There aren't many items trending that are both fashionable and useful. The puffer jacket is a warm and comfortable outerwear layer that's ideal for those extremely chilly nights and days. Puffer jackets for guys have been there for a longtime now, and we're on a mission to identify the best puffer coats for men to wear this winter. The puffer jacket is perfect for anything from evenings with colleagues to going to work on those chilly days.
The classic puffy jacket can be worn in a variety of ways. It can be simple and comfortable, with additional down layers to keep you warm than it is much less puffy cousins, such as the Fall bomber jacket or even other men's winter jackets. It can also go horribly wrong, leaving you appearing like The Marshmallow Man or a child from A Christmas Story.
Let's avoid the latter and pick a puffer jacket which will keep the body cozy while still keeping your style trendy this winter.
Price: $302.49 - $550.00
Mountain Hardwear Nilas
The Mountain Hardwear Nilas Jacket is one of the top brands of men's puffer jackets and has excellent features. It did not provide as much warmth as one would expect with its synthetic insulation. Though it still helps stay warm enough to block the weather on 8000m peaks.
The Good of Mountain Hardwear Nilas
- Lightweight. Proper 8000m outerwear is double the weight.
- Great fit for climbing
- Amazing butter jersey cuffs
- The face fabric is not too hard and provides excellent protection.
- The adequate number of pockets for an elevation of 8000m
The Bad of Mountain Hardwear Nilas
- The zipper has no pulls – not adjustable with mitts on
- Not enough insulation in icy conditions.
- The distribution of insulation is not as excellent as Nilas Bib's
- Insulation didn't hold up remarkably well
Warmth/weight performance of Mountain Hardwear Nilas
The Nilas is half the weight of a North Face Himalayan Parka or Mountain Hardwear Absolute Zero Parka. Also, it provides more incredible warmth than any other jacket. I used the layering system, and it proved incredibly versatile. I was surprised by the protection it offered despite its packability.
Design/features of Mountain Hardwear Nilas
Price: $549.99 - $585.02
The Nilas has great features though a few flaws exist. For starters, the butter jersey cuffs are amazingly comfortable and squashy. They are much better than the previous Velcro cuffs. Moreover, the interior mesh pockets secure belongings such as food, water, or wallet well. However, I found that the insulation was not well distributed, i.e. the sleeves were warmer than the back. Also, there are no pulls on the zippers, so you cannot adjust them if you're wearing any mittens or big gloves. (Of course, you may make your own out of thin cord or purchase after-market ones—don't forget about this when packing for your vacation).
Weatherproofing of Mountain Hardwear Nilas
The outer fabric blocked the wind pretty well without getting wrinkled. However, the jacket did start to leak down from a few spots after I returned from my Lhotse expedition. Also, the baffles in the back were particularly large, and as a result, cold spots were developed. This wasn't the case with the Nilas Bib.
Insulation of Mountain Hardwear Nilas
The Q-shield down is fantastic and lives up to its reputation of an 850-fill rating. However, the down's distribution was disturbed after the clumsy expedition because of the large baffles in the torso.
Value of Mountain Hardwear Nilas
Nilas is a pretty expensive jacket costing $550. However, there are other competing items by the North Face and Mountain Hardwear that are more expensive. Nilas is a relatively more costly option because its price is not justified as it does not provide the warmth of a $550 jacket. Other jackets like First Ascent Peak XV or the Patagonia Das Parka offer better value overall.
Duvet is a hot layer that may be used as a belay layer in the winter or a high altitude layer on icy peaks. Some excellent features are carefully thought out, and a couple that might be improved.
Nilas Jacket Review:
Almost every climber know about the great Ueli Steck. His solo runs, especially the one on the Eiger's north face, have brought him praise from around the world. Few people have become as fond of Ueli and his climbing as I have. I have watched his free solo on the Eiger many times and kept myself updated about his latest feats through his websites.
