|Nothing beats a good raincoat to look sharp,
to keep warm, and to keep dry. But when buying
a raincoat, what should you look for?
- Style - a raincoat is a piece of clothing,
and therefore, by definition a fashion item.
The raincoat you pick should be appropriate
to the occasions where you are going to wear
it. For example, a bright yellow slicker
might be perfect if you are reeling in fish
or working as a crossing guard, but don't
dare try to slip it over your tuxedo for
that special night on the town. The material
also plays a tremendous role in the stlye
like it does with any other clothing item:
if its plastic (or looks shiny like plastic)
then its for children or manual labor unless
it happens to be that one of a kind, stop
dead in your tracks, fashion item.
- Material - Plastic, nylon, and rubber are
efficient raincoat materials for keeping
out the wet, but they also keep in the wet,
and without ventilation, you'll quicly find
yourself in your own miniature rain forest.
On the otherhand, untreated natural fibers
will soak up water like a rag. There are
breatheable high tech fabrics (like GORE-TEX)
and treated natural fabrics that do an excellent
job of keeping moisture out and wicking away
your body's moisture at the same time. Let
us not forget that there are also animal
skins, such as leather, which are water repellant
but these tend to stain and soil when wet
unless chemically treated or oiled.
- Construction - The way the raincoat is made
is important to its value. Look for a coat
with sturdy, water-resistant stitching.