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These Puffer Jackets Promise to Keep You Warm

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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Lost Coast Moleskin Puffer

Made from 100-percent cotton moleskin and filled with recycled polyester, Outerknown's option wears like a lighter, trimmer jacket but will keep you plenty toasty. It's the puffer for people who hate puffers.

Navigation Stretch Down Hoodie

This stretchy, insulated hoodie is new to this season for Lululemon. The athleisure experts emphasize that this style won't limit your range of motion, meaning it isn't the over-bundled ensemble your parents put you in to play in the snow.

Moonweight Hooded Jacket

I can confidently say this is the lightest jacket on this list — after all, it's Moonweight (whatever that means). It's made from water-resistant nylon, filled with poly and infused with graphene, which means it's odor-repelling and super warm.

Down Parka

Goldwin makes its puffers from PERTEX, a lightweight ripstop fabric known for its performance properties. Plus, the Kodenshi down does a quality job of keeping you warm, while photoelectronic regulates your body's temperature inside. Intense! But well worth it.

Prime Down Jacket

100-percent recycled materials make up the exterior and inner lining on this jacket. It's filled with Primaloft Gold down blend, and finished with recycled zipper taping. It's truly eco-friendly yet totally performs. 

1996 Retro Nuptse Jacket
The North Face

The North Face's 1996 Retro Nuptse Jacket references (very obviously) a different era in outerwear. But it proves something, too: the style's endured! It's been updated a bunch of times and ways, but it's the '90s distilled down into a down jacket. And we dig it.

Featherweight Down Jacket

The combination of browns on Filson's popular Featherweight Down Jacket proves stellar enough to compel any fashion-forward mind to buy one. But what about its performance? It's lightweight nylon on the inside and out, and filled with goose down — which has an incredible weight to warmth ratio. 

Pathead Puffer Jacket

Here's the puffer concept applied to a more straightforward silhouette. It's Kestin's Pathead Puffer in water-repellent Italian polyamide with synthetic down.

Faux Shearling Nuptse Puffer Coat
The North Face

The North Face...again? I rarely put any brand into a guide twice, but this jacket's so different from the other TNF on this list even though they're the same silhouette. This one comes with a detachable hood and the obvious shearling accents on the inside and out. This is less technical and more comfortable, because it combines the features of your favorite fleece and the puffer you've been pining for. 

Batten-Down Parka

This Batten-Down Parka from Battenwear takes cues from '70s-era outerwear, when the gear was just eh and the outdoors even wilder. It is wind- and water-repellent and has horizontal quilting for improved heat retention. 

Cerium LT Jacket

The number one reservation people have about puffer jackets is the fear that they'll look too...puffy. I guess it's a reasonable complaint. These kinds of coats can add a few inches here and there. Arc'terx's doesn't, though. It's slim, trim, and only slightly puffy — but still high-performing. 

Storm-FIT Windrunner

Nike makes everything. Of course there's a puffer in its catalog. It's called the Windrunner, which leads me to believe it works well in all types of weather (especially windy). (Hint: I'm right.) It's polyester on polyester with duck down, meaning it's light, warm, and water-repellent. 

Jackson Glacier Jacket

I love Patagonia, but sometimes a brand suffers when it gets Patagonia-level popular. And I'm not talking about quality, but mere consumer opinion. This puffer is inconspicuous, meaning the tonal Patagonia logo is barely present. You get all of the tech included without the tech bro-look about you. 

Padded Quilted Nylon Down Jacket

Aspesi take's an olive hue historically reserved for military-inspired garments and applies it to the brand's puffer. It puts a subtle twist on an otherwise straightforward style. 

Shark Capsule Shell Jacket
Orlebar Brown

This puffer by Orlebar Brown balances its size to strength ratio (if that makes sense). It isn't overly puffy but it provides the warmth and shape everyone wants from this type of jacket. And if you're not in need of the hood, just detach it. 

Vitus Down Jacket
Wood Wood

In my opinion, this is what a puffer looks like. Plush enough for you to hide inside its hood, wide enough for your shadow to look like its waddling, and way, way, way warm enough for wet, cold winters.

Puffer Jacket

A puffer made by a company that specializes in rain coats? You're getting the best of both worlds. It isn't hard, per se, to make an insulated jacket. You just want to be sure it's really waterproof, which Rains' is. It's sealed shut whenever you zipper it so that no water will penetrate. 

Orange Clay Epuffa Jacket
Daily Paper

Daily Paper interpolates outerwear aesthetics for its own puffer, which is a bright orange hue and a sensible halfway point between alpine gear and streetwear.

2-Tone Down Jacket
Moncler x and Wander

Wow. Will you look at it? If I had $2,000 to spend on a jacket you'd see me strutting the city in just this. (Pants and boots, too, duh.) It's a collab coat from Moncler and and Wander made from durable nylon with premium goose down fill. 

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