The Independent's journalism is supported by our readers. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission. Why trust us?

11 best men’s ski and snowboard jackets for staying warm on the slopes

Head down the slopes in style with our pick of the best waterproof and insulated ski jackets

Paddy Maddison,Alex Lee
Thursday 28 March 2024 17:31 GMT
Our top picks include lots of special features that you’ll be thankful for when you’re up a mountain in sub-zero conditions
Our top picks include lots of special features that you’ll be thankful for when you’re up a mountain in sub-zero conditions (The Independent)
Our Top Picks

Grieving the loss of warm weather and outdoor activities? In our experience, the most effective antidote is to book a week or two in the mountains, strap on your skis or snowboard, and grab winter by the horns. Whatever your discipline, spending some time carving through freshly fallen snow is the best way to embrace the cold weather… but only if your outerwear is up to snuff.

Much like shoes to a runner or some decent Lycra to a cyclist, a proper ski jacket is an essential tool for ensuring optimal comfort and performance on the slopes. Buy right and it will keep you warm, dry and sweat-free when the going gets gnarly.

If you’re new to snowsports and planning your first trip, you may be wondering why you can’t just use your regular old winter coat. In short, purpose-specific ski and snowboard jackets include lots of special features that you’ll be thankful for when you’re up a mountain in sub-zero conditions.

Ski and snowboard jackets are cut roomy to allow for proper layering, they have a multitude of strategically placed pockets for goggles, piste maps, lift passes and spare lenses, and most feature a built-in ‘powder skirt’ to stop snow from getting up inside the jacket when you inevitably take a tumble. Some have additional safety features like avalanche detection too, and the vast majority are made from clever waterproof fabrics that block droplets of water from entering while simultaneously allowing water vapour to escape from within. Safe to say your average parka or pea coat isn’t going to do any of that.

How we tested the best men’s ski and snowboard jackets

The best snow sports brands launch their new-season styles in the autumn – a time when snow isn’t yet falling in abundance. Still, some of the jackets on this list have been tested on the slopes in Norway, while others use our extensive outerwear knowledge and years of experience on the slopes to bring you our verdict.

(The Independent/Paddy Maddison)

We went over each and every jacket with a fine-tooth comb, paying meticulous attention to detail, assessing the materials, construction and special features to paint you the best possible picture of what each has to offer. We tried to include a range of prices to cater for all budgets, but we don’t include any rubbish, so even the options at the lower end of the pricing spectrum have certain standards they must live up to. Put simply, if it’s not built for alpine abuse, breathable, steezy (that’s ‘effortlessly stylish’ in snowboarder) and cut for a comfortable fit, it’s not on the list.

The best mens ski and snowbaord jackets for 2024 are:

  • Best ski jacket overall –H&M Move stormmove jacket, £84, H&
  • Best budget ski jacket –Dare 2b eagle ski jacket, £69.99,
  • Best insulated ski jacket –Oakley tc rykkinn insulated jacket, £205.80,
  • Best environmentally friendly ski jacket –Picture welcome 3l jacket, £288,
  • Best high-end ski jacket –The North Face summit series verbier gore-tex jacket, £630,

H&M Move stormmove jacket

  • Best: Overall
  • Type: Shell jacket
  • Face fabric: 3l waterproof
  • Sizes: XS - XXL
  • Colours : Black, turquoise, light grey
  • Why we love it
    • Affordable
    • Looks great
  • Take note
    • Not the lightest jacket on the market

H&M? Snowsports gear? Granted, not two things that traditionally go together, but the Swedish high-street store’s new H&M Move sports collection is actually well worth a look. The range includes a full spread of reasonably priced snow gear for frugal shredders, and unlike most budget-friendly ski brands the low prices don’t necessarily come at the expense of style or functionality.

We were surprised when we first got our hands on the stormmove jacket. It looks and feels remarkable for the price, with a clean, uncluttered design that puts it up there with top-flight jackets from some of the leading names in the market. This is no doubt down to the fact that H&M enlisted the help of activewear design agency Grand Studio, which has done work for The North Face, Salomon and On Running to name a few.

