Author Topic: Winter jacket suggestions  (Read 2305 times)


  • Pencil Stache
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Winter jacket suggestions
« on: September 20, 2015, 11:34:45 AM »
I'm looking for a lightweight but warm winter jacket that can be all purpose.  I don't like to be cold and I live in Southern Ohio.  It gets down in the 20's a few days a year, so I need something REALLY warm.  I really dislike bulky coats.  I have a few coats that I just despise wearing because you can't move in them and they are just completely uncomfortable.

I've been looking at North Face which seems to have a variety of jackets but they seem quite pricey.




  • Bristles
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Re: Winter jacket suggestions
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2015, 12:46:55 PM »
North face is expensive for what it is. You could probably get a cheaper store brand.

The warmth of a jacket is determined by how thick it is, and how much it covers. A hood greatly increases warmth if you don't mind wearing it, otherwise wear a hat and scarf.

A lot of people will tell you that 1/4 inch thick down puffy jackets are "really warm". They are not because they are too thin.  For example:

A much warmer outdoor gear type jacket is: But you can still find something much cheaper.

I'd look for a similar style jacket with synthetic insulation, which is cheaper than down. It should be thick, like an inch or more if you want to be really warm or if you get cold easily.  If it's made of soft fabrics it won't feel as stiff as one made of hard fabrics.


  • Stubble
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Re: Winter jacket suggestions
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2015, 01:18:02 PM »
I have a hooded Columbia jacket with an "omniheat" zip out liner that is fantastically warm throughout the western ny winters (regularly below zero temps with windchill.) During fall I often wear only the inner liner. I spent about $90 on a "last year's style" about 3 years ago. I can move well in it and I don't find it constrictive or overly bulky. I get cold pretty easily but this has been a great purchase as I now can actually hang out outside pretty comfortably even on really cold days. I love that thing and I would spend that money again in a heartbeat.


  • Pencil Stache
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Re: Winter jacket suggestions
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2015, 01:49:06 PM »
So much depends on what you mean by all-purpose. For me, that means biking in it. I am super excited that I found a deal on a used EMS winter jacket that has long armpit zips, so I can be warm, but also vent if I get overheated.


  • Handlebar Stache
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Re: Winter jacket suggestions
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2015, 02:35:28 PM »
I've heard New York winters aren't as bad but I've actually had good luck recently with small thin jackets. The trick is they fit really well. Psychologically a big jacket feels good to me, but since I'm small, a big coat means a lot of airspace that my body needs to heat up. Meanwhile heat is being lost at the the bottom and wrists. Well-fitting and windproof means I can create more than enough heat and it's not lost.

I ended up with two EMS layers. One is a fleece and the other is a rainjacket. They sell systems so they fit together. Whatever you end up with you might consider the layer system to fit your all-purpose requirement. I love having the fleece in case my indoor workspace turns out to be cold that day (whereas with a super warm coat you sometimes end up having to carry a sweater to change into at your destination, haha), and the rain jacket of course can be used on its own in warmer weather. The outer layer being a rain jacket is key because that provides windproofing. I have another jacket that's well-fitting and has a tight weave cloth but I just got lucky; I think it's hard to tell in the store.

It helps that my commute is a walk. If I didn't walk fast or if I had to stand waiting for the bus, I think I'd need thicker insulation.


  • Pencil Stache
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Re: Winter jacket suggestions
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2015, 02:42:59 PM »
I have been very happy with Lands End coats/jackets.  they tell you the temp they are intended for, they fit well and when you get a 30% off code or you buy one from clearance, they are very well priced. In NY, I don't find that one coat can go from one extreme to another unless you buy a coat that has a  3 ways to wear it type of system.  I also for work, was going from a hot car to a very hot elderly person's home so often my heaviest, warmest coat was a hindrance even on the coldest days.

my DD is into North Face fleece, the ones she has are nice but honestly, my good LE's fleece looks very similar, seems as well made and people ask me if it's North Face.