Hands-on Gear Review
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Pros: Cozy fleece with a hood.
Cons: Not very technical or versatile.
Best Uses: Around town jacket, for cuddling up in something warm.
The Marmot Flair Hoody is a cozy around-town fleece that has been part of Marmot's lineup at least since our women's fleece reviews debuted in 2011. It didn't win an award in this year's update, but it's still a cozy favorite. The Flair isn't a technical piece and we don't really recommend it for big outdoor adventures, but it is very cozy and warm. The pile on this raschel fleece is on the shorter side, so if you want the silky feel of The North Face Oso Hoodie without the Muppet look, this is the jacket for you. The hood fits well (and is looser than the Patagonia R1 Hoody - Women's hood) and the interior brushed fleece fabric is soft on your ears, though not as soft as the exterior fleece. This jacket is less expensive than some of the other technical fleeces we reviewed (and it's a previous Best Buy winner), so 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, this jacket is a great and affordable option. For a more technical, cozy and packable fleece without a hood try the Editors' Choice The North Face Radium Hi-loft - Women's.
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
The Marmot Flair Hoody is made of a plush raschel fleece with a weight of 9.4 oz/yard (or 266 g). It has two zippered hand pockets and is available in five different colors.
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 North Face Oso Hoodie, this jacket will definitely keep you toasty on a chilly day. It also has a wind flap behind the zipper to keep you even cozier.
Comfort and Coziness
The Flair Hoody scored very high in this metric, though not as high as some of the other raschel fleeces that we tested, like The North Face Osito 2 and The North Face Radium Hi-Loft. That's because while the outside of the jacket is made of soft raschel fleece, the inside is a flat finished fleece that is not quite as silky to the touch.
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 R1 Hoody - Women's.
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 snugger that the other fleeces we reviewed. Also, although we loved the Flair's hood, it does slightly restrict your peripheral vision.
Wind Protection and Water Resistance
The fleece material on this jacket 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
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. It is more casual than the Patagonia Better Sweater Jacket - Women's, and in the latest color that we reviewed, Violet Mist, it somewhat resembles a velour jacket, which wasn't a big hit with our testers.
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 this jacket is an awesome pick that won't break the bank.
This fleece jacket is not super versatile, but for only $100 it's a great option for a cozy, around-town hoody.
The Marmot Flair Hoody wasn't designed with technical pursuits in mind, but it is a great choice if you are looking for a lounging layer on a cold day. Since it's 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's 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.
This fleece also comes in a non-hooded full-zip jacket, the Marmot Flair Jacket.
— Cam McKenzie Ring & Amanda Fenn
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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: September 6, 2014
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