Table of Contents
- 1 Never Let The Fear of Cold Weather Keep You From Enjoying an Adventure
- 2 Key features to take note of when selecting a top down jacket:
- 3 The ugly side of down:
- 4 Lightweight down jackets for men:
- 5 Midweight Down Jackets:
- 6 Heavyweight Down Jackets:
- 7 Our Favorite Down Jacket:
- 8 How To Wash A Down Jacket?
- 9 Final Thoughts:
Never Let The Fear of Cold Weather Keep You From Enjoying an Adventure
Whether you are a hiker or a mountaineer, chances are that you will be exposed to cold winter temperatures at some point during your trip and without the right insulation; it will definitely be tough for you to enjoy the adventure and get the full experience. Temperatures on mountains can plummet quickly at night and this will be when that insulation from the down jacket kicks in and keeps you warm.
We have set out to find the best down jackets at the most affordable prices. With so many online retailers, it can be hard to get the best jacket, but after some scouring, we have picked the online stores that will give you the best deal for your money and also give you some great deals on shipping costs while ensuring that your jackets are prime quality.
Before we get into the top down jackets for men, there are a few things that you should take note of when selecting a down jacket. These features will ensure that your down jacket offers you the ideal insulation for the environment that you will find yourself in and it will also give you the best value for your money in terms of weight and storage space.
Key features to take note of when selecting a top down jacket:
Down is a little more expensive than most of the other fillings and fabrics that you will find and with many environmentalists now fighting for the survival of geese and ducks, you might find that they are becoming more and more expensive as time goes on. These key features should help you make the best decision on what you will need and ensure that you can only invest in the features that you need.
- Down fill power: The amount of down found per cubic inch is usually referred to as the down fill and this will indicate the amount of warmth that a jacket is capable of providing. Down jackets generally come in two fills of down, but many other can also be found if you are willing to search far enough. 700 or 800 fill down is usually rated as some of the top insulated and warmest jackets on the market.
- Type of down: There are two types of down that you will find in these jackets. The standard or regular down is the most common, but it is not the best when it comes to colder wetter temperatures and the down will usually fall flat when it comes into contact with moisture.
Treated down has been treated with a water repellent chemical and this chemical will force the water away from the down. DWR or Durable Water Repellent usually makes the filling much more resistant to water and will also dry out much faster than regular down.
- Insulation: The insulation is usually determined by the construction method of the jacket. There are 2 types of construction methods and they are both unique. The sewn method is the most common and it is also a little cheaper than the baffle box method.
The baffle box method gives each is off down its own square or rectangle and this will keep it from fluffing around, which means that cold spots are less likely to appear and you should be more insulated.
- Weight: In our review section, you will notice that the jackets have been chosen according to their weight and they have also been sectioned off in this manner. The weight determines the usage of the jacket on your outdoor adventure.
- Lightweight: Lightweight down jackets are generally used for backpacking and hiking longer distances where weight could hold you back or cause you problems. The lightweight jackets are also perfect for casual wear, but they do lack insulation.
- Medium weight: The medium weight jacket is designed to make sure that you get the most possible insulation, while also saving a little weight. Mountaineers and backpackers can use these jackets, but if you are planning to hike longer distances, you might need to consider the lightweight down jacket.
- Heavy down jacket: These jackets are for the coldest of cold temperatures and they will definitely keep you insulated on the mountains and also in the snow. The heavy jackets are predominantly chosen by those venturing into ice landscapes, but skiers and snowboarders will also find these jackets extremely beneficial to wear.
- Pockets: While this might not be important to everyone, we do consider the amount of pockets on the jacket to be important and if you are outdoors, you can never have enough storage space. We do recommend looking at the amount of pockets and see if there are enough, but the pockets should not be the deciding factor when choosing a down jacket.
These five features are considered to be the most important and they should give you an idea of the quality and the warmth potential of the jacket. We highly recommend using them as your criterion when selecting the best down jacket for your outdoor adventures in the colder winter months.
The ugly side of down:
Unfortunately, there is also a bad side to down products and since it is a by-product of the food industry, many people tend to abuse these animals to get them ready for food and to produce more to the market. In the case of down, you will find many people avoiding it and also fighting against it as they know how the geese and ducks are being force fed to produce foie gras to the market. The down from these animals is then sent to be used in clothing and other outdoor items.
