Thuro Snowboarding: Snowboard Jacket Buyers Guide

When buying a new snowboarding jacket, you might come across some technical terms you might not know like such as 5K rating, powder skirt, and taped seams. All these technical terms may seem complicated but they can help determine what jacket is best for your winter shredding needs.

Lets get down on what all these terms mean and factors you should look out for: 


  • Basically what these number mean is the breathability index and waterproof rating of the fabric used to make the jacket. 
  • For the breathability index, the higher the number goes the more breathable the jacket fabric will be. When looking for a snowboarding jacket, you want something that can breathe so sweat doesn't build up on the inside. It's usually recommended to look for an index of at least 10k and if you sweat a lot or snowboard during the warmer times, you should find a jacket with an index of 20k+.
  • For waterproof rating, the higher the number goes, the more waterproof the jacket is. A 5K rated jacket means that the fabric can withstand 16 feet of water. A 10K rated jacket can withstand 32 feet of water and 20K rated can withstand 66 feet of water. All these ratings are based on the amount of water the fabric can repel in 24 hours.

Seam Taping: 

  • There are 2 different types of seam taping, critically or partially taped seams and fully taped seams.
  • Critically or partially taped seams basically means that only the main seams are covered with waterproof tape.
  • Fully taped seams means that every seam/stitching on the jacket is covered with waterproof tape. 


  • Some snowboard jackets are just a hard outer shell membrane that will only protect you from wind and water. This means you would be vulnerable to the cold elements. These shells are meant to be used with other layers of clothing or on warmer days on the mountain.
  • It's recommended to find a snowboarding jacket with already built-in insulation. With insulation already in the jacket, you don't have to worry about grabbing extra layers when you're hitting the slopes.  

 Powder Skirt:

  • Basically what a powder skirt is, it's a piece of cloth with elastic on the bottom side. It helps prevent snow from getting into your pants.
  • It's recommended to have a powder skirt when you're just starting to learn how to snowboard because more than you are spending most of your time falling on your rear end. It's also recommended for snowboarders who spend most on their time shredding through deep fresh powder.
  • Getting a jacket with a powder skirt is completely based on your personal preferences and what you will be doing on the mountain.  


  • Vents are zip openings around the jacket. They help you control how much air gets into your jacket. They are most useful when you need to cool down fast or just want a little air flow going as you ride down the mountain.


  • One of the most important factor when it comes to buying any jacket is the fit.
  • When buying a non-insulated jacket, you would want a slightly larger size to accommodate the extra clothing that goes inside.
  • You want to make sure that the jacket you are getting fits perfectly and doesn't constrict your movement when snowboarding around the mountain.

 Jacket Pockets:

  • When looking for the right jacket, you should also consider the pockets.
  • Having large easily accessible pockets to store your phone, mp3 player, gloves, lift pass, and wallet is very useful when you can't really carry a bag or backpack while you're on top of the mountain.

Style and Color: 

  • When buying any clothing at all, you want to make sure you look good!
  • Snowboard jackets come in all styles, colors, and prints. If you're taking tons of photos or doing some filming, you may want to find a jacket that looks awesome on you and be brightly colored. Bright colors show up best in snow covered backgrounds and no one wants to look unstylish when filming some footage.


Since there are many factors that go into finding your perfect jacket, it's best to do some research before you buy. The best way to find the right jacket is to go to a local store and try them out. Come by Thuro Shop and try on some awesome snowboarding jackets, we'll help you find the best jacket suited for you! 


Christie Tran
Christie Tran