The Best Women’s Winter Jackets of 2024

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The Best Women’s Winter Jackets of 2024

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Whether you’re looking for the perfect coat to commute in a snowstorm, warmth while spectating the hockey game, or a cozy jacket for après-ski, we’ve got you covered with the best women’s winter jackets.

If you live in a wintry environment or plan to visit one, you definitely don’t want to be sidelined for lack of cold-weather protection.

Whatever your cold weather itinerary entails, these winter jackets will help regulate your body temperature while also shielding you from wind, snow, and drizzle. Here we focus on warm, protective winter jackets and parkas geared toward everyday use.

On the other hand, there are plenty of performance-oriented winter jackets, too. That includes shells for skiing and snowboarding, compressible down jackets for backcountry alpine adventures, or active insulation layers for high-output activities like winter running or cross-country skiing.

If you’d like to learn more about the various women’s winter jackets for warmth and everyday use, their nitty-gritty features, and how to choose your jacket based on climate, scroll through our buyer’s guide and FAQ at the bottom of the page. You can also consult the comparison chart below to help steer your decision process.

Otherwise, read our full gear guide and check out our awarded picks below for the best women’s winter jackets of 2024.

Editor’s Note: We updated our Women’s Winter Jackets guide on January 12, 2024, to include one newly tested and awarded product.

The Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka ($315) delivers a high level of warmth while being super cozy and a bit roomy with a flattering feminine-leaning touch. Such a mix of high-grade and recycled materials made us assume the price would be higher, but this jacket sits near several hundred dollars, which is rather reasonable.

With so many excellent women’s winter jackets, the Deep Cover Down Parka jumped to the top of our list for the overall comfort and ergonomic fit that’s spacious and stretchy enough in just the right spots but not boxy. The shoulders, chest, and bottom hem are tailored and a tad roomy, which is great for layering beneath. We never felt restricted.

Pulling this windproof piece on over a long sleeve shirt in blustery conditions always kept us warm yet the jacket could easily slide over midlayers or our favorite sweater, too.

We also love the tall down-filled collar, which is a stylish accent when we opt to remove the hood (that’s also insulated). Over our hands, the well-designed stretchy interior gaiters with thumbholes are a nice attribute that help block wind, snow, and cold — and they’re not cumbersome. Sometimes wrist gaiters can feel too tight in winter jackets — not these.

Dressed with a hydrophobic treatment, which is fluorocarbon-free, the down fill retains its loft even when the conditions are damp and wet. Furthermore, 100% of the European Goose Down, 20-denier liner, and 50-denier exterior fabric is recycled — helping to keep waste out of the landfill.

The exterior face of this jacket is likewise treated with fluorocarbon-free DWR, called Pertex Quantum, that prevents moisture from being absorbed by the garment but is free of toxic chemicals. So we can feel good about the eco-friendliness of this jacket in addition to liking the way it feels to wear.

For aesthetic, the sheen fabric isn’t overly glossy and it’s quiet, too. Overall, the Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka is hands-down our top pick for the best winter jacket for women.

Cozy, fashion-centric, and comfortable for layering, the REI Co-op Norseland Insulated Parka 2.0 ($199) is a fan favorite. With high-quality materials, eco-conscious traits, and attention to small details, the price doesn’t break the bank. Plus, introduced last season and continuing for winter 2023-24 is expanded sizing from the XL ceiling through 1X to 3X.

We love the snug-fitting, thick hood, which is lined with fleece for extra warmth and comfort. Helping to alleviate wind, a wide storm flap with snaps covers the front zipper. (We do wish the snaps weren’t so shallow, so they were easier to pin closed, especially with one hand.)

The two exterior hand pockets are well-designed: Far-reaching, deep, and softly lined with buttery fabric. An interior zippered chest pocket is easy to access, too. Thick, long knit wrist cuffs help bar the breeze and snow from sliding up the sleeves.

To help shed moisture, the exterior face fabric is treated with a DWR coating, which repels snow or light rain. With a unique touch, the hem is slightly longer in the back. And there are two 6-inch side zippers, which expand for longer strides or stepping into a rig. We did notice the zippers tend to slide up as we move.

Recycled polyester, which was Bluesign-approved, comprises the liner. Inside, Responsible Down Standard-certified down ensures that the duck plumage is ethically sourced. Despite being only 650-fill, this jacket literally feels like walking around in a sleeping bag even in freezing weather. Its oven quality is connected to the slightly heavier weight: That fill is loaded in each baffle. We’re here for it.

Ultimately, the shape of the REI Co-op Norseland Insulated Parka 2.0 is roomy and the design is functional. Some women also noted the size runs large, so consider that a bonus if you want the option to layer up beneath (or consider sizing down).

At first, we thought this roomier style might be a bit too puffy — but as we pulled it on time and time again, we realized how warm, comfortable, and well-tailored this jacket is.

The Stio Women’s Colter WINDSTOPPER Down Jacket ($429) is at a moderate-to-high price point among our women’s winter jackets, but the thoughtful features live up to that tag. This jacket really celebrates the finer details and feminine touch. We just can’t get enough of wearing this coat. We’ve also never received so many compliments on a winter jacket. Nearly every time we wore it around town or on the road, another lady noted how cool it looked.

With an amazing amount of stretch, we could reach over the hood of our rig to clear away snow or wrap our arms around large packages at the post office without issue. The interior is lined with buttery taffeta fabric — our chin loves its guard.

Two-way zippers on each side of the Colter’s GORE-TEX WINDSTOPPER from the armpit to the hem functionally provide a greater range of motion, a looser fit, or some airflow under the pits. A brilliant touch. Beneath the zipper, the uppermost section has a 5.5-inch mesh panel for ventilation beneath the armpits. The remaining lower length of the panel is solid fabric to guard against the elements.