Luckily, the US does have a few federations that will ensure that the down used in your jackets are not from farms that are guilty of animal cruelty and to ensure that they are certified, you can simply call the manufacturer to find out from which farm they get there down. The jackets on our list are all from certified farms that do not treat the animals cruelty for profit.
With that being said, here are the top men’s down jackets of 2018:
Lightweight down jackets for men:
Arc'teryx Cerium LT Down Jacket
Down type: DWR
Down fill: 850
Best Use: Backpacking and hiking
First, on our list, we have the Arc’teryx cerium LT Down jacket and this is one of the lighter down jackets that you find on the market today. The jacket weighs in at 9.7 ounces and this will certainly allow you to move for long periods of time without causing you to fatigue. The jacket has been constructed with the baffle box method and this means that there will not be any cold spots appearing on the jacket and you should stay insulated.
The jacket has also been stuffed with 850 fill down and this is definitely some of the highest levels that you could find. With this fill power, you should not have any issue when it comes to keeping you warm and you should easily be ready to take on some of colder areas of the world. DWR has been used to treat the down and this will ensure that your jacket could resist some moisture.
While the jacket does have a nice and slim fit to keep you mobile, we did find some lacking in terms of pockets and when the jacket does get soaked in water, it will fall flat and you will be subjected to the elements that will freeze you. The jacket also takes a long time to dry out once it is wet and this could set you back on your trip.
We would highly recommend this jacket, but it does have a few fatal flaws and the price is also exceptionally high. This jacket is ideal for most winter situation, but we would like to recommend it to backpacker traveling in areas without much moisture in the air. The drier the air, the better your jacket will perform when it comes to keeping you warm.
- Down Composite Mapping strategically places synthetic insulation in areas prone to moisture and down where you need the most warmth
- Lightweight yet durable face fabric with DWR finish repels moisture
- The higher, insulated collar with chin guard provides extra warmth and blocks wind without scratching your precious chin
Patagonia Ultralight Down Jacket
Down type: DWR
Down fill: 800 fill
Best use: Backpacking
The Patagonia ultralight down jacket for men is another extremely light jacket that will keep you warm and also not drag you down when you are backpacking on those longer expeditions. One of the main benefits you will have from this jacket is the 15 Denier Pertex Quantum constructions that are made from 100% nylon. This material is incorporate into this jacket with the baffle box method and it will ensure that you need not worry about cold spots appearing.
The jacket is not as slim as the previous one and the fit is more regular, which might allow some air to get through and also keep you from having that full range of movement required for free climbing and going down those steep slopes., the jacket can be adjusted with a draw cord if you need it a little tighter and this will offer you some multi-functional use as well.
This jacket is not as expensive as one would think and it still feature a down fill of 800 to keep you insulated in the colder areas of mountains that you will be hiking and trekking through. We highly recommend this jacket for backpackers and the additional stow away bag will allow you to keep the jacket from taking up too much space when it is kept in the backpack.
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The North Face Morph Down Jacket
The North Face Morph Down jacket certainly stands out as one of our favorites in terms of design and construction and aside from having 800 fill down per cubic inch, it is also constructed from 20 Denier nylon that will keep the jacket safe and ensure that it cannot be ripped apart by nature. This jacket has also been constructed using the baffle box method, but it certainly is one of the more stylish winter jackets as well.
The jacket features a standard fit, but this fit can be adjusted and closed down if you are looking for a more body fitted jacket. The only quarrel we have with this great lightweight jacket is the amount of pockets available. Unfortunately, you will only have three pockets that you can use and this can be extremely frustrating if you are taking along things like digital cameras and perhaps even a GPS device.
This jacket is definitely one of the more stylish jackets that you can wear with your casual wardrobe as well and we do recommend it for casual and backpacking use. The modifiable fit is great for changing it up in certain conditions and you will definitely get your money’s worth. The backcountry site also offers a great special on this jacket that will certainly be a good buy for the future.
Midweight Down Jackets:
Arc'teryx Rico Jacket
The Arc’teryx Rico jacket features an extremely stylish design and it has been constructed with the baffle box method to ensure that you never get any cold spots on the jacket. The jacket has been constructed from durable nylon materials and it features 750 down fill power. This might not seem enormous, but for the 12-ounce weight it is quite impressive and will keep you warm in the Alpine and urban environments.
