Skiers have an overwhelming number of choices when it comes to what we wear. Making the right choice matters; we want it to look good, it needs to fit, and, most importantly, it has to work.
I once had to borrow an old jacket from the lost-and-found at a resort. It meant I could still ski all day as planned, but it was really awkward. The sleeves kept riding up over my mittens, it smelled weird, and, by the end of the day, I was cold and frustrated.
Ski days are precious. Having trustworthy gear—be it your favorite jorts or a three-layer Gore-Tex jacket—allows us to enjoy them without distraction.
For the past seven years, we've made it our goal at Thread the Needle, the foundational event for this Apparel Guide, to sift through the year's newest products to determine the very best jackets and pants for skiers. From there, it's up to you to decide which pieces best express your personal style. Usually, style and fit are subjective because skiers' tastes are as diverse as our bodies.
This year, however, after the 16 skiers from across the country—who make up the Powder Order of Sartorial Splendor and Excellence (POSSE)—spent a combined 300-plus hours reviewing more than 100 jackets and pants at Solitude Mountain, Utah, we came to a consensus.
The Hemispheres Jacket and Hemispheres Bib from Outdoor Research, for both men and women, scored highest across the board for their superior technical performance and comfortable fit, earning the nod for our first-ever Apparel of the Year.
In the remainder of this guide, you'll find a total of 40 of the best jackets and pants that received the Skier’s Choice award. Here, you can read extended reviews, watch videos of these products in action with tester feedback, and more.
Many choices still exist, but we can vouch that however you choose to express your style, all of these jackets and pants will do the job so you can focus on the skiing.