The jacket is cut from a three-layer shell fabric that blocks wind and wetness, while remaining breathable during high-output activities, whether that’s sweating your way down a black run or aggressively table dancing at the Folie Douce. It also boasts all the functional features you’d expect from a jacket twice the price, including fully taped seams, underarm ventilation, fully adjustable hood and plenty of intuitively placed pockets for lift passes, spare lenses and the like.

  1. £139 from
Prices may vary
Back to top

Dare 2b eagle ski jacket

Dare 2b-mens-ski-jackets-indybest
  • Best: Budget buy
  • Type: Insulated shell jacket
  • Face fabric: waterproof
  • Sizes : XS - XL
  • Colours: Puffins orange, lichen green, black, neon spng, olympian blue, midnight denim
  • Why we love it
    • Affordable
  • Take note
    • Quality could be better

Snowsports is an expensive hobby. If you’ve just dropped in excess of a grand on flights and accommodation in the Alps, you might not have vast amounts of cash left to spend on gear. If that’s the case, we’d always recommend shopping for pre-loved kit to ensure you get the best quality for your money, but if you really want to have something brand spanking new, this budget-friendly jacket from Dare 2b is about as good as it gets.

The eagle jacket is waterproof, insulated, and trim in the body, but with enough room for a mid layer beneath if required. It has multiple zip pockets, adjustable hem, cuffs and hood, and it’s made from 100-percent recycled polyester. In short, it does everything a high-end jacket does for a fraction of the price. Is it particularly jaw-dropping to look at? No. Will it still be going strong in ten years time? Unlikely. But if what you want is a brand new ski jacket for less than £100, it’s got everything you need.

  1. £74 from
Prices may vary
Back to top

Arc’teryx sabre gore-tex jacket

  • Best: Gore-Tex ski jacket
  • Type : Shell jacket
  • Face fabric: Gore-Tex waterproof
  • Sizes: XS - XXL
  • Colours: lampyre, relic, black sapphire, blue tetra, black
  • Why we love it
    • Exceptional build quality
    • Great fit
    • Gore-Tex fabric
  • Take note
    • Expensive

At the complete opposite end of the pricing spectrum is this premium option from Canadian purveyor of high-end outdoor apparel, Arc’teryx. Granted, it is not cheap, but it is one of the best jackets out there if you’re the type of skier or snowboarder who likes to push their gear to the limits, regularly venturing off groomed pistes and into the backcountry in search of new lines.

The sabre jacket is made completely from gore-tex fabric, which over the decades has become the gold standard of waterproof materials. It blocks water droplets from entering, while allowing vapour to escape from within, meaning you stay completely dry even when you’re working up a sweat putting those powder turns in.

The articulated design makes movement comfortable and easy, with a roomy cut and a cleverly designed stormhood that allows for unobstructed peripheral vision when adjusted. There’s also an integrated recco reflector, which could help alert search and rescue of your whereabouts – valuable peace of mind for adventurous skiers. Above all else, it’s built for hard use in the most demanding of mountain conditions. So, while it is expensive, there’s every chance it’ll still be holding up after many seasons of abuse.

Back to top

Spyder Vanqysh gore-tex insulated ski jacket

Spyder vanqysh
  • Best: For style
  • Type : Insulated jacket
  • Face fabric : gore-tex pow-pow 2.0 four-way stretch nylon
  • Sizes : S-XXL
  • Colours: black, electric blue, cypress green
  • Why we love it
    • Very well-insulated
    • Great design

Spyder’s ski jackets never cease to earn us compliments out on the slopes. While our skills may be lacking, at least we can fall in style. Spyder’s Vanqysh had loads of sauce, and kept us so toasty warm that we only had to wear a t-shirt underneath the jacket in sub-10 temperatures.

Even in the heaviest of snowfalls, the Vanqysh still kept us dry thanks to its waterproof design and four-way stretch. There are nice funnel cuffs, so our wrists stayed warm. Plus, there were enough pockets on the inside and over the breast to keep our goggles safe.

What really came in handy was the jacket’s high collar, which kept our neck warm when there was a chill in the mountain. A top-tier jacket that was breathable, well-insulated and very good-looking.

