The Best Rain Jacket in Ireland

Today, we're on a quest to find you the best rain jacket in Ireland. Why?

Because the average rainfall in Ireland is a soaking 1,230mm. On the west coast of Ireland, along the Wild Atlantic Way, it can rain up to 235 days a year. You’ve probably heard us say it before, “If you only go outside when it’s not raining in Ireland, you’ll hardly get outside.” 😊


So your first question is usually this:


How long will it keep you dry for?

Let's first decode that 'mm.' In terms of rainfall, 'mm' stands for millimeters, and 1,230mm is roughly 48.5 inches. Our Portwest Ventron technology has a waterproof rating ranging from 3K – 10K.  So let’s talk about waterproof rating. A "mm/24 hours" rating refers to the amount of rainfall a fabric can withstand in a single day.


Waterproof Rating

Not all rain jackets are waterproof. A fabric’s waterproof rating is directly related to its ability to withstand water under pressure. The more resistance to pressurized water equates to a higher waterproof rating. The higher a garment's waterproof rating, the longer the fabric will remain waterproof for. A 10,000mm waterproof rating means your jacket can withstand 10,000mm of rainfall in a single day without letting moisture in. The higher the number, the more waterproof the item will be. Gore-Tex®, for example, has a waterproof rating of 28,000mm.






 0 – 1,500mm

Water resistant / Snowproof

Very light rain

 1,500mm – 5,000mm


Light to average rain


Very Waterproof

Moderate to heavy rain

 10,000mm - 20,000mm +

Highly Waterproof

Heavy rain



Waterproof vs. Water-Resistant Fabric:

So what’s the difference? Water-resistant jackets can handle light rain for a brief period, but they're not designed to keep you dry during a full-on downpour. The fabric is typically treated to repel water, but the seams aren't sealed, so water can seep in over time. Waterproof jackets, on the other hand, come with sealed seams for pockets and zips and a membrane that prevents water from passing through.


So what’s the best men and women’s rain jacket in Ireland?


So first you need to know two things. Your activity and location.


What activity is your jacket for and where:

Are you wearing your jacket around town or are you wearing your jacket hiking Carrantouhill in the middle of December? For regular hikes in extreme weather you'll love Mountain Equipment's Makalu Gore-Tex Jacket, available in men's and women's fit. For an everyday jacket around town you'll love Portwest Women's Newgrange Rain Jacket or Portwest Men's Portrush Softshell Jacket. If you plan to spend time outdoors in wet conditions for more than a stroll you’ll need to consider what waterproof rating you want.


How long will waterproof fabric last?

All waterproof fabrics need to be treated after a certain amount of usage. The usage depends on how often you wear your jacket and how you wear your jacket. We usually recommend reproofing after 6 months but this depends on a couple of factors.  e.g., If you wear a backpack while wearing your waterproof jacket, the layer of wax around the shoulder and back will break down quicker than if you do not.  If you your waterproof jacket is letting water in, we recommend using NikWax, there are a wide range of sprays, gels and cleaning products stocked in all Portwest stores to revive your jacket.


So what does this mean for you?

What it evolves around is breathability - which is a fabric's ability to let air pass through so that sweat can evaporate. The aim is to create a garment which can maintain a comfortable internal micro-climate while protecting you during wet weather activities. Choosing the best rain jacket for you also depends on many other factors; How many pockets do you need? Do you need waterproof pockets and zips? Do you need an oversized hood? How long will you be wearing your jacket in a full on downpour?


All types of jackets listed in our women's rain jackets and men's rain jackets sections provide both waterproof and breathable to varying degrees, Each brand has their own patent waterproofing technology which can lead to confusion but here is some of their logos to look out for:   


 Ventron Technology from Portwest



So now you know how to look for the best rain jacket in Ireland.  Call instore or browse our jackets online and you’ll find a jacket for you.

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