It’s hard to come by a jacket with more stowaway space. Both zippered hand pockets have a very soft brushed tricot liner. There are also two interior chest pockets (one with a zip closure and the other is a snap) and two deep flap-closure lower interior pockets.

We love the length, the angled cuffs that cover our hands, and the huge baffles that ultimately deliver a toasty experience. Better yet, this jacket was made with the planet in mind. Using Bluesign-approved HyperDRY Water Repellent Down, made by the insulation brand Allied Feather and Down, and a 100% recycled polyester outer face fabric, the Stio Women’s Colter WINDSTOPPER Down Jacket is a go-to for anyone looking for a consciously-made women’s winter jacket.

With sleek style, the Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka ($699) is a fully functional down parka or standalone shell: The two pieces zip together for the most warmth and protection from precipitation. This versatility makes it one of our top picks for the best winter jackets for women this season. After testing the older version and the new, we fully approve of the updates.

Improved for 2023-24, the fit is straighter rather than the former slim, hourglass shape, allowing for more range of motion, stepping into the truck, mounting a cruiser, and simply layering beneath. The length was increased and remains above the knees but below the backend, so our hindquarters can stay warm, too, when we sit on a cold seat.

A double zipper lets you expand the circumference of the jacket, if you need to sit at a wider stance. The shell is now made from 100% recycled polyester, up from 50%, which is made from collected plastic bottles. And the baffle design was altered from chevron to more vertical to help increase warmth.

The Tres’s sustainability features don’t stop there. This exterior shell’s lining is 100% recycled. The interior insulation layer is filled with duck and goose down that’s reclaimed from retired products, meaning that’s 100% recycled, too. The insulated jacket’s shell and lining are both 100% recycled polyester.

All of the textiles are Bluesign-approved, made in a Fair Trade Certified factory, and coated with a PFC-free DWR (durable water repellent) for water resistance. The jacket also meets Patagonia’s in-house H2No Performance Standard, following years of testing for waterproofness, breathability, and durability.

If you’re running around town, heading to work meetings, or wanting to look good at an outdoor winter (or rainy summer) concert, this jacket has style and function for a range of weather conditions. We tested the jacket in single digits on winter mornings, walking over icy sidewalks in downtown Ogden, Utah, in a snowstorm, and at a monsoon-showered summer music festival at 9,000 feet. The jacket never got drenched while keeping us very cozy.

The outer shell repelled drops of rain and didn’t soak through, and the shell’s ergonomic hood fits well over our front-brim hat or a beanie. The knee-length design helped protect our thighs and backside from the rain, which was perfect when we forgot rain pants. We love the brushed tricot lining in the two hand pockets, which are super roomy and can easily fit a large phone.

A lovely fleece fabric lines the interior collar of the shell, at the front of the face, as well as around the entire insulated neck of the down jacket. Another neat component: The cuff on each arm has a slender zipper, so you can expand the width for larger gloves to slide beneath.

Overall, this 3-in-1 retains a flattering cut. The shell alone also offers a nice amount of warmth — more than a typical lightweight rain shell. When paired with the down parka, the set is toasty on frigid winter days. For supreme versatility, the Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka is one of the best winter jackets you can find.

The Lands’ End Women’s Down Maxi Winter Coat ($290) stands out as one of the most comfortable, functional, and cost-effective plus-size designs out there. There’s no winter-month substitute for the warmth of this maxi-length parka with elegant style.

With a loose, forgiving silhouette that’s comfortable to wear while moving around, the jacket’s size run ranges from 1X to 3X (16W to 26W). The jacket is also available in Tall, Petite, and Regular size runs from XS to XL (except for the Tall silhouette, which starts at size small).

This maxi silhouette sits in the lower price tier but doesn’t cut corners. Built for super cold conditions, the down jacket is constructed to withstand -25 to 10 F lows.

Filled with HyperDry down, the down is water-repellant and retains warmth. Plus, HyperDry is fluorocarbon-free, and the fill is Responsible Down Standard (RDS) certified. The water-resistant shell shields snow and weather well. Because of these features, the Lands’ End Women’s Down Maxi Winter Coat ranks near the top of our list of the best winter coats for women.

If you live in a super wet environment, highly consider the premium-grade Arc’teryx Patera Parka ($800) for all of your around-town errands, social outings, and work dates. The sophisticated style and high-end materials provide a ton of protection against the elements while looking sharp.

Robust construction is where Arc’teryx doesn’t ever fall short, as reflected in the price. This 75-denier exterior fabric is extremely durable, making this grab one of the best women’s winter jackets on the market.

To reduce bulk yet provide warmth where most needed around the core and arms, this winter jacket features targeted zones of RDS-certified down fill. The global standard ensures that the down fill is sourced from birds that have not been subjected to unnecessary harm. Synthetic insulation is added to areas where environmental moisture often hits including the hood and collar. The arms reach the wrists but no farther, which can be good for certain pairs of gloves.

To shield against the elements, the face fabric of the Patera is waterproof/breathable and treated with a bonus DWR. A broad, sturdy brim is integrated into the insulated hood to block rain.

The two-way zipper on the front and two hand pocket zippers are not only well-constructed but also super water-resistant. With fully taped seams, this level of warmth mixed with protection against high water content is hard to find among our favorite women’s winter jackets.

The revised fit is roomier to accommodate more layers beneath. Regardless, the Arc’teryx Patera Parka great to pull on over a shirt, looks classy, and provides superior protection against coastal winter storms.

Well-designed, super warm, and functional, the Fjallraven Nuuk Parka ($500) is among the best winter jackets for women. This top-rated premium build is comfortable and utilitarian for everyday use all winter. This winter jacket is also made with a 100% recycled face fabric and liner and a synthetic fill to avoid down sourced through animals.

Since 2014, Fjallraven has followed its Down Promise, a mission to reduce waste, supply chain abuse, and environmental impact in the garment industry. By instilling a strict supply chain, the brand assures customers that no birds are harmed in the making of their products. Four Paws, the International Animal Welfare Organization, recognized Fjallraven’s Down Promise as one of the best in the industry.

