This water-repellent, windproof vest is an RDS-certified down product. It is tear-resistant and features tricot-lined, zippered hand pockets. For storage and travel, it can be stuffed into the left pocket, which has a convenient carabiner clip-in loop.
This vest is lighter than some expected, but that's what makes it suitable for activewear.
This vest features a nylon shell and lining, and 90 percent duck down insulation. Stretch arm holes and raised collar are nice features. Compacts nicely into an included carry pouch.
Not as warm as goose down vests.
Features a durable nylon shell with 80 percent duck down insulation. Boasts water-resistant fabric, adjustable hem and large inside pocket for storing valuables. Zippered hand pockets.
Insulation isn’t the highest grade.
Features a polyester shell and lining with a stand-collar design to keep your neck warm. Quilted and windproof, with one interior pocket and zippered hand pockets. Compacts well.
Polyester fill instead of actual down.
Quilted and water-resistant, this vest has a durable nylon shell and lining, and duck down and feather insulation. Stand-up collar and elasticized arm holes provide extra warmth. Zippered hand pockets.
No waist drawstring. Too thin for regular winter use.
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A down vest is arguably one of the most versatile outerwear pieces a man can own. It provides freedom of movement that is impossible to achieve while wearing a coat, yet it is still extremely effective at providing warmth.
The right men's down vest can allow for full range of motion, provide adequate warmth, and make you look fantastic. When choosing a vest, there are a few key ideas to keep in mind. For example, “fill power” is an oft-misunderstood term that it helps to clarify when talking about an item containing down. “Hydrophobic down” is specially treated down that you might be interested in, depending on what you like to do outside. And not least important, a down vest can look fantastic when paired with the right pieces, such as a pair of great jeans and hiking boots.
In this article, we highlight the features you should consider when shopping for a men’s down vest.
The best fit for a down vest is close to the body, but not so snug that movement is restricted or the down is compressed. If you are going to wear layers beneath your vest, you may need to go up one size. Don't get a vest that is too big, however, or it won't effectively insulate you.
The concept of fill power can be boiled down to this: the higher the fill power, the more warmth provided. For example, a vest with 1 pound of 800-fill down will be warmer than a vest with 1 pound of 600-fill down.
The less a down vest weighs, the more you will like wearing it — as long as it provides adequate warmth. Additionally, a lightweight down vest will be easier to compress if you need to pack it for hiking or camping.
A down vest that consists of “hydrophobic down” contains down that has been treated to repel water rather than absorb it. This is important because down loses its ability to keep you warm once it gets wet. Purchasing a down vest with treated down can help ensure you will stay warm if the vest gets wet.
When traveling, a vest may be a better option than a winter coat because it takes up less packing space.
Even if you won't be using your down vest for camping and hiking, an outer material that is tear-resistant, windproof, and waterproof is ideal. Durable polyester or nylon are two solid options.
Zippered pockets are often preferred so you do not lose what you place in them. While most vests have two side pockets, a few also feature a chest pocket for added convenience.
While a down vest is fairly good at helping keep your core warm, there are three additional features you may want to consider.
If you want a down vest with a little extra style, there are four additional features to consider.
Jeans: Levi’s Men’s 517 Bootcut
You can’t go wrong with a pair of bootcut Levi’s with your down vest. These 517s are available in a range of washes and are tailored to fit nicely through the seat and upper leg.
Compression shirt: Men’s Under Armour ColdGear Compression Crew
Under Armour makes some of the best compression shirts, and we love this cold-weather crew for its stylish appearance and layering possibilities.
Hiking boots: Men’s Timberland White Ledge Ankle Boots
If you’ll be hiking in your down vest, consider this sturdy pair of waterproof Timberlands for your next adventure. They come at a reasonable price and are valued for their durability.
Inexpensive: A lightweight, budget-priced down vest will cost between $20 and $40. In this range, you won't find many slim-fitting models with a tailored look; the fit tends to be more bulky or boxy.
Mid-range: In the $40 to $80 price range, you will find men's down vests with a greater emphasis on style, allowing the wearer to achieve a slimmer, more put-together look. Many of these vests are lightweight yet still provide adequate warmth.
High-end: While you could spend $200 or more, between $80 and $140 is what you can expect to pay for the typical high-end vest. These vests tend to be more rugged — something you would feel comfortable wearing in extreme conditions. Many vests in this upper range tend to be quite stylish, too.
If you want to look stylish, fit, and slim when wearing a down vest, consider one that is tapered at the waist.
If we carefully choose what we wear, we can tell the world a great deal about who we are without ever saying a word. Here are a few tips on how to present your best self in a vest.
A. One of the most common questions you get asked when wearing a vest is, "Aren't your arms cold?" When the temperature drops, your body increases blood flow to your core to protect your vital organs. This reduces the blood flow to your extremities, which means they get cold. A vest is designed to keep your core warm so your arms (and legs) can still receive the adequate blood flow needed to stay warm.
A. Two key factors can help determine when it is best to wear a vest: temperature and activity. For example, if it is cold outside but you are active, a vest is fine. On the other hand, if it is cold and you are not engaged in any sort of physical activity, a vest might not be enough to keep you warm.
A. The Responsible Down Standard (RDS) is an organization devoted to protecting animal welfare, educating companies (so they understand what is actually in their products), and providing credible certification for companies that seek to adhere to cruelty-free down sourcing practices. Some of the best down vests for men adhere to the RDS.