Outdoor Clothing Brands for Comfortable and Stylish Gear

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Leading outdoor clothing brands compete yearly to deliver affordable and functional gear to an increasingly educated and demanding customer base.

Outdoor activities require innovative and performant garments in stylish designs from sustainable materials and at the lowest possible prices.

In this article, I’ll introduce you to 20 outdoor clothing brands we’ve curated for their excellent offering of stylish, comfortable, and affordable gear.

1. PATAGONIA

Best for Sustainable Outdoor Apparel

Patagonia Outdoor clothing

With a fly-fishing heritage, Patagonia is an American outdoor clothing brand with a cult-like following.

Named after one of the world’s most pristine environments, Patagonia cares about Earth.

According to their website, Patagonia is in business to save our home planet.

Designed for exploring the earth, everything Patagonia does revolves around “saving our home planet,” from repairing products for free to donating their tax cuts!

2. THE NORTH FACE

Best for Mountaineering

The North Face outdoor clothing

Like Columbia, The North Face is a leading outdoor clothing brand from the US.

Named after the north face of Yosemite’s Half Dome, the California-based outdoor giant is an industry shaper.

The brand dictates the latest styles, materials, and technologies through which the industry creates techwear.

3. COLUMBIA

Best for Skiing & Hiking

COLUMBIA outdoor clothing

Hailing from Portland, US, a city famous for its rainfall, Columbia has a reputation for affordable but high-quality outerwear.

Columbia was founded in 1938 and can be summed up as “tested tough.”

Affordable but high-quality outerwear, Columbia is one of the outdoorsy’s favorite clothing brands.

The latest collaboration with KITH and Opening Ceremony wanted to revive classic outdoor apparel through a lens of contemporary silhouettes.

4. HELLY HANSEN

Best for Hardcore Outdoor

HELLY HANSEN outdoor gears

Helly Hansen is a Norwegian outdoor clothing brand and one of the landscape’s OGs.

When ‘performance fabrics’ meant textiles soaked in fat, Helly Hansen invented waterproof garments for sailors in the cold North Sea.

For the last 140 years, Helly Hansen has been producing outdoor apparel built for frozen oceans, mountain tops, yacht runs, and street-style scenes worldwide.

With highly innovative and technical fabrics, Helly Hansen outdoor clothing is designed for frozen oceans, mountain tops, and yacht runs.

The brand has mixed its craftsmanship and heritage with today’s bleeding-edge brands, such as GmbH and WTAPS.

5. MONCLER

Best for Luxury Resorts

MONCLER luxury outdoor clothing

Italy’s more popular outdoor clothing brand, Moncler, is the archetype of techwear luxury.

With roots tracing back to the ’50s ski scene, Moncler brings the craftmanship of top designers such as Craig Green and Kei Ninomiya to technical outdoor apparel.

Listed as one of the top fashion brands, Moncler is an Italian luxury brand, so don’t expect cheap products at all.

6. SALOMON

Best for Skiing & Hiking

SALOMON outdoor clothing and ski gears

Founded in 1947 in the French Alps, Salomon is a sportswear company residing in Annecy and famous for hiking and skiing gear.

Launched as a metalworking company for mountain gear almost 70 years later, the runners in the family decided to get into apparel by creating “the ultimate fashion sneaker.”

Since then, the outdoor label has made some of the best hiking shoes and Alpine ski gear worldwide.

Salomon is one of the outdoor equipment leaders in Europe, with products such as top-of-the-range ski and snowboard gear and backpacks.

Today, Salomon’s outdoor clothing covers a wide range of outdoor sports, including trail running, hiking, and climbing, and is available in over 45 countries across five continents.

7. BARBOUR

Best for Fishing & Camping

BARBOUR outdoor clothing and outerwear

Barbour outdoor clothing brand is a stalwart in the British countryside and loved by the Sloane Range style aficionados.

The label has been making outstanding outdoor apparel since 1894 and has become the very definition of luxury outdoor wear fit for Royalty.

Since 1974, Barbour has held three Imperial warrants to supply waterproof and protective clothing to the British Royal family.

Nowadays, the brand has a wide range of outdoor clothing, from Merino sweaters, shirts, and moleskin overcoats with scrupulous quality standards.

