Dare2B Impassioned Jacket, $200; en.dare2b.com
The Good- Hit up two worlds with one jacket! It’s useful for both looking good next to the mountain as well staying uber warm on the mountain. It’s a jacket that can handle the cold and snowy weather.
The Bad- Although versatile in environmental settings, this jacket is really just functional in cold weather. Unless you’re sitting still, you’ll overheat rather quickly if it’s over 32 degrees.
The Ugly- The white version of this jacket definitely made me feel like I was wearing a marshmallow (with a little ‘diva’ mixed in thanks to furry hood). But hey, if that’s your style…props to you.
Hailing from the motherland (Manchester, England to be specific)- these guys know how to make a jacket for the cold. The Impassioned jacket is insulated with high loft synthetic down and it does its job. Walking around in below freezing temps- nothing, not even a little chill. The insulation is like the Great Wall of Puff Coat Nation. With its ARED 5000 coated fabric, it holds up well against rain and snow. But if it’s raining, it’s probably too warm for this coat. If it gets much warmer than freezing, unless you’re sitting still, you’re sweating buckets. I took this jacket out for a few turns down at Heavenly in South Lake Tahoe where the temperature was at about 40 degrees. I made it 3 runs and I was dying (and no, I wasn’t working that hard). I literally was melting in a synthetic down oven. Higher up on the mountain where it was a bit colder and the lifts moved a bit faster, the coat was of some better use, but even then, I didn’t last long. Packing the thing in a pack was a pain, it took up a significant chunk of space in the backpack. So, when is this coat a good choice? Skiing and hanging out in the dead of winter, absolutely. Spring skiing or anything above freezing, nope.
Now, take a gondola ride down to Heavenly Village where the ski bunnies are sitting around drinking mojitos all day, and you’ll fit right in. One of Dare2B’s goals with this jacket was to be able to create a product that could be chic for the mountain town as well as functional for the mountain face. So for the woman who likes to take a few runs then hang out by the lodge sipping her favorite drink, this could be your ideal ski coat. I would say the fashion level rises a little higher than the function level, but not so much so that you can’t hit the slopes and kick some guy’s ass to prove you’re a legit skier or snowboarder.
If you’re willing to put up with the marshmallow look (they have black and purple versions which diffuse this situation significantly, as well as improve safety while on the slopes) it will be one of the warmest coats in your closet. The fur on the hood is removable incase it gets in the way of your vision…or is just a little too diva for you. Other features include an adjustable hood, tons of pockets, and an adjustable/removable waist belt so you can show off those curves if you so choose. Really, aside from the puffiness, this jacket can be customized to your own personal style. My favorite feature? The crazy soft inner stretch cuffs. My wrists and hands have never been so in love.
With the Impassioned Jacket, that little bit of diva you know you have is able to have a little fun while also being able to own the slopes no matter how cold it gets. Recommended to the sassy, the stylish, and the girl who just wants to have her [frozen ice cream] cake and eat it, too.