The world's most in-depth and scientific reviews of outdoor gear

Patagonia Airshed Review

The Airshed is an incredibly breathable and comfortable running layer.
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Price:  $119 List | $75.93 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 3 resellers
Pros:  Incredibly breathable, comfortable
Cons:  Pullover design, weather resistance
Manufacturer:   Patagonia
By Brian Martin ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Aug 22, 2018
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79
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 9
  • Breathability - 30% 9
  • Weather Resistance - 20% 6
  • Comfort and Mobility - 20% 8
  • Portability - 15% 9
  • Visibility - 15% 7

Our Verdict

The Patagonia Airshed is a strong performer in venting, breathability, and comfort. While we found the performance in other areas such as weather resistance and visibility to be lacking, it's a worthy jacket, as it kept us warm on chilly mornings and vents excess heat and moisture better than many running jackets on the market.

New Colors

The Airshed is offered in some new colors this season, like the turquoise shown above.

December 2018


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This Product
Patagonia Airshed
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Top Pick Award  
Price $75.93 at Backcountry
Compare at 3 sellers
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$109.99 at Backcountry
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$90 List$75.00 at Amazon
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Incredibly breathable, comfortableLightweight, water resistance, breathability, comfortableLightweight, packs into pocket, superior weather resistanceWeather resistance, durability, large pocketGreat ventilation, easy to layer over
Cons Pullover design, weather resistanceWe'll get back to youPriceyHeavy, bulkyNo hem or hood drawcords, a bit pricey, not extremely wind resistant
Bottom Line The Airshed is an incredibly breathable and comfortable running layer.If you're looking for a multi use, functional running jacket, look no further.An excellent jacket for all running occasions.The Anorak is a durable, weather resistant running jacket made to get you outside no matter the conditions.An interesting and unique combination of fabrics that performed about average.
Rating Categories Patagonia Airshed Outdoor Research Tantrum II Arc'teryx Incendo Hoody Crew Run Wind Anorak PhD Ultra Light Sport Hoody
Breathability (30%)
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
9
Weather Resistance (20%)
10
0
6
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
10
10
0
6
Comfort And Mobility (20%)
10
0
8
10
0
10
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
7
Portability (15%)
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
6
10
0
7
Visibility (15%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
10
10
0
6
Specs Patagonia Airshed Outdoor Research... Arc'teryx Incendo... Crew Run Wind Anorak PhD Ultra Light...
OGL Weight (ounces) 3.6oz 4.2oz 4.7oz 7.5oz 4.9 oz
Number of pockets 1 1 1 2 1
Main Material 20D 100% nylon mechanical stretch ripstop with a DWR finish 100% nylon 20D mechanical stretch ripstop Lumin 100% nylon 20D Ripstop fabric 100% polyester [shell] nylon with DWR finish, [inserts] 54% merino wool, 46% polyester
Unique Features Packs into pocket with clip in loop Packs into pocket, thumb loops, elastic drawcord at waist Media Pocket Kangaroo chest pocket, pull-over Packs into pocket with clip in loop, hole in pocket for headphone cords
Vent Type Quarter zip None Mesh panels under arm Side zip Mesh panels under arm, vents on sholders
Compressible? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Media pocket? No No Yes Yes Yes
Reflective material? Yes Yes Logo and blazes Yes Yes, logo
Hood Available? No Yes Hooded version available Yes Yes
Other versions? No Hooded No No

Our Analysis and Test Results

Some jackets tested this year sacrificed breathability to have maximum weather resistance; the Patagonia Airshed has done the exact opposite. This jacket is comprised of a highly breathable material at the expense of weather and wind protection.

Performance Comparison


The Airshed was a great choice on chilly mornings when the clouds looked friendly and unlikely to dump!
The Airshed was a great choice on chilly mornings when the clouds looked friendly and unlikely to dump!

Breathability and Venting


This metric is the bread and butter of the Airshed. Easily one of the most breathable jackets we have tested in the running jacket category, you could wear this model in a sauna and expect to stay dry. While we're mostly kidding, we put the Airshed through a slew of high output activities and felt protected from cold air. Excess heat and moisture were also efficiently dissipated. The Airshed might be the ideal jacket for chilly mornings when you know there is zero chance of precipitation.

