It’s the lightweight layer you won’t mind schlepping around.
Have you ever gotten halfway out of the house and thought, “Should I bring a jacket?” We know we have. Even if the forecast calls for a light shower or you know you’ll be chilly on your commute, you still don’t want to bring your heavy parka—if you don’t end up wearing it, you have to schlep it around all day. Big fat nope.
Enter: windbreaker jackets, one of the most practical pieces of outdoor wear worth investing in. Not only are they super lightweight and flexible (many times they can even pack into themselves!), but their basic purpose is to block wind—which comes in handy whether you’re jogging, hiking, biking, out on the water, or simply running errands. But unlike rain jackets, you won’t want a windbreaker that’s completely waterproof—just water-resistant—so it’ll feel super breathable and you won’t get sweaty during workouts.
Not sure where to start? We’ve compiled a list of the best windbreaker jackets according to shopper reviews, below. Whether you’re looking for a lightweight option that won’t break the bank, a sporty jacket to take you from trail to city, or a wind-resistant layer that won’t use up any precious carry-on space while traveling, we’ve got you covered.
Lululemon Mist Over Windbreaker
Whether you’re gearing up for a morning jog in the rain, going for a hike on a windy day, or just running errands in the city, this windbreaker jacket is made from DWR-treated, four-way stretch fabric that makes it ready for anything. You can conveniently secure the hood to prevent bounce when you’re running or biking, and you can even pack the entire jacket into the back pocket—creating an easy-to-carry pouch—when the weather warms up.
“This is possibly the most flattering windbreaker ever made! The defined waist really works for my body,” said one reviewer.
Adidas Women’s Originals Windbreaker
For a tennis-inspired look, this crisp colorblocked windbreaker delivers major court to street style. With sporty raglan sleeves and a high stand-up collar, the relaxed fit of this jacket goes great over leggings and a tank after spin or with jeans, a tee, and chunky sneakers for brunch.
One shopper raved, “I love this jacket. The design is so good! And the price is not so expensive.”
L.L. Bean Katabatic Wind Hooded Jacket
This lightweight, colorblocked windbreaker not only brings major cute factor to the trail, but it’s also breathable, moisture-wicking, and quick-drying—just in case you get caught in a summer shower.
“I spend a lot of time outdoors and this jacket will be perfect for those in between days when you need a little something some of the time,” shared one reviewer. “It folds down into a pocket that zips into a packet about 6 inches square so it is easy to travel with, too.”
Athleta Recycled City Slicker
Made from recycled polyester (read: post-consumer plastic bottles!), this fashionable, sustainable windbreaker has a relaxed fit and longer hem length for extra coverage on blustery days. Water-repellent and wind-resistant, it’s perfect for running errands and conveniently packs into its own pocket while traveling.
“Plenty of room to layer if need be, and still fits great with single layer. I love the cinched waist and the length is perfect. It looked great with my yoga gear and also at lunch with jeans and cute shoes. Perfect for those spring/summer rainy days....AND will be packing it for all my trips,” one customer said.
Nike Sportswear Windrunner
With bold colors, contrasting piping, and a chevron pattern on the chest, this playful windbreaker checks all the boxes when it comes to a trendy running jacket. Also great? It has a padded hood for extra coverage on cooler mornings and evenings.
“I bought this windbreaker in blue last year and liked it so much that I bought the sail color this year,” one shopper wrote. “It does a very good job of keeping the wind out and it is also waterproof in case you get caught in the rain.”
Columbia Flash Forward Lined Windbreaker
Reach for this sporty windbreaker when it’s breezy or stormy out—it’ll keep you comfy and dry with its wind-resistant and water-repellent fabric. Bonus: Bright reflective detailing will keep you visible and safe whether you’re leaving dinner with friends or jogging long after the sun goes down.
“Color was great! Lining was the perfect thickness. Great quality! Fit was awesome. Very happy with this purchase,” a customer raves.
Eddie Bauer Charly Anorak
The ultimate adventure anorak, this chic windbreaker boasts waterproof and breathable fabric along with a snap placket for added wind and rain protection. Plus, it can easily pack into its front kangaroo pocket, making it no-brainer for hikes and traveling. Looking for an even lighter, packable windbreaker? Check out Eddie Bauer’s Ventatrex Packable Jacket in Pale Pink ($89, was $149; eddiebauer.com) or the BC Uplift Jacket in Blue Smoke ($119, was $199; eddiebauer.com).
“I have relied on Eddie Bauer for my adventure gear for years and this is top notch just like the rest of it. The material is very thick for an Anorak, which I like. I feel like I can scratch it up, get it dirty, and it will still endure wind and rain like a champ,” said one reviewer.
Helly Hansen Voss Jacket
Built on its legacy for protecting fisherman from the elements, this jacket doubles as both a windbreaker and rain jacket. It features welded seams, a quick-drying inner fabric, and a front zipper with an storm flap, so you’ll stay dry and warm whether you’re kayaking in rough weather or simply commuting to work.
“I love this jacket! It blocks rain and wind beautifully, adds a nice layer of warmth, and looks great whether I'm running errands or with a scarf for a casual evening out,” one shopper shared.
The North Face Venture 2 Jacket
A polyurethane coating ensures that this windbreaker is durable, waterproof, and moisture-wicking, meaning it’ll be able to keep up with all your outdoor activities while also looking sophisticated thrown over jeans and a cute top. Pick from 43 hues, including feminine pink salt, your new neutral.
“I took it with me to New York and the day we got there it was raining. But, I was wearing this jacket and it not only protected me from the rain, but it helped with the wind and kept me from getting cold. I love the look of this jacket and it’s very flattering,” said a reviewer.
Fjallraven Skogso Jacket
This trail-to-city windbreaker protects from wind and light showers while also offering ventilation and breathability—so you won’t work up a sweat like you would in a fully waterproof raincoat. With an adjustable hood and a slightly longer hem in the back, it’s a flattering option that’ll keep you comfortable while trekking, biking, or commuting to work.
“It's a great jacket, lightweight, nice wind-blocking, and water-resistant. It doesn't have any insulation so colder weather needs a nice warm sweater. I absolutely love it,” one shopper wrote.
Free Country Women's Plus-Size Composure Windshear Jacket
Thanks to the longer silhouette (and water- and wind-resistant capabilities), this classic windbreaker will keep you dry and comfortable no matter the weather. Plus, the cinched waist makes for a super flattering fit, giving the casual jacket a more refined look. Choose from plus-size or regular fit, as well as an array of neutrals, including blush rose, silver, black, sage, and understated gray camouflage.
"This jacket has it all... it's warm and comfortable, its soft and fuzzy, but it is also light-weight so it doesn't weigh you down, and is great to carry around when want to have it close at hand," said a reviewer.
Canada Goose Elmira Jacket
You won't feel like you're wearing a huge paper bag with this slim-fitting, utilitarian-inspired windbreaker. It's unlined to make it feel featherlight and has mesh venting underneath the back panel for added breathability. Also amazing? The bomber has double-stripe reflective details at the back collar to keep you seen and safe after the sun sets.
"I loved the way it fits," one shopper commented.