Mic/Amazon

The 8 best cycling rain jackets

There are fair-weather cyclists and then there are those diehards who peddle in the rain, wind, snow, or hail. If this is you, then you need one of the best cycling rain jackets to avoid being wet and miserable. However, it's important to keep in mind that good cycling jackets have several important qualities distinguishing them from regular raincoats:

  • Reflective: When you're cycling along busy streets, it's critical for other drivers to be able to see you, so your jacket needs reflective components and bright, highly visible colors.
  • Breathable: You sweat a lot more chugging up a hill on your bicycle than you do walking around town. High-quality cycling jackets have things like a mesh lining, strategic zippers, or other ventilating features.
  • Wind-resistant: When you're zipping down a hill at top speeds on your bike, the wind chill factor is a much bigger deal. That's why it's critical that your cycling jacket be wind-resistant, too.
  • Packable: It's fine for your regular rain coat to be bulky and heavy but cycling jackets need to be thin, lightweight, and easy to pack. The best options can be rolled up or stuffed in a backpack.

In addition to these cycling-specific features, your bike jacket should have strong waterproofing technology, such as materials that have been treated with DWR or similar repellant coating, waterproof zippers, and seam-sealed designs. They should be either hoodless or fully helmet-compatible.

Given these considerations, check out the best cycling rain jackets below.

THE BEST MEN'S RAIN JACKETS

The best overall

Constructed from a tough blend of mostly polyamide with some elastane to add stretch, this high-quality men's cycling jacket is exceptionally lightweight yet still fully waterproof thanks to its DWR treatment. Not only that, but it's also ultra-packable and can be stuffed into its own pocket, making it easy to throw in your pack. In addition to solid rain protection, it's windproof and breathable, too, with 360-degree reflective detailing for visibility at night. Offered at a reasonable mid-range price, it comes in your choice of black or bright yellow.

  • Available sizes: Small to XX-Large

The runner-up

Another fantastic pick, this top-grade men's cycling rain jacket is made from 100% lightweight polyester that's fully waterproof and completely bulk-free. It has a breathable mesh panel on the back, so you can sweat hard while you cycle without getting soaked and, like the first option, it's wind-proof, as well. It's fairly packable, with a low-profile design and thin, lightweight material. The jacket comes with your choice of bright green or red color panels to add extra daylight visibility, and both options have special BioViz reflective stripes for night riding.

  • Available sizes: Small to XX-Large

The best budget jacket

With more than 400 reviews, this popular budget rain jacket costs less than $30, yet customers say it still does a great job of blocking water. The 100% nylon material is soft and lightweight, and it has elastic cuffs for extra protection from the elements. The coat does a decent job shielding you from the wind, too, according to reviewers, and it has a stowaway hood with reflective stripes. The hood isn't helmet-compatible; however, it can be tucked away into the collar so it doesn't collect water while you're riding. It's available in a handful of different colors, too.

  • Available sizes: Small to XX-Large

The best for night riding

All of the jackets on this list have reflective elements, but this one is specifically designed for people who ride a lot at night. The premium-quality men's cycling jacket features a combination of highly reflective material called REFLECT360 that interacts with headlights, and naturally bright fabric to keep you visible. The REFLECT360 is positioned in the parts of the jacket most likely to catch light from cars during rides, while the regular high-visibility material runs throughout the rest. The sleek rain jacket offers a rare combination of complete dryness and exceptional breathability — fully waterproof material with rain-blocking pockets, zippers, and a seam-sealed design, while the interior features a ventilated mesh liner. It also has Velcro cuffs and a zip-pull to attach your gloves.

  • Available sizes: X-Small to XX-Large

THE BEST WOMEN'S RAIN JACKETS

The best overall

This outstanding women's rain jacket, which is specifically designed for biking, is warm in addition to being fully waterproof. The breathable fabric is constructed from 100% polyester that blocks both wind and rain, and the interior boasts a thermal fleece liner that wicks sweat while keeping you cozy and dry. This low-profile cold-weather rain coat is bulk-free and highly packable, with a full-length zipper that offers ventilation without being drafty on chillier days. The back of the coat has zippered pockets, and there are high-visibility reflective components throughout.

  • Available sizes: X-Small to XX-Large

The runner-up

Constructed with a special fabric that's extremely waterproof yet also lightweight, this women's biking jacket is a great way to stay dry and comfortable while cycling around town. The packable design is made especially for biking, and it has reflective Scotchlite fabric. The 2.5-layer material is at once breathable and fully waterproof, while the taped seams provide extra protection from both water and wind. The front pockets are water-resistant, and it boasts an adjustable hood that fits comfortably underneath your helmet.

  • Available sizes: Small to X-Large

The best budget jacket

For folks on a budget, this Little Donkey cycling jacket provides an excellent blend of quality and affordability. The 100% nylon jacket is lightweight and impressively waterproof, according to fans — especially considering the price. The 2.5-layer material is breathable and wind-resistant with high-density nylon in the middle of laminated TPU and tough ripstop. Air vents in the back add extra ventilation and it is extremely thin and packable. It has a zippered back pocket and two high-visibility reflective stripes.

  • Available sizes: X-Small to X-Large

The best for night riding

If you ride a lot at dusk or after dark, this Proviz Nightrider rain jacket is a fantastic option. It's the women's version of the high-visibility men's coat above and similarly, it's made with a blend of two fabrics: a naturally bright, waterproof material and a specially designed reflective fabric. The latter, which is called REFLECT360, is featured in the areas of the jacket most prone to bouncing headlights, making you extra visible in the evening hours. It's breathable and fully waterproof, with storm pockets, waterproof zippers, and sealed seams. Not only that, but it also has a breezy, ventilated mesh liner and Velcro cuffs for blocking both wind and rain.

  • Available sizes: 2 to 10

Mic may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently of Mic's editorial and sales departments.