When you’re far from any shelter during your hike, having a good rain jacket can save the day.
But with tons of choices out there, how do you pick the best rain jackets for men in 2024?
You’ll want a jacket that’s light, waterproof, and lets your skin breathe so you stay dry without feeling weighed down.
In this guide, we’ve gathered our picks for the best rain jackets for men this year to make your search easier. We’ll cover the top lightweight and ultralight hiking rain jackets that will keep you dry on the trail.
It’s time to make your pack lighter and get a better rain jacket for men. Let’s begin!
Weight: 3.52 ounces (100 grams)
Waterproof Rating: 15,000 HH
✅ Small pack size
❌ Only two colors available
The Inov8 Raceshell ultralight rain jacket is like a dream for hikers and trail runners who move quickly. It’s super light, weighing only 3.52 ounces (100 grams), yet it keeps you really dry without making you feel heavy.
We tried out the Raceshell on a bunch of day hikes and trail runs, and we were seriously impressed with how well it worked.
Even when it poured rain really hard while we were on the trail, the jacket’s waterproof rating of 15,000HH held up great.
The seams on the jacket were taped so well that no water leaked in, and the fabric was breathable, so we stayed comfortable even when we were working hard uphill. We also loved how easy it was to pack up the jacket because it’s so light and portable.
Our only complaint is about the hood design. When we pulled the hood tight to protect ourselves from the storm, it was hard to zip the jacket all the way up because the collar is slim. The neck hole is a little small when the hood is up, so there isn’t much room to comfortably fit the zipper inside.
But other than that, the Inov8 Raceshell is now our favorite ultralight rain jacket. It has everything fast hikers and runners need in a simple waterproof layer.
Weight: 9.52 ounces (270 grams)
Waterproof Rating: 28,000 HH
✅ Great waterproof rating
✅ Sizeable pockets
The Haglöfs L.I.M GTX rain jacket is an excellent ultralight shell for hikers and outdoor enthusiasts.
Crafted from waterproof and breathable Gore-Tex Paclite Plus fabric, it provides reliable wet weather protection while remaining lightweight and packable.
The athletic fit suits an active lifestyle and allows layering over midweight insulation. The hood fits snugly over a hat to shield from wind and rain.
Two zippered hand pockets are appreciated for warming hands and storing small items. Reflective trims add visibility for early morning and evening hikes.
The Paclite Plus inner layer has a soft, durable feel that is comfortable next to skin. Though the zippers lack storm flaps, I haven’t experienced moisture ingress. Elasticated cuffs and hem seal out drafts. The two-way zipper is handy for venting, secured by a snap at the chest.
My main complaints are the lack of hood and hem cinch cords compared to the previous version. The hood no longer stays put in high winds. For cold and stormy hikes, I miss being able to tighten the jacket around my waist.
Overall, the Haglöfs L.I.M GTX rain jacket delivers impressive waterproof performance and packability at a lightweight 10.8 oz. It’s a well-designed minimalist rain jacket.
Weight: 6.84 ounces (194 grams)
Waterproof Rating: 20,000 HH
✅ Great waterproof rating
✅ Great adjustability
The Mountain Equipment Firefly impresses as an exceptional ultralight rain shell for mountain adventures.
Built with 3-layer GORE-TEX Active fabric, it delivers elite breathability and waterproofing in a barely-there 6.84 oz (194g) package.
The athletic fit and protective Mountain Hood seal out winds and precipitation. A single zippered chest pocket proves useful for essentials.
My only complaint is the lofty price, but for hardcore ultralight enthusiasts seeking the ultimate breathable, packable rain protection, the Firefly is a worthwhile investment.
It’s simply unmatched for all-around performance on rugged mountain trails.
Weight: 8.29 ounces (235 grams)
Waterproof Rating: 20,000 HH
✅ Great material
✅ Great pockets
❌ Hood is too large
The Patagonia Storm10 lives up to its name as an ultralight windbreaker that can be easily packed away into its own pocket.
I found this jacket to be a versatile 3-layer waterproof companion for hikes and everyday wear. The recycled nylon shell provides protection from the elements while remaining breathable.
