Hardshell vs Softshell - What's The Difference

Coat and jacket wearing season is fully upon us but what kind of jacket should you be wearing? There are two main types of jacket, soft shell and hard shell, which are perfect for different outings and activities. But which would best suit you?


If it is lightly raining, a bit chilly and you’re out running errands or exploring the outdoors, a soft-shell jacket is the ideal option for you. Made from softer, more flexible materials like polyester and nylon, soft shell jackets are great at providing maximum movement whilst out and about. As they are only water resistant, they aren’t designed to be worn in heavy rain but offer good protection in milder conditions. They also provide excellent warmth and comfort and can easily fit under a coat.


Hard shell coats on the other hand, tend to be heavier, stiffer and provide the most weather protection. Because of this, they are perfect to wear when hiking in the cold, rainy or snowy weather. Due to the tightly woven fabric, a hard-shell jacket is resistant to wear and tear, staying in the best shape use after use.


So, if you are planning on going on a woodland walk when there is a bit of a breeze, a soft-shell fleece jacket is the perfect. But if you are planning on going out in heavy rain, snow or freezing conditions, a hard-shell waterproof coat is the best option for maximum weather protection.