Fleece jackets are an essential item for your wardrobe during winter. These jackets are designed to keep your body warm and safe from the cold, no matter whether you go on a run or on a mountain expedition. Fleece comes in many different types, and each jacket provides specific features. Some fleece jackets feature zippers, extra pockets, or include windproof properties. Prices are also varied, so how can you really know which is the best fleece jacket on the market?
Although there is no easy way to tell, one thing to keep in mind is that all fleece jackets are protective. Maybe you are unsure of which product to choose, but don’t worry. We have brought you a selection of various fleece jackets designed by specialized outdoor wear brands. Your decision should be based on a combination of factors like price, durability and features.
Once you have read the descriptions and properties of the following jackets, you will be able to make a more informed decision and hopefully purchase a product that will satisfy your needs. All the fleece jackets presented below offer comfort and will enhance your mountain experience.
Our top picks
|Arcteryx Covert Cardigan||No||Full front||1.3 pounds||Check price on Amazon|
|Arc'teryx Fortrez||Yes||Full front||1.3 pounds||Check price on Amazon|
|Patagonia Synchilla||No||No - half way snap buttons||1 pound||Check price on Amazon|
|The North Face Denali 2||No||Full front||2 pounds||Check price on Amazon|
|Marmot Flashpoint||Yes||Full front||0.6 pounds||Check price on Amazon|
|Penfield Carson||Yes||Full front||1.9 pounds||Check price on Amazon|
|Columbia Benton Springs||No||Full front||3 pounds||Check price on Amazon|
Things to look out for when shopping for a fleece jacket
You probably already know what type of jacket you want: with or without a hood, pockets, or zippers. Paying attention to a few minor details before a purchase will typically mean you won’t spend your money in vain.
Buying recycled fleece can help with some of environmental problems we’re facing. Some brands are well known for their commitment to sustainability and purchasing from them can only help spread this movement. When buying recycled fleece, non renewable petroleum derivatives have been used only when producing the items turned into fleece.
There are more types of fleece, and it’s usually the cheapest that releases the unmistakable bad smell some items have. This odor can be felt on any product made of cheap fleece, not just jackets. You probably already know it is almost impossible to make the smell disappear by washing.
By getting goods from reputable brands you avoid this unwanted problem. Unfortunately, when buying online, you can’t know if your product will smell or not.
While wearing or washing, many clothes items can lose their shape. This can be easily seen on items made of wool and other natural fibers. Sometimes, even fleece clothes can lose shape, however knowing the seller’s reputation will minimize the chances of this happening.
The above mentioned aspects usually come with a hefty price tag. Since not everyone can afford spending a lot on a jacket, waiting for the sale season or clearance is a great option. Buying from outlets is another way of saving on a fleece jacket.
If you wonder how can you take care of your polar fleece jacket, you might be happy to learn that special care is not needed. These items can easily be washed in the laundry machine, but at a lower temperature. Furthermore, the fabric doesn’t retain much water and it comes out of the machine nearly dry.
It is better to allow the item to air dry rather than using the drier. Buying any other color than white, you can be sure dirt won’t be easily visible and you won’t have to worry about random stains that can occur outdoors.
And the best fleece jackets for women are
All the info on fleece jackets and their features must have gotten you curious as to which ones are considered the best. Without further ado, here you some of the top women’s fleece jackets, to give you an idea.
Arcteryx Covert Cardigan Jacket
Price: $107 – $180
Weight: 1.3 pounds
Colors: Azure, indigo, black, brown, light mint, navy, white, burgundy, teal
Size: XS – XL
Specific features: Dries quickly, zippered pockets, breathable, lightweight
Best use: Riding a bike, hiking
Not all fleece jackets are the same, and the Arcteryx Covert Cardigan Jacket is a one of a kind piece. The jacket lets your body breathe thanks to its insulating properties, while it also keeps you dry when doing sports. The 2 hand pockets are placed on each side for comfort, and the zipped sleeve pocket is ideal for keeping any small accessories.
This cardigan doesn’t disappoint when it comes to fashion, as it is available in several eye catching colors. The Alpenex fabric feels soft to the touch and comfortable to wear regardless of the weather conditions. You can zip your jacket all the way up or leave it unzipped, and its features will keep the wind from reaching your body.
