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Editors' Choice

Best Raingear For Golfers

*All products featured on Golf Digest are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.*
June 22, 2022

There’s no reason that a few raindrops should get in the way of completing your round comfortably. But this is where the right raingear comes into play. If you’re the type to make the turn without question during a monsoon, you’ll want a heavy duty raingear set you can trust to keep you dry. If you’re just looking for something to bead away rain until you get back to the clubhouse, there are more affordable options that are a little more lightweight and easier to store in your bag until you need it.

When evaluating raingear, we put each brand’s waterproof promises to the test in simulated rainstorms and on-course testing during inclement weather conditions. We analyzed fabrics under microscopes, timed how long it took them to dry completely, measured how small each folded down and even compared how much noise each piece made compared to competitors—among other tests performed over the last several months. Testers ranged in size, age and golf skill in order to help inform golfers of all types on the best rain gear for their needs. Although the technology is typically identical, both men’s and women’s options were tested where applicable.


We’ve expanded the Best Raingear picks to include options for all golfers with new categories for different weather conditions, price points and style preferences. Here are the 2022 Editors’ Choice picks for Best Raingear.
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Zero Restriction Men's Z2000 Jacket

This three-layer jacket is another top contender for playing golf in bad conditions. It’s fully waterproof, seam-sealed and packed with golf-ready details. There’s an anti-chafe chin guard that adds protection without sacrificing comfort, the adjustable arm cuffs have a unique closure that’s less abrasive than Velcro and won’t attract dirt or fabrics. It’s on the higher-end pricewise, but the brand guarantees it’ll be waterproof for the life of the garment.

Runner Up: Best Heavy Duty Rain Gear
$550
Galway Bay Men's All-Weather Jacket

   There’s a higher collar at the back of this jacket that blocks rain from going down your back, but it tapers around the neck toward the chin for a more comfortable wear and streamlined look. It’s made with a waterproof fabric that is quieter than most swishy-sounding raingear and is thick enough to add a bit of warmth in colder conditions. Our testers were a fan of the versatile styling of the jacket that can easily transition off the course. The monochromatic Galaway Bay branding gives it a sleek and on-trend finish that adds versatility so it can easily transition off the course.

Runner-Up Best Everyday Raingear for Golfers
$329 $229
Most Packable Runner-Up: FootJoy Men's Select LS Rain Jacket

The FootJoy Select LS Rain Jacket was one of the more noticeably lightweight jackets we tested, weighing  just 7.4 ounces—about the weight of a golf shirt. It comes in seven color options, but is only available in men’s sizing. It’s a true shell rain jacket, meaning it will block rain well but will not provide much insulation or warmth.

$385
KJUS Men's Gemini Jacket

For an athletic-modern look, the raingear from KJUS ranks high style-wise. The jacket is reversible, but most people wear the traditional blue or black color side primarily. The darker side is designed to absorb heat to keep you warm, while the silver-gray alternative side can reflect that heat to cool the body down. The raingear pieces are well-tailored, have an upscale look and feel, and performed very well in our waterproof testing.

Runner-up: Most Stylish
$549
Walter Hagen Men's Full Zip Golf Rain Jacket

Testers noted that this seam-sealed, wind- and waterproof jacket didn’t seem like a golf jacket and felt like more of a traditional rain jacket. It has a looser fit that can accommodate layering underneath, and vents at the back give it a breathable feel. It’s an affordable option that will keep you dry and has simple styling for those who prefer a no-frills set of raingear.

$85 | DICK'S Sporting Goods

Raingear Buying Guide:

Everything you need to know about buying the best raingear for golf

Our style editors spent the past months putting the raingear on the market today through a series of thorough tests. After simulated rainstorms and rough course conditions, they’ve compiled this list (above) of the best waterproof pants, jackets and garb for players of all types and skillsets. But once you’ve found your perfect fit, how do you maintain it? Here’s everything you need to know about how to care for your raingear, so you can make the most of your purchases and extend the life of your waterproof golf gear. Plus, we break down some key terms and concepts to know when hunting for precipitation-friendly clothes for the course, so you can shop confidently.

FootJoy Men's HydroLite Rain Jacket
$195
Sun Mountain Men's Cirque Waterproof Golf Jacket
$320
Peter Millar Hyperlight Link 3-Layer Hooded Jacket
$248

What is DWR?

If you’ve spent any time looking through product reviews or raingear comparisons, you’ve probably come across this term. DWR stands for the durable water-repellent finish most raingear are treated with. Most water-resistant raingear consists of two basic components: a waterproof membrane to stop rain from soaking through the interior, and a DWR, the waxy coating that helps keep precipitation from pooling on the fabric and consequently breaking down its resistant qualities.

If you’ve ever heard fellow players complain that their rain jacket has “stopped working,” it’s probably related to a breakdown of the DWR. This can happen over time due to accidental snags or tears, as well as stains or buildup of oils (which could come from as benign a source as the skin’s natural secretions) that accumulate and slowly deter the DWR. You’ll know this has started to happen when you wear your raingear but find it leaves you clammy or a little damp, almost as if there’s condensation percolating inside your clothing.