Our series of steep uphill runs exposed some breathability issues with several jackets. The AirShed (pictured) performed quite well.
Our series of steep uphill runs exposed some breathability issues with several jackets. The AirShed (pictured) performed quite well.

Weather Resistance


While the DWR treatment was initially fairly effective on the Airshed, the jacket seemed extremely permeable after a few runs, which is likely a result of the superior breathability of the fabric. Our gear tester put all of the running jackets through a rainy bike ride test and was drenched most rapidly while wearing the Airshed. That being said, it dried out quickly and wasn't the most uncomfortable jacket when wet.

We tried to grow our minds with diligent watering and some old-fashioned magazine reading. Unfortunately  the Airshed allowed heaps of water to permeate through
We tried to grow our minds with diligent watering and some old-fashioned magazine reading. Unfortunately, the Airshed allowed heaps of water to permeate through

Comfort and Mobility


Another excellent attribute of the Airshed is the supple material of the body, as well as the stretch material that comprises the waist and wrist cuffs. Even after hours of running or riding in this jacket, it remained comfortable. Only the Outdoor Research Tantrum II proved to be more comfortable, with its movement-mirroring stretch material. The pullover design was one of the only detractors from comfort and mobility. If your shoulders are chronically tight like our gear testers, getting in and out of a pullover can make you feel like Houdini trying to escape from a straight jacket. However, this isn't necessarily the fault of the jacket as much as our non-compliance with our physical therapist's recommendations to stretch our shoulders…

Portability


Patagonia has mastered the art of creating portable garments and the Airshed is no exception. In the early days of the Houdini, one needed three thumbs to stuff the jacket into its microscopic stuff pouch; now with the Airshed, the pouch is truly the perfect size.

The Airshed packs down to a handy pocket size. Unlike the older versions of Patagonia's packable jackets  this one fits easily into its stuff pouch.
The Airshed packs down to a handy pocket size. Unlike the older versions of Patagonia's packable jackets, this one fits easily into its stuff pouch.

It packs down to a small size but not so small that it's a chore to cram it into the pocket. The only notable issue is the aforementioned frustration with putting this thing on and taking it off!

105 grams or 3.7 ounces seems like the sweet spot for a highly breathable jacket. Jackets that are made much lighter or heavier tend to have a deficit when it comes to breathability and venting.
105 grams or 3.7 ounces seems like the sweet spot for a highly breathable jacket. Jackets that are made much lighter or heavier tend to have a deficit when it comes to breathability and venting.

Day and Night Visibility


The color choices of the Airshed are all quite dark; this coupled with the minimal reflective badging helped earn a barely passing grade for visibility. The extremely bright reflective material of the front and back Patagonia badges helped salvage some visibility from the gloomy color scheme.

A look at the reflective qualities of the jackets in our test. The TNF Anorak and (previously tested) Ultimate Direction Breeze had the strongest low-light visibility  with the other three having fairly comparable levels of reflectivity. Pictured left to right Ultimate Direction Breeze  the Anorak (2 pictures)  Outdoor Research Tantrum II  Marmot Air Lite (previously tested)  and the Airshed from Patagonia.
A look at the reflective qualities of the jackets in our test. The TNF Anorak and (previously tested) Ultimate Direction Breeze had the strongest low-light visibility, with the other three having fairly comparable levels of reflectivity. Pictured left to right Ultimate Direction Breeze, the Anorak (2 pictures), Outdoor Research Tantrum II, Marmot Air Lite (previously tested), and the Airshed from Patagonia.

Best Applications


The Airshed is a breathability specialist. This jacket is best suited for high output activities when breathability is essential. The weatherproofing isn't anything to write home about, relegating this jacket to specific weather conditions, i.e., cold and dry.

Value


The Airshed isn't a bad value. If breathability performance is a top priority in seeking out a running jacket, this is one of the best, making the $119.00 price tag worth it. If you're looking for something a bit more well-rounded, the same $119 can get you a lot of jacket. Check out the Outdoor Research Tantrum II as the all-arounder.

Conclusion


The Patagonia Airshed is highly breathable, comfortable, and portable. It struggles to shed precipitation, and when the wind gets strong, it can howl through. The breathability alone is a reason to get this jacket as many other running jackets struggle to offer a satisfactory level of breathability or venting.


Brian Martin