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The Best Outdoor Techwear Brands in 2023

The Best Outdoor Techwear Brands in 2023

Discover the fusion of high-tech materials and outdoor functionality as we unveil the top 20 outdoor techwear brands defining 2023. Dive into the future of fashion, where style meets substance in the great outdoors.

The global techwear market has seen a staggering growth rate of over 10% annually since 2020, making it one of the fastest-growing fashion niches.

2023 was no exception to the rule. It was a year synonymous with innovation, collaboration and growth.

With an increasing number of brands diving into the techwear arena, knowing where to get the equipment suited to your lifestyle (and your budget) is not easy.

For me, outdoor techwear is more than a fleeting trend; it's a lifestyle and a passion. I don't just write about it—I live it. Whether I'm scaling mountains, navigating urban jungles, or braving inclement weather, I trust in the very techwear brands I recommend.

I have selected 20 brands offering high-tech clothing that performs exceptionally well outdoors but also looks great, so you can wear it proudly every day of the year, wherever you are.

From the futuristic aesthetics of Kinsupplies to the breathability in Snowpeak's collection, this article explores the most sought-after outdoor techwear designers of the year.

Planning to merge your passion for the great outdoors with fashion-forward tech? You won't need GPS for this. Trek with me through the wild world of outdoor wear!

1. Descente Allterrain

descente allterrain outdoor techwear brand

Descente Allterrain is a Japanese brand founded in Osaka in 1935 by Takeao Ishimoto. The company began by offering high-quality ski equipment.

Philosophy: "Design that moves"

Blending sleek aesthetics with high-tech materials (Gore-Tex, Polartec, Exctra-Fine Wool, Eco Tacteem) Descente Allterrain stands out with its impeccable designs for city streets and rugged terrains.

The brand is famous for its amazing waterproof, hard-shell blouses and jackets.

The team's photography is always breathtaking.

Price range: 300-1000$

2. Hyke

hyke outdoor techwear brand

Hyke was created and is still run by two renowned Japanese designers: Hideaki YOSHIDARA & Yukiko ODE.

Philosophy: "Heritage & Evolution."

HYKE clothes are simple and clean, with a hint of stillness.

However, they look so different from other garments when worn, despite their simplicity, because of the brand's extraordinary interest in fabrics and needlework. HYKE is a rare womenswear brand with a practical quality and a finish that stays in tune with the times.

The brand has worked with fashion titans like Adidas (2015, 2017, 2020), The North Face (2018, 2019, 2023), Moncler (2021), Porter (2022).

In early septembre 2023, Hyke has announced on Instagram that TNFH THE NORTH FACE × HYKE, a new collaborative project with THE NORTH FACE focusing on high-performance trail running, is launching in spring/summer 2024.

More details will be available in mid-January 2024. You can follow their Instagram for more information.

Price Range: 300-1000$

3. Aether Apparel

aether outdoor techwear brand

AETHER is an American brand started in 2009 by Palmer West and Jonah Smith.

The two friends were urban businessmen with an all-consuming passion for outdoor activities.

They needed outerwear to support their dual lifestyle without looking like they were waiting for a ski lift.

Today, AETHER offers a complete collection of clothing for men and women who live in the city, value style, and travel a lot. The brand also has a dedicated motorcycle clothing collection.

AETHER's high-tech fabrics make it a preferred brand for those seeking lightweight yet durable clothing options.

The team offers minimalistic outdoor clothing with a low-key design.

Philosophy: "Uniforms of the Restless"

Price Range:

  • clothing 300-1000$

  • accessories (gloves, scarves, sunglasses, watches...): 200-2500$

4. Kin Supplies

kin supplies outdoor techwear brand

Kin Supplies is a sub-line of the Indonesian brand Orbit Gear. It has inherited and outgrew the techwear vibe OrbitGear gives in its every piece. Wearing them feels like reading a poem.

