If you have engaged in at least one minute of small talk already this month, you probably know the following: Cuffing season - or, as we used to call it, fall - is coming. As soon as the temperature dips below 20 degrees, we scurry about, frantically trying to shack up with someone who will keep us warm and comfortable throughout the fall and winter months. But sometimes, convincing a new love interest to keep us cozy as the leaves change and wither proves harder than anticipated. In those times, we can turn to a more reliable source of comfort: Fall jackets.
Patagonia Torrentshell 3L Jacket$225
Kor Stasis Hoody$360
Men's Jackson Glacier Rain Jacket$315
Jorum Men’s Shirt Jacket$149
These breezy garments of nylon and polyester block rain and wind and give us courage to make it through October and November's chills and dark days. But, as is the case with dating, making the wrong pick can truly ruin a season. Here is a list of seven fall jackets that will keep you toasty and make you look sharp at the pumpkin patch, hiking trail and the rest of your autumn outings.
Most affordable: Buffalo Jeans Jorum Men’s Shirt Jacket
Most versatile: Arc’teryx Atom Jacket
Best bang for your buck: Patagonia Men’s Jackson Glacier Rain Jacket
100 per cent waterproof
Highly portable (stuffs in a small pocket)
Adjustable hood and sealable cuffs
As an early fall jacket, the Torrentshell is tough to beat. Its three-layer shell is highly breathable and waterproof with a sealable hood and cuffs that keep the water out. It’s the best item on this list to face a hot September rainstorm, and it also boasts enough insulation to keep its wearer toasty on crisp, 10-degree autumn mornings. That being said, this coat is not the warmest on the list; once November hits, it might pair best with a hefty base layer.
When I first tried it on, I thought of it as a raincoat only, but a few of its frills — like the microfleece-lined neck, adjustable hood and hidden pockets — makes it a comfortable coat for a variety of weather conditions. As a bonus: The Torrentshell is a rockstar travel item, easily folding and stuffing into its left hand-warmer pocket to shrink to the size of a cell phone.
Moisture and wind-resistant
Fleece-lined, insulated collar
Internal chest pocket
The Atom Jacket excels as both a mid-layer and a standalone piece. Despite being feather-light (400 grams), it may be the most insulated coat on this list — if you wear the Atom in 20 degree weather, you will sweat. Any colder than that, and the jacket shines; its fleece side panels under the arms complement its heat-trapping outer shell to keep wearers in an optimal temperature range.
What I like most about this product is that it can support a rigorous hike all while collecting style points. The pockets on its side and internal chest make it incredibly practical on a long trek, whereas its puffy structure — which hasn't fallen out of style since the Hotline Bling phenomenon of 2015, if you ask me — also makes it suitable for social outings.
Can work as a rain or exercise jacket
Hidden phone sleeve
If you are in the market for a running coat that is also fashionable enough to double as your everyday layer, buy the Lululemon Precipitation Jacket. It has all the specs of a proper running garment: It is waterproof, has a lightweight construction with vents throughout its shell to allow airflow, hides a phone pocket in its sleeve and is covered in reflective strands for those dark, post-work slogs.
The catch with many running jackets is that they are reflective to the point of being proper attire for a traffic control officer. The Precipitation Jacket is black and minimalist, so you can wear it to work or out on the town without suggesting to everyone that you ran there (and that you probably are sweating).
Air-permeable under the arms, weather-resistant everywhere else
Ultra-light for its size
The Kor Stasis Hoody is your late-fall, early-winter staple. Think: First ski outing of the season, or taking your kids trick-or-treating when it’s two degrees over freezing. This lightweight marvel, with its elastic-bound hood and halo cinch, provides excellent insulation against the cold. The outer layer, which is Quantum Air Fabric by Pertex, also makes it highly water and wind resistant.
You can guess those things about the Kor Stasis by looking at its puffy construction; the surprising part is how it stays breathable in slightly warmer conditions. Under the arms are flaps of air-permeable fabrics to prevent overheating, and the entire shell is flexible enough to permit all kinds of movement. And just like the Patagonia 3L Torrentshell, the Hoody can zip itself into its own hand pocket, making it easy to pack on any excursion.
Versatile for all occasions
Lightweight but warm
I chose the Jackson Glacier as the best bang for your buck because, on top of featuring most of the perks of the other jackets at its price point, it beats them all in warmth. Slightly sturdier than the Torrentshell, and longer than its counterparts from ON and Lululemon, the Jackson Glacier can be a go-to jacket deep into the fall months. It stacks layers of polyester and nylon into a breathable fabric, and the full-length zipper comes flanked with snap-in buttons to ensure total insulation. The jacket also comes with hidden security pockets with zippers; and an adjustable hood, cuffs and a drawcord hem that work together to keep out the cold. As a bonus, the understated colour palate and slim fit allow it to double as a casual coat. If your budget allows for just one fall jacket for all occasions, the Jackson Glacier is a can't-miss option.
Chest and side pockets
Warm sherpa lining
This item varies significantly from the other ones on the list by virtue of not being an activewear or weatherproof garment, but I am including it because it’s my favourite thing to wear on a fall day that calls for no rain or exercise (think: Apple picking or a backyard Thanksgiving party.) I have comfortably worn previous Buffalo Jeans products of similar makes on days that ranged from five to 20 degrees celsius. Not only does this button-up coat boast a thick, insular sherpa lining like its predecessors, it has a roomy fit that wears well over a hefty base layer like a sweatshirt. I am also a fan of its four pockets: Hands slide into the side ones, while items like phones and keys can occupy the two on the chest. At $149, it’s a safe buy — besides, can one really make it through the Canadian fall without something plaid?
Moisture-wicking and water-resistant
Thumb holes and pockets
100% recycled padding and insulation
I discovered ON last year as a running brand, and quickly fell in love with their casual pieces like the Climate Jacket. Like the Precipitation Jacket by Lululemon, this one is essentially a running coat in disguise, with all the comfort and none of the distracting, flashy colours. What sets the Climate Jacket apart is its 100 per cent recycled, heat-mapped padding, which strikes a great balance between warmth and insulation. The outer fabric also has a DWR (Durable Water Repellent) coating that shields wearers from rain showers, and is designed to stretch four ways so that it never obstructs movement. Somehow, ON has managed to pack all that tech in a super-light, 350 gram jacket. I’m bullish on them to continue shaking up the athleisure space.