The large adjustable hood was a bit too roomy for my preference when not wearing a helmet, but wearing a hat underneath solved that issue. I appreciated the jacket’s roomy hand pockets and smooth lining.
Overall, the Storm10 effectively blocks wind and rain without compromising comfort or packability. I do wish it came in more color options and had pit zips for ventilation, but otherwise this is a quality ultralight rain jacket that makes a great addition to any hiker’s gear closet.
Weight: 3.88 ounces (110 grams)
Waterproof Rating: 15,000 HH
❌ No pockets
The Montane Minimus Nano Pull-On jacket truly lives up to its reputation as a must-have for hikers who move quickly and need something super lightweight.
Weighing only 3.88 ounces (110 grams), its simple design is perfect for those who prefer minimalist adventures.
During our testing, we found the jacket’s simplicity to be perfect for quickly protecting ourselves from mountain storms. The cuffs and hood, which are pre-elasticated, stay securely in place without needing constant adjustments. While the half-length zipper provides some ventilation options, wearing a cap under the hood adds extra protection from rain.
However, aiming for an extremely lightweight jacket does come with a few trade-offs:
Despite not being as easy to put on as a full-zip option, the Nano’s minimalist design still makes it an excellent choice as an emergency shell for ultralight hikers who are mindful of every ounce.
We recommend including it as part of a layered kit for those who need to move quickly through unpredictable mountain conditions.
When it comes to selecting the right hiking rain jacket, there are a few important things to think about:
A rain jacket needs to fit well as part of your layering system. Make sure it’s long enough to keep your lower back covered and has a roomy hood to fit over a hat or helmet. You don’t want it too baggy though – it still needs to be trim enough to layer under your shell and outer layers comfortably.
The fabric is crucial – you’ll see options ranging from basic polyester or nylon to high-tech membranes like GORE-TEX. The more rugged the material, the better it will hold up under frequent hiking use and harsh weather exposure.
Look for pit zips, mesh-lined pockets and a cinchable hem so you can fine tune ventilation on the move. These features help prevent an internal sauna effect.
Zippers are often a weak point for water ingress. Opt for water-resistant or waterproof zippers so you don’t have to worry about moisture leaking through.
Price & Performance
Consider how often you’ll realistically use it and what weather you expect to encounter. More technical mountaineering jackets warrant higher investments. For occasional use in light rain, a budget-friendly option should suffice.
If you’re in need of rain pants, you can take a look at our guide here, where we’ve listed the TOP 5 lightest rain pants.
When choosing the best rain jacket for men, consider key features like windproof and waterproof fabric, stylish and functional design, proper fit to allow layering, ventilation zippers to prevent overheating, and waterproof zippers to keep moisture out. The right balance of price and performance depends on how often you’ll use it and the conditions – for light rain and occasional use, a budget-friendly pick is fine, while technical mountaineering jackets warrant a higher investment. Focus on rugged, durable materials that will hold up to frequent hiking use and harsh weather exposure so your jacket lasts for seasons to come.
The most common and reliable jacket materials are polyester or nylon shell fabrics that are coated with a Durable Water Repellent (DWR) finish to make them waterproof and windproof. For even better water protection, higher-end jackets use proprietary waterproof-breathable membranes like Gore-Tex, eVent, or Pertex Shield that block rain while allowing sweat vapor to escape. Soft shell jackets offer stretchy, breathable comfort with weather resistance using materials like polyester fleece lining and spandex. For severe weather, coated nylon with a vinyl or polyurethane layer provides a budget-friendly super waterproof option. The ideal material provides the optimal blend of water protection, durability, and breathability for your needs.
Yes, you’ll need to retreat or reapply a waterproofing agent on a men’s rain jacket from time to time. This is because the initial factory waterproof coating will wear off after heavy use and washing. Using a Durable Water Repellent (DWR) spray designed for outerwear can reactivate water beading and repellency once wetting out occurs. This simple reapplication helps maintain the jacket’s water resistance and breathability. Follow the product instructions to properly retreat the fabric. Taking good care of your rain jacket with occasional reproofing lets you get the most out of your gear investment.