I was very excited when MHW announced that they were launching a new Alpine line inspired and designed by Ueli himself. As I used to be very brand loyal to MWH, I lost my liking for them due to their stagnancy in recent years. The quality they always promised and delivered seemed missing in these last few years.
Last January, I was at the Outdoor Retailer show, and I checked out the new Ueli-themed line of climbing apparel by Mountain Hardwear. The sales representative admitted that MHW had lacked up a little the past few years in terms of innovation, but they were back in the game with this new Ueli apparel line.
I'm a jackets enthusiast. When I heard about the Nilas, part of Ueli's line, I decided to get one for myself. It weighs the same as my Rab Neutrino. I didn't believe that a 22oz down jacket would be suitable for 8000m climbs. It was a painful purchase since the jacket cost a whopping $500. I also intended to get the Quasar Pullover, but my size wasn't available.
The Features and Stats:
Price: $549.99 - $585.02
Nilas is compared with the Rab Neutrino Endurance. This will be a like-with-like comparison since both jackets are the same weight. I have already done a detailed review of the Neutrino Endurance. I believe the Neutrino is one of the best down jackets in the mid-weight category.
- Both the Nilas and the Neutrino weigh the same at 22oz as per the catalogue.
- Both have two zippered hand pockets which are not fleece-lined.
- Neutrino has a single zippered pocket on the inside, whereas Nilas has two mesh pockets on the inside that are not zippered.
- Both jackets are windproof and highly water-resistant. The Nilas shell (Airshield Elite) is 15denier, while the Neutrino shell is 30D. Interior fabric is more or less the same at 15D and is super comfortable.
- The zipper on Nilas is one-way, while Neutrino's zipper is two-way.
- Both have adjustable hems though the Neutrino hem is easier to adjust since it has two adjustments instead of Nilas' one.
- Both have a two-way adjustable hood though neutrinos are easier to adjust.
- Nilas features excellent butter jersey cuffs. Neutrino's cuffs are Velcro and elastic.
- The entire Neutrino is sewn-through, while the Nilas only has sewn-through sleeves.
- Neutrino has 3 inches of loft, while the Nilas has 3.5 inches of loft.
Continuation of Features
– I am 6 feet 2 inches tall, and I weigh around 185 pounds. The jacket fits great over a t-shirt, but it's a little too big to put over a few layers. This size is perfect for me. The Neutrino is a little tighter.
– The hood is excellent as it does not restrict head movement. There are two adjustments on the hood. One at the front for closing and one behind the hood. The hood is helmet-friendly.
– Neutrino as a point of reference. The hood is loftier, but it does not zip up as high in front. There are also two hood adjustments.
– The pull cords are relatively small. They are on the interior, which means you have to unzip the jacket to adjust the cords. Though they don't flutter in your face whilst windy conditions. They are difficult to adjust with gloves on.
– The Nilas has two mesh pockets on the inside which are big enough to hold Nalgene bottles. The drawcords on the hem and the hood are almost the same skinny ones. However, there is only one adjustment on the hem. This makes it difficult to adjust the hem, and there is a lot of a cord hanging out once the hem is cinched. The Neutrino has one zippered pocket on the inside and two adjustments on the hem, which are easier to adjust. As a result, the cord is divided between the two adjustments, and there's no extra cord hanging out of the Neutrino.
– Kudos to MHW, The cuffs on the Nilas are much more comfortable than those on the Neutrino. Although not adjustable, they keep the snow out and work great with gloves on—adding to the hands' warmth.
To Sum Things Up:
The Nilas is a fantastic jacket though I'm not sure if it's better than the Neutrino. Both are equally lightweight, and I think the Nilas has more incredible warmth than the Neutrino. The mesh pockets and cuffs are also a plus point for the Nilas as compared to the Neutrino. They both have the same adjustments though the Nilas are more difficult to adjust with gloves on.
Although the Nilas is a better option overall than the Neutrino, I'd go with the Neutrino if I have the choice. The Nilas costs $175 more than the Neutrino, which is not justified according to me. However, I have not put the Nilas to their limit as I have only walked outside wearing them. I'll update the review once I'm a bit more sure about its functionality.