Furthermore, have you ever seen a women’s winter parka with this many pockets? There are two fleece-lined exterior pockets, two chest pockets, two top-loading pockets, a media pocket on the sleeve, two large interior stretch mesh storage pockets, and another interior media pocket plus an interior chest pocket. That’s 11 pockets total.

The fleece-lined hood is comfortable and has an integrated stiffer brim to help shelter against snow and light rain.

Overall, the Fjallraven Nuuk Parka is one of the best winter coats for women to pull on for below-freezing and moderate temperatures, especially if you don’t want to carry a purse or need to carry a ton of small items with you around town.

Perfect for neighborhood strolls or hanging out by a cozy bonfire on a crisp night, the Columbia Women’s Heavenly Long Hooded Jacket ($160) is another one of our go-to budget-friendly options. For users who live in more temperate winter environments, this winter jacket is a great choice for those who don’t want to break the bank.

Featuring Columbia’s Omni-Heat thermal reflective liner — an innovative series of thermal reflective dots attached to the inside of this coat — this jacket reflects heat back toward you to keep you warmer. With sizes ranging from XS to XXL in a standard fit and plus-size options 1X-3X, you can purchase the best fit catered to your sizing needs. The Heavenly Jacket’s active style makes it ideal for hikes and walks on those chillier days.

What else did our testers love? The buttery soft hand gaiters kept our palms warm and protected, with the additional pockets allowing for phone and snack storage. The longer drop tail style kept our tester’s torso and hips warm on cold 26-degree F mornings. Overall, the Columbia Women’s Heavenly Long Hooded Jacket is a great option for milder winter climates and shoulder seasons in colder regions. It’s also useful for hiking, camping, or snowshoeing. 

In a standard fit, The North Face Women’s Arctic Parka ($350) has got to be one of the longest-standing, most popular down parkas available today.

This season, the updated jacket has 600-fill, up slightly from 550, and the fill is recycled waterfowl down. On the exterior 2-layer shell, the polyester face fabric is 100% recycled and treated with PFC-free DWR. The entire linings of the body, cuff, and pockets are made from recycled textiles.

The construction is super durable against a range of elements — it barricades wind and is waterproof yet breathable. A cinch along the lower back adds a slightly tailored fit. And the removable faux fur for the hood helps stop the breeze from reaching the face while adding another hint of style.

For a range of ladies, the size run is broad. Folks can opt for XS through XXL or plus sizes, 1X-3X.

Tried and true, this women’s winter jacket is a staple in the industry. The North Face Women’s Arctic Parka delivers for the price.

The 800-fill Lands’ End Wanderweight Ultralight Packable Down Coat ($230) is a warm hug on a freezing day. This knee-length jacket protects our pants from getting soaked when we’re knocking snow off the rig and keeps us warm when running errands.

It’s the perfect choice for heading to the gym or riding a bike around town in cold or snowy weather. For this amount of protection at close to $200, this jacket is a steal.

The jacket’s temperature rating is meant to keep you cozy at 3 to 29 degrees, which we found accurate. The jacket is filled with HyperDry down, so the down repels water and retains warmth. Plus, HyperDry is fluorocarbon-free and the fill is Responsible Down Standard (RDS) certified. The water-resistant shell and liner shielded snow and weather well.

The hood is not removable. There’s no soft liner along the interior chin guard (though, it’s not rough, either). While there are two zippered hand pockets, an interior chest pocket would be a nice addition. Feathers also occasionally sneak out of the seams. There are no side zippers along the hem, for expansion if you’re climbing in and out of a rig. But we love how basic this coat is.

Though not as robust and fancy as pricier options, we found the simple design of the Lands’ End Women’s Wanderweight Ultralight Packable Down Coat surprisingly durable and easy to pull on.

The Duluth Trading Women’s Ruffer Puffer Arctic Down Long Coat ($250) feels like crawling into a burly sleeping bag mid-winter storm. This lengthy workhorse reaches the back of the knees with a nylon shell that’s durable, DWR-treated for moisture resistance, and windproof — and the tag doesn’t steal the show.

For ease of movement, two 9-inch side zips open the jacket’s hem on each side, so you can comfortably step into a rig or crouch down while working on the farm and in the yard.

Closing the center, the primary zipper is burly and so is the tab, making the pull easier. An exterior storm flap covers the zipper, which practically snaps shut hands-free, thanks to a column of powerful button-shaped magnets.

With zip closures, the two exterior hand pockets are spacious and softly lined. Inside, there are two large dump pockets and one zippered chest pocket. We also love the plush, insulated hood and buttery fabric on the chin guard.

Inside are two integrated suspenders, so you can wear the jacket hands-free like a backpack: We found the straps to be gimmicky, as the jacket is so long it drags behind us. That said, the straps are fairly streamlined, so we can wear the jacket without using ’em and don’t notice. Overall, the Duluth Trading Women’s Ruffer Puffer Arctic Down Long Coat is a great pick for a toasty everyday winter coat.

Scroll right to view all of the columns: Price, Weight, Fill, Center Back Length, Climate.

Our GearJunkie team has tested and reviewed dozens of women’s winter jackets in a range of cold-weather conditions across the country. For this guide, we examined the fine details of each jacket including comfort, functionality, durability, ergonomics, protection from the elements, ease of use, adaptability, and style. We also strongly considered the most popular, highly acclaimed, legacy, and size-inclusive winter coats for women across a range of price points and applications.

GearJunkie contributor Meghan LaHatte has resided in the high Rockies of Southwest Colorado for more than 5 years. Living in such a cold climate has allowed her to explore many winter sports and activities such as skiing, hiking, skinning, and camping — all of which require the warmest jackets possible. From chilly mornings spent on the trail to blizzardy afternoon dog walks, she tests women’s winter coats to their fullest potential. 

