If there's one piece of outerwear that will protect you from bad weather, it's the trusty old puffer jacket! Not only is this style of coat supremely warm and comfortable, but recently it's become quite the fashion statement too. So, while in the past you might have only reached for one when embarking on outdoor activities in the extreme cold, you'll now find that ladies all over the UK can be seen sporting one while shopping or carrying out daily chores.
The only question is, how do you go about choosing the ultimate cosy cocoon? To help you select the best one for your style and budget, we’ve created a simple buying guide that will explain all of the different options available. Then it's on to the recommendations, which include a variety of designs — from short quilted khaki jackets to classic long black coats with a hood. Come rain, snow or sunshine, we'll help you find the perfect puffer!
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Finding the right puffer jacket is all about balancing form and function. With this in mind, we'll share expert advice about the various factors you should consider when shopping such as the type of insulation, the down ratio and how to get a flattering fit.
On the other hand, you have synthetic insulation. This can be made from an array of different fabrics such as polyester, polyamide or nylon, but all work in the same way and have similar characteristics.
Synthetic materials are inexpensive to buy yet still provide the warmth and comfort of traditional down, so it’s easy to see why they have become the go-to option for many people nowadays. Unfortunately though, these fibres collapse more quickly, which means you’ll likely need to replace a synthetic jacket every few years.
Now, if you do opt for down over a synthetic layer, there are a few things you might want to learn about it to ensure you know exactly what you’re buying.
First up, you have the "down ratio". Since companies aren't always able to clear away all of the feathers when sourcing down, they will sometimes provide a down to feather ratio. This is usually 70:30, 80:20 or 90:10. As you’d expect, the more down, the warmer the jacket.
If the company doesn’t provide this information, they may instead indicate the "down fill". This is a measurement of the quality of the down used for insulation — the higher the number, the less down is required to keep you warm. A down jacket with 550 fill will technically be bulkier than a 900 fill, but they should both provide around the same amount of warmth.
Next up, you’ll want to consider the fit of the jacket. Regular is the classic fit and hence the most popular choice. Regular jackets are cut closer to the body and have a slimmer silhouette — this makes them a better day-to-day choice, as you don’t have to worry about feeling in the way on a crowded bus or taking up all the space on the coat stand at work.
Then you have boxy puffer jackets. These have a more traditional mountaineering silhouette and are more casual in style. If you’re a keen hiker then a jacket like this would be the obvious choice, but don’t be surprised if you see fashionistas wearing these around Shoreditch as well. Naturally, the downside to the bulky shape is that they can be a pain to wear on public transport or when carrying lots of shopping.
Another factor to think about is the length of the jacket, as there are short, mid-length and long options available. If you're petite then stick to a short or mid-length puffer, as a knee-length coat will overwhelm your frame. If you’re on the taller side, however, we recommend opting for something longer that will flatter your figure.
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The North Face
Nuptse Cropped Jacket in Pink
The Archetypal Puffer Jacket
Thickened Down Jacket with Hood
A Super Cosy Coat With a Cult Following
Fashionable Yet Functional, and Affordable Too
Mackney Funnel Neck Quilted Jacket
A Neutral Addition to Your Wardrobe
The North Face
Stretch Down Jacket in Burgundy
Water-Repellent and Easy to Pack Away
Tephra Stretch Insulated Jacket, Vintage Indigo
A Versatile Puffer That Works on Its Own or as a Layer
Copenhagen Tilda Down Filled Coat, Black/Pumice
The Closest You’ll Get To Wearing Your Duvet
Lightweight Water-Resistant Packable Puffer Jacket
An Economical, Lightweight Option
Down Puffer Jacket
Simple, Sleek and Sophisticated
Diamond Quilted Reversible Coat
Two Puffers for the Price of One
Call us sentimental, but there was only ever going to be one brand that came out on top in our ranking — it was just a matter of which jacket! We've opted for the Nuptse, which we believe to be the archetypal puffer jacket thanks to its combination of comfort and cool vibes.
This cropped coat has a boxy fit and comes in a gorgeous light pink shade, but it's what's inside that really counts. The 700-fill and 70:30 ratio of down will keep you warm whatever the weather. Plus, The North Face is such an iconic brand that you can wear this jacket pretty much anywhere, from the shopping centre to the cinema!
You may have never heard of Orolay, but we're here to tell you that they have quite the cult following on the internet! This might even be the most sought after women's jacket on Amazon, with almost 20,000 reviews and a huge range of sizes available.
