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The Best Puffer Jackets for Every Style

Insulation and a quilt-like stitch pattern give these jackets their shape.

puffer jackets
Gear Patrol

"Puffer jackets, down jackets. What's the difference?" you, probably. Well, all down jackets are puffer (for the most part) but not all puffers are down jackets. Down refers to the material each little quilted pocket is stuffed with. Puffer is merely an aesthetic descriptor of the puff created by particular stitching patterns.

Some brands favor straight across stripes, which create stacked pillows down the jacket. Others opt for squares, which give jackets a quilted look. Plenty create their own patterns, too, like The North Face's ultra-thick puffs or Goldwin's Chevron-like lines. No matter the differences in their intricacies, all of the jackets on this list share a primary function: to keep the wearer warm.

Eddie Bauer designed the first puffer, the Skyliner, in 1936 after he nearly froze to death on a fishing trip. Like sleeping bags, his padded jackets insulated the wearer, trapping in heat, and keeping them warm (and in Eddie's case alive). A few decades later the style made its way into the fashion sphere, courtesy of womenswear designer Norma Kamali (with her Sleeping Bag Coat) and luxury label Moncler (with its colorful Alpine coats).

Nowadays the style's everywhere: hidden in collab collections between Drake and Nike, worn like a uniform by British rappers, and trusted by every college-aged adult in America living on a campus where even the cold can't stop the party. Shop the streetwear-influenced, alpine-oriented, and every version in-between below.

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our pick
Lost Coast Moleskin Puffer
an upgrade
Featherweight Water Repellent Down Coat
an affordable alternative
Ultra Light Down Parka
Navigation Stretch Down Hoodie
Moonweight Hooded Jacket
Prime Down Jacket
1996 Retro Nuptse Jacket
Pathead Puffer Jacket
Sherpa Nuptse Jacket
Batten-Down Parka
Cerium LT Jacket
Storm-FIT Windrunner
Jackson Glacier Down Jacket
Padded Quilted Nylon Down Jacket
Shark Capsule Shell Jacket
Orlebar Brown
Vitus Down Jacket
Puffer Jacket
Orange Clay Epuffa Jacket
2-Tone Down Jacket
Moncler x and Wander
More Jackets for Keeping Warm
Chase Pellerin

Explore the following guides to find more of our top jacket recommendations.

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