Leading the crew, GearJunkie Senior Editor Morgan Tilton specializes in snowsports content. She’s been a gear journalist including covering snowsports for more than a decade. That includes reporting at nearly 16 outdoor industry trade shows for several publications from Outdoor Retailer Daily to Snow Show Daily, and serving as Snowboard Editor at Teton Gravity Research.

Raised in Telluride, Colorado, Tilton has been skiing and snowboarding for more than three decades including pulling on a warm winter coat before and after, while running errands, going to the gym, shoveling — you name it. Living in the frigid ski town of Crested Butte, Colo., Tilton is able to put these winter coats to the ultimate test.

We’ve cruised on our bikes, walked in blizzards, sat on park benches, cheered on cross-country ski races, shoveled our rigs out of powder piles, and commuted to the gym in these jackets. Several of our testers have beat up jackets in Colorado’s Gunnison Valley, one of the coldest, snowiest destinations in the United States.

What we like most about this selection of best picks is that each winter jacket can be worn running errands around town but can also be donned for a night out to dinner. We’re confident these women’s winter jackets are among the best on the market.

With so many different types of winter jackets for women on the market, it can be a challenge to find the right one catered to your needs. Most of the jackets in this guide are parkas — designs that are lengthier, bulkier, and hooded — hip-length puffer coats, and down jackets.

Unlike athletic performance coats, which are made of more breathable and lightweight materials, these women’s winter jackets tend to provide the weight and insulation needed to keep gals toasty throughout the day. 

Well-suited for winter activities, down jackets are generally lightweight and shorter, closer to hip-length, so they tend to be better picks for more strenuous activities such as skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing. Be sure to check out our Best Down Jackets for Women guide if women’s down jackets seem like a closer fit for your needs.

Many of the best women’s winter jackets for everyday and lifestyle applications are insulated, offering warmth for cold or windy locations, as well as waterproofness to keep you warm and dry.

In frigid conditions, an insulated jacket is perfect for wearing after a gym workout, before you step into a frigid car, and for running errands.

The warmth level and type of insulation varies across each jacket from flannel to down fill or synthetic proprietary fabrics. Some insulated jackets are more water- and wind-resistant than others based on the type of fill, surface fabric, and how both have been constructed or chemically treated.

Some jackets are made with down, and others are filled with synthetic insulation that mimics down. A handful of designs blend the two materials.

Synthetic insulation is made from polyester fibers and designed to imitate down clusters and properties with a few key differences. If you compare two equal-weight jackets, down is warmer than this alternative.

But synthetic insulation retains warmth even when wet. It’s also easier to wash and usually comes at a lower price point.

Overall, in super-wet or mixed weather and when weight isn’t an issue, synthetics can be a better, safer choice. Alternatively, down can be treated with a coating that helps prevent moisture absorption, such as the Nikwax Fluorocarbon-Free Hydrophobic Finish applied to the down fill of the Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka.

The Duluth Trading Women’s Ruffer Puffer Arctic Down Long Coat is filled with duck down for insulation. The Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka is also a down-fill jacket, and 100% of that down is recycled from retired products. In comparison, the Fjallraven Nuuk Parka is a synthetic insulated jacket.

If it’s cold and dry out, down is optimal despite a higher cost. To go deeper, check out our guide to the best down jackets, which are generally more athletic and movement-oriented than the broader winter jackets category, to keep you covered in the cold.

Temperature ratings for winter jackets refer to the lowest ambient temperature at which the coat can keep the wearer warm. Because there is no universal metric or third-party testing for temperature rating, the rating system varies between manufacturers. That final figure can be influenced by factors such as insulation, material thickness, and other design features like a fleece liner or faux fur around the hood.

Some manufacturers label the warmth of a jacket using a range of degrees F. Other brands operate on an internal sliding scale of warmness, which helps folks compare their products side by side for the warmest option.

For example, the Lands’ End Women’s Down Maxi Winter Coat has a rating of -25 degrees F to 10 degrees F, which means it’s designed to keep the wearer warm in temperatures as low as -25 degrees F, with 10 degrees F being the warmest end on that scale. When choosing the best winter jacket for you, temperature ratings are a guideline and can vary based on individual preferences, activity levels, and the environment such as wind.

A brand’s internal scale of warmness can help provide a guideline for which jacket is ideal and how you can layer beneath it. Take The North Face Women’s Arctic Parka, for example. Under The North Face’s sliding temperature scale, the Arctic Parka is considered warmest on a scale of warm, warmer, and warmest.

Women’s winter jackets that are made for mild weather conditions, such as the Columbia Women’s Heavenly Long Hooded Jacket, can be worn with thicker or more insulated layers if you want additional insulation.

Ultimately, it is important to choose a winter jacket with a temperature rating that matches the expected conditions to ensure comfort and protection.

Fill power measures the loft and quality of the down. To calculate fill, a 1-ounce sample of down is compressed in a cylinder. Generally speaking, the higher the number, the warmer the jacket — though the fill power isn’t the only variable affecting a jacket’s warmth.

But the higher the fill quality, the less down is needed to create the same warmth. This is because it’s able to trap more air and warmth within the jacket. Higher fill power is also more compressible, loftier, more lightweight, and pricier.

Fill power ratings range from 300 to 900 and even higher. Most of the jackets on this list are in the 800-fill range, with a few clocking in above or below. Generally, the quality increases with the fill number:

When deciding on the best women’s winter jacket for you, another element to consider is the fill weight.

A down jacket’s fill power is the down’s quality and amount of loft. You’ll see jackets labeled as 600-fill or 800-fill, for instance. The fill weight, which is measured in ounces, reflects the density or amount of that down stuffed inside the jacket.

So when two 700-fill jackets have different weights, we know the heavier one is warmer.

On the other hand, if two down jackets weigh the same with different fill power (such as two 15-ounce jackets with 650 fill and 800 fill), the higher fill jacket is going to be less bulky and more compressible.

