The best waterproof jackets for women
Avoid a wardrobe washout with our pick of waterproof jackets that don't compromise on style
But what style to choose?
Bright yellow fishermen's jackets are fine for braving a windswept walk or a trip to the playground, but probably don't convey the professional attitude you're aiming for at work, while a classic trench might seem a bit too 'grown up'. It might seem indulgent to own more than one waterproof coat, but with Britain's reliably wet weather, spreading your bets is an investment that will pay off over the years.
Whether you're planning a glamping trip, another al fresco summer of social distancing or simply need to update your arsenal, we've rounded up the best waterproof outerwear brands for every occasion and aesthetic. Don't leave out your little ones, check out the Culture Whisper guide to wet-weather essentials for kids.
Best for a relaxed take on utility: Mint Velvet
Something of an unsung outerwear hero, the design team behind Mint Velvet has a canny knack of feminising and updating the classics while still managing to maintain cool credentials.
CW Pick: Mint Velvet Military Parka in Charcoal, £159 – buy here
It's surprising how even the smallest touches can bring cheer when faced with endless days of spring showers. Take the metallic stripe on the back of this shower-repellent fishtail parka, it's just enough to add a bit of brightness to your outfit (and your day) without making a full-on style statement.
Best for a splash of colour: Boden
Boden is a go-to for bright and beautiful takes on wardrobe classics such as cashmere sweaters and summer dresses, and its approach to outerwear is no different encompassing everything from full-on brights to more subtle colour-blocking details.
CW Pick: Morris Waterproof Mac in Surf, £140 – buy here
Sure, you could get this jacket in a classic navy with a striped cuff and hem, but there's something about this icy pastel blue that just screams spring. Fully waterproof and windproof, this is an essential if you're planning to holiday in the British Isles this summer.
Best for sporty styling: Sweaty Betty
Whether you're an athleisure aficionado or simply want a jacket you can rely on for dashing home post-workout, Sweaty Betty has plenty of showerproof options to consider.
CW Pick: Festival Poncho in Navy, £155 – buy here
It's unlikely that many of us will be making it to a festival this summer, but that doesn't mean we need to abandon the dressing lessons learned: this street-smart take on a poncho is perfect throw on and go piece for a summer spent in the great outdoors, be that a wild walk or a friend's back garden.
Best for the nine-to-five commute: Blocktech by Uniqlo
Blocktech might sound like something used to protect your computer from a virus or the latest cryptocurrency, but in fact it's the rainproof outerwear range from Uniqlo. Smartly designed to be rain- and windproof and still breathable, it means you won't suddenly steam up as you go between outside and inside.
CW pick: Uniqlo Blocktech Hooded Coat, £79.90 – buy here
This is the perfect office-appropriate overcoat and a timely investment for those headed back to their usual places of work. The lightweight fabric and clean lines mean it won't appear bulky over a blazer like some coats can, while the generous hood means you don't need to worry about carrying a dripping umbrella into your client meeting.
Best for unexpected showers: K-Way
The original pac-a-mac, Parisian style. Cleverly, K-Way's waterproof jackets pack into a zippable pocket with a strap so you can keep yours on hand just in case, meaning they're perfect for festival dressing, keeping in your desk drawer for popping to Pret or simply mooching around town at the weekend. There's a pleasing retro-sensibility to the range, while seasonal prints bring a bit of pzzazz to proceedings.
CW pick: K-Way Claudette, from £51.64 – buy here
The most exciting anorak on the market: choose from a great range of colour-pop brights or chic black, and look out for seasonal patterns and reversible versions.
Best for casual cover ups: Stutterheim
This mid-thigh, A-line coat from Swedish experts Stutterheim looks particularly good with wide-leg trousers and midiskirts with chunky boots, making it the perfect choice for spring showers. Crafted from rubberised cotton with double-welded seams to ensure it's fully waterproof, warm and durable.
CW Pick: Stutterheim A-Line Raincoat Mosebacke Black, £250 – buy here
This muted dark green is particularly versatile and flattering while the short length means that it'll be handy for festival season as well as wet days in the city.
Best for town and country: Hunter
From festival-goers to farmers, Hunter is the immediate go-to for wellies, but there's much more to the brand's offering than just puddle-jumpers. Waterproof jackets abound, making use of rubberised cotton and vinyl, while insulated versions are a sensible option without sacrificing style for the colder months. Even better, many of the brand's options are vegan.
CW Pick: Women's Original Vinyl Waterproof Hunting Coat in White, £155 – buy here
Who wants to carefully put together an outfit, only to cover most of it up? This translucent vinyl hooded jacket is the solution to that wardrobe woe, making it perfect for the British summer when rain simply cannot stop play.
Best for sustainable credentials: Arket
There's much to be said for Arket's outerwear, especially its two-in-one series, a collection of modular pieces designed to be worn alone or interlocked in order to create an all-weather wardrobe, perfect for the in-between months of changeable weather. One of the more sustainably focused high-street brands, outerwear uses organic cotton, recycled down and polyester made from plastic bottles.
CW Pick: Arket Oversized Padded Parka, £190 – buy here
A parka is a wardrobe classic for a reason but this version is a thoroughly modern take on the traditional: made from recycled plastic bottles and fishing nets, the showerproof lining and padding will ensure you're living the snug life all the way through the chills of spring and beyond.
Best for contemporary takes on the classics: Rains
Encompassing a range of belted trench jackets, short hooded raincoats in a full spectrum of colours and even waterproof bags and accessories, there's plenty of inclement-weather inspiration to be had from this Danish brand.
CW Pick: Rains Coral Rubberised Raincoat, £75 – buy here
While we still have a soft spot for the yellow fisherman's jacket, it's all about looking pretty in pastel right now. This casual jacket will ensure you don't fade into the sea of grey and black coats across the capital.
Best for design-led durability: Kassl Editions
Designed to last, Kassl Editions is bringing a new approach built on an old-fashioned ethos to the outerwear category in order to challenge the increasingly pressing issue of overproduction. Rather than attempting to reinvent the wheel, the design collective behind the Amsterdam-based brand sticks to a core style, playing with colours, fabrics and design details to bring something new each season.
CW Pick: Kassl Editions Original Wax-coated Cotton Trench Coat, £600 – buy here
Fashion forward yet innately timeless, this will look just as good with tailoring for the office as it would with mom jeans and trainers for an off-duty look.
Best for wardrobe classics: Burberry
When it comes to timeless fashion, there are few items more everlasting than a trench, and Burberry remains the brand to beat. Perfect as is for work or layered with other outerwear pieces for a more fashion-forward off-duty look.
CW Pick: Burberry The Waterloo Heritage Trench Coat, £1,550 – buy here
Catwalk-referencing updates come out every season, but in our opinion a classic beige coat with that signature check lining will never date – there's a reason this style icon is in almost every fashion editor's wardrobe.