At the shoulder areas, you will notice some additional padding that will serve as another type of insulation to keep you warm and with the athletic it, you can be sure that the jacket will be comfortable and snug to walk around in. Unfortunately, the jacket does not have a hood or adjustable hem and you will solely be relying on the fit to keep you warm and insulated.
For the weight and the fill, this jacket is actually quite affordable and we certainly do like the urban color used in the design. We highly recommend this jacket for urban use as it will fit with almost any wardrobe and we also like the weight for hikers. You might need to consider carrying a backpack due to the lack of pockets on the jacket.
Dynafit Vulcan Down Jacket
Down type: DWR
Down fill: 750
Best use: Hiking, skiing, and camping
The Dynafit Vulcan Down jacket features a unique design and the color on this jacket is definitely on the brighter side. The jacket has been constructed from Pertex Quantum materials and this is one of the most durable forms of nylon you will find. It also uses the baffle box construction method to ensure that the down stays in place with no cold spots emerging.
Much like the other top down jackets, the Dynafit Vulcan has also been treated with DWR to ensure that your jacket is not rendered useless in a storm. This jacket also features three pockets and while this is not much, it will be ideal for those shorter hikes. The pockets have also ben insulated and they are waterproof, thus ensuring that your valuable electronic devices are safe if you should go skiing with it.
The major downside to this jacket is the tight fit and the short length. Cold wing might still penetrate the bottom if you do not have matching pants and the color might also be a little too bright for most people looking for an urban and alpine jacket type.
We still highly recommend this jacket for skiers, campers, and hikers. The jacket might be a little heavy for backpackers and it will not be the best for casual wear. The price is also not that expensive and you will certainly get what you are paying for if you pick this jacket up on a sale.
Fjallraven Ovik Lite Jacket
Down type: Standard
Down fill: 500
Best use: Hiking, camping and casual
The Fjallraven Company has been well-known for their casual clothing and jackets and the Ovik lite jacket is no different. The jacket might not be ideal for any moist weather, but the combination of down and feather will certainly keep you insulated in the coldest of temperatures. The jacket is constructed from a blend of polyester and cotton to ensure decent durability with Pertex quantum lining to ensure that the jacket doesn’t easily rip or tear.
This jacket features multiple pockets for you to store all of your items that wish to carry along, but since it is a little heavier, it is not ideally recommended for backpacking. The jacket also lacks when it comes to being water resistant and you will not be able to wash this jacket without the Fjallraven Greenland wax. Aside from that, the jacket will keep you warm and insulated if no moisture is present.
Unfortunately, the jacket is quite expensive and this is due to the inclusion of leather and feathers, but if you are looking for a multifunctional jacket that will be ideal in the urban environment as well as outdoors, this jacket should be the one that you are looking for. With multiple colors, you should have no problems getting the color to match your style.
- A light and shorter jacket in G-1000 lite filled with down
- Two hand pockets with integrated inside pocket
- The two way front zipper Covered with piping
Heavyweight Down Jackets:
Mountain Equipment Lightline Down Jacket
The Mountain Equipment Lightline down jacket is one of the heaviest down jackets you find on the market with a weight of 27 ounces. This does certainly make it one of the thicker and most comfortable jackets to keep you insulated in the coldest of winter temperatures. The jacket is designed from durable nylon materials, with the DryLite technology incorporated to ensure that water cannot get to the down on the inside.
The baffle box design is essential in these heavyweight jackets and this jacket will also ensure that there are no cold spots that could allow the wind to penetrate. We also like the bigger design with adjustable hems and cuffs to give you that perfect fit, but unfortunately, the jacket does lack in terms of pockets and down fill.
The down fill power is only 675 and it is not treated with a water repellent chemical. We have found that the jacket does take and an enormous amount of time to dry and should you get it wet on your expeditions you will be left to the mercy of nature.
This jacket will be fine for shorter expeditions, but we do not recommend it for camping out in the cold mountains if you do not have some sort of backup. The jacket is also extremely expensive when compared to much better and lighter jackets, but it will certainly keep you warm in the dry icy conditions of the arctic.
