What are the key points of a ski jacket?
- High performance in terms of waterproofing and breathability.
- Thermal insulation.
- Additional features (the number and functions of the pockets, ventilation zippers, protection against snow penetration, RECCO avalanche beacon, etc).
The notions of waterproofing and breathability
To enable your ski jacket protect you from moisture, manufacturers are developing membranes that ensure both resistance to water and breathability. Among the best-known membranes are, of course, the Gore-Tex membrane, but also other technologies such as the InfiDRY from 686, Dryplay from Picture, Dermizax and DRYOsphere from Scott, etc.
The breathability of a fabric is measured in grams per square metre per 24 hours. This will give us breathability indicators such as 6,000 m/m²/24 hours, 10,000 g/m²/24 hours, 20,000 g/m²/24 hours, etc.
The levels of water resistance and breathability of a membrane are often indicated together and abbreviated with a K. For example, a jacket that is 10,000 mm waterproof and 10,000 g/m²/24 breathable may be indicated as a 10K/10K jacket.
Choosing the right level of water resistance to suit your practice
The long-lasting water-repellent treatment
Water-repellent treatments are made from chemicals, which can be harmful to the environment when they contain perfluorocarbons (PFCs). Some manufacturers looking to reduce their environmental impact, such as the French brand Picture Organic Clothing, for example, that uses PFC-free water-repellent treatments. This is usually specified in our product data sheets.
The thermal insulation of a ski jacket
In addition to being synthetic or natural, the insulations differ from each other in terms of their thermal efficiency. An insulation that provides a lot of warmth with little material will keep the jacket thickness in check and leave the skier or snowboarder free to move around. The best performing insulation therefore has a high heat index and a low filling weight (measured in grams per square metre).
In our product data sheets, we indicate the heat level of the jacket as well as its filling weight, when the manufacturer provides us with this information. This allows you to choose the ski jacket that best suits your needs and the conditions in which you will be practicing.