Paraphernalia

Review: E-outdoor outdoor clothing

It seems odd to be shopping for cold weather clothes when the sun is blazing down – although if you’re more organised than I normally am, you can get some great discounts on wintery thermals and rainwear online in the summer.

When I was invited to review an item from e-outdoor.co.uk and was browsing the raincoats and fleeces in June, I fondly assumed I wouldn’t actually be able to test them out before September.

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I had counted without a British summer… Sadly I’ve had more than one occasion where a waterproof has been very essential indeed.

And with that pessimistic thought in mind, I’d skipped the cold-weather versions, which assume you want to be snug as well as dry, and found a more summery alternative which promised to keep the rain off but not leave me sweltering – however dismal July gets, it’s never *that* cold after all.

I picked the Jack Wolfskin Exhalation Texapore waterproof jacket, with a 40% discount bringing it down to £77.95 from the RRP of £130. Lightweight and waterproof, it also came in lemon yellow: again, I don’t fancy wearing black or navy in the summer, even if it is pouring.

Along with a vent, plus plenty of zips and pockets, there’s a clever bag to stuff it into so ideal for living at the bottom of a bag or in the boot along with my wellies. More to the point, it has a hood, which inexplicably lots of waterproof jackets and coats don’t.

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There’s also a great size guide on the site, so I could check it wasn’t going to swamp me – or the opposite. And while mine was sent to review so I didn’t place the order as a customer would, standard delivery is a bargain £1 for two to three days (free for orders of £30 or more) or £1.95 for next working day for delivery within a one-hour slot.

Don’t like it? There’s a 60-day fuss-free returns policy, as well as price matching subject to conditions. Along with Jack Wolfskin, the big name brands include The North Face, Barbour, Craghoppers and Berghaus, among others.

So, how did it measure up? The jacket itself is great quality and perfect condition, so no worries about substandard waterproofs being shipped out. And it kept me beautifully dry without any overheating in the middle of several torrential summer downpours.

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The negatives are the unavoidable kind that come with shopping online. Although the jacket fits beautifully, the slightly peaked hood isn’t quite so good. The design is clever so you don’t get a hood that blows down or need elastic but still keeps the rain off your face – unfortunately it swamps me so I’m forever peering out or fiddling.

And that cheery yellow I’d envisaged? I had forgotten it’s only a few shades away from a hi-vis vest. Practical but not quite what I’d had in mind. Admittedly, that’s my own fault for not thinking ahead.

If I’d bought it myself, I suspect I might have taken advantage of that 60-day return, as I do want perfection for a price tag of almost £80. A great product, just not quite the perfect one for me.

But if that jacket gets 7/10, the site is looking at full marks. Easy to use, lots of choice, great prices and lots of little extras like the long returns and cheap delivery which make it a great source for outdoor clothing. With kids’ options too (albeit in limited sizes under about age seven), I suspect we might be revisiting it as Minnie grows too.

Disclosure: I was sent the jacket for the purposes of review by e-outdoor. The choice, small head and all opinions are my own.

 

Product image courtesy of e-outdoor