This cardigan is done in brushed back knit, which provides great comfort and a stylish appearance. If you are looking for a lightweight cardigan that allows you to practice professional sports, consider this one as an option.
- Side pockets
- The price
- No hood
Related: If you’d prefer an item that is more like a sweater, but still has a zipper the Arcteryx Delta LT Zip Jacket could be it.
Arc’teryx Fortrez Hoody
Price: $106 – $242
Weight: 1.3 pounds
Colors: Red, blue, white, navy blue, baby blue
Size: XS – XL
Specific features: Stretchy fabric, hood with balaclava system, breathable, zippered hand pockets, zipped chest pocket
Best use: Layering, worn alone, both indoor and outdoor activities, hiking
The Arc’teryx Fortrez Hoody is a jacket that would fit about any requirement. Made of soft but resistant Power Stretch material, the item can also be worn with or without the hoodie on. The jacket allows your body to breathe but it also keeps warm in colder weather.
The comfortable hand pockets enable you to store a cell phone or headset, while the incorporated No-lift technology adds mobility to your elbows and underarms. Additionally, the Hardface Technology keeps you dry and protected from heavy wind or rain. The hoodie is a great feature that allows your face and head to stay protected during windy weather.
The jacket comes in several refreshing colors and has a relaxed fit. If you are looking for a jacket that is suitable for a morning run but also a hike, this one is a really good option. One of its best features is that it doesn’t lose shape during washing. This hoody is ideal for layering as it’s not very thick, which helps with keeping your body warm.
- Side pockets
- The price
- Stretchy fabric
- Thin fabric
Related: Arc’teryx also offers jackets without a hood for those who prefer a hat. These are the thicker Arc’teryx Atom LT Jacket with a taffeta face and the quick drying Arc’teryx Delta LT Jacket.
Patagonia Synchilla Pullover
Price: $95 – $128
Weight: 1 pound
Colors: Black with violet blue accents
Specific features: Chest pocket, snap closing system
Best use: A quick autumn walk, hiking, fishing
Most autumn pullovers are tight around the neck, but the Patagonia Synchilla Pullover from Patagonia comes with a four snaps closing system at the neck. One of this product’s best features is that it is made of 86% recycled polyester since this brand is well committed to sustainability. The pullover’s backdraw is its lack of side pockets, but it compensates with its softness and comfort, which don’t go away during washing.
There is a chest pocket though, that is protected with a flap and also closes with a snap button. Those who are scared of the cold have nothing to worry about as the fabric keeps the body very warm, especially when layered with a top underneath. Furthermore, the collar is pretty high and reinforced, therefore it will help keep your neck warm as well.
Patagonia is known for running larger sizes, so this pullover would also fit someone who usually wears a Small in other brands. The Y joint sleeves allow the wearer to move without feeling constricted or thinking the item will rip.
- Recycled material
- No zipper
- No side pockets
- Runs large
Related: If you prefer a jacket with a zipped front and side pockets you can check out the Patagonia Better Sweater Jacket.
The North Face Denali 2 Jacket
Price: $91 – $242
Weight: 2 pounds
Colors: Many different colors and combinations of colors
Size: S – XXL
Specific features: Zippered front, zippered side and chest pockets, light weight
Best use: Autumn and winter, camping, hiking
A jacket that is available in so many colors is sure to find many fans. This jacket closes with a zipper allowing the wearer to nicely layer several other items underneath and keep warm even in winter’s temperatures of 20F or below. Zippers can be found on the pockets as well, adding extra security when you want to easily carry your phone or keys.
This North Face Denali 2 Jacket is a really good purchase for those who want an item to last for years to come while maintaining its softness and shape. Additionally, on warmer days, the insulation this jacket offers, will not overheat your body. What some readers should keep in mind is that due to screen settings, there might be color differences between the image on the screen and the product in real life.
Additionally, not everyone has the same cold resistance and might need more or less layers than other people. To reduce pollution and landfill, The North Face uses partially recycled fleece.
- Partially recycled material
- Zippered pockets
- Different screen color from real product
Related: The North Face Women’s Osito 2 Jacket is a great alternative for those who prefer a single color jacket. For a hooded jacket, the The North Face Denali Hoodie Jacket is a good option.