In short, the brand offers very affordable and stylish products that may seem suited to the urban jungle, but try them in the countryside, and they'll undoubtedly surprise you.

Philosophy: "Functional Apparel Made of Obsession to Details and Untamed Vision."

Price Range: 80-130$

5. Templa

templa outdoor techwear brand

Templa is an award-winning luxury outdoor performance brand specializing in Alpine and Urban outerwear that fuses a contemporary aesthetic with technical innovation for the fashion-conscious outdoor adventurer.

It was founded in Australia by Maniscalo, Dellano Pereira, and Anati Rakocz in 2016.

Their offerings, from dresses to coats and jackets, are as apt for the runway as snowy mountains.

Templa's raison d'être is to speak to snowboarders and skiers who don't just want their gear to withstand the elements but also look good.

templa outdoor techwear brand

The brand is highly committed to sustainable fashion. It also follows in the footsteps of other leading outdoor brands by championing environmentally-friendly practices, paying close attention to how it makes its clothing and ensuring that it works with the best partners to hold them to account for these goals.

Philosophy: "Our vision is simple: We want to create thoughtful collections, aptly engineered for extreme alpine sports, with an attitude and aesthetic that can be worn off the mountains".

Price Range: 300-2400$

6. Goldwin

goldwin outdoor techwear brands 

Goldwin is a Japanese brand founded in 1950.

Yet, 70 years later in 2023, Goldwin is easily one of the best things that happened in fashion, from a design, material science, and sustainability perspective.

With a strong legacy in sports and performance wear, Goldwin has transitioned into the techwear aesthetic, offering functional clothing that doesn’t compromise on style.

The label is highly focused on zero-waste, functional and technical apparel.

Philosophy: "Immerse yourself in nature. Feel your body unite with the world."

Price Range: 200-1500$

7. Comfy Outdoor Garment

comfy outdoor garment outdoor techwear brand

The name says it all.

The brand mixes technical, high-quality fabrics with contemporary urban styling, meaning items can be worn in the city but depended upon to perform in more adventurous settings.

Comfy Outdoor Garment was created in Tokyo by designer Makoto.

The brand wants to see more athletes wear attractive designs during their activities: "People should want to look as good on a mountain as they do in the city. This is important for the Comfy Outdoor Garment brand" - said Makoto.

Philosophy: "My goal is to see people wearing Comfy Outdoor Garment on a mountain with a big smile" - Makot, Creator.

Price Range: 50-400$

8. A-Cold-Wall

a-cold-wall outdoor techwear brand

A-Cold-Wall was created by famous techwear designer Samual Ross in 2015 in London.

The brand offers technical streetwear and high-performance outerwear inspired by youth culture, blending British working-class uniforms, architectural nuances, and a deconstructed cyberpunk aesthetic.

Raw edges, exposed seams, unfinished hems, and cyberpunk aesthetic are common elements.

Many products can withstand the worst weather conditions and are ideally suited to urban living and the great outdoors.

Philosophy: "Art is the medium I want to express myself in." - Samuel Ross.

Price Range: 100-2000$

9. Gramicci

gramicci outdoor techwear brand

 

Gramicci is a hiking brand that has been making functional clothing for outdoor living since 1982.

The brand designs clothes with young explorers in mind.

Gramicci is well known for its durable shorts, comfortable cotton pants and warm down puffer jackets, and what began in a garage in Ventura, California, has traveled to the streets of Tokyo and beyond.

Philosophy: "Built with movement in mind."

Price Range: 70-400$

10. Post-Archive Faction

post archi faction outdoor techwear brand

In my opinion, by far one the most interesting, innovative brands in the techwear scene.

Founded in 2018 by Dongjoon Lim and Sookyo Jeong, the South Korean brand follows an experimental process to create its pieces, deconstructing and reconstructing elements to reach the final shape of a garment.

POST ARCHIVE FACTION thrives on the fringes of fashion, uniting avant-garde streetwear and futuristic outerwear.

