The world's most in-depth and scientific reviews of outdoor gear

How We Tested Winter Jacket for Women

By Liz Williamson ⋅ Review Editor
Thursday November 15, 2018

Where We Tested


We tested each of these winter jackets in stormy winter weather and on sunny bluebird days, and during everyday use in Lake Tahoe, California and the Sierra Nevada mountains. From early morning commutes to work to cold and bitter walks with friends, we used each model for countless different activities and in various weather conditions. We were fortunate to have some early season storms and below freezing temperatures and we were able to gauge the warmth and weather resistance of each model by cycling through the different jackets daily, as well as loaning them out to friends and gathering their feedback.

We tested these jackets all around Lake Tahoe  California and more! We hunted down snow  tromped around in rain  went hiking in sunny weather  to really get a feel for how each jacket performed.
We tested these jackets all around Lake Tahoe, California and more! We hunted down snow, tromped around in rain, went hiking in sunny weather, to really get a feel for how each jacket performed.

Whenever we left the house, we wore a different jacket to test out each one and get to know them better. We understand that winter weather isn't predictable and some years are better snow years than others. This was the case this year when we tested our winter jackets. We had some big early season storms, and then it tapered off. To get a sense of how these jackets worked in cold temperatures we had to test late at night and early in the morning.

We tested the jackets at different times of day  at the different temperatures in an airy of weather to really get a sense for how each jacket performed.
We tested the jackets at different times of day, at the different temperatures in an airy of weather to really get a sense for how each jacket performed.

Testing Process


We tested each winter jacket with various layers on underneath, from spandex leggings and a t-shirt to thermal long underwear with thick sweaters, in our effort to examine the fit and mobility of each one. We would wear different layers at different times of the day to measure the warmth of each model. We also tried them on a variety of ladies to get a sense of the fit and style and to see which ones had more fashionable looks. We compared notes about the praises and issues of each jacket and compiled the feedback into this extensive review.

We even wore the jackets on small walks or hikes when we traveled in and around California. We learned how many layers were needed to feel comfortable in each jacket. We were a little too hot here in the Rab Deep Cover Parka  mainly because we had a sweatshirt on underneath.
We even wore the jackets on small walks or hikes when we traveled in and around California. We learned how many layers were needed to feel comfortable in each jacket. We were a little too hot here in the Rab Deep Cover Parka, mainly because we had a sweatshirt on underneath.

We also examined and took into consideration each jacket's small details, from the zippers to the lining in the pockets, to the quality of the faux or real fur ruff around the hoods.

We weren't afraid to get soaked in these jackets to really determine which ones were the most waterproof.
We weren't afraid to get soaked in these jackets to really determine which ones were the most waterproof.

While we spent time in each jacket outside in stormy weather, we wanted to see how each model performed in a super heavy downpour. So we hopped in the shower in each one for two and a half minutes under a steady stream. This was a great way to get an accurate side-by-side comparison of their ability to keep us dry, as we could instantly tell once they were fully saturated.