Breathable and waterproof rainwear: is it possible?
For the past few days, it's been the deluge in Montreal. Fall classic what! So we thought it would be useful to give you a few tips to help you stay dry no matter what your activities!
Waterproof coatss: Outdoor raincoats are actually waterproof breathable shells. First and foremost, they protect you from the rain and wind, while allowing some of your moisture to escape. This is the very principle of the membrane. Whether your raincoat is a 2.5-ply (outer shell + membrane + protective membrane coating) or a 3-ply (outer shell + membrane + laminated protective liner), it will keep you dry, even in a torrential rain! The stronger your raincoat, the more water resistant it will be. However, you will lose on breathability and lightness.
Here for our selection of performance raincoats: HERE
Waterproof clothing is never completely breathable. Although technical membranes are effective, they cannot wick an excessive amount of perspiration. Thus, waterproof coats should be avoided when practicing intense sport. Also, it is important to avoid cotton clothing under the raincoat. Cotton absorbs about 90% of the moisture produced by your body, so even though the coat is 100% efficient and waterproof, you will still feel soggy. We therefore favor synthetic clothing or in merino wool. To keep warm, the fleece is a great choice. It does not take moisture and provides a lot of heat, despite its lightness.
The windbreaker or softshell (soft shell) is a water-repellent garment, which protects you from the elements up to a certain limit. The windbreaker or softshell lightweight can become your best friend. It's much more breathable than a raincoat and protects you from the wind, while generally being lighter and more flexible. In a light rain, it may be sufficient (especially if you have an umbrella!) And it is the ideal clothing when exercising.
The same thoughts can apply to pants worn when it rains. Obviously, whether you are on a bike or on foot changes the game. When you're just walking around town, or even in the mountains, softshell pants offer enough protection. Again, they provide more flexibility and breathability. However, if you are on a bike you will probably need more total protection, so waterproof breathability will be a must!
No matter what choice you make, the shoe should be waterproof. We prefer to wear a light hiking boot with a waterproof-breathable membrane, for more comfort. If you prefer the low shoe, this is also a great option, whether for the city or hiking!
With that, let's go play in the rain. We are not made of chocolate!