IF YOU'VE been bitten by the running bug during the summer, you might be considering continuing your jogging exploits into the autumn and winter.
To make your running experience as seamless (and enjoyable) as possible as the conditions start to change though, it’s worth investing in a waterproof running jacket.
Although you might already own a waterproof coat, a running-specific shell will have a better cut (preventing fabric from flapping around and slowing you down in the process) and will also be more breathable – keeping you dry both on the outside of the jacket and inside too.
And, like other running clothing, a women-specific jacket will fit a lot better than those designed for a man.
Other features to look out for include waterproof pockets (handy for storing valuables) and the ability to stow the jacket away into a compact pack – making it easy to carry in a running backpack.
Not sure where to start in your search for the best waterproof running jacket for women? The below list should have something for all budgets and needs.
1. Evadict Women’s Waterproof Trail running jacket
- Evadict Women’s Waterproof Trail running jacket, £54.99 from Decathlon – buy here
Staying dry doesn’t always have to mean spending lots of money, as Decathlon’s in-house brand Evadict proves.
Although it may have a budget price, the jacket has features that are generally found on waterproof shells twice as much.
Fully taped seams and waterproof zips should keep you dry when the conditions turn, while the jacket will remain breathable in all but the hottest conditions.
Two side pockets allow you to keep your essentials at hand. One of them is also waterproof, meaning it can be packed into it once the rain has stopped and stored in a rucksack without getting your bag’s contents wet.
Keela Ladies Storm Jacket
- Keela Ladies Storm Jacket, £104.95 from Keela – buy here
If you’re looking for a jacket that is great for running but also other sports such as cycling, then the Ladies Storm Jacket by Scottish company Keela is a great bet.
As well as being waterproof and breathable, the jacket has four zipped pockets handy for storing mid-run essentials.
Its adjustable hood meanwhile can fit snuggly over a bike helmet, keeping your head dry whether you’re running or cycling.
Reflective trims increase your visibility in low light settings and a scooped back helps to keep your bottom dry from spray from the road or trails.
3. The North Face Women’s Flight Futurelight Jacket
- The North Face Women’s Flight Futurelight Jacket, £146.25 from Wiggle – buy here
The North Face is renowned for its all-terrain clothing, and its Flight Futurelight Jacket is its answer to a women’s waterproof that can withstand the most challenging conditions.
A standard fit allows room for movement when tackling the trails, and an adjustable hem and hood prevents rain from getting into the jacket at potential weak points.
Made from 90% of sustainable recycled fabrics, it’s also the green choice in this round-up.
4. On Women’s Waterproof Anorak
- On Waterproof Anorak, £320 from On – buy here
An anorak isn’t a common choice when looking for a waterproof running jacket, but this relaxed fit offering from Swiss brand On can rival its more tight-fitting full-zip rivals.
Completely water- and windproof, the anorak features a smart fabric that increases airflow the harder your working – making it suitable for summer showers as well as winter downpours.
It packs away into its own inner pocket, making it easy to carry when not in use. Its lightweight construction makes something that can be chucked in a rucksack and forgotten about, coming to the rescue when you really need it.
5. Lululemon Rain Chaser Jacket
- Lululemon Rain Chaser Jacket, £168 from Lululemon – buy now
The most stylish pick in our list, the Rain Chaser Jacket from much-loved fitness brand Lululemon certainly looks the part. But can it deliver when the weather turns sour?
While not as waterproof as some of the more heavy-duty picks in our list, it will certainly keep you dry if caught in a shower in a 5k – and you’ll look good while doing it.
Pockets cleverly double as vents when you need a little extra airflow, while the sleeves roll up to reveal some nicely designed reflective detailing.
6. Proviz Reflect360
- Proviz Reflect women’s running jacket, £89.99 from Proviz – buy here
If you’re considering running to and from work, then a waterproof jacket is a worthwhile investment for around half the year.
The Reflect360 from Proviz will not only keep you warm and dry, but it will help you stay seen when out running too.
Made from an extremely reflective material, car’s lights literally bounce off the jacket, turning your jacket into your own light source.
7. Gore Wear Women's R7 Gore-Tex Shakedry
- Gore Wear Women's R7 Gore-Tex Shakedry, £220.99 from Wiggle – buy here
For unrivalled protection against the elements, you should look no further than clothing that features Gore-Tex. The American brand is a by-word for waterproof and you know you can rely on it to keep you dry in the worst conditions.
The R7 Gore-Tex Shakedry from Gore Wear is the pinnacle of waterproof road running jackets, but that protection comes with a cost.
Water beads on the fabric, rather than being absorbed, allowing the jacket to be literally shaken dry for the next time it’s called upon.
One thing to note is that the material is very delicate, so if you’re planning on tackling overgrown trails or wearing a bag while running, you should look for something a bit more wear-resistant.
What is the best running jacket for winter?
A winter running jacket should not only be able to keep you dry from the elements, but warm on those days when there’s a chill in the air.
Proviz’s Reflect360 is a cost-effective way to stay protected year-round and is something of an all-in-one running jacket.
Should I wear a jacket when running?
Choosing the right clothing when running is crucial – not enough or not the right layers and you can be left cold and wet, too much and even the most breathable jacket can soon become a sweaty mess.
It’s best to wear a jacket only if the conditions call for it. If the forecast looks changeable, then a packable running jacket can be a handy accessory to have in your running bag.
What is the best rain jacket for running?
The best rain jacket for running depends on the type of running you’re doing. The R7 Gore-tex Shakedry from Gore Wear is the top of the pile if you’re looking for a premium road running shell but is delicate so should be avoided in other circumstances.
For trail running or running with a bag, The North Face Women’s Flight Futurelight Jacket is tough to beat.
Are windbreakers good for running?
While windbreakers are a handy addition to any runner’s wardrobe, you might be better of just investing in a waterproof jacket.
Most will also include protection against the wind, preventing you from needing a different jacket for every occasion.
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