The good news: this is fixable. There’s no need to run out and buy a replacement just yet (unless, of course, you’re just using the DWR as an excuse to check out one of the jackets we’ve got our eyes on, which we’d totally understand). The next section breaks down the easy steps to follow when caring for your jacket, including repairing the DWR.

How to care for raingear

While raingear is known for its durability and ability to keep you dry during torrential downpours and the roughest of playing conditions, these pieces still require care and maintenance. Following these simple steps when you suspect your raingear’s lost its impermeable sheen will help extend the life of your purchases.

  • Check for stains that might be contributing to the exacerbation of the breakdown of the repellent qualities. These can be spot-treated using a stain remover specially designed for waterproof gear, like Nikwax. Spray on the desired areas and set a timer for 5 minutes. Then give the area a little rub to help loosen the oils. Proceed to Step Two.
Nikwax Hardshell Cleaning and Waterproofing Duo-Pack
$23 | Amazon
  • Wash your raingear using a specially designed detergent, like this one. You can do this right in the washing machine. Only wash a few articles of raingear at a time so as not to overwhelm the fabric. Use a normal cold water cycle, or follow the directions on your soap product of choice.
  • Re-waterproof your gear if you feel the need to. You can do this right in the machine using a purchasable re-waterproofing formula (Nikwax also makes a well-regarded option here). Before starting, you’ll need to inspect your gear and see whether or not it has a liner (a soft, non-waterproof interior). If it does not have a liner, you can proceed with the waterproofing product in the machine, though change your settings to a delicate cycle, or check the product for further instructions. If your gear does have a liner, the step is slightly more complicated, but still very doable. Take the gear out of the machine and hang it. Put your waterproofing solution in a spray bottle (or buy a spray-on alternative) and coat your gear. Make sure you cover the whole area evenly; difficult spots like around the shoulders and underarms may require a bit extra attention.
  • Allow generous drying time and opt for air-drying rather than using a machine. While these steps aren’t too technically difficult or time-consuming individually, with drying time, this process can take 24 hours.

You can reapply the DWR as many times as necessary, extending the life of your gear multiple years. Other maintenance issues, such as broken zippers, tiny holes, or broken laminations can also yield simple fixes. The next section explains when to say enough is enough.

Image via Sun Mountain

When to replace your raingear

You’ll know it’s time to say goodbye to your trustee raingear when these simple fixes and maintenance steps no longer work. Large tears that can’t be patched, steamed or re-melted together, broken laminations no tape will hold, or fabric snares that compromise the jacket’s integrity are all signs that it’s time to say adieu.

The silver lining? There’s awesome new waterproof tech to behold if you’ve decided on an upgrade.

Type of raingear per conditions

So you’re looking to fill out your rainy day golf wardrobe, or you’re staring at your closet trying to figure out what to wear to hit a few rounds on an ominously gray-skied day. Here’s how to know what type of raingear is right for you.

There are three types of raingear: waterproof/breathable, water-resistant, and waterproof/non-breathable.

Waterproof/breathable: This category of raingear is for more heavy-duty rains that are no joke but don’t entirely diminish play. The breathability means the jacket will help keep you dry from outside rain while also circulating sweat to the exterior, preventing it from soaking you. These are often more flexible, allowing for less constriction during play.
Water-resistant: If the forecast calls for only periodic or short, light, gentle rain, this should do the trick. Plus, it’s breathable, so good for a warmer day or more rigorous play where you’ll want your jacket’s perspiration-circulating properties.
Waterproof/non-breathable: If you want to stay dry, or beat out torrential downpours or sideways rain, this is the option for you. It’s not right for playing as it will constrict bodily movements, but it’s perfect for waiting out a storm or in between swings.

Pro-tip: Many waterproof/non-breathable options, like the infamous rain poncho, can be acquired cheaply and pack tightly. You might consider keeping a few of these in your golf bag to have on hand as they’re usually oversized, they can be used as an exterior layer to quickly convert water-resistant gear into more heavy duty wear.

How to test your raingear

Image via FootJoy

Gregory Shamus

And finally, here’s how to test your raingear. While we’d also recommend reading up on product reviews and buying guides like ours , here are some other, more physical ways to test your gear once you’ve purchased it. These will also help you determine the best way to proceed with care and maintenance outlined above.

  1. The simulated rainstorm aka the shower test is a really useful tool for putting your gear through the ringer so you can make sure it works before getting stuck in a tight spot on the course. Put on your gear and stand in the shower for a few minutes and make sure your clothes underneath stayed dry. Pro tip: wearing a gray shirt or under layer will help you track spillage more easily.
  2. The DWR test is just as easy but less involved. Run your hand through the sink and then splash droplets onto your raingear. If the water slides right off in a stream of pearl-shaped beads, you’re good to go. If it hangs around and pools a little, it’s time to re-waterproof your jacket (see above).
  3. The functionality test is pretty straightforward. Get dressed as you would for the course. Make sure the rain gear provides you with the right roominess for layering. Make sure the zippers function easily, and try out the pockets, hoods, and adjustments. You can also take a few practice swings to test out the malleability of the fabric.