8. JACK WOLFSKIN

Best for Everyday Outdoor Apparel
JACK WOLFSKIN outdoor clothing and accessories

Jack Wolfskin is an outdoor clothing brand often described as ‘The North Face’ of Europe.

The German brand is known for its attention to quality and environmental emphasis.

Right now, all products are made from recycled plastic.

Moreover, the ‘Fair Wear Foundation’ honored the outdoor clothing brand for its efforts to build and maintain an ethical supply chain.

9. MAMMUT

Best for Hiking & Climbing

MAMMUT outdoor clothing brand

Founded in 1862, Mammut is a Swiss outdoor clothing brand famous for high-performance techwear and climbing ropes.

The brand’s unique technology – Phase Weave – combines multiple pieces of fabric into one material.

In the past, Mammut’s outdoor apparel was designed around snow sports, but now the brand is taking steps toward ‘urban performance,’ as with its ‘Delta X’ product line.

10. HOUDINI

Best for Running & Skiing

HOUDINI outdoor clothing

Like Patagonia (wait for it!), Houdini is an eco-conscious outdoor clothing brand that makes extreme sports apparel.

Given its focus on sustainability, the quality Scandinavian company uses some of the most innovative fabrics and textiles.

For example, the Surpass 2.5L hardshell tech performs better than any tech-core materials.

Additionally, as most of Houdini’s garments are made from recycled materials, the brand makes waves with its planet-friendly mission and performance cred.

11. BERGHAUS

Best for Outdoor Basics

BERGHAUS outdoor clothing

Launched in Newcastle in 1972, Berghaus is a British outdoor clothing brand with a German name recognized in techno music.

Ever since, Berghaus has been producing specialist outdoor gear with loud colors and superb gossamer detailing for a long time.

Thanks to affordable and high-quality outerwear, the label is also a well-known manufacturer of technical apparel.

The label’s latest must-have is its Dean Street collection, especially if you’re after an ultimate techwear look.

12. MONTANE

Best for Trail Running

MONTANE outerwear clothing

Launched 25 years ago, Montane is a British outdoor clothing brand created for serious mountain professionals working in hostile conditions.

Made for people who demand the most stringent credentials from their clothing, Montane understands the importance of functional garments of excellent design.

Fabric technology is critical to producing the best products, and Montane works with the world’s leading fabric suppliers to engineer new cutting-edge materials.

13. KATHMANDU

Best for Traveling & Backpacking

KATHMANDU outdoor clothing brand

Launched in New Zealand in 1987, Kathmandu has produced excellent quality outdoor clothing for all outdoor activities for over 30 years.

The outdoor label is most known for its wide selection of pants, merino gear, and insulated jackets for women.

Also, as it hails from a country with a dramatic landscape that demands exploration, the brand is very conscious of its environmental impact.

14. MARMOT

Best for Mountain Climbing Apparel

MARMOT outdoor clothing brand

Marmot is an American outdoor clothing company based in Rohnert Park, California, and part of Newell Brands.

Launched in 1974 by two university students, in their students’ slang, Marmots were friends climbing mountains.

The label struck gold when the producers of a Clint Eastwood film requested 108 “very puffy jackets,” to which they dutifully obliged despite barely getting off the ground as a company.

15. OUTDOOR RESEARCH

Best for Hiking & Trail Running

Outdoor Research outdoor clothing brands

Outdoor Research was founded in 1981 by Ron Gregg, a nuclear physicist.

During an expedition up North America’s highest peak, Gregg’s climbing partner suffered frostbitten feet in extreme conditions and had to be airlifted to safety.

The whole experience inspired Gregg to leave his science career behind and seek the best ways to prevent such problems from happening again.

Based out of Seattle, the brand offers alpine pursuits, paddling, rock and ice climbing, backcountry skiing, snowboarding, backpacking… the list goes on.

16. KUHL

Best for Hiking & Camping

Kuhl outdoor clothing brand

KUHL is an American outdoor clothing brand focusing on mountain wear.

KUHL’s story as an independent brand began in the snow-covered peaks of the Wasatch Mountains, US.