It’s also trickier to compare jackets with differing fill power. But in general, the lower the fill power, the less loft and warmth are provided.

Down does not perform well when wet. And this is one of the places synthetic jackets tend to win out. In the past decade, there has been a growing use of hydrophobic down. As we previously mentioned, the recycled down of the Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka is coated with Nikwax Fluorocarbon-Free Hydrophobic Finish for moisture resistance, for example.

Essentially, the down feathers are coated in a water-resistant polymer. It still doesn’t match the water-resistance of synthetics. But for light precipitation, hydrophobic down can’t be beat. The face fabric of some down jackets is treated with DWR to help block light moisture, too.

When deciding on the best women’s winter coat for you, it is important to consider the garment’s waterproofness.

A waterproof jacket is ideal for being outside in wet snow, rain, or drizzly weather. The top-tier standard for waterproofness is GORE-TEX, which is a membrane integrated into various jacket designs. The material is waterproof, windproof, and breathable. Many brands likewise have a proprietary version of waterproof/breathable fabrics.

Waterproofness is measured by the amount of water that can be placed atop a fabric before it leaks. The rate of waterproof jackets varies from 5,000 to 20,000 mm or greater. The latter end of the spectrum leads to a less breathable fabric.

Many down and synthetic winter jackets are not waterproof but offer a degree of water resistance, which works fine in dryer winter climates and where the snow water equivalent (read: the amount of liquid water in the snow) is lower.

There are four general snow climates: coastal, transitional, intermountain, and continental. Generally, the closer you are to the coast, the more precipitation you’ll experience and the water content will be higher in the snow: it’ll be wetter and heavier! In contrast, the snow in continental climates is dryer, lighter, and accumulates less compared to the coast. That includes most of the Rocky Mountains, such as in Colorado. Intermountain regions and ranges show characteristics of both and transitional areas are similar to the coast but with less rain and snow.

Examples according to the Utah Avalanche Center:

For wetter environments, the Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka includes a removable exterior waterproof shell, and the Arc’teryx Patera Parka is likewise waterproof. You can wear waterproof winter jackets in drier climates, too, though they generally cost more.

Other factors that can help make a jacket waterproof or water-resistant are the fill or face fabric treatments, which can be eco-friendly formulas or chemicals that are toxic for the environment. Jackets can also have sealed seams to block moisture.

If you live in a gusty climate like the Midwest, it is crucial to pick a winter jacket that can help protect you from those bone-chilling breezes. Many jackets are designed to be “windproof,” which is the apparel’s ability to prevent cold air from penetrating the fabric layers. 

The windproofness of a jacket is usually measured in terms of wind resistance or a windproof rating, which is typically expressed in units of cubic feet per minute (CFM).

A jacket with a high CFM rating is less windproof than a jacket with a low CFM rating. For example, fabrics with a CFM rating of 60 tend to have no wind protection, while those with a 0 CFM rating are completely windproof.  Our go-to windproof women’s winter jacket? The Duluth Trading Women’s Ruffer Puffer Arctic Down Long Coat is a great choice for those looking to protect themselves from the most frigid gusts.

An ergonomic collar and hood are significant features for protecting your face, head, ears, neck, and hair against sun, snow, sleet, hail, wind, or rain. Pulling up a hood can help the body retain heat in chilly conditions while shielding you from the elements.

Jacket collars vary in height and ideally have an interior chin guard that feels snuggly against the face, a key component on a windy day on the sidewalk.

Hoods can be insulated or non-insulated. Certain designs have an elastic cinch in the back to snug up the overall fit or one along the hood’s hem. Jackets that are made for wetter environments might also have hoods with a small integrated rain brim, which is slightly rigid and blocks moisture from dripping down onto the face, such as the Arc’teryx Patera Parka and Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka.

Some hoods are fixed, and others are removable via a zipper. Fashion-centric choices include a removable faux fur that zips or snaps onto the periphery of the hood, which offers a bit of additional safeguard from wind and snow flurries while adding style.

On some women’s warm winter jackets, the sleeve cuffs have a Velcro or zip closure, so you can cinch them down once you pull the jacket on. But many cuffs are sleek and simply stretch when you slide your hands through, meaning it’s easier to pull the jacket on before you put on your gloves. The shape of cuffs is either tapered or straight across and certain designs are lengthier, offering extended shelter for your hands.

A handful of higher-end designs have an inner wrist gaiter — a stretchy fabric for additional warmth that sometimes has thumbholes to help secure the fabric over the top of the hand.

Most women’s winter jackets include two exterior hand pockets with zip closures. Traditional hand pockets have a side entry while alternative designs offer a top entry for hand pockets. Often, there is at least one interior chest pocket with a zip closure, which can be great for chambering a credit card, ID, or key.

Women’s winter jackets are generally trimmer with a more streamlined fit, or they can be roomier and boxier with a more relaxed silhouette.

Both options can be comfortable. A roomier jacket is better if you need a greater range of movement or if you plan to wear a bunch of layers beneath your jacket. You can still add layers beneath a fitted style, but you might want to consider sizing up, because often the arm, shoulder, or chest areas can get too snug with a midlayer or two beneath.

Size-wise, each manufacturer has its own size charts. Be sure to take your personal measurements and match them up with the size charts, which can differ across brands.

Some companies provide more size inclusivity with broader offerings. That includes The North Face, which has a size run of XS to XXL. Lands’ End offers XS to XXXL including petite and tall options, as well as plus sizes in 1X-3X. 

Everyone’s body is unique, so check the exchange and return policy before you buy.

A winter jacket’s weight and compressibility can be an important variable for cargo space and airline travel as well as storage and closet space. Otherwise, a jacket that’s used for everyday errands and social events will generally weigh more than a lightweight technical down jacket that’s made for athletic pursuits. Having a lightweight design for an everyday jacket is typically less of a priority, because the comfort, ergonomics, and high warmth factors are the most important.