Their garments are as much art pieces as they are clothing.

post archive faction

PAF was a semi-finalist for the prestigious LVMH Prize in 2021, presented at the Paris Fashion Week, and churned out highly anticipated collaborations with FILA Korea and Off-White.

Philosophy: "When you think about a classic shirt, you are reminded of an archetype. The exact perspective depends on the person, but there is a common thought of that archetype in our mind, so I’m trying to find that point. From that, I stretch the experimental level to the left and try to find a balance". - Owner Lim

Price Range: 250-7000$

11. J.L-A.L

J.L-A.L outdoor techwear brand

Created by British designer Jean-Luc A. Lavelle, (J.L-A.L) offers some of the finest techwear garments in the game.

His collections are predominantly designed employing 3D development software to reduce the amount of sampling and waste and have functionality and technical fabrications at their heart.

Waterproof outerwear, nylon trousers, tactical waistcoats: many utility items look ready to protect you from more than just the elements. The use of high-tech aesthetics reflects the processes behind the scenes, including using CLO, a computer-aided design software for clothing.

Top that with a growing number of footwear collabs, I bet J.L-A.L will soon become the key brand for your GORP-focused outfits. You can expect big things from Jean Luc and the J.L-A.L brand.

Price Range: 80-600$

12. Krakatau

krakatau outdoor techwear brand

Krakatau was founded in 1999 in Saint-Petersburg, Russia.

The brand is well known for its affordable survivalist gear & technical performance clothing.

Krakatau's garments are designed with a unique Northern minimalism and incorporate many recycled and raw materials in the design process. For instance, the accessories and insulation jackets are all made from plastic bottles.

Philosophy: "We must save our lives and civilization from air and water composition changes, fires, and soil movements. And, of course, we will need the right clothes to survive and resist." - The Krakatau team.

Price Range: 300-1000$

13. Arc'Teryx Veilance

veilance outdoor techwear brand

Veilance is Arc'Teryx's luxury streetwear retailer and was founded in 2009.

The label applies minimalist values and advanced technical construction to its range of climate control outfits.

Based in Canada's West Coast mountains, Veilance designs innovative climbing gear and high-performance techwear.

Their products are waterproof, breathable, and durable.

Philosophy: "We build tools to enable and inspire". - the Veilance team.

Price Range: 200-1600$

14. MA.Strum

MA strum outdoor techwear brand

MA. Strum was launched in 2008 by British duo John Sharp - Donrad Duncan, in partnership with the Massimo Osti Archive, the well-known Italian Designer who created the infamous brands Stone Island and C.P Company.

A master of form and function, MA. Strum offers military-inspired collections combining utilitarian designs with technical performance, creating high-quality heavyweight pieces that provide maximum comfort.

Philosophy: "I wanted to represent rhythm, life, music, something that connects everyone, which is how I came up with strum. MA is an abbreviation of Master of Arts. When the two parts are together, it represents mastering the art and rhythm of life." - Donrad Duncan

Price Range: 140-400$

15. Vollebak

vollebak outdoor techwear brand

Vollebak is an award-winning company created by British twin brothers Steve and Nick Tidball in 2015.

The brand is well-known for its men's sportswear and adventure clothing quality.

Vollebak's creative team uses science and technology to create futuristic and athletic outdoor apparel.

From their "100 Year Hoodie" to their Apocalypse Jackets, the brand aims to offer sustainable garments suitable for life on Mars or surviving Earth's most extreme environments.

Philosophy: "If you design for extraordinary circumstances, you’re inevitably going to discover amazing things along the way." - The founders.

 Price Range: 115-1600$

16. Snow Peak

snow peak outdoor techwear brand

Snow Peak was launched in 1958 by mountaineer Yukio Yamaihe, from the snowy Japanese mountains of the Niigata Prefecture.

The brand offers high-end camping clothing and accessories that last.