The brand’s superb selection of hiking clothes (under $100) places them as one of the most affordable brands out there right now.

17. FJALLRAVEN

Best for Ourdoor Backpacks

FJALLRAVEN outdoor clothing brand

Fjallraven was founded in 1960 in Ornskoldsvik, a small town in Sweden.

The Swedish outdoor clothing brand is committed to making nature more accessible.

Hailing from a place where mountains and forests meet the sea, the outdoor accessories equipment company focuses on simplicity and practicality with the utmost respect for the environment.

18. ARCTERYX

Best for Extreme Weather

ARC'TERYX outdoor clothing

Founded by climbers in 1989, Arcteryx is a Vancouver-based outdoor clothing brand that has 30 years in tech apparel.

Arcteryx clothes are light and blizzard-ready, built for outdoor extremes and the most severe weather conditions.

While quality does not guarantee style, Arc’teryx is considered one of the best streetwear brands.

19. COTOPAXI

Best for Backpacking & Camping

COTOPAXI outdoor clothing

Named after the famous volcano in Ecuador, Cotopaxi is an outdoor clothing brand with a social conscience.

The brand has founded the Cotopaxi Foundation, designed to support poverty alleviation projects by donating 1 percent of its annual revenue.

Cotopaxi outdoor clothing is one of the best sustainable clothing brands and is on the lower end of the price scale.

20. CRAGHOPPERS

Best for Trail Running & Hiking

CRAGHOPPERS outdoor clothing

Craghoppers is a British outdoor clothing brand founded in 1965 in Batley, West Yorkshire.

Its founders, Brian Gaskin and Roy Holmes, were approached by the mountaineering expedition team of Chris Bonington to design their weather wear for the successful 1975 Everest Expedition.

Worldwide renowned for its walking gear Kiwi range, Craghoppers makes stylish and functional outdoor apparel that can also be used around the town.

Also, from the use of recycled fleece to the use of natural fabrics such as merino wool, the British brand is committed to sustainable fashion.

Conclusion

Patagonia’s business strategy seems to have inspired other outdoor clothing brands, particularly American ones.

Compared to last year, the top outdoor clothing brands are now dominated by US and UK brands.

As a takeaway, we see a growing interest in small outdoor brands that create with sustainable materials and the emergence of ‘techwear‘ inspired by outdoor clothing brands.

Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with the latest in fashion, beauty and style!

After years of managing hundreds of fashion brands from London's office of a global retailer, Mandy has ventured into freelancing. Connected with several fashion retailers and media platforms in the US, Australia, and the UK, Mandy uses her expertise to consult for emerging fashion brands create top-notch content as an editorial strategist for several online publications.

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8 COMMENTS

  1. I recently ordered a few items from D’S Sporting Good and waited patiently for the delivery. FedEx delivered the package in a complete mess. The box was crushed, with boot marks all over, and the box was open. Needless to say I was missing 2 of the 3 items. I contacted D’S Sporting Goods Customer Service and they immediately replaced those items, no questions asked. FedEx received a complaint/claim. I really appreciate D’S Sporting Goods costumer service. Thank you!

  2. I have bought ten years back a 3 in 1 waterproof jacket with a fleece inner jacket from Vaude. Together with a backpack from Vaude of 90 liters for a week hike. Both excellent stuff. Jacket is even warm in Canadian winters when you wear 2 regular T-shirts and a sweater. I mean for -30 celcius. I had no problems. After 10 years not so much waterproof anymore but i guess that is normal with daily use for 10 years.
    But still, walk 100 meter in it and it is toasty warm.

  3. I live in the UK, Oxford city, moved here years ago to do a master’s and then a Ph.D. I am now running a business, have a family, and enjoy this amazing county with superb hills, valleys, rivers, and lots of places to explore. Here’s Oxford Blue, a great outdoor clothing brand that I can’t recommend enough. The brand was established in 1968 and is one of Europe’s leading leisure brands, specializing in the finest lifestyle and country clothing. All clothes are made in the UK and showcase a rare British royal vibe you’ll love to wear.

  4. If you want good outdoor brands, shop in online clothing stores from Scandinavia, or look for outdoor clothing stores from Norway, Sweeden, or even north of Russia!

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