The longer a jacket is, the more it will weigh and the more space it will take up. The heavier a jacket is, the warmer it will be (read more about fill weight above.) If you don’t need a warm winter jacket that’s built for arctic conditions and need one for milder winter temperatures that hover above or around freezing, then the jacket will most likely weigh less.

The lightest women’s winter jackets in our top picks are the 800-fill Lands’ End Women’s Wanderweight Ultralight Packable Down Coat, which is 376 g, and the heaviest options are The North Face Women’s Arctic Parka at 1,290 g and Fjallraven Nuuk Parka, which is 1,732 g.

Ultimately, don’t compromise a jacket’s safety or comfort features and adequate warmth to drop grams.

The length of women’s winter jackets varies, which affects the overall warmth, protection from the elements, and range of movement.

One of the best winter jackets for women on the shorter side, at least among our selection, is the Stio Women’s Colter WINDSTOPPER Down Jacket, which reaches a bit lower past the mid-glute.

Many of our top winter jacket choices are longer, ranging from mid-thigh to knee-level to below-the-knee options. Longer jackets are inherently warmer and insulate our backside and legs from moisture or biting wind, which is nice for bike commuting or staying warm in a cold seat. Some jackets even reach the ankles for a full-on blanket to-go. Even longer versions, like the Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka, can feel like you’re held in a portable mini sleeping bag!

However, we aren’t always looking for a long coat. Shorter lengths offer a greater range of motion and can be more functional, such as when we’re shoveling, climbing into the truck bed, or if we’re stepping onto a cruiser bike without a lower top tube bar.

Jackets that are shorter to mid-length either have a uniform hem that is even all the way around or they feature a tapered silhouette that’s longer in the back and higher in the front. Tapered cuts can look fashion forward and offer a tad more armor for the backside, which we like. The longer and longest designs usually have a level length on all sides like the Lands’ End Women’s Wanderweight Ultralight Packable Down Coat.

That said, a handful of silhouettes integrate double two-way zippers in the front, as well as zippers on either side near the hips, to offer a broader circumference for a broader range of movement. The smartest design we’ve seen is that arena is on the Stio Women’s Colter WINDSTOPPER Down Jacket, which features two two-way zippers on each side from the armpit to the hem. Beneath the zipper, the uppermost section has a 5.5-inch mesh panel for ventilation beneath the armpits. The remaining lower length of the panel is solid fabric to guard against the elements.

Brands at the forefront of sustainable change are swapping out new down for recycled down. The Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka and Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka are both filled with 100% recycled down.

Outdoor industry brands have also made an effort to source new down ethically without animal cruelty and create transparency in the global supply chain.

Various certifications exist such as The Global Traceable Down Standard (Global TDS) and Responsible Down Standard (RDS), which are certifications offered via the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF). ALLIED Feather & Down launched the TrackMyDown program, which won a 2019 ISPO Gold Award, allows everyday users to find out where and how their winter jacket’s down feathers were sourced. It’s quite simple to use — just type in the lot number found on your jacket’s hang tag and press enter.

The TrackMyDown database provides information regarding the farms where the birds were raised, as well as how to properly care for and increase the longevity of your insulation.

Without establishing transparency and down standards, animal abuse can persist within the supply chain. A synthetic winter jacket can be a more comforting choice if you want to avoid animal byproducts, like the Fjallraven Nuuk Parka.

If you prefer a natural down winter jacket, the Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka and Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka both have 100% recycled down from retired products.

A wide variety of jackets on our list have RDS-certified down including the REI Co-op Norseland Insulated Parka 2.0, Stio Women’s Colter WINDSTOPPER Down Jacket, Lands’ End Women’s Down Maxi Winter Coat, Arc’teryx Patera Parka, The North Face Women’s Arctic Parka, and  Lands’ End Wanderweight Ultralight Packable Down Coat.

Beyond responsible down, winter jackets have an opportunity to include a bunch of eco-friendly design traits. Some jackets are created with PFC-free DWR treatments for the face fabric or down fill. Several of our top choices incorporate a fluorocarbon-free hydrophobic treatment on the down to repel moisture, like the Lands’ End Wanderweight Ultralight Packable Down Coat and Lands’ End Women’s Down Maxi Winter Coat, which both use HyperDry. The Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka is likewise treated with a Nikwax Fluorocarbon-Free Hydrophobic Finish.

The treated surface of many jacket fabrics is now chemical-free. That includes the fluorocarbon-free DWR, called Pertex Quantum, used on the Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka. All fabrics in the Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka are PFC-free including the membrane and surface coatings. The DWR finish of the Stio Women’s Colter WINDSTOPPER Down Jacket is PFCEC-free, meaning the treatment is void of all PFCs of Environmental Concern (PFCEC).

While we’ve seen textile advancements in the outdoor industry that are designed to withstand elements without a chemical DWR treatment at all, we haven’t tested women’s winter jackets with those materials, yet.

Other jacket designs are made with recycled materials such as recycled down and recycled polyester for the fabric and liner. A few spots where we see jackets lag with recycled materials include the wrist cuffs or zipper pulls. Among our top picks, the recycled polyester liner in the REI Co-op Norseland Insulated Parka 2.0 is also Bluesign-approved. We’re also impressed by the 100% recycled down fill and 100% recycled 50-denier fabric of the Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka.

The Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka checks the box for sustainability on a stack of levels: 100% recycled polyester shell, 100% recycled shell lining, 100% recycled polyester zip-out shell and lining, 100% recycled down fill, and Bluesign-approved fabrics treated with PFC-free DWR. Plus, it’s made in a Fair Trade Certified factory.

Other outer layers guarantee Fair Trade sewing or Bluesign or Oeko-Tex-certified fabrics.

Layering effectively under a winter jacket is essential to staying warm and comfortable on those chilly days.