Marmot Ajax Down Jacket
If you find yourself looking for something a little more affordable, the Marmot Ajax down jacket will be the jacket you are looking for. The jacket is still quite heavy at more than 20 ounces compared to some of the others, but it will certainly keep you warm and insulated in the winter. The jacket is constructed from durable ripstop nylon and the 600 fill down has also been DWR treated to ensure that the jacket can be used in wetter weather as well.
This jacket excels when you are looking for storage space and with multiple pockets, including one insulated waterproof pocket for media devices, this will be the ideal skiing jacket for your adventure. The design of the jacket is also quite casual and it should be ideal for a budget shopper.
Unfortunately, the down fill is quite low on the jacket and this might be felt as you go higher up in the mountains. The jacket is also quite large in design and there are no adjustable hems or cords for you to change the fit to suit your body. We do recommend buying the right size and not too large.
In terms of pricing, this jacket surely beats out the rest are one of the cheapest jackets on the market. The jacket will be decent s as a budget buy, but if you plan on heading up the mountains, the jacket might not have enough down fill power to keep you warm and insulated.
Fjallraven Greenland Down Jacket
The Fjallraven Greenland down jacket is probably the heaviest jacket on our list and it weighs in at 2.7lbs. It has been constructed from a blend of durable polyester and cotton materials that might not be ideal for stopping any tears or rips, but will certainly keep you insulated. The baffle box construction method has also been used for the construction of this jacket to minimize the chances of having any cold spots.
In terms of pockets and functionality, this jacket certainly excels. The jacket is great when it comes to providing you extra storage space and the adjustable hems and cuffs will allow you to get the perfect fit for your body. The only downside to this jacket might be the lack of down fill power, but the added feathers will ensure that you do not get any cold areas or wind cooling you down.
Unfortunately, the jacket is quite expensive, but like with most Fjallraven down jackets, the design will give you multifunctional use and you should be able to comfortably wear this jacket in the urban environments as well. We do; however, recommend it for expeditions and icy mountain hiking trips.
Our Favorite Down Jacket:
With so many good down jackets on the market, it is nearly impossible to choose the best one. These 9 are what we consider the best for their weight class, but we have decided to add one more jacket to ensure that you have a complete set of 10 to choose from. The following jacket might not be the best jacket on the market, but we consider it to be our favorite down jacket currently available on the market.
Fjallraven Sormland Down Shirt Jacket
Down type: Standard
Down fill: 700
Best use: Hunting, hiking, and camping
The Fjallraven Sormland down shirt jacket is one of the more stylish down jackets on the market and it also features a unique design. This shirt jacket has also been constructed from the famous G-1000 combination of cotton and polyester and aside from being very durable; the jacket will also keep you fully insulated.
Since it takes the form of the shirt, it does not have a baffle box construction and this is one of the downsides. Even though the jacket does have 700 down fill power, you might still notice a few cold spots emerging on the jacket after prolonged use. The shirt style does make it multifunctional and even though it does lack a little in terms of insulation.
The jacket is also not that expensive and with multiple pockets, the jacket will be ideal for carrying along all of your belongings. We highly recommend this jacket for urban and outdoor use and you will certainly get your money’s worth with the inclusion of a 1-year warranty. We should also mention that the size of the pockets will be ideal for carrying along extra ammo.
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How To Wash A Down Jacket?
One of the main concerns that many people face once they have purchased a down jacket is how to wash the jacket. It is actually quite simple and a standard procedure to keep the jacket clean after a long expedition. You can simply choose to hand wash the jacket or it can be simply thrown into the automatic washing machine.
We highly recommend the hand wash method and we do recommend that you use a detergent like Nikwax Down Wash Direct to ensure that the down cannot damage. Once the down jacket dries out, the detergent will also help you to add some water repellent properties to the jacket and keep it dry longer.
This detergent can also be added to the washing machine and we highly recommend that you do not use normal detergent. Between hand and machine wash, we do choose hand wash to avoid having other clothing articles snag the jacket.
We would like to thank you for reading this article and we do hope that you are now fully capable of choosing the best down jacket for your body type and outdoor adventure. These jackets might not be perfect in every sense of the word, but we do believe that they will offer you the complete package when you know what you are looking for.
We greatly appreciate your feedback and we would like to know more about your thoughts on our selection and if you think we might have missed any of your favorite down jackets.