The best lightweight ladies’ riding jackets need to be breathable, water resistant and comfortable making them ideal to be worn during the changeable weather often seen in spring and autumn, as well as on wet but mild winter days and chilly damp summer ones. In fact if you find your perfect lightweight ladies’ riding jacket, it could become one of the most-worn garments in your equestrian wardrobe!
When buying a lightweight jacket it’s worth weighing up the look verses the practicality, for example chic looking exposed zips may not prove to be as water resistant as enclosed ones. Also, a hood can be useful when you are teaching or on the yard, but can be an annoyance while in saddle. Some jackets have either a detachable or fold-away hood, which gives you the best of both worlds. Lastly, for maximum protection from the weather, it is good if the cuffs close tightly around the wrist and the seams are taped to prevent water from leaking through the stitching.
Horse & Hound has been working with a number of professional riders, trainers and yards to put a range of products to the test in a busy yard environment. And here are the results…
Meet the product testers
The lightweight ladies’ riding jackets in this group test were trialled by Tamsin Addison. Tamsin beat bone cancer at the age of 21 and become the first person in the world to re-grow the humerus bone in her upper arm. She has competed up to CCI2*-L eventing, but now rides for Ireland in para dressage.
Horse & Hound’s pick of the best lightweight ladies’ riding jackets 2019
* BEST IN TEST & BEST VALUE *
“The jacket is really flattering and it is comfortable to wear. I particularly like the color and the shape of the jacket. It coped well with light rain showers and it keeps you warm in lower temperatures. I would have liked the pocket on the chest to have been a bit bigger. I would recommended this jacket to all my friends, equestrian or not.”
“This jacket is super smart. I liked the tan stitches, quilted pattern across shoulders and matching taped seams inside. It was also a lovely fit. I found this jacket very robust and comfortable to wear all day. The fabric it was made out of meant that I never felt restricted, but as the same time I felt nice and cosy. The pockets were secure and overall I felt very stylish without being too over the top.”
“This is a smart jacket that looked lightweight and waterproof with very strong branding on the rear of the collar. This jacket was very comfortable and stood up to the job in terms of being waterproof and lightweight. I like having the hood in the collar as it makes the collar padded and actually adds to the comfort, with the added luxury of having a hood when you need it. But I found the cuffs of this jacket to be too big and the popper on them is not adjustable.”
“I liked the shape and the detail of this jacket, which was suitable for teaching or riding in. The quilted design made it warm, breathable, flexible and comfortable to wear in the saddle. The side panels meant that it fitted well without being restrictive. It had good warm pockets, but had no hood. The detail on the back of the collar was nice, but I found my long hair got caught in it while I was riding.”
“This jacket was quite plain in design, although the back vent made it flattering. This jacket did come up quite small, but I found it flexible, so it was easy to ride in as well as doing everyday jobs in. It was water resistant in light showers, but I did get quite damp in anything more than that. However, it was very wind resistant. I like the navy colour, but I think more colour on the jacket would make it more appealing. The red zip is a nice touch, but it can’t easily be seen. I really liked the fold-away hood as it means you can easily put it away when riding. I would advise buying this jacket in a size up from usual.”
“This jacket is made of a very lightweight material, which was slightly translucent so what you are wearing underneath shows through the jacket. This jacket coped well with heavy rain leaving me dry at the end of the day. It was extremely lightweight and therefore easy to wear. I didn’t think this jacket was particularly flattering, but it does the basic job of keeping the wearer dry very well.”
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If you're looking for a new versatile mid-layer top, then check out our tester’s comments
Horse & Hound is in the process of testing a wide range of equestrian kit, clothing and equipment, the results of which will be published on HorseandHound.co.uk
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