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Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody Review: First Look

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The Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody gets an upgrade this season, including a design with ‘strands’ of synthetic insulation for warmth inside. We test the Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody.

Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody

Patagonia calls it the “lightest, most packable insulated jacket the company has ever created.” Available today, a new version of the Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody offers a wear-anywhere top that gives direct competition to midweight goose down.

GearJunkie got an exclusive first look review. We’ve spent the summer seeking some elevation for chilly weather to test a jacket Patagonia touts offers a “previously unattained balance of warmth, weight, and compressibility.”

And over the years since this review was first published, we’ve tested it over many outings. The Micro Puff Hoody has proven itself as one of the best synthetic puffy jackets on the market.

Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody Review (PlumaFill Synthetic Insulation)

A new synthetic insulation type for Patagonia, at a glance PlumaFill seems like much of the competition. Meaning the fluffy stuff inside is a white, feather-like matrix designed to trap heat.

PlumaFill replicates the structure and function of down. But it comes in strands, not loose fibers. This allows for less stitching on the jacket and does not require traditional baffles to hold the insulation in place.

Pull on the Micro Puff Hoody and you indeed feel immediate warmth. The insulation is made of polyester. Its ultrafine filaments trap body heat and give warm-when-wet performance like most of its synthetic cousins.

Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody
Lofts like goose down

Beyond the fancy faux-feathers, the jacket is a basic, if comfy build. A main zipper, two hand pockets, and two interior pockets — plus a head-hugging hood — are the main features on the utilitarian piece.

There are no Velcro cuffs nor a drawstring at the waist. The hood does not adjust, but instead, it fits tight and moves comfortably as you turn to look left and right, up and down.

plumafill insulation
Thin fabric and the PlumaFill insulation makes the jacket almost see-through if backlit

Is the Micro-Puff Hoody a Good Jacket?

We love the face fabric choice. Patagonia goes with a light nylon ripstop called Pertex Quantum GL. The fabric is a longtime GearJunkie favorite, with its shiny exterior and thin, durable weave.

The material blocks wind. A DWR (durable water repellent) finish keeps light precipitation at bay, though this is not a shell; use it as a midlayer with a hard shell on top if bad weather is in the forecast.

More unique to this model, Patagonia uses an offset, discontinuous stitching pattern to prevent cold spots and “reduce the number of quilt points.”

Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody packs up small
Like a down jacket, the Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody packs up small

Designers used “fewer, yet larger” pattern pieces when constructing the coat. The result is that heat can move more freely within the jacket, offering consistent warmth, Patagonia notes.

The end product is a patent-pending design that achieves larger lofted areas and cuts the overall weight of the jacket.

It is small and light for its warmth. A callout feature, the jacket stuffs into its own pocket when not in use, much like a high-end down piece. Put it in a backpack (or clip it on a harness) and you’re toting just an extra 9 ounces for the puffy warmth.

Multiple colors of the Micro Puff Hoody
Multiple colors of the Micro Puff Hoody

The Micro Puff Hoody comes in a few colors and a men’s and women’s model. (The women’s weighs a scant 8 ounces.)

It is available in Patagonia stores and on Patagonia.com starting today for $299. We’ll continue to review the jacket as autumn takes over and the wind howls toward winter, putting the new kind of synthetic puffy jacket to the test.

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