Reviews You Can Rely On

Flylow Billie Coat Review

This ideal and stylish hardshell fends off wind and moisture in a functional, no-frills package
Flylow Billie Coat
Photo: Flylow
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Price:  $420 List | $230.97 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Stylish, great ski features and pockets, strong value, more versatile than an insulated ski jacket
Cons:  Not the lightest hardshell, stiffer material, no insulation
Manufacturer:   Flylow
By Jessica Haist ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Sep 25, 2019
  • Share this article:
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
70
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#5 of 11
  • Weather Resistance - 20% 9
  • Comfort and Fit - 20% 7
  • Warmth - 20% 4
  • Ventilation - 20% 7
  • Style - 10% 8
  • Features - 10% 8

Our Verdict

The folks at FlyLow have perfected the hardshell ski jacket with the Flylow Billie Coat. Although it has a Spartan feel, the features and weather resistance are second to none. We also love the cut and colors. This jacket was great to ski in on days when skies stormed, and we appreciated the oversized hood and removable powder skirt in changing conditions, as well. Since it's a shell jacket, the Billie Coat doesn't get high marks for warmth. Nevertheless, it has plenty of space for layering underneath. If you seek a hardshell at the resort that can also handle shorter ski tours with ease, this is one of our top recommendations.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Flylow Billie Coat
This Product
Flylow Billie Coat
Awards  Best Buy Award Top Pick Award Best Buy Award  
Price $230.97 at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
$399.00 at Amazon
Compare at 2 sellers
Check Price at REI
Compare at 3 sellers
$249.95 at AmazonCheck Price at REI
Compare at 3 sellers
Overall Score Sort Icon
70
76
68
65
62
Star Rating
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Pros Stylish, great ski features and pockets, strong value, more versatile than an insulated ski jacketBreathable, versatile, comfortable, strong value, classic lookWarm, three jackets in one, well-constructed with thoughtful featuresInexpensive, stylish, warm, stretchy and comfortableInexpensive, three jackets in one, warm, comfortable
Cons Not the lightest hardshell, stiffer material, no insulationNo insulationSlim fit, heavyNot the most water resistant, runs a little small, not very breathableNot very stylish, hood not helmet compatible, two layers don't work well when zipped together
Bottom Line This ideal and stylish hardshell fends off wind and moisture in a functional, no-frills packageA sleek and technical backcountry shell with enough stretch, space, and breathability to be extremely versatile at a fair priceThis jacket is versatile and has all the necessary ski features for a long day on the hillAn inexpensive, synthetically insulated shell to keep you warm, dry, and stylish without breaking the bankA decent deal for two jackets that can be worn in three combinations, this is a great intro ski jacket
Rating Categories Flylow Billie Coat Black Diamond Recon... The North Face Ther... Columbia Wild Card... Columbia Whirlibird...
Weather Resistance (20%)
9.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
8.0
Comfort And Fit (20%)
7.0
9.0
6.0
6.0
6.0
Warmth (20%)
4.0
4.0
8.0
7.0
8.0
Ventilation (20%)
7.0
9.0
4.0
5.0
4.0
Style (10%)
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
5.0
Features (10%)
8.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
5.0
Specs Flylow Billie Coat Black Diamond Recon... The North Face Ther... Columbia Wild Card... Columbia Whirlibird...
Insulation None None PrimaLoft ThermoBall Eco 60g Omni-Heat Thermarator
Waterproofing 20k/20k waterproof breathable membrane BD.dry DryVent 2L Omni-Tech Omni-Tech
Weight (in pounds) 1.5 lbs 1.5 lbs 2.3 lbs 2.1 lbs 2.4 lbs
# of Pockets 2 hand, 1 chest, 1 sleeve, 1 internal 2 zippered hand, 1 zippered pass, 1 zippered chest, 2 internal mesh 2 zippered hand, 1 zippered chest, 1 zippered sleeve (goggle-wipe), 1 internal goggle, [liner] 2 zippered hand 2 zippered hand, 2 zippered chest, 1 zippered pass, one internal mesh, 1 zippered internal Shell: 5, Liner: 3
Main Fabric 3-layer nylon Dobby Intuitive fabric 84% nylon, 16% elastane 100% recycled polyester, DWR treatment Omni-Tech Lux Stretch 94% Polyester/ 6% Elastane Legacy Dobby 72% Nylon/ 28% Polyester.
Unique Features RFID pocket, headphone port removable powder skirt, 4-way stretch shell 3 jackets in 1, zippered hand pockets, outer layer has "mechanical stretch", side-zip venting mesh lined pit zips, headphone port, built-in spandex wrist gaiters 3-in-1, internal goggle pocket
Hood Option? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Pit Zips? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Cuff construction Velcro Velcro Velcro Velcro with wrist gaiters Velcro
Ski features Removable powder skirt, helmet compatible hood, Pass pocket Powder skirt, hem cinch, pass pocket, helmet compatible hood Powder skirt, helmet compatible hood, goggle pocket Powder skirt, hem cinch, pass pocket, helmet compatible hood Powder skirt, pass and goggle pocket