This incredible Men's Puffer Jacket can be purchased by a potential customer on any sporting goods site by filter sort or product shop without providing any personal data or details. You can then access and wear the jacket by getting it shipped to your address.
People who have the money for it and want the best warmth to weight ratio always opt for Nilas. Nilas can be trusted as your warmest layer, even up to Denali. I wouldn't be as much confident with the Neutrino since it has vulnerable seams.
If you want a lightweight jacket and consider the Nilas slightly expensive, you should go for the Neutrino plus. It's baffled and has more down than the Neutrino Endurance. It is sewn through and weighs 5 ounces more than the Nilas. Its retail price is $400.
After a Couple Months of Use:
I've been using the Nilas for a few months now. I just used it for a week in Wind Rivers, Wyoming. Every time I wear this jacket, my admiration for it grows. The following are some of the characteristics that make this jacket a superb product:
In terms of warmth, the jacket is among the top three, if not the top three, lightweight jackets. Despite being 14 ounces less than the mont-bell alpine light down parka, the coats are equally warm. Though I haven't been in the severe cold (colder than 0 degrees F) with it yet, I start to sweat sitting in the camp when it's 15 or 20 degrees F, and the jacket is zipped up.
Because the drawcords are too tiny, adjusting the hood with gloves is a chore. To pull the drawcords on the hood, you must unzip the jacket. The hem is considerably simpler to alter. It's just as aggravating to loosen the cable. THE WEATHER WASN'T FREEZING while I was out and about, so taking off my gloves wasn't too tricky. However, in colder environments, such as Denali, taking off your gloves is a big annoyance. The Neutrino is considerably better designed in this respect.
The two interior mesh pockets are fantastic. They are deep enough that nothing, not even tiny objects like batteries, has ever fallen out of them. The elastic closure at the top of the pocket keeps everything in place. For further protection, I wouldn't mind an interior zip pocket in addition to the mesh pockets, but I'd prefer to have the mesh pockets and no zipped pocket than the other way around. These compartments can easily hold a litre Nalgene, gloves, a propane canister, a beanie, a wallet, and a GPS.
Except for the thumbholes, the cuffs are well-designed. For someone my size, the sleeves are a little short. As a consequence, anytime I grab for anything, the thumbholes push against my thumbs. After a time, I stopped using the thumbholes because they were becoming irritating. Otherwise, the cuffs are excellent. They keep the hands warm by blocking the cold. They keep the cold out and are incredibly comfy. Someone with shorter arms might not have as much trouble utilising the thumbholes as I did.
As a belay jacket, I like the fit. This jacket is somewhat boxier than the Neutrino, but it is the perfect size for use as a belay jacket, in my opinion. It feels tidy but not too tight when I put it over additional layers. There is no loss of loft in the coat. Even when worn alone over a t-shirt, it didn't seem overly big. The Neutrino fits nicely as a standalone jacket. However, it feels a bit snug when placed over additional garments. It's not very unpleasant, but it does compress the skin somewhat. The Nilas is slightly roomier, which I believe makes it a better belay jacket.
The face fabric and the liner material is excellent. The liner is squashy and feels very comfortable to the skin. The face fabric is terrific at weather blocking and is very light. I haven't tried it in downpours except for one time in a five-minute rain. The DWR worked great, and a few hours of blowing snow couldn't touch it.
Overall, I had started liking this jacket more than when I first got it. I think it somewhat justifies the $500 price. However, I still believe the heavier Neutrino is a better value for money.
Source: I bought it new.
Price Paid: $500
However, the jacket still has pros and cons that balanced out. Overall, it's a fantastic product, but it has a few downsides compared with alternative options. It's a high-altitude jacket that is lightweight and provides excellent warmth. It fits well and features excellent options like interior pockets and cuffs. However, the insulation does not work well at expeditions as it doesn't spread adequately. Moreover, the fact that you cannot manoeuvre the zippers with the mitts on is annoying.