I love the mix of traditional Japanese craftsmanship with modern design, resulting in elegant and durable camping apparel.

All the products are made in Japan, from tents to pullovers and parkas.

Philosophy: "Snow Peak’s mission is centered on a deeply held belief that time spent in nature has the power to heal, cultivate happiness and build connections." - The Snow Peak team.

Price Range: 100-750$ 

17. And Wander

and wander outdoor techwear brand

And Wander is a Japanese label founded in 2011 by Keita Ikeuchi and Mihoko Mori.

The brand specializes in high-performance clothing with minimalist design.

And Wander's objective is to offer its customers garments that can withstand challenging conditions while evoking nature's beauty.

Philosophy: “The pleasure of playing in the mountains”.

Price Range: 70-600$

18. Houdini

houdini outdoor techwear brand

Houdini is an award-winning performance outerwear founded by Swedish climber Lotta Giornofelice in 1993.

The brand has become a benchmark for environmentally friendly fashion and is highly committed to 100% recycled fabrics and biodegradable materials.

Houdini offers a free repair and recycling service. Once you have used one of Houdini's products, you can return it to the company to be repaired or recycled to create new items.

The brand is revered in the mountaineering community.

Philosophy: "We are a progressive outdoor company based in Stockholm, Sweden. With an odd band of scientists, artists, designers and adventurers, we are pushing the boundaries of how outdoor clothing is made. Together with our customers, we are recycling, renting, repairing and reusing our way to a new, sustainable outdoor industry" - the Houdini team.

Price Range: 55-800$

19. Griffin Studio

griffin studio outdoor techwear brands

Griffin Studio is a British brand created in 1994 by Jeff and Karina Griffin, presenting itself at the forefront of the menswear revolution.

Bridging the gap between fashion-forward streetwear and outdoor performance, the brand elegantly blends sportswear, high fashion and military influences, resulting in unique pieces.

Griffin Studio's creativity is outstanding.

Philosophy: "An eco fashion design studio mixing up modern luxury, sportswear and the great outdoors."

Price Range: 300-1000$

20. Poutnikbytilak

poutnik by tilak outdoor brand

Poutnik is a sub-brand of the well-known Czech brand named Tilak.

The Poutnik label focuses solely on urban outdoor clothing.

While offering superior functionality and aesthetics, Poutnik's products are also suitable for everyday life.

Over the years, Poutnik has incorporated materials such as Goretex, PERTEX microlight, Polartec, and even the traditional waterproof cotton Ventile, giving a whole new dimension to their collections. This is a brand not to be missed in the future.

Philosophy: "The whole concept is built on a combination of minimalist design with exceptional properties of the finest materials and technologies that require flawless workmanship."

Price Range: 150-500$

Outdoor Techwear FAQs

Q1. How to Choose the Right Outdoor Techwear Equipment for My Needs?

The answer to this question comes in 4 parts:

1. Understand your outdoor activity and season requirements.

Understanding the breadth of your activities is the heart of choosing the right outdoor techwear outfits.

Are you into urban explorations, or do your adventures lean toward mountain hiking? Do you like camping?

The outdoor attire you should opt for must seamlessly integrate with your lifestyle, making it both functional and stylish for your unique pursuits.

Moreover, different seasons have diverse demands. The right techwear materials can make a difference from sweltering summers to chilly winters.

Ensure your equipment is tailored to your most frequent adventures' temperature and environmental conditions.

2. Understand Fabric Technology (like Gore-Tex).

Diving into the fabric technology is essential. Materials like Gore-Tex, Polartec fleece, and advanced nylon are more than trendy terms; they're your gateways to optimized performance.

Learn the properties of these high-tech fabrics — water resistance, breathability, or windproof capabilities — to ensure your equipment stands up to the specific challenges you'll encounter.

Choose an outdoor brand techwear in your budget.

It's now possible to find effective, stylish outdoor equipment at reasonable prices. No need to ruin yourself.

