How to Choose the Best Lightweight Waterproof Jacket for Summer

June 08, 2023


Are you gearing up for your summer adventures, and looking for the best lightweight waterproof jacket? Whether you're planning a hiking trip, a beach getaway, or just bracing for those unpredictable summer showers, a lightweight, breathable waterproof jacket is a must-have in your wardrobe. Here’s everything you need to know to help you choose the best lightweight waterproof jacket Australia has to offer.

Why you need a softshell jacket for Summer: Softshell jackets are a must-have for summer as they keep you warm in sudden gusts and unforeseen chilly blasts. Softshells are essential for kids too, as sudden cool spells can ruin your outdoor adventure if your little ones get chilled. Luckily great brands have created lightweight, breathable and portable options for you and your family to keep you warm in sudden cool changes this summer.

Consider Colour: A Hi Vis Softshell Jacket is Best for Cycling

If you’re heading off sailing, cycling or fishing by a busy waterway where you need to stay visible, a hi vis softshell jacket is a great choice. They’re vibrant, but light enough to let your body breath as you work hard to pedal up that next hill. If you’re after a more gentle tone, modern patterns and colours make these hugely useful jackets a fashion statement too. Great brands now offer pastels, moody patterns and classic dark hues to keep your waterproof look on trend.

The Best Womens Waterproof Cycling Jacket Is Unisex
The best womens waterproof cycling jackets must be bright, but breathable and lightweight. Plus, they need to be able to be packed away easily to not add bulk while you’re on your adventures. Look for options like the Rainbird STOWaway which can be packed up into a compact ball, but doesn’t compromise on waterproofing and durability. Best of all, most womens waterproof cycling jackets like the STOWaway are unisex so they work perfectly for men and women.

Consider Waterproof Ratings Depending on Where You’ll Be

If you’re going to be exploring the jungle in Far North Queensland, you’ll need a much more waterproof jacket than if you’re considering a stroll in the gentle rain of Melbourne’s summer. The waterproof rating of a jacket is measured in millimeters (mm) and indicates how much water pressure it can withstand before letting moisture seep through. For summer use, a jacket with a rating of 5,000mm should suffice to keep you dry without requiring heavier fabric.
Seam sealing is another way brands can make jackets fully waterproof. This almost invisible method is done via a Heat Sealing Tape that is run over the seams. Without seam sealing, the tiny holes made during the sewing process can let water in, leaving you damp. Rainbird ensures most of their jackets are made with seam sealing technology.

Breathability Matters When Choosing a Lightweight Waterproof Jacket in Australia

Staying dry is crucial, but you also don't want to feel like you're in a sauna. Great breathable jackets release the water vapour from inside the jacket to the outside via tiny holes in the fabric to keep you dry and comfortable. Look for a jacket with good breathability, measured in Moisture Vapour Permeability (mvp). A rating of 5000 or higher will ensure you stay comfortable even in warm, muggy conditions.
Top breathable lightweight waterproof jackets in Australia for Summer:
STOWaway - 7,000mvp rating
Agena 2.5 and Hadar 2.5 - 8,000mvp rating
Women’s Polaris - 8,000mvp
Men’s Deneb- 8,000mvp

Weight and Packability Help Determine the Perfect Lightweight Waterproof Jacket

Since it's summer, the last thing you want is a bulky, heavy jacket weighing you down. Choose a lightweight jacket that's easy to pack and won't hog up your backpack space. It should be compact enough to carry with you everywhere.
Great brands make jackets with a packable pocket or insert, like the Rainbird STOWaway jacket. By using the jacket’s own pocket, you can pack the jacket away to keep it in the car or in your backpack for easy access. This way it won’t take up too much room when it’s packed away so you can always have it with you.

Choose a Comfy Fit for your Lightweight Waterproof Jacket

From long-line jackets to shorter waist-length jackets, the best style of your lightweight waterproof jacket will depend on your activity. Waterproof fishing jackets will work best if they’re slightly longer, while cycling jackets are usually better if they’re waist-length.

Avoid the Scrunching Sound of a Lightweight Waterproof Jacket by Choosing Quiet Fabric

When you think of waterproof fabric, you probably can imagine that scrunching and ‘swish swish’ sound of raincoats from your childhood. Thankfully, modern brands use technical waterproof ‘quiet’ fabrics that don’t make an intrusive sound when you walk and move. This means you can enjoy your hike through the forest in a gentle rain without hearing your jacket scrunching and disrupting the peace and quiet of the bush.

Your Lightweight Waterproof Jacket Must be Durable

Invest in a quality jacket that can withstand rough and tumble adventures. Check for reinforced seams, durable zippers, and high-quality materials that can handle the wear and tear of outdoor activities.
Some great durable jackets, like the Rainbird Agena 2.5 and Hadar 2.5 are lightweight, breathable and waterproof making them perfect for summer hikes. Plus, they have a thin laminate inner lining making them extra durable with enhanced waterproofing. Luckily though, the soft-touch fabric is slim enough to keep you cool on hot, wet summer nights.

Choosing the best lightweight waterproof jacket is easy when you know what to look for. Decide on your ideal colour scheme, length, breathability and waterproof rating depending on your main activities, and you’re ready to go. Rainbird waterproof jackets are the perfect place to start looking. Rainbird jackets are designed with the harsh Australian climate in mind, making them perfect for summer adventures anywhere in the world. From lightweight and packable jackets to stylish and durable options, Rainbird jackets are made with exceptional waterproof, breathability and fabric ratings and designs.
So, don't let a little rain or unexpected drizzle ruin your plans. Stay dry, comfortable, and stylish while you explore the world, and make sure to check out Rainbird Waterproof Jackets Australia for some top-notch options. Adventure awaits, so go out and make the most of it!

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