We recommend starting with a moisture-wicking women’s base layer to keep your skin dry and warm. Choose a fabric like merino wool, synthetic materials, or a blend that fits snugly to your body. This layer should be close-fitting but not so tight that it restricts any movement.

For extra warmth, you can add a midlayer over your base layer. Materials such as down, fleece, or synthetic insulation work well if you’re looking for insulation. Choose a sweater, vest, or jacket as a midlayer — any of those options work — depending on the weather conditions and what fits best with your outer layer. If your women’s winter jacket already includes an insulating midlayer, such as the Patagonia Tres 3-in-1 Parka, you can probably omit adding the extra garment — but also, multiple midlayers can be perfectly fine and appropriate. 

Remember, the key to layering is to find a balance between warmth and mobility. Too many layers can restrict your movement and make you feel cumbersome — like how we imagine the Michelin Man feels — while too few layers can leave you feeling cold. By layering to your needs, you can stay warm and comfortable no matter what the winter weather brings.

Our budget picks in this lineup include the REI Co-op Norseland Insulated Parka 2.0 ($199) and Columbia Women’s Heavenly Long Hooded Jacket ($160) followed closely in price by another top choice, the Lands’ End Women’s Wanderweight Ultralight Packable Down Coat ($230). Generally, if you find a warm, dependable, well-made, and comfortable women’s winter jacket that’s hovering near $200, that’s an economic option for an essential cold-weather tool. We get it. That baseline is no small investment.

At full price, the most expensive jacket on our list is among the warmest and offers the most coverage against the elements: the Arc’teryx Patera Parka ($800). As fill power and fill weight increase, the warmth increases, and you’ll see the price of a jacket go up. That’s one reason why super lightweight, durable, technical cold-weather jackets are pricy. On this list of lifestyle winter jackets for women, the longer parkas also inherently cost more because they require more resources and material to develop.

A huge variety of warm winter jackets exist within those two prices. In the second price tier is the Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka ($315), Lands’ End Women’s Plus Size Down Maxi Winter Coat ($290), and The North Face Women’s Arctic Parka ($350).

Jackets that are more expensive feature more technical design features, materials that are more robust against a range of weather conditions and materials, as well as high-end sustainable materials. That includes the Stio Women’s Colter WINDSTOPPER Down Jacket ($429), Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka ($699), Arc’teryx Patera Parka ($700), and Fjallraven Nuuk Parka ($500).

After you learn the different types of winter jackets, you might need to get one of each! This guide focuses on warm, functional, well-made choices for being outside during everyday commutes, errands, and casual activity. They’ll protect you in weather on your bike ride to the post office, walking the dogs, or going to and from the nordic center or gym.

To learn more about the various winter jacket options, check out our other down jackets and insulated jackets buying guides.

Here’s how winter jackets as a whole are each a bit different:

Take a look at the average temperatures and weather conditions where you most often go outside in the winter. Choose a jacket that has enough fill power and fill weight to keep you comfortable and dry in that environment. Whether you’re carrying heavy luggage or walking to the grocery store or observing an ice statue contest, also consider how much body heat you’ll build during your activity.

You’ll want to consider your preferred length — the longer a jacket, the warmer — but the less freedom you’ll have for big movements like if you’re shoveling the deck. You also might not need the warmth of a knee-length jacket.

Mull over your choice style. Do you want a more tailored fit or a more relaxed profile? There will be features to consider, too, like the hood, wrist gaiters, and aesthetics.

At the end of the day, finding the best women’s winter jacket is a matter of personal style, end use, and budget.

The warmest winter jackets are down jackets closely followed by synthetic-filled winter jackets.

Among down jackets, the higher the fill power and the higher the fill weight, the warmer the product will be. Also, the longer the down jacket, the more heat it will hold and weather it can barricade.

A down jacket holds heat around your body’s core in order to maintain a comfortable level of warmth when the temperatures drop. Down jacket options exist that are plush, stylish, or longer for everyday use, which we highlight here in this guide.

Though we don’t include them in this guide, there are also lighter, packable, more technical down jacket designs for year-round backcountry adventures.

A jacket’s fill power is the down’s quality and amount of loft. You’ll see jackets labeled as 600-fill or 800-fill, for instance. The fill weight, which is measured in ounces, reflects the density or amount of that down stuffed inside the jacket.

So when two 700-fill jackets have different weights, we know the heavier one is warmer.

On the other hand, if two down jackets weigh the same with different fill power (such as two 15-ounce jackets with 650 fill and 800 fill), the higher fill jacket is going to be less bulky, lighter, and more compressible.

It’s also trickier to compare jackets with differing fill power. But in general, the lower the fill power, the less loft and warmth are provided.

Down jackets have a huge variance of warmth. We focus on the warmest winter jackets for women in this guide.

While some jackets are constructed to withstand below freezing or sub-zero temperatures, others are a match for summer, spring, and fall backpacking or camping trips.

Here are the broad categories of down jackets depending on their fill weight:

The combination of the fill weight and fill power changes how warm a jacket is. The higher the fill power and higher the weight, the more heat the jacket retains.

Winter lifestyle jackets are generally heavier than performance-oriented winter jackets because the priority is warmth.

In contrast, super lightweight and lightweight down jackets are very compressible and a great choice for cramming into your pack for emergency use – you can easily carry one in your backpack, purse, or car. They often cost more.

Those weights range from 226-425 g (8-15 ounces). Midweight options bump up to the 567g (20-ounce) range. Heavier-set down jackets are around 850 g (30 ounces).

Also, the lengthier the winter jacket, the heavier it will be.

You don’t want a winter jacket to fit tight, because activities like sledding, shoveling, unloading groceries from the car, or picking up the kids require a lot of freedom of movement. Plus, it’s nice to wear a comfortable long-sleeve beneath the jacket or even a fleece or wool midlayer or two if the temperatures plummet.