  1. £525 from
Prices may vary
Back to top

Oakley tc rykkinn insulated jacket

  • Best: Insulated ski jacket
  • Type: Insulated jacket
  • Face fabric: DWR-coated polyamide
  • Sizes: S - XXL
  • Colours: Brown clouds print
  • Why we love it
    • Warm
    • Eye-catching graphic print
  • Take note
    • Too hot for high-output use

Multiple layers is usually the best way to go when skiing or snowboarding. This way, you can remove or add insulation depending on the weather and your activity level throughout the day. However, for those hitting the slopes in the coldest of conditions, an insulated jacket might be a better option. This one from Oakley is one of the coolest we’ve seen this year.

The tc rykkinn jacket is part of pro snowboarder Stale Sandbech’s signature collection, featuring an all-over cloud print to make you stand out on the slopes. It’s packed full of synthetic insulation that doesn’t lose its warmth when wet, and while it’s not completely waterproof, it does have a durable water repellent (DWR) coating that allows it to shrug off snow and light rain comfortably. It also features an adjustable hood and hem, lined pockets for warmth and a built-in powder skirt to keep the snow sealed out.

  1. £294 from
Prices may vary
Back to top

Burton covert jacket

  • Best: Mid-range ski jacket
  • Type: Insulated shell jacket
  • Face fabric: 2l waterproof
  • Sizes: XS - XXL
  • Colours : Rock lichen/mushroom, forrest moss, silver sconce, true black, stout white cookie camo, almandine
  • Why we love it
    • Lightweight insulation is warm yet versatile
    • Reasonable price
  • Take note
    • Won’t suit those who are prone to overheating

Burton is one of the best-known names in snowboarding, synonymous with quality boards, bindings, boots and all the associated clobber you need to hurtle down snow-covered hills on a plank of wood.

The covert jacket is a solid all-rounder that can handle everything from cruisy groomer days to full-blown backcountry action, with apres-friendly looks and plenty of pocket real estate to boot.

The one we tested came in a rather nice turquoise and pale green colourway (which Burton calls ‘rock lichen and mushroom’), but it’s also available in five other colour options. The fit is slim but with ample room for layering, and long in the body. It has all of the pockets and pull cords you’d expect from such a piece of outerwear, including chest pockets, handwarmer pockets, a lift-pass pocket on the sleeve and two roomy mesh dump pockets inside for goggles, snacks and spares.

  1. £175 from
Prices may vary
Back to top

Spyder Titan ski jacket

spyder titan .png
  • Best: For warmth
  • Type: Insulated ski jacket
  • Face fabric : Exo shield 30k 4-way stretch recycled polyester
  • Sizes: S-XXXL
  • Colours: black, cypress green, electric blue, volcano, saffron
  • Why we love it
    • Extremely warm
    • Good stretch
  • Take note
    • Pricey

Spyder is one of the leading premium skiwear brands, and for a long old time produced the skiwear for the US’s Olympic ski team. And while they don’t come cheap, they ooze quality and they’ll last years on the slope.

The Titan is a great purchase for those looking for really. good warmth from a slimline jacket featuring 80g PrimaLoft silver eco insulation that kept us toasty even when we got a little wet from a few too many falls. Even then, it’s super water-resistant, with zippers that kept out the snow. Plus, it comes with that handy forearm ski pass pocket.

What we really liked about this one was that it features underarm vents, so we never got too sweaty when going on long ski runs. Updated for the 2023/24 ski season, it’s as stylish as ever and now features exo shield technology, making it stretchier and less stuffy than before. No one likes to wear a stiff jacket when you need to move fast.

  1. £312 from
Prices may vary
Back to top

Picture welcome 3l jacket

  • Best: Environmentally friendly buy
  • Type: Shell jacket
  • Fave fabric: 3l waterproof
  • Sizes: XS-XXL
  • Colour : black, laurel wreath, spectra green
  • Why we love it
    • Eco credentials
    • Understated look
  • Take note
    • Not lots o colour options

There’s a grim irony in hopping on a plane to go and enjoy the increasingly scarce snowfall foreign mountains have to offer, but if you’re going to do it, the least you can do is make sure your gear is as responsibly produced as possible. That’s why we always recommend French brand Picture Organic Clothing to eco-conscious skiers and snowboarders.

Picture is committed to making snowsports apparel as environmentally friendly as possible. It does this by using recycled and natural fibres, limiting its use of harmful chemicals and offering an extensive lifetime repair warranty on its products.

