Frosty temperatures aren't enough to deter devoted runners from lacing up their sneakers and heading outdoors. But, as anyone who's kept up their jogging routine in cold weather will tell you, layers are essential. While your usual winter coat is likely to cause overheating once you get your heart rate up, a lighter, form-fitting jacket is the ideal top layer to keep your body warm yet unrestricted as you pound the pavement.
If you don't have much experience exercising out in the cold, you may feel some hesitation as you leave your home dressed in relatively light layers — but once you get moving, your body temperature will quickly rise. "As a general tip for my winter runs, I like to dress as though it's about 20 degrees warmer than the current temperature," Katherine Kielar, marketing brand manager at SIX:02 Powered by Foot Locker previously told Shape.
When temperatures are in the 30s and below, you'll want to pair a base layer and insulating layer with a running jacket (plus warm leggings, gloves, and a hat) to help your body retain heat. Add in inclement weather like rain, snow, and sleet, and you'll have to make other considerations, like opting for a waterproof jacket or one that's designed to stand up to heavy wind. When you're dressed appropriately, you can reap all the benefits of running outside in the winter, like improving your mood and burning more body fat. (Related: These are the best running gloves to keep you warm during even the chillest miles)
If you're eager to get outside but don't have the proper gear yet, don't worry: Amazon has plenty of options to help you suit up in style. Below, the 8 best running jackets for women, according to customer reviews.
Whether you're searching for a lightweight windbreaker to wear through every season or a layering option to keep you warm in winter temperatures, these Amazon shopper-approved running jackets will keep you moving.
Available in four versatile colors — black, grey, blue, and purple — this form-fitting jacket with zip-up pockets from C9 Champion is made with a moisture-wicking polyester and spandex blend. The lightweight pick has a high collar and thumbholes to help guard against wind chill, and its full-zip style makes it easy to remove mid-run if you end up getting a little too warm. If you're in between sizes, some shoppers recommend sizing up for the best fit. Also nice: It's earned high praise from thousands of shoppers who say it's "fitted but flexible" and "perfect for running."
"I like the material — softer than most athletic wear but still breathable and stretchy," wrote another. "Good zip-up pockets too! Will probably be buying in more colors."
An ultra-soft microfleece interior makes this half-zip option extra cozy — though it also has sweat-wicking properties to keep you dry and comfortable during outdoor runs. The jacket features a kangaroo pocket (with zippers on either side) that makes it easy to store your phone and keys as you jog. Available in nine colorways, Baleaf's customer-favorite jacket has 1,400 positive ratings and is currently the number one best-selling women's running jacket on Amazon.
Reviewers especially love how warm the jacket is: "I wore this during my 50k trail race yesterday and it was PERFECT. The temps were 25-30 degrees with 15 mph winds," said a shopper. "This top kept me warm, it wicked my sweat, and was super comfy."
Buy It: Baleaf Women's Thermal Fleece Half Zip Running Pullover, from $33, amazon.com
If you tend to get overheated easily, this full-zip jacket is a great option thanks to the mesh panels in the back that allow for extra ventilation. Made with a nylon and spandex blend that's soft and stretchy, the form-fitting style is also available in 30 color options, including a few fun patterned ones. Some shoppers even consider it a good dupe for Lululemon's popular Define jacket. And thanks to plenty of other satisfied shoppers, this style by Queenieke is the number one best-seller in Amazon's women's athletic jackets category.
"This jacket is the most flattering athletic jacket I've ever tried. It's form-fitting and slimming," wrote one customer. "The material is soft and the stitching is high quality. The thing that excited me most was the sleeve length. I am tall and have long arms and the sleeves actually fit, even with the thumb holes on!"
Over 30 five-star reviewers mention how soft this track jacket is, thanks to its stretchy nylon and spandex blend. Available in 14 different colors, the form-fitting style features thumbholes and zippered pockets that are big enough to hold a phone. (Related: Cute Workout Leggings with Pockets You Can Actually Use)
Shoppers are also impressed by the quality of the jacket. "I typically spend more money on my athleisure clothes (i.e. Lululemon, Nike, etc) and this jacket is right up there from a quality perspective. It is SO soft and has a good level of thickness — it doesn't feel cheap at all," noted one reviewer, who dubbed it their "new favorite jacket."
If you want to make sure your cards or cash are extra secure, this workout jacket from Global Bank is a great choice thanks to its hidden interior pockets and two exterior pockets. And because it's made with 100-percent polyester, it has more of a structured, rather than stretchy, fit. Many shoppers say the jacket still feels super lightweight, though, which makes it a great layering piece for outdoor workouts in cold weather.
This polyester and spandex jacket is available in eight stylish, muted colors — which is why some shoppers say they've found themselves ordering multiples. Its fabric is moisture-wicking, and the jacket is designed with mesh panels throughout for extra ventilation. Also worth noting: It comes in sizes ranging from small to 3X. Since it's form-fitting, some customers recommend sizing up if you'd prefer a looser running jacket.
"The structure is beautiful, the long lines are neat and perfect, the fit is tight, snug to my body, and it comes right to my waist," wrote a reviewer, who reported that they even prefer this jacket to comparable styles from Lululemon. "The price is amazing, and the quality is spot on."
With 39 different color options, this rain jacket from Columbia can suit just about any preference — it's no wonder why it's Amazon's number-one best-seller in the outdoor recreation raincoats category. The cut is slim, but not form-fitting, and the design features a high neck with a stowaway hood. An adjustable drawcord hem can also be used to make the jacket fit tighter or looser, depending on your preference. (Related: The Best Waterproof Running Gear)
"I bought it for my short morning runs during a wintertime," shared a buyer. "It's a nice shell jacket, [so I can wear layers] underneath without it becoming too bulky. It's waterproof enough to withstand 30 mins of moderate rain so that works out perfectly for me."
Buy It: Columbia Women's Switchback III Adjustable Waterproof Rain Jacket, from $25, amazon.com
There are fewer hours of daylight in the wintertime, which means dressing safely for evening or early morning runs is super important. Not only does this windbreaker have reflective accents, but it also comes in two bright, fluorescent hues that are easy to spot in the dark. The windproof topper is lightweight and has a loose, roomy fit, so it can easily be worn over a base layer or another jacket as a shell. (Check out even more reflective gear here.)
"I love this jacket for running! It is very lightweight yet warm," wrote one five-star reviewer. "The bright color makes me feel safe. Great quality."
Buy It: Baleaf Women's Running Windproof Reflective Windbreaker, from $43, amazon.com