. Check out quality stores like  MK Nordika US that sell great raincoat brands across the US.

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