Our Analysis and Test Results

We always knew Flylow was a cool company with excellent products, and the Billie Coat convinced us that we know what we're talking about. The jacket performs well on the slopes and looks good, too. We felt it had everything we wanted in a hardshell despite feeling a little stiff and crunchy at the outset.

Performance Comparison


The Billie Coat is a great hardshell for all conditions.
The Billie Coat is a great hardshell for all conditions.

Weather Resistance


The Billie Coat is a three-layer hardshell, and you can tell. The fabric was slightly stiff at the outset, but we didn't mind because of its amazing ability to protect us from the elements. It boasts OmniBloq Durable Water Repellent coating, which is supposedly more protective than the industry standard DWR. We certainly didn't get wet during a sloppy snowstorm.

The water repelling qualities of the Billie Coat are bombproof.
The water repelling qualities of the Billie Coat are bombproof.

The jacket also protected us from the vicious winds of the Colorado Front Range. The hood helped, too, with more than ample room to fit over our helmets and then cinch tightly around our necks. We could still move our heads from side to side even with the hood fully cinched down. And, the Billie's zippers didn't allow any noticeable drafts through.

The Billie Coat keeps us protected from the elements in style.
The Billie Coat keeps us protected from the elements in style.

Comfort and Fit


This jacket fits true to size, and we were able to layer up underneath it easily. It has a long, flattering silhouette, and we liked that it was feminine without being girly. It was easy to move while we skied and rode. It felt a bit stiff the first few times we used it but it seemed to develop some flexibility with use.

Warmth


The jacket isn't insulated, so it received a lower rating in this category. It was important that we always had adequate layers on underneath. We will say, however, that the thick shell material did not let any wind pass through the material itself or through the front zipper when traveling at high speeds down the mountain.

The Billie Coat breathed well on short ski tours.
The Billie Coat breathed well on short ski tours.

Ventilation


The Billie Coat breathes well for a hardshell and has large, gaping pit-zips. Because the shell has no insulation, it vents easily. We found that we could hike short distances without overheating in this jacket.

The Billie Coat has long pit zips, allowing for maximum airflow.
The Billie Coat has long pit zips, allowing for maximum airflow.

Style


The Billie Coat has great subtle style. It's not flashy but it still manages to stand out in a crowd. Because of how flattering it is, our testers all wanted to be the one wearing this jacket for our photos. We like its long hemline, color choices, and how it tapers at the waist and flares at the hips. Our testers received many compliments when they wore this jacket.

Ski Features


We love the interior pockets in this jacket. They're both zippered and nine inches deep. The outer hand pockets are similarly spacious. Manufacturers often skimp on the usefulness of features in women's products, but the Billie Coat defies that trend. We love that the powder skirt is removable and wish that all jackets had this option.

Another favorite feature of this jacket is drawcord for the hood. The toggles are placed on the outside of the collar near your collar bones and make it super easy to cinch down your hood when things get windy sitting on the chairlift.

The Billie Coat's removable powder skirt is there when you needed...
The Billie Coat's removable powder skirt is there when you needed, off when you don't

Value


We think that the Billie Coat is a stellar value for a hard-charging hardshell. It has all the features we want and need and offers superior weather resistance. Our only complaint is that it's not that warm, but that's to be expected for a hardshell. Needless to say, it's a jacket that will hold up to the test of time, and that's invaluable.

Conclusion


If you are looking for a stylish, high functioning ski shell that will help you rip around the mountain and look like a pro doing it, look no further than the Billie Coat. Our testers received many compliments on this jacket and reached for it when they were hitting the town as well as the slopes. We love its well-thought-out ski features, wind and waterproof exterior, and subtle style.

We loved the long, relaxed, and feminine fit of the Billie Coat.
We loved the long, relaxed, and feminine fit of the Billie Coat.

Jessica Haist