Down jackets are one of our favorite pieces of outdoor gear: they’re impressively warm for their weight, pack down well, and provide a cozy haven from the cold. From performance pieces built for the backcountry to casual models that wear well around town, below you’ll find all of our detailed down jacket reviews. In terms of warmth, we cover the gamut, including lightweight, midweight, and heavyweight pieces. And at the bottom, you'll find a number of helpful down jacket informational articles.

Best Down Jackets of 2020

Nothing beats a great down jacket, whether it’s for casual use or tearing around the backcountry. This cozy insulation type offers the best warmth-to-weight ratio on the market and also compresses more easily than synthetics for easy stowage. Below are...

Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer UL Review

For years, Mountain Hardwear’s Ghost Whisperer down jacket has dominated the ultralight market, offering impressive warmth in a streamlined package. Now, their Ghost Whisperer UL carries the torch...

Best Cheap Down Jacket: REI Co-op 650 2.0

Here at Switchback Travel, we’re passionate about our down jackets. We’ve tested a huge range of models over the years from entry-level options from Outdoor Research and Columbia to premium alternatives...

REI Co-op 650 Down Jacket 2.0 Review

Retooled for 2019, the REI Co-op 650 Down Jacket 2.0 is one of the best budget-oriented down jackets on the market. The combination of cozy materials, responsibly sourced 650-fill down, and a...

Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer/2 Hoody Review

Ultralight without feeling ultra-compromised, the updated-for-2019 Ghost Whisperer/2 is one of the lightest fully featured down jackets on the market. Despite hitting a sub-9-ounce weight (for the men’s...

Patagonia Down Sweater Review

Climbers, hikers, and outdoor adventurers of all types have enjoyed Patagonia’s Down Sweater for years. It’s a go-to piece that has defined a jacket category, as any new down sweater is compared to this legendary...

Arc'teryx Cerium LT Hoody Review

Always designed with a specific purpose in mind, Arc’teryx offers a wide range of insulated jackets, and the Cerium LT is one of its most popular. With premium 850-fill down and Coreloft synthetic in areas prone to moisture, it’s a great option for...

Arc'teryx Thorium AR Hoody Review

Arc’teryx’s Thorium AR (“all round”) Hoody slots below the performance-oriented Cerium LT as the brand’s do-everything down layer. Eager to test this claim, I wore the women’s Thorium regularly...

Arc’teryx Cerium SL Hoody Review

The ultralight Arc’teryx Cerium SL Hoody combines 850-fill down with synthetic insulation, and it was an obvious choice for our recent bikepacking trip to Mongolia’s Khangai Mountains and trek...

Feathered Friends Eos Review

Feathered Friends is a boutique down specialist birthed out of Seattle’s climbing scene in the 1970s, and they still lead the pack in down outerwear construction and design. The company is known for...

Best Winter Jackets of 2020-2021

When the heart of the coldest winter months arrives, it’s time for a serious jacket. Our picks for the best winter jackets and parkas below are among the warmest on the market—they are packed with...

Rab Neutrino Pro Review

Winters are harsh in the U.K., and British alpinists are known for getting out in all types of conditions. So if there’s any brand we can trust to make proper gear for the cold and wet, it’s Rab. This England-based company launched the Neutrino down...

Patagonia Fitz Roy Down Parka Review

Patagonia’s down products are known for their 100-percent-traceable feathers, quality construction, and sleek, stylish looks. Building off of these core characteristics, the Fitz Roy Down Parka is...

REI Co-op Stormhenge 850 Review

REI Co-op continues to impress us with their premium down products, and we’ve been particularly taken with the Stormhenge 850 winter jacket. Featuring a waterproof shell and high-quality 850-fill down, the...

Marmot Montreal Review

Many women’s winter jacket models come and go, but Marmot’s Montreal has been a powerhouse for years. For less than $300, you get quality down fill, a fleece-lined interior, fur-rimmed hood, and clean styling, making it ubiquitous across a wide range...

Patagonia Down With It Parka Review

Patagonia’s high-performance and responsibly produced outerwear is known both for excellent protection from the elements and looking good in the process. Their casual Down With It Parka follows...

Arc'teryx Firebee AR Review

Arc’teryx rarely misses the mark with quality, performance-oriented gear, and the Firebee AR is no exception. This winter parka is the whole package: it’s loaded with premium down, and offers excellent weather resistance and impressive packability...

The North Face Metropolis Parka II Review

Winter weather doesn’t discriminate—it can be just as unforgiving on the streets of New York City as it is in the mountains of Colorado. And for everyday use, down-filled parkas like...

The North Face Gotham Jacket III Review

The North Face is known for making stylish jackets, which is demonstrated again with the winter-ready Gotham III. For a reasonable $299, it checks most major boxes including a stout weatherproof build, impressive warmth, and great durability. The...

How to Choose a Down Jacket

For the best in cozy and lofty warmth, down jackets are in a class of their own. That said, the category covers a wide range of options, from lightweight and packable designs for backcountry use to stylish...

Does Your Down Jacket Need a Hood?

A down jacket is a wonderful insulating piece: it’s light, packable and offers premium warmth that you simply can’t find in a synthetic equivalent. In choosing your perfect puffy, one of the forks in the road...

Down vs. Synthetic Insulation

As the weather cools down each year the insulation debate heats up. Goose and duck down fill are among the premier insulators on earth, trapping air and creating pockets of warmth around your body...

How to Stay Warm While Skiing

There’s a lot to love about resort skiing: you can cram in a ton of runs per day, always have the convenience of a lodge nearby, and don’t have to hoof it up thousands of vertical feet to earn your turns. That said, the biggest challenge with skiing...

Down Fill and Insulation Explained

Despite continued efforts in synthetics, down is the best insulator on Earth. It’s warmth-to-weight ratio and compressibility are unbeatable, and it’s extremely soft and cozy too. To better understand the...