Some women’s winter jackets on the market are more tailored and fitted, offering less room around the circumference of the arms, shoulders, and chest.

Though relatively streamlined, the revised fits of both the Arc’teryx Patera Parka and Patagonia Women’s Tres 3-in-1 Parka are intended to allow more layers beneath, while offering a moderately slender shape. Even more relaxed winter jackets have more room for thicker or additional layers beneath like the Lands’ End Women’s Wanderweight Ultralight Packable Down Coat or Rab Women’s Deep Cover Down Parka.

Size-wise, each manufacturer has its own size charts. Be sure to check the size charts and make your personal measurements to match up your size, which can differ across brands.

Women’s winter jackets are long-term investments and worth the money for the protection and comfort they provide in a cold, wintry environment. The most economic options usually range from $200 to $300, and the average cost is $300-500. The higher tier of women’s winter jackets on our list range from $600 to $700.

The highest-end, hardiest, warmest, and longest parka designs can reach up to $1,150 or more.

A warm winter jacket breaks down for a multitude of reasons, including exposure to sunshine, rain, and snow. The materials wear due to the rub points of backpack and purse straps, brushing against the bike seat or car door, and even contact with human skin. Frequency of use, roughness of the activity, if children and animals are being held, and overall user care are factors that dissolve a jacket, too.

If you use your warm jacket for every day and live in a place with lengthy winters, the jacket will deteriorate faster. Be sure to follow the care instructions, which are unique for each jacket and located on the interior label.

With so many variables, the exact lifespan of each jacket can’t be predicted. We typically find ourselves using our favorite well-constructed winter jackets for 5 or 6 years but less if we’re harder on it.

If you take good care of your jacket or use it for select activities, you can easily assume the product life will be longer — maybe a decade.

Washing a winter jacket requires careful consideration of the material and insulation.

Before washing, check the care label for specific instructions from the manufacturer. In general, it’s best to wash your winter coat on a gentle cycle in a washing machine with a mild detergent purposed for washing products with down fill. Avoid using any fabric softeners, bleach, or harsh chemicals that can damage the material or insulation.

Before washing a winter jacket, start by zipping or buttoning up all the pockets and closures. Spot-treat any stains with a mild stain remover before placing the jacket in the washing machine.

Use a gentle cycle with a cold water setting to prevent any damage to the textile and insulation. Hot water can severely damage down by causing the feathers to clump together, thus losing their insulation properties. 

After the cycle is complete, hang the jacket to air dry, making sure to avoid direct sunlight or heat sources. Or use the tumble mode on your dryer. Adding a tennis ball can help fluff the material. It is crucial to never use the dryer’s hot air as the high heat can damage the jacket’s insulation and cause shrinkage.

Finally, fluff the jacket to restore its shape and loftiness.

Following these steps will help ensure your winter jacket is looking fresh and staying clean for many winters to come.

Whether you’re traveling to the cold, rainy Pacific Northwest or to the most frigid, snowy regions of Iceland, it is important to bring along a winter jacket that will keep you warm and comfortable while you explore.

Some of the best women’s winter jackets are designed to be packable for travel, but this trait can vary depending on the specific jacket and insulation. Jackets with down insulation tend to be more packable than those with synthetic insulation, which are generally bulkier and harder to compress.

When searching for a packable winter jacket, consider both the overall product weight and the compressibility of the design. Some jackets come with a stuff sack or can be packed into their own pockets for easy transportation, but generally those designs are found among women’s down jackets rather than bulkier women’s winter jackets. Jackets that are lightweight and compact can be great for travel, as they won’t take up too much space in your luggage.

It’s important to note that some winter jackets that are designed for extremely cold temperatures might not be as packable as others — extra insulation means extra bulk. If you’re planning a trip to a very cold destination, you may need to prioritize warmth over packability. In general, it’s a good idea to research the climate of where you are going, as well as your chosen airline’s baggage rules in case you’ll need a larger suitcase.

We tested the best women’s ski pants for both resort and backcountry. Top picks are from The North Face, Arc’teryx, Helly Hansen, and more.

We tested the best winter boots for women of 2024, from winter hiking boots to extra-warm snow boots. Our top picks include Sorel, Timberland, and more!

Based among the awe-inspiring peaks of Crested Butte, Colorado, Morgan Tilton is a Senior Editor for GearJunkie honing the SnowSports Buyer’s Guides alongside warmer coverage. More broadly, she’s an adventure journalist specializing in outdoor industry news and adventure travel stories, which she’s produced for more than a decade and more than 80 publications to date. A recipient of 14 North American Travel Journalists Association awards, when she’s not recovering from high alpine or jungle expeditions she’s usually trail running, mountain biking, or splitboarding in Southwest Colorado, where she grew up and lives today. From resort to backcountry and human-powered to motorized travel, she loves sliding across snow.

Mary Murphy is the Managing Editor of GearJunkie. She has been writing about hiking, running, climbing, camping, skiing, and more for seven years, and has been on staff at GearJunkie since 2019. Prior to that, Mary wrote for 5280 Magazine in Denver while working as an outdoor instructor teaching climbing, kayaking, paddleboarding, and mountain biking. Based in Denver, Colorado, Murphy is an avid hiker, runner, backpacker, skier, yogi, and pack-paddleboarder. Mary also serves as the leader of AllGear Digital’s DEI Committee.

Meghan LaHatte is a contributor for GearJunkie and a graphic designer for the Aspen Daily News. A recent college graduate, she is excited to dive into work with the outdoor industry, journalism, and her role as a gear tester. She’s sharpened her skills as the head marketing photographer for Momentum Ski Camps, as a climbing instructor for Western Colorado University, and as a sales representative for Redline Gallery in Crested Butte, CO. Based in Western Colorado, Meghan is a passionate rock climber, roller skater, skier, artist and coffee connoisseur — all of which she does alongside her rescue dog, Opa.

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The Best Women’s Winter Jackets of 2024

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