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SHELL OR TRADITIONAL RAINWEAR?

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March 10, 2017 by Polarn O. Pyret

Shell or traditional rainwear
Shell or traditional rainwear – what’s the best choice? We’ve put together a handy table comparing the advantages and disadvantages of both products. Further down the page, you can read about the different qualities of shell and traditional rainwear in greater detail.

SHELL
garments are usually recommended for more lively activities because they are flexible, durable and work well with the layering principle.
TRADITONAL RAINWEAR
Traditional rain garments are usually recommended for more sedate activities, such as sitting in a sandpit, because they are easy to clean and don’t need the same breathability.
Breathability
Yes.
Breathability
No.
Water resistant
Yes.
Water resistant
Yes. Our most waterproof garments.
Layering principle
Yes. Work well as one of multiple layers.
Layering principle
No, lack of breathability means they don’t work as well.
Easy to keep clean
Not as dirt-resistant as traditional rainwear.
Easy to keep clean
Yes. Any dirt is easy to rinse off.
Durability
Yes. One of our most durable products.
Durability
Yes.
Flexibility
Yes. Pre-bent sleeves and legs for extra ease of movement.
Flexibility
Yes. The plastic coating makes the garments less flexible.

Click to view all our shell garments and traditional rainwear.

Breathability
Our shell garments “breathe”, i.e. they release moisture that forms inside without getting damp. The seams are also slanted to reduce wear from chafing against each other.

Traditional rainwear lacks the ability to “breathe”, i.e. to release moisture from the body. If a child wearing traditional rainwear is very active, it’s important to make sure they are well ventilated to stop them getting damp and chilled from the inside.

Water resistance
Our shell garments are waterproof, with taped seams. Our traditional rainwear is made of a plastic-covered woven fabric, a classic material used for waterproof rain clothes.

Layering principle
The breathability of shell garments means they are at their most effective when used as one of several layers in unpredictable weather. In the spring, a lightweight base layer underneath may be sufficient, while in late autumn/early winter, you may need to add one or more middle layers over the base layer.
Traditional rainwear doesn’t ‘breathe’ so it doesn’t work as well with the layering principle. Find our layers here: Layer 1| Layer 2 | Layer 3

Easy to keep clean
Traditional rainwear is easy to keep clean and any dirt can simply be rinsed off.
Shell garments should be washed occasionally, but over-washing them can impair their ability to repel dirt. Wipe away dirt with a damp cloth if possible.

Durability
Traditional rainwear is hard-wearing, but shell garments are among our most durable products. A really durable product usually has a benchmark of about 10,000 revolutions, but Polarn O. Pyret’s shell garments can withstand up to 33,000 revolutions.

Flexibility
Our shell garments also have pre-bent sleeves and legs for added flexibility.
The plastic coating makes traditional rainwear waterproof and durable, but also quite stiff.

So which is really best?
Since shell garments work so well with the layering principle, have greater flexibility and durability, many people prefer shell. But it all depends on how the clothing is used. If your child is more likely to be sitting still in a sandpit or mud, the breathability of shell garments won’t be needed. It’s also convenient to be able to clean traditional rainwear by simply rinsing off any dirt. So give some thought to how your child tends to use their outerwear and base your choice on what suits you both best.


1 comment »

  1. […] When it rains Rainproof garments can be made of different materials, which are more or less suitable depending on your child’s level of activity. If your child spends a lot of time sitting still, traditional rainwear is a good choice and if your child is very active, waterproof shell garments that breathe are a better option. To find out more about traditional rainwear and shell garments, please take a look at our comparison here. […]

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