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

Nike Windrunner Woven - Women's Review

A functional jacket with a sporty-chic vibe.
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Price:  $100 List | $78.67 at Amazon
Pros:  Wide cuffs, large back vent, comfortable fabric, bold color options
Cons:  Doesn't pack into it's own pocket, short fit is harder to layer, sleeves on the short side
Manufacturer:   Nike
By Maggie Brandenburg ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  May 27, 2019
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68
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#5 of 10
  • Wind Resistance - 30% 8
  • Breathability - 30% 7
  • Weight and Packability - 20% 5
  • Versatility - 10% 6
  • Water Resistance - 10% 7

Our Verdict

The Nike Windrunner is a classically sporty windbreaker that makes a great layer on your way to the gym or addition to the wardrobe of an athleticwear junkie. It has a big back vent, wide, comfortable sleeve cuffs, and full-sized zippered hand pockets. With a short front and longer back, this jacket is a fashionable throwback that comes in bold colors. It lacks many of the techy features of its competitors - like the ability to pack into its own pocket, a versatile fit for layering, or an exceptionally light weight - but still retains a lot of features we enjoy and a look we love.

Want more technical function over fashion? The Editor's Choice award winner, Patagonia Houdini is ultralight and super useful for pretty much any outdoor adventure. For a jacket with even more everyday style that's a little less sporty, consider the Fjallraven High Coast.


Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Nike Windrunner is a full-zip, hooded windbreaker made of 100% polyester. It features full-sized zippered hand pockets, a hood drawstring, and large back vent.

Performance Comparison



We like the look and functionality of this non-technical windbreaker from Nike.
We like the look and functionality of this non-technical windbreaker from Nike.

Wind Resistance


The Nike Windrunner provides pretty good wind resistance and good ability to keep you extremities protected. The bottom hem is elastic on the front, which helps to keep this jacket secured against the wind. The hood is quite large, but with a traditional string tie option to keep it on in a gale. The sleeve cuffs are wide and comfortable elastic bands, which protect against the wind while being more comfortable than most the competition to push up when you're hot. Our 5'4", 117 pound main tester tested the XS, which she says could have longer sleeves - though she also self-identifies as a woman with particularly long arms.

The super wide cuffs of the Windrunner are very comfortable  though we think the sleeves could stand to be a bit longer.
The super wide cuffs of the Windrunner are very comfortable, though we think the sleeves could stand to be a bit longer.

Breathability


The entire top section of the Windrunner's back is mesh covered by a flap of fabric. This goes a long way toward adding breathability to this jacket with fairly closed hems. The wide sleeve cuffs are very appreciated for those moments in which pushing up your sleeves is needed. The fabric is also less plastic-feeling than many of the DWR-treated options we tested. The large hood helps to hold the top open wide for easy venting but also rests against part of the back vent, semi-restricting airflow.

The whole back pink section lifts up and is just mesh underneath.
The whole back pink section lifts up and is just mesh underneath.

Weight & Packability


At 7.4 ounces the Windrunner is one of the heavier jackets we tested, and simply can't compete with the ultralight Patagonia Houdini, which weighs just 1.2 ounces. This jacket is one of only a few models we tested that doesn't pack into its own pocket, further decreasing its score in this metric. The wide elastic cuffs, while making this jacket more comfortable in our opinion, also is harder to compact if you're short on space. However, it's not a huge jacket and is relatively simple to stuff into the bottom of your bag if it's hotter on your way home than it was on your way in.

Not our top choice for backpacking  but a short hike on a crisp day isn't bad.
Not our top choice for backpacking, but a short hike on a crisp day isn't bad.

Versatility


The Windrunner gives the wearer a fairly specific look and isn't the easiest to layer over any longer or looser-fitting clothing. It's not our first choice for overly technical outdoor activities like climbing or backpacking, but it is decently versatile for less intense and urban activities. With two full-sized zippered hand pockets and a comfortable fit, we love throwing this jacket on for errands, dog walks, and even short hikes. We think it's a good everyday option, though if a front country, urban style is what you're after, the Fjallraven High Coast might be more your style.

We enjoyed having everyday adventures in this classic look from Nike.
We enjoyed having everyday adventures in this classic look from Nike.

Water Resistance


This jacket doesn't have a DWR finish to help repel water, like many of the more technical options we tested, but it does decently in a brief shower. We found that in light rain, drops will bead on this jacket pretty well, though after too long or in a more intense shower, the Windrunner will eventually get wet. This isn't too surprising for a windbreaker though, as any jacket with true water repellent properties tends to lose a lot of breathability and even some comfort. For what it is, the Nike Windrunner does an okay job in a pinch.

The water did make this jacket wet during our controlled testing  but it still beaded even when it was wet  which we think is pretty good.
The water did make this jacket wet during our controlled testing, but it still beaded even when it was wet, which we think is pretty good.

Best Applications


This classic jacket is a good compromise of function with a sporty chic look. It's a good option for everyday wear, though not our first choice for overly technical uses like climbing or backpacking. If you like this look, we think you'll appreciate the functionality of this throwback jacket.

Full-sized zippered hand pockets make this jacket handy for everyday use  though a bit heavier and less technical than some others.
Full-sized zippered hand pockets make this jacket handy for everyday use, though a bit heavier and less technical than some others.

Value


For about $100, the Nike Windrunner isn't a bad price. If you want a more technical piece, consider instead something like the Patagonia Houdini, our Editor's Choice award winner, or the Black Diamond Alpine Start, our Top Pick for Versatility.

Conclusion


This windbreaker is a fun new take on a classic look. It works decently well, though doesn't blow us away with its functionality. It is superbly comfortable though and we think it makes a great addition to the everyday garb of the gym rat or activewear junkie.

The Windrunner is great for adventures outside your city.
The Windrunner is great for adventures outside your city.


Maggie Brandenburg