One of Patagonia’s most popular and long-standing waterproof jackets, the Torrentshell combines all the ethical and environmental elements you’d expect from a company long-known for its commitment to as light an impact as possible in all ways. The end result is an environmentally conscious jacket that’s a reasonable price and does a very decent job, as well as looking good. The fabric is made from ECONYL 100% recycled nylon and no PFCs are used in the production process of the jacket. Patagonia also state that it is manufactured in a Fair Trade Certified factory. Patagonia also offer recycling and repair programmes. That’s a lot of eco-boxes ticked.

Lara Dunn’s Best in Test

The end result is an environmentally conscious jacket that’s a reasonable price and does a very decent job, as well as looking good.
  • Rugged but light and packable
  • Environmental credentials
  • Good size range
  • Limited hood adjustment
Quick specs
Price: £180
Weight: 377g (size L)
Materials: 50D ECONYL 100% recycled nylon, PFC free DWR and membrane
Hood: Stiffened with volume adjustment
Front closure: Zip
Underarm/side zips: Yes, zips
Pockets: 2
Hem: Drawcord adjuster
Cuffs: Velcro
Sizes: XS-XXL
Women’s/Men’s version: Women’s (Men’s direct equivalent available)

There’s a lot of emphasis here on the fabric itself and the Torrentshell delivers excellent performance for a lightweight and packable jacket, combining good reliable waterproofing with decent breathability to help keep you dry on the inside as well as from the outside. It’s still a jacket that you’d rather have at the bottom of your pack, and its low weight and small pack size make it ideal for just that purpose, but it’s comfortable to wear and effective when the weather turns bad. It’s a bit on the crinkly and noisy side, and the inside surface isn’t that comfortable to wear next to skin so a long sleeved baselayer is ideal if the weather looks set to turn, but it’s effective at keeping the rain out without causing overheating. The fit is spot on for an average sort of height and shape, and the size L is great for me as a high street 14, with enough space for a thinner mid-layer if needed.

The Torrentshell has a pared down, lightweight design so features are limited to two zipped side pockets, underarm vents and drawstring adjustments for hood and hem, but that’s all you need really from a jacket that’s only there for part of your walk – hopefully.

Reviewed and tested by Lara Dunn in 2024

Lara wore this jacket during wet autumn and winter conditions on a variety of walks – with and without a pack – in the Malvern Hills, Brecon Beacons and Black Mountains. She usually takes a high street size 14, sometimes 16 and is 5’5” tall.