Friday, 13 August 2021 08:14

Patagonia Nano Puff tested and reviewed

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Patagonia's Nano Puff jacket has been with us for a few years now and in that time it's become iconic, but others have been catching up.

So how does the latest version compare? For a start the focus is clearly on making the manufacturing process more environmentally friendly, but without losing its functionality and style. The latest Nano Puff has been developed using what Patagonia call P.U.R.E., or Produced Using Reduced Emissions, to drastically reduce the carbon emissions produced during the manufacture of synthetic insulation. 

Patagonia Nano Puff

For decades insulation was bonded using large, slow-moving ovens that rely on fossil fuels. The new process uses a proprietary manufacturing technique that significantly improves the energy efficiency of the process, resulting in carbon emission savings of up to 50%. P.U.R.E. products have now been in production for over a year and includes Primaloft' Gold Eco used in the Patagonia Nano Puff.

What Patagonia say:

Warm, windproof, water-resistant—the Nano Puff® Jacket uses incredibly lightweight and highly compressible 60-g PrimaLoft® Gold Insulation Eco 100% postconsumer recycled polyester with P.U.R.E.™ (Produced Using Reduced Emissions) technology, wrapped in a 100% recycled polyester shell and lining. Fair Trade Certified™ sewn.


  • 100% Recycled Shell Fabric - Lightweight 100% recycled polyester ripstop shell has a DWR (durable water repellent) finish

  • 100% Recycled Insulation - 60-g PrimaLoft® Gold Insulation Eco 100% postconsumer recycled polyester with P.U.R.E.™ (Produced Using Reduced Emissions) technology provides excellent warmth for its weight, stays warm when wet and reduces carbon emissions as compared to conventional production methods

  • Horizontal Quilting Pattern = Brick quilting pattern with horizontal quilt lines on side panels stabilizes insulation and uses durable thread for abrasion resistance

  • Center-Front Zipper - Center-front zipper has wicking interior storm flap and zipper garage at chin for next-to-skin comfort

  • Pocket Features - Two zippered handwarmer pockets have cleanly finished zipper garages; internal zippered chest pocket doubles as a stuffsack with a reinforced carabiner clip-in loop

  • Sealed-In Warmth - Drawcord-adjustable drop-tail hem seals in warmth

  • Supporting the People Who Made This Product - Fair Trade Certified™ sewn, which means the people who made it earned a premium for their labor

  • Weight - 337 g (11.9 oz)


  • Shell: 1.4-oz 20-denier 100% recycled polyester ripstop with a DWR (durable water repellent) finish
  • Lining: 1.3-oz 22-denier 100% recycled polyester with a PFC-free DWR finish (durable water repellent coating that does not contain perfluorinated chemistry)
  • Insulation: 60-g PrimaLoft® Gold Insulation Eco 100% postconsumer recycled polyester with P.U.R.E.™ (Produced Using Reduced Emissions) technology
  • Fabric is certified as bluesign® approved
  • Fair Trade Certified™ sewn

Patagonia Nano Puff reviewed:

 The Patagonia Nano Puff is a great example of a product that gains something from its simplicity. It has the basics you'd expect  in an insulatec jacket; two handwarmer pockets, an inside pocket, hem drawcord and elasticated cuffs. All pretty standard features, and while the high collar and a baffle behind the main zip add to the basics it's actually the quilting style that marks the Nano Puff as something instantly recognisable.

Nano Puff Construction

The quilting pattern resembles a wall of bricks, with small rectangular pockets of insulation in a row and the lines above and below overlapping. This stabalises the insulation and prevents insulation migration in the main body.and arms, with only the sides, below the armpit, using non-overlapping, channels. The result is a jacket that's surprisingly warm for its weight, 340g (M), and lack of visible loft.

Patagonia Nano Puff side panels Side panels have more traditional stitching

When it comes to weather protection, windproofing and breathability it's important to remember what the Nano Puff is meant to be; it's essentially a mid layer replacement for a heavy fleece. It's not designed as a full weatherproof shell, although the DWR coating will easily shed light rain for a while. The overlaying brick design of the insulation does mean there's a lot of stitching and tis does make it more susceptible to wetting out, but being synthetic insulation it will still retain much of its insulating power when wet. In terms of wind resistance, however, the Nano Puff is superb. The inner. almost seamless, liner helps here.

Patagonia Nano Puff liner and inside pocketPatagonia Nano Puff liner and inside pocket

It's not the most breathable of jackets, possibly because the fabrics that make it so windproof also prevent the escape of hot air. The lack of pit zips or cuffs that can allow air to escape also don't help breathability, but again that's not what the Nano Puff is designed for. If you want more breathability then the Nano Air is probably what you're looking for. The Nano Puff is more of a 3 season mid/outer layer for wearing around camp in the evenings or when the wind picks up. It's not designed for aerobic exercise, although for a bit of downhill skiing or mountain biking it's damn near perfect. We've tried the previous version both skydiving and paragliding in the Alps and are really looking forward to repeating the same test in the near future.

Patagonia Nano Puff hemPatagonia Nano Puff hem

Patagonia Nano Puff cuffs

Overall the Patagonia Nano Puff has managed to retain the features and attributes that made each of its previous iterations a success, but with a much more environmental focus thanks to the use of Primaloft Gold Eco. It's lightweight, fits in its own inside pocket for storage, and performs well within its design objectives.  If there's a couple of slight downsides it's that the handwarmer pockets could be a couple of inches higher to escape waist belts and the use of a single tightener on the hem - it tends to pull the jacket slightly sideways. With a street price of around £130, RRP £180, it's very good value - and it's not going to cost the earth

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