How to Choose the Perfect Raincoat

Your Guide to buying the best raincoats


A raincoat is a practical and stylish way to protect yourself from the elements when the forecast calls for rain. Whether you’re looking for a coat to keep you warm and dry during your commute, while hiking, or while out on the town, there is a raincoat to fit your needs. This buying guide will provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision when purchasing a raincoat, such as the different types of raincoat materials, features to look for, and other factors to consider.

Key features

  1. Material: Raincoats come in a variety of materials. Common materials include nylon, polyester, and neoprene. Consider the climate of the area you plan to wear the raincoat in when selecting the material.
  2. Style: Raincoats come in a variety of styles, including anoraks, parkas, trench coats, and ponchos. Each style has different features, so consider which features will best suit your needs.
  3. Fit: It is important to select a raincoat that fits you well. Make sure the coat is not too tight or too loose. Consider the length of the coat and whether it covers your hips and lower body.
  4. Weatherproofing: Look for a raincoat that is waterproof and breathable. Look for features such as taped seams, waterproof zippers, and adjustable hoods for added protection from the elements.
  5. Additional Features: Consider any additional features that may be important to you when selecting a raincoat. Common features include pockets, vents, and drawstrings for adjustable fit.

See the most popular raincoats on Amazon

Important considerations


  • Waterproof: Raincoats are designed to keep the wearer dry, even in the heaviest of downpours.
  • Lightweight: Raincoats are usually lightweight, making them easy to transport and wear.
  • Breathable: Many raincoats are designed to be breathable, allowing sweat and moisture to escape while keeping the wearer dry.
  • Stylish: Raincoats come in a variety of styles, so you can find one to suit your needs and personal style.
  • Protection: Raincoats can help protect the wearer from wind and cold temperatures.
  • Versatile: Raincoats can be worn in a variety of situations, such as for hiking, camping, or just a rainy day.


  • Style/Fit - Raincoats come in many different styles and sizes, so it is important to make sure that the raincoat fits properly and is comfortable to wear.
  • Material - Raincoats are made from a variety of materials, some of which are not designed to be waterproof. As such, it is important to choose a raincoat that is made from a waterproof material.
  • Price - Raincoats can range in price from relatively inexpensive to quite expensive. It is important to consider what is an acceptable price range for the desired quality and features.
  • Durability - Some raincoats are not particularly durable and may need to be replaced more often than more expensive counterparts.
  • Breathability - Some raincoats are not very breathable and can cause the wearer to become hot or uncomfortable.
  • Weight - Lighter raincoats can be more comfortable to wear, but may not offer as much protection from the elements. Heavier raincoats may be more durable and provide more protection, but may be more uncomfortable to wear in hot weather.
  • Maintenance/Care - Depending on the material and style of the raincoat, it may require special care or maintenance to keep it in good condition.

Best alternatives

  1. Rain Jackets - jackets that have a lightweight fabric and are tightly sealed to keep out water
  2. Ponchos - a piece of fabric with a hole in the middle that slips over the head and is typically more affordable and easier to transport than a rain coat.
  3. Umbrellas - a device that can be used to keep a person dry while in the rain.
  4. Rubber Boots - rubber boots that are waterproof and come up to the ankles or higher.
  5. Waterproof Hiking Boots - waterproof boots designed specifically for outdoor activities such as hiking, climbing, and backpacking.

Related tools, supplies, and accessories

  • Umbrella - A common accessory that can be used for rain protection.
  • Rain Boots - Waterproof boots for keeping feet dry in wet conditions.
  • Rain Hat - A hat with a brim to help keep rain off the face.
  • Waterproof Spray - A spray used to make raincoats more water-resistant.
  • Rain Poncho - A large hooded garment worn for rain protection.
  • Rain Jacket - A lightweight, waterproof jacket typically worn in wet conditions.

Common questions

  1. What features should I consider when buying a raincoat? Look for raincoats with waterproof fabrics, wind-resistant properties, and sealed seams to ensure you stay dry in a downpour. Pay attention to the fit – choose a style that works best for your body type and activities. Check to see if the raincoat features pockets or other storage options, and consider the weight of the fabric if you plan on wearing your raincoat often.
  2. What types of raincoats are available? There are several varieties of raincoats available, including ponchos, parkas, anoraks, and trench coats. Ponchos are lightweight and come in oversized silhouettes, and are great for casual wear. Parkas offer more coverage and feature a drawstring waist and hood for added protection from the elements. Anoraks are lightweight and tend to be more fitted than other styles. Trench coats are a timeless classic with a clean, tailored silhouette.
  3. What are the benefits of buying a raincoat? Raincoats are an excellent way to stay dry and comfortable when the weather turns wet. They are also a great way to add an extra layer of protection from the elements without compromising style. Raincoats are available in a variety of styles, colors, and fabrics, making them a great addition to any wardrobe.
  4. Are there different types of raincoat fabrics? Yes, there are several different fabrics used in raincoat manufacturing. Common fabrics include nylon, polyester, Gore-Tex, and neoprene. Each fabric has its own advantages, so be sure to consider the performance requirements before making your decision.
  5. Are raincoats worth the investment? Raincoats are generally an excellent investment. They offer protection from the elements, are typically lightweight and comfortable, and can often be worn in multiple seasons. Raincoats can also help you stay dry and warm while looking stylish.


According to the American History Museum, the first raincoat was invented in 1824 by Charles Macintosh, a Scottish chemist. Macintosh's invention was made of two layers of fabric with a layer of rubber sandwiched between them. This meant that it was waterproof, but unfortunately it was also very smelly. To make up for the smell, Macintosh added a layer of wool to the coat, making it both waterproof and warm. It became known as the "Macintosh" and went on to become one of the most popular raincoat designs in history. Source

Disclaimer: This buying guide was not created by humans, and it is possible that some of it's content is inaccurate or incomplete. We do not guarantee or take any liability for the accuracy of this buying guide. Additionally, the images on this page were generated by AI and may not accurately represent the product that is being discussed. We have tried to convey useful information, but it is our subjective opinion and should not be taken as complete or factual.