Understanding waterproof and breathability ratings
The waterproof and breathability ratings of garments usually include two numbers. The first number describes the level of waterproofing, and the second refers to breathability.
The higher the waterproof rating, the more resistant to water the fabric will be. Likewise, the higher the breathability rating, the more the fabric will allow moisture and vapour to escape, which helps regulate temperature and minimise sweating.
Waterproof and breathability ratings can be categorised as follows:
5,000mm: Minimal resistance to moisture, suitable for light rain or dry snow conditions.
10,000mm – 15,000mm: Designed to withstand most downpours and snow but will soak through if subjected to pressure and heavy, sustained rain.
20,000mm and above: Will remain waterproof in almost all conditions, even with pressure such as carrying a heavy pack.
5,000 – 10,000g/m²: Suitable for urban outings, fishing, camping or low-intensity activities.
10,000 – 15,000g/m²: Suitable for low-level walking and hiking or very light jogging.
15,000 – 20,000g/m² and above: Suitable for mountaineering and trekking uphill or in warm climates.
What are the essentials of a waterproof outfit?
If you’re looking for a waterproof outfit, men’s or women’s, here are the key pieces to complete your ensemble:
Waterproof boots or shoes
Sturdy, durable waterproof footwear is arguably the most important item you’ll need, particularly if you’ll be walking in wet or muddy conditions. A good pair of waterproof boots can last years and keep your feet dry and protected in any conditions.
Try: The Original 6-inch Boot
A reliable waterproof jacket will keep you warm and dry around the head, neck, torso and wrists, which are the most critical areas of the body for thermoregulation. Your jacket should also be breathable, allowing sweat to escape, so you stay dry from the inside and comfortable throughout the day.
Try: Timberland Eco Ready 3-in-1 Waterproof Jacket
Waterproof trousers are generally made of nylon or a nylon blend and are treated with a durable water repellent. When buying waterproof trousers, consider both functionality and fit. They should be able to not only repel water but also offer freedom of movement while you’re on the go.
Try: Timberland Convertible Trousers
For activities like mountaineering and skiing, waterproof gloves can help minimise exposure to moisture and keep the cold out. Look for styles with a waterproof membrane or with weatherproof fabrics such as polyester and nylon.
Try: Timberland Snow Brook Pinnacle 2-in-1 Gloves
Timberland has been an industry leader for almost half a century. Explore the latest collection of waterproof footwear and apparel.