Travel

A raincoat for every reason

Our roundup of the raincoats you need to get you through those spring showers

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Fashion + function: The Helly Hansen W Loke Jacket in green Esra print

This season Helly Hansen’s limited edition prints for women feature the artwork of Oslo-based illustrator Esra Røise — and the collections are built around sustainability. Their products include “Mono Material” garments with the goal of high quality textile-to-textile recycling, as well as using recycled plastic bottles and used coffee grounds in outdoor apparel that provides 50+ UPF sun protection — and is better for the environment.

The Loke jacket is the essential adventure jacket for year-round activity. Even when it’s not raining it’s the perfect accompaniment to varying spring temperatures. In the rain it’s superbly waterproof, without the damp chill that tends to come with many raincoats. Come rain or shine it’s comfortable without sticking to your skin or having that awkward plastic raincoat feel.

It’s waterproof, windproof, breathable and fully seam sealed. At $150, it’s the only waterproof you need for light activity from spring to fall.

Also recommended: the LIFA Active Solen T-Shirt with everlasting 50+ UPF sun protection.

Photo: Columbia
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Perfect for a run: Columbia Sportswear Out Dry Extreme NanoLite™ Shell

I was definitely ready to blaze new trails with this ultralight jacket designed for speed, comfort and performance. Light enough to pack into a pocket yet able to shrug off stormy conditions, the OutDry™ Extreme NanoLite™ Shell features Columbia’s most advanced waterproof-breathable technology — with an adjustable hood and drop-tail hem to keep you covered without missing a step.

The Out Dry™ technology is perfect for waterproofing in heavy rain and snow, extreme conditions and features 100 per cent recycled, dye-free fabrics.

I found this jacket perfect for a run or bike, helping me break out of my fairweather-exercise-only mentality. The material allows excess heat and moisture to escape and has internal wicking for next-to-skin comfort. At $250, it’s the best jacket for those always on the move.

Columbia even goes so far as to save water during manufacturing. Learn more about their tech here.

Urban style: Indyeva KISA 2.5L Rain Jacket

“Abi, this isn’t a fashion show,” my Mum had drilled into me when out on the trails growing up. With that in mind, I’d always bought waterproofs for their function, rather than fashion. Substance over style. But with this jacket, you can have both.

It’s lightweight, waterproof, windproof and breathable, with plenty of room for layers on a colder day. The hood is a nice size — with space for a hat (or not to mess up your hair). For a test run, I walked to the supermarket with a backpack in heavy rain. I came back dry, although after a couple of wears, I did see the water start to sink into the coat, rather than standing in beads on the surface.

At $270, the price tag would be out of my usual price range. But it feels like you’re wearing good quality, especially with the detail on the zipper and the streamlined look.

I wouldn’t say it’s one for the backcountry, but it will certainly keep you dry for city jaunts and gentle trails, and it’s probably one of the more stylish (and comfortable) waterproofs I’ve worn. Plus the deep pockets are fantastic.

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