Ski Jackets

Designed in France, at the foot of the Alps, CimAlp's ski jackets are made using high-end materials and the latest technologies
to keep you warm and dry, on the slopes or during any skiing activity (Nordic ski, cross-country skiing, freeride...)

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What do I need to know before buying a jacket for Skiing?

There’s a massive choice of ski jackets available to todays skiers, which is hardly surprising when you consider the wide variety of skiing disciplines you might be enjoying, from the many variants of Alpine skiing and Nordic skiing, to freeride and of course snowboarding… Here’s our ski jacket buying guide to help.

Equipping yourself well for skiing is vital, and finding your perfect ski jacket is right at the top of the list. Sure, you want to look the part on the slopes, as well as for the apres ski. But functionality and performance need to be right, too. 

Fit and features to look for on your ski jacket

Look out for the following features to suit your chosen ski discipline and conditions:

Fit : don’t choose too tight – you need room for different layers to match your activity.
Pockets : make sure you’ve got plenty, including for bulky items like gloves. And don’t forget a dedicated pocket for your ski lift pass.
Stretch : high stretch materials can add hugely to your comfort and freedom of movement.
Ventilation : vents and pit-zips will help you manage your temperature and avoid overheating.
Hood : sometimes crucial, but not always – a removeable and adjustable hood can be handy.
Powder skirt & wrist gaiters : essential to avoid powder going where you don’t want it…
Safety : high end jackets include systems such as Recco® detectors, which help you get found if buried in snow during an avalanche.

Ski jacket waterproofing and insulation

Your ski jacket has to be able to keep out cold, wet snow, as well as icy winds, so one of the first things to check is that it has a suitably waterproof and windproof fabric. Check the waterproof rating, which may be measured in ‘hydrostatic head’ or Schmerbers – the higher the number (in mm), the more waterproof it will be. 10,000mm is a good minimum rating to aim for with a hardshell jacket, but many modern ski jackets offer even higher levels, such as those featuring CimAlp’s patented Ultrashell® membrane.

Softshell ski jackets will offer great flexibility and a degree of moisture protection, but won’t be as waterproof, so you’ll need a hardshell to wear on top of it if conditions  are wet.

Depending on where and how you’re skiing, you may want to look for a jacket that combines a waterproof outer shell with insulation. Generally we’d recommend this for more extreme below zero temperatures. Down insulation works well in dry conditions, but not so well if it’s wet – and if you’re working really hard and overheat, you will quickly start to sweat, so your jacket can get damp from the inside.