This three-layer waterproof shell jacket is a prime example. The face fabric is composed primarily of recycled polyester, and even the DWR coating is free from the usual nasty chemicals. Eco credentials aside, it’s a real piece of high-performance outerwear perfect for serious skiers and snowboarders. Features include fully taped seams, waterproof zippers, a removable powder skirt and more pockets than you can shake a ski pole at.

Back to top

The North Face summit series verbier gore-tex jacket

  • Best: High-end ski jacket
  • Type: Shell jacket
  • Face fabric: Gore-Tex waterproof
  • Sizes: XS - XL
  • Colours: Pine needle-chlorophyll green, TNF black
  • Why we love it
    • Packed full of functional details
    • Next-level build quality
    • Gore-Tex construction
  • Take note
    • Eye-wateringly expensive
    • Extreme length at the back won’t be for everyone

The North Face’s summit series range caters for serious alpine athletes who need the absolute best of the best. Think jumping onto mountainsides out of helicopters as opposed to pizza-ing down the bunny slope at 5mph.

If that sounds like you, then this verbier gore-tex jacket will be right up your couloir. It’s a top-of-the-range freeride jacket, every inch of it designed with extreme big-mountain riding in mind. The construction is next level, with fully taped seams, cleverly concealed pockets, underarm zip ventilation and a helmet-compatible adjustable hood. We also love the lengthy, streamlined cut, which is perfect for layering up in cold temperatures, while offering complete freedom of movement for maximum carving potential.

Back to top

Klattermusen bifrost hooded jacket

klattermusen .png
  • Best: Cross-country skiing
  • Type: Shell jacket
  • Face fabric : Levitend fabric in a 2-layer cutan construction
  • Sizes: XS-XXL
  • Why we love it
    • Comfortable and warm
    • Extremely lightweight

There’s something really lovely about owning a ski jacket that works just as well when you’re ski mountaineering abroad and trying to stay dry and warm back home in the UK. Swedish mountaineering company Klattermusen’s bifrost hooded jacket does both.

Keeping us warm and toasty while tackling cross-country ski trails thanks to its waterproof design, it’s also ully-insulated with re-down. Not too bulky, it was one of the lightest jackets we’ve tested this ski season, making it versatile for most occasions.

We also loved its slightly baggy fit on the front and fully-adjustable hood, making for a great all-round fit and superior manoeuvrability, even when skiing uphill.

Back to top

66°North skálafell jacket

  • Best: For casual use
  • Type: Insulated jacket
  • Face fabric: Gore-Tex Infinium
  • Sizes: S - 2XL
  • Colour: High rise, charcoal
  • Why we love it
    • Highly versatile
    • Great build quality
  • Take note
    • Can get hot
    • Understated styling won’t suit those who like their skiwear bright and bold

They don’t call it Iceland for nothing. This remote island in the North Atlantic is home to some of the most extreme conditions on Earth, so it’s little wonder one of the best outdoor brands around sprang up on its shores. And while it may not be as ubiquitous as Patagoia or The North Face (yet!), 66°North can happily go toe-to-toe with such brands in terms of build quality and looks, more often than not coming out on top.

The Skálafell jacket is a lightweight insulated jacket made using gore-tex infinium fabric. This stuff isn’t completely waterproof, but it’s windproof, highly breathable, water resistant and features a full DWR coating which makes it perfect for use in the snow during high-output activities… like skiing and snowboarding.

What we love most about this jacket is its versatility. It’s a highly capable ski jacket, but without the overly baggy fit that’s often associated with such outerwear. This means it’s perfect for casual wear too. Expensive, yes. But when you consider that you’ll be able to wear it all through the winter, and not just a week or two in the mountains, the price tag becomes a lot more palatable.

  1. £485 from
Prices may vary
Back to top

The verdict: Men’s ski jackets

Cheap ski jackets tend to look and perform like, well, cheap ski jackets. H&M Move’s stormmove jacket bucks this trend in our opinion, offering up premium looks and performance at a wallet-friendly price point. And while £139 is by no means chump change, it is still very reasonable by skiwear standards, particularly in a market with products half as good routinely selling for twice as much.

If you need something a little more robust (and have the cash to spend), Arc’teryx makes some truly world-class outerwear, and its backcountry ready sabre gore-tex shell is testament to that.

Stay safe with our round-up of the best ski helmets for snow sports

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in