A puffer jacket (also called a padded jacket) is a type of insulated coat that is great for cold temperatures. The past few winter seasons have seen puffer jackets boom in popularity, being seen on the catwalk and the high street!
You can find answers to the most common questions and learn how to choose a puffer jacket that’s right for you in our guide below…
There are two main types of insulation that your jacket will use, down or synthetic.
A down jacket is a product which has been insulated with the soft and warm under feathers from duck or geese. Down is a fantastic insulator as the loft (or fluffiness) of down creates thousands of tiny air pockets which trap warm air and retain heat, thus helping to keep the wearer very warm in cold winter weather. However, a downside is that a down jacket can be more expensive than a jacket using synthetic materials.
All our feather and down is a by-product of the food industry that would otherwise go to waste and is sourced from humanely treated birds. We have a consolidated group of suppliers who ensure they are ethically sourcing from farms with good animal husbandry, which is defined by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).
|Pros of Down||Cons of Down|
|Excellent heat retention||Loses insulating ability when wet|
|Lightweight- better warmth to weight ratio||Takes a long time to dry out when wet|
|Wider comfort temperature range- making it suitable for cold and warm temperatures||More expensive|
|Easier to compress and packs small||Requires special cleaning|
Puffer jackets that use synthetic insulation contain man-made fibres instead of feathers. This can be a great choice if you don’t want to wear clothing derived from animal products and some people find synthetic insulation a bit less bulky than down. Mountain Warehouse uses its own microfibre synthetic insulation for its puffer jackets, as well as branded insulation such as PrimaLoft which consists of ultra-fine polyester fibre. PrimaLoft products have got more advanced in the last few years and are now a leading choice in down alternatives because of their ease to clean, fast drying properties and the fact that the majority of their products contain at least 50% recycled fibres.
|Pros of Synthetic||Cons of Synthetic|
|Mostly cheaper than down||Can be heavier|
|Easier to clean||May not retain heat as well as down|
|Keeps insulating ability when wet|
Different padded jackets will have different temperature ratings, based on laboratory tests. For example, a rating of -30 degrees means the jacket can keep your torso warm to temperatures as low as -30 degrees. The ratings should always be taken as guidance as there are many factors that can affect this. Health, physical activity, exposure time, correct layers, weather conditions and perspiration will all affect performance and comfort.
Unlike most puffer jackets that you’ll find on the high-street, many of our jackets are treated with Durable Water Repellent (DWR) which makes them water-resistant. This means droplets will bead and roll off the fabric and keep you dry in limited exposure to rain.
When picking your puffer jacket, what features it has can also be a big deciding factor on which coat you ultimately choose.
A hood will help add extra warmth but will also add bulk. It can also help if you get caught out in the rain, but remember, many puffer jackets only have a DWR (durable water-repellent) coating and are only recommended for light drizzle. Some padded jackets with hoods available are the Seasons Padded Jacket and the Snow Padded Jacket.
You’ll find all Mountain Warehouse puffer jackets have padded pockets which will keep your valuables tucked away and your hands warm. Some of our favourites include the Henry II Extreme Padded Jacket and the Cosy Wrap Extreme Padded Jacket.
A cuffed sleeve is when the fabric on your sleeves gets hemmed and elastic is used to ensure the jacket sits as close to your skin as possible. This helps to seal in the warmth. You can find cuffed sleeves on most Mountain Warehouse puffer jackets including the Link Padded Jacket and the Sky Extreme Jacket.