Hands-on Gear Review
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Pros: Best fit, stylish, really cozy, hood.
Cons: Not very technical or versatile.
Best Uses: Around town jacket, for cuddling up in something warm.
Our Best Buy pick, the Marmot Flair Hoody won our hearts as a cozy around-town fleece. Although it's not very technical and we don't really recommend it for big outdoor adventures, it is extremely snuggly. This jacket comes in five colors and has a stylish fit for a fuzzy fleece. The hood fits well (and is looser than the Patagonia R1 Hoody’s hood) and the fur-like fabric is super soft on your ears. We reviewed a well-loved version of this fleece from last season and still found the fur to be super soft and cozy. Similar in function to the Mountain Hardwear Monkey Woman Fleece, the Marmot Flair Hoody is about $50 less and it is $20 less than the Patagonia Re-Tool Snap-T Pullover. If you're looking for a comfy, high-quality fleece to wear while walking the dog, lounging at your favorite coffee shop, or curled up on the couch, the Marmot Flair Hoody is a great and affordable option. For a more technical hoody that's great for jogging, check out our Top Pick, the Patagonia R1 Hoody, or for a cozy packable fleece without a hood try the Patagonia R2 Jacket - Women's.
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
Comfort and Coziness
One of our favorite cozy fleeces, the Marmot Flair Hoody has an ultra-plush fabric that reminds us of Muppet fur. The whole jacket, inside and out, including the hood, is made of super touchable fabric that just screams comfy. Our testers agreed that the Marmot Flair's coziest feature is its soft, furry hood. A more fitted jacket, it doesn't have quite as much room to move around in, compared to the Patagonia Re-Tool Snap-T Pullover, but it still a great layer to toss on over a tank top or fitted t-shirt when you're headed out to run errands on a chilly day.
With its dense furry fabric made of polyester Raschel fleece, the Marmot Flair Hoody really seals in warmth. It features a warm, furry hood and two hand pockets that are lined with fleece on one side and mesh on the other. Although it's not quite as warm as the Mountain Hardwear Monkey Woman Fleece, the Marmot Flair Hoody will definitely keep you toasty on a chilly day. This fleece also has a wind flap behind the zipper to keep you even cozier.
The Marmot Flair Hoody is not the jacket to grab before you head out on a jog. Although its cozy Muppet fur will keep you warm when it's cold out, this piece received one of our lowest ratings for breathability. For a hoody with maximum breathability, check out our Top Pick, the Patagonia Women's R1 Hoody.
Layering Ability and Ease of Movement
A fluffy fleece with a tailored fit, the Marmot Flair Hoody is a bit challenging to layer both over and under. The fabric isn't stretchy like the Mammut Aconcagua Hoody or the Patagonia R1 Hoody and the shoulders are a bit more snug that the other fleeces we reviewed. Also, although we loved the Flair's hood, it does slightly restrict your peripheral vision.
Wind and Water Protection
The Marmot Flair Hoody is not designed to tackle the elements and offers almost no protection from gusty winds. While the thick fabric will keep you dry during a short dash from the car to the house if it’s rainy, this fleece quickly absorbs water right through to the skin.
Style and Fit
A flattering jacket, the Marmot Flair Hoody has a relatively tailored fit, given the bulkier nature of its fabric. It falls at about hip length, but is a bit shorter than the majority of the other fleeces we reviewed. The hood has a looser fit than the hood on the Patagonia Piton Hybrid Hoody - Women's and the Flair’s zipper comes up to the chin or just below. As more of an around-town jacket, this fleece scored higher on our style metrics than several of the technical fleeces, but is more casual than the Patagonia Better Sweater Jacket - Women's.
This fleece is definitely best saved for around-town use on cold days. Because of its lack of breathability, we don't recommend this jacket for even mild cardio activities. It's also pretty heavy and not packable, so it doesn't make for a great extra layer to toss in the pack. However, if you're looking for a fleece to curl up in at your favorite coffee shop, then the Marmot Flair Hoody is an awesome pick that won‘t break the bank!
We chose the Marmot Flair Hoody as our Best Buy for this fleece review. Although it’s not super versatile, for only $100 it's a great option for a cozy, yet stylish around-town hoody.
This fleece also comes in a non-hooded full-zip jacket.
Video Review From Marmot
— Amanda Fenn
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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: February 20, 2013
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