Marmot Flashpoint Fleece Jacket
Price: $62 – $99
Weight: 0.6 pounds
Colors: Black, atomic blue, platinum, white, orange
Size: XS – XL
Specific features: Side zippered pockets, zippered pocket on the left arm, thumb holes, lightweight
Best use: Cross country skiing, snowshoeing, bike riding
Women searching for a mid layer for wintertime might just have found the perfect item. This Marmot jacket comes with slightly longer sleeves that have holes for the thumb fingers. Wearing the sleeves around the thumbs ensures the sleeves stay in place, reduces the need for gloves and the wearer can perform more activities.
This feature is also great for those women who are more sensitive to the cold weather and prefer protecting their wrists from the elements. The Marmot Flashpoint Fleece Jacket can also be used as an outer layer when the weather is dry and cool as its wearer won’t be bothered by it. The protection against the chilly wind is increased by the elastic hem.
The pockets are positioned perfectly to hold items even when they’re forgotten unzipped. Following the size chart, you can be certain the jacket will fit nicely. Getting a size up will give you a looser fit, and more room for extra layers.
- Longer sleeves
- Zippered pockets
- Better used as midlayer
Related: This Marmot Stretch Fleece Jacket is for those who like the comfort of a stretchy material. The Primaloft insulation should help you keep warm without feeling uncomfortable. The flatlock construction is a nice touch as well.
Penfield Carson Fleece Jacket
Price: $88 – $135
Weight: 1.9 pounds
Colors: Black, gray, navy blue, off white
Size: S – XL
Specific features: Hooded, zippered pockets
Best use: Camping, fishing
For many a jacket doesn’t feel right without pockets, however the Penfield Carson Fleece Jacket does not only have one, but three of them. Two of these pockets are comfortably placed at hand level on the front of the jacket, while the third one is placed on the chest. All of them close with a zipper, therefore you can be sure your possessions will be protected.
The outside of the hood and the shoulders are reinforced with water resistant Nylon so the rain won’t be an issue. The whole jacket is lined with mesh to increase the comfort level and allow your body to breathe. The jacket has a regular fit and if you want more layers underneath, you are better off getting a size bigger.
Some wearers could feel that this jacket is a bit heavy to climb a mountain despite the manufacturer mentioning it is made of lightweight pile fleece. As such, this jacket could be a better choice for when traveling on terrain that is mostly flat.
- Mesh lining
- Zippered pockets
- Piled fleece
- Pretty heavy
Related: If you prefer something much lighter, non hooded, sleeveless, and better suited for layering, the Penfield Mattawa Fleece Vest is something to take into consideration.
Columbia Benton Springs Fleece Jacket
Price: $15 – $100
Weight: 3 pounds
Colors: More than 50 colors to choose from
Size: XS – XXL
Specific features: Zippered side pockets, slim cut fleece, lightweight
Best use: Spring, hiking
This Columbia Benton Springs Fleece Jacket for women closes with a zipper and has a tall collar to better protect against the wind when fully zipped. This jacket can be worn well in very windy weather for its MTR filament fleece of 250 grams will keep you warm and comfortable. Another great way to wear this jacket is under a ski jacket for extra warmth.
Both pockets are secured with zippers that can’t be seen at first glance: they’re hidden. The regular fit of this product means that it runs down to your hips, although it might fall a little short for taller persons. The sleeves might also be too long for shorter ladies.
Another point to keep in mind is that the color of the actual item can differ from the one seen on the screen due to different screen settings. Columbia made this jacket available in many different colors, therefore it is impossible not to find one you like.
- Zippered pockets
- Real color might differ from the one on screen
- No hood
Related: Those who want a lighter item can have a look at the sleeveless Columbia Benton Springs Vest for women, still made by Columbia.
Now you can beat the cold
These are the women’s polar fleece jackets that are less likely to have most of the problems we mentioned in the first part of the article. All these items have a regular fit making them a good choice for when you want to dress down and feel comfortable. A more tailored jacket is a better choice for running or jogging, and you can easily find these options as well.
People living in colder regions rely heavily on this material to keep warm no matter what they do and where they go, due to their lightweight, insulating properties and ease of cleaning. These jackets are an ideal gift for ladies who enjoy spending a lot of time in nature, hiking or even camping.
Do you agree with our list, or do you think other jackets should have been mentioned instead? We’d love to hear from you, so please leave a comment below!