So, what's so great about this particular puffer? Well, the stand out factor has to be the 90:10 down ratio, which is the highest you can get and is usually saved for expedition outerwear. Thankfully though, the brand combines practicality with a stylish aesthetic, producing a wonderfully cosy winter jacket that looks as good as it feels.
Since Calvin Klein is one of the biggest names in fashion, you might be surprised at how affordable this stylish puffer is! It's practical too, with a centre zip that extends through the collar for additional safeguarding against the weather and two side pockets for storage.
Best of all, this mid-length jacket packs away nice and small when it's not in use, making it perfect for travelling. If you're looking for a chic way to stay warm without breaking the bank, look no further!
Barbour International is probably better known for producing wax coats but they also offer a fantastic range of puffer jackets in various shapes and sizes. Our favourite is the "Mackney", a quilted jacket that's designed specifically for winter warmth.
While it does have a rather relaxed fit, you won't have to worry about cold air getting in or out due to the tall funnel neck and thick cuffs. Plus, the neutral colourway means this jacket will work well with the rest of your wardrobe!
This jacket from The North Face is a packable puffer that comes in a stunning burgundy shade. Not only is it easy to fold away, but it also employs water-repellent technology, which will help to keep you extra warm on a rainy or snowy day.
Furthermore, the stretch fabric (which has an 800-fill down insulation) gives you full range of motion, making it ideal for hiking and other outdoor activities. Despite the high price, this is an excellent option for those who like to split their time between the country and the city.
Berghaus is a highly respected outerwear brand, so they know how to make a decent puffer jacket. We've opted for their Tephra design for two main reasons. Firstly, we like its slim profile as this gives the jacket a bit more versatility — it can work on its own or as an outer layer over a fleece or sweatshirt.
Secondly, the 600 fill Hydrodown insulation is powered by Nikwax, which ensures that the filling remains effective even when it becomes wet. While it's not the most stylish of garments, if you're planning on spending time in the mountains rather than the city centre then this would be a wise choice.
Ever woken up on a cold morning and wished that you could take your duvet with you to work? We can't imagine your boss would be too impressed, but we can recommend something that's just as snuggly — this down-filled coat from Masai!
You see, this oversized jacket combines technical outdoor functionality with comfort, thanks to the high collar and deep side pockets. Sure, it'll cost you an arm and a leg, but you'll probably never need to buy another coat again!
While you might not win any points with the cool kids when wearing this puffer jacket from Amazon Essentials, it does offer excellent warmth and protection for the low price. The design is mid-length and comes with a hood, providing you with adequate shielding from the great British weather.
Moreover, there are some other excellent features such as zippered pockets, elasticated cuffs and the fact the jacket can be packed down into a small carrying bag for travelling. Some users have found that the sizes run small though, so bear this in mind when ordering.
Tommy Hilfiger is often known for its bright colours, but this simple black garment is fairly subdued. Sophisticated yet versatile, it features a fixed hood that will provide you with plenty of protection from the elements.
This jacket is cut a little shorter, as it's designed to sit on the wearer's hips, so taller ladies may want to check the sizing chart to ensure it fits correctly. It's also rather expensive, although that's to be expected from such a popular brand.
First up in our ranking, we have this beautiful jacket from Hush. It has a polyester lining and comes with a sleek, short-collared neckline. Plus, there are two large outer pockets for storing your gloves or phone and comfy elastic cuffs to combat the cold.
The main selling point of this coat is its reversible nature, which gives you the option of plain khaki green or an all-over leopard print. The latter is quite a bold design though so it might not be everyone's cup of tea!
Why not pair your new puffer jacket with a stylish scarf, cosy cardigan and some warm winter boots? We've got recommendations for all three wardrobe essentials — just check out the links below!
So there you have it, our comprehensive guide to finding the ultimate puffer jacket. Hopefully we've helped to point you in the right direction when it comes to the features you want from your new coat and you've enjoyed browsing our suggestions. Here's to staying warm while still looking cool!
Author: Lewis Clark
No. 1: The North Face｜Nuptse Cropped Jacket in Pink
No. 2: Orolay｜Thickened Down Jacket with Hood
No. 3: Calvin Klein｜Down Jacket
No. 4: Barbour International｜Mackney Funnel Neck Quilted Jacket
No. 5: The North Face｜Stretch Down Jacket in Burgundy
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