The North Face Thermoball Eco Hoodie 2.0 - Women's Review
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|Pros||Warm for its thinness, simple but quality design, packs into its own pocket||Warm without being bulky, great coverage all around, protective and comfortable cuffs, microfleece-lined pockets||Soft and comfortable, breathable, easy to layer, great mobility, weather resistant||Lightweight and packable, more coverage, excellent cuffs, good warmth-to-weight ratio, versatile fit and function||Warmth, many comfort features, very weatherproof|
|Cons||Less coverage than others, difficult to pack into its pocket, shoulders are snug for movement, many baffle seams create weak points||Runs large||Doesn't stuff into its own pocket, hood is very large||Hood is drafty without a beanie or helmet, stuff pocket is oddly shaped||Not breathable or very packable|
|Bottom Line||A casual jacket that has less extensive coverage than most yet is warm for how thin it is||An excellent midweight jacket with great warmth, top-notch coverage, and comfortable details||A very comfortable jacket that's great for adventures in diverse conditions where layering, mobility, and protection are key||A lightweight versatile jacket with good warmth and great coverage that's got your back on any mission||A cute, high performing non-technical option that boasts an excellent price|
|Rating Categories||The North Face Ther...||Rab Xenon Hoodie 2.0||Arc'teryx Atom Hoody||Mountain Hardwear G...||Columbia Heavenly H...|
|Weather Resistance (20%)|
|Weight and Compressibility (15%)|
|Specs||The North Face Ther...||Rab Xenon Hoodie 2.0||Arc'teryx Atom Hoody||Mountain Hardwear G...||Columbia Heavenly H...|
|Weight, size small (ounces)||12.6 oz||12.1 oz||10.5 oz||9.7 oz||22.4 oz|
|Number of Pockets||3 (2 zippered hand, 1 internal zippered chest)||3 (2 zippered hand, 1 internal zippered chest)||3 (2 zippered hand, 1 internal zippered chest)||4 (2 zippered hand, 2 internal drop)||3 (2 zippered hand, 1 internal zippered chest)|
|Hem Type||Single bungee adjustment||Single bungee adjustment||Dual bungee adjustment||Single bungee adjustment||No adjustment|
|Fit||Relaxed slim||Relaxed slim||Relaxed||Relaxed slim||Slim|
|Insulation||Thermoball Eco 100% recycled polyester||100% recycled PrimaLoft Silver||Coreloft 60 100% recycled polyester||80 g (body, sleeves), 60 g (hood, side panels) partially recycled synthetic||100% polyester|
|Outer Fabric||100% recycled nylon||30D Pertex Quantum ripstop||Tyono 20D 100% nylon
Stretch fleece side panels: 94% polyester, 6% elastane
|Whisperer 10D x 10D Ripstop
100% Recycled Nylon
|Storm-Lite DP II Polyester|
|Lining||100% recycled nylon||20D recycled Atmos ripstop||Dope Permeair 20D - 100% nylon||Whisperer 10D x 10D Ripstop
100% Recycled Nylon
|Luscious Pile Fleece Polyester|
|Built-in stow pocket||Yes; chest||Yes; chest||No||Yes; hand||No|
|Cuff construction||Elasticized cuffs||Elasticized with overhang||Stretch-knit||Elasticized with overhang||Stretch-knit wrist-warmer cuff with thumbholes|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The North Face Thermoball Eco Hoodie 2.0 is a lightweight jacket with a relaxed fitted hood and a relaxed slim fit. Its exterior material is 100% recycled nylon, and the hem has a single bungee cord adjustment point. It has three pockets; two hand pockets with zippers and an interior zippered chest pocked into which it can be packed away.
Though a thin jacket, the Thermoball Eco packs dense insulation that's warmer than other similar models. Where it loses points for warmth is in its lowered coverage. The torso isn't nearly as long as most other models, and it has just the barest hint of a drop hem to keep your back and upper bum covered. The sleeves are also much shorter than most others and end in an elastic cuff that leaves your hands fully exposed. Without mobility features to make the shoulders complement your body motions, those short sleeves can leave wrists exposed as you reach. The hem does have a single adjustment point for a bungee cord that can seal the whole bottom of this jacket and the hood is well-fitted and protective.
A classically swishy puffy jacket, the Thermoball 2.0 hides few surprises in how it feels. It has a very subtly tapered waist in its overall relaxed slim fit. Its dense insulation and standard construction make it harder to move in, creating pressure points when bending at the shoulders and elbows. The cuffs are also on the loose side, adding to the overall "fine, but not great" feel of this jacket.
The fabric and insulation of the Thermoball do a great job blocking out wind, aided by a full-length wind guard behind the main zipper. Cinching the bottom hem tight also protects your inner warmth on windy days, though doing so leaves more of your lower half exposed than most jackets. When pitted against precipitation, the Thermoball shed most water, though some soaked into the seams of the excessive number of baffle edges. We didn't get wet underneath, but it didn't leave us with a lot of confidence in its water-resistance after years of wear.
Weight and Compressibility
The size Small Thermoball we tested weighs 12.6 ounces, a bit heavier than average in our test fleet. It can be packed into its chest pocket, though doing so proved challenging. The zippered opening is quite small, making it difficult to stuff this densely insulated jacket through that narrow space. The actual pocket itself provides an adequate amount of space to accommodate the jacket but getting it in (and out of) there is a chore.
With dense insulation meant to keep you warm rather than let you breathe, we're not surprised by the unimpressive breathability of the Thermoball. Loosening the hem helps some, as do the shorter sleeves that leave your hands exposed. At the end of the day, this jacket is built for warmth, not for breathability.
Should You Buy The North Face Thermoball Eco 2.0?
The Thermoball is a decent everyday jacket with an above-average price tag. If you prefer shorter sleeves with exposed hands and a dense, stiff jacket body, it may be worth its cost. But for similar — and sometimes lower — price points, we found numerous jackets with better technical and everyday performance.
What Other Insulated Jackets Should You Consider?
The Thermoball Eco 2.0 is a popular jacket that's warm but lacks coverage and mobility. If you want a thin lightweight everyday jacket that performs better in every metric, check out the Rab Xenon 2.0, which we love for everything from running errands to snowy hikes. For more weather protection in a warmer jacket, the Patagonia DAS Light is a great standalone jacket for most cold-weather pursuits.
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