You can also opt for sustainable brands that offer free repair services like Houdini or free returns at any time like Patagonia.

Also, brands like Kin Supplies and Krakatau offer clothing with excellent value for money

Q2. What are the key characteristics and benefits of Techwear Outdoor Clothes?

Adaptability & Functionality

Adaptable and functional outdoor techwear presents an evolution in fashion, seamlessly blending high-tech materials with on-the-go practicality.

No longer do you have to compromise style for comfort or durability for aesthetics.

Today's outdoor techwear shops offer high-performing outdoor apparel that can also be very suitable for everyday life.

Whether navigating the bustling streets of an urban environment or exploring off-the-beaten-path trails, you can be both fashion-forward and prepared for any element.

Comfort

Climbing cliffs or camping in the forest wouldn't be as enjoyable without clothes that are pleasant to wear.

Opt for long-lasting, warm and resistant garments that use high-quality technical fabrics.

Sustainability

Sustainable products often employ eco-friendly materials and production processes. This reduces the strain on natural resources, reduces waste, and minimizes harmful emissions.

Plus, while the initial investment might be higher, sustainable techwear often results in long-term savings due to its durability.

Eco-conscious techwear also avoids hazardous chemicals and dyes. Wearing such clothing can reduce potential skin irritations and health risks associated with chemical exposure.

Q3. What makes a good outdoor techwear jacket?

  • High-Tech Materials: Prioritize jackets crafted from Gore-Tex, nylon, or Polartec fleece materials. These fabrics offer superior water resistance and breathability and ensure longevity.

  • Functionality: Good techwear jackets seamlessly merge function with style. To enhance utility, look for features like adjustable hoods, strategic pocket placements, and reinforced zippers.

  • Breathability: A jacket's ability to allow vapor to escape without letting water in is a game-changer, especially in varying outdoor conditions. Advanced breathability ensures comfort regardless of the weather.

  • Weatherproofing: Beyond being waterproof, a good jacket offers windproof and insulated properties, ensuring you're shielded from all environmental elements.

  • Adaptive Design: Jackets that offer modular capabilities or customizable features can adapt to changing conditions and individual preferences.

  • Sleek Aesthetics: While performance is paramount, the techwear aesthetic is equally vital. A well-designed jacket will align with the futuristic, urban techwear look without compromising practicality.

  • Sustainability: With the fashion industry moving towards eco-friendliness, opt for jackets made from sustainable or recycled materials, proving that fashion can be stylish and responsible.

An excellent outdoor techwear jacket is the perfect combination of cutting-edge technology, urban aesthetics, and unparalleled functionality, designed for the modern adventurer.

Q4. How do I choose outdoor techwear pants?

Selecting the right pair of outdoor techwear pants involves a blend of functionality, comfort, and style. Here's your guide to making an informed choice:

  • Material Matters: Prioritize pants made from high-tech fabrics like Gore-Tex, nylon, or breathable polymers. These ensure durability, water resistance, and adaptability to varying temperatures.

  • Fit and Comfort: Look for pants with an ergonomic design, ensuring mobility for activities like hiking, climbing, or just a day out in the city. Adjustable waistbands and articulated knees can enhance comfort.

  • Storage Solutions: Techwear pants often feature innovative pocket designs and storage solutions. Choose designs that cater to your needs, whether concealed pockets for valuables or larger compartments for tools.

  • Weather Adaptability: For varying outdoor conditions, select pants that offer water-resistant, windproof, and breathable properties. This ensures protection against sudden rain showers or cold gusts.

  • Aesthetic Appeal: Techwear is as much about function as it is about form. Seek pants that align with the sleek, urban techwear look, often characterized by modular designs and futuristic elements.

  • Versatility: Some techwear pants have modular features like zip-off sections to convert into shorts or adjustable cuffs. This can be beneficial for adapting to different activities and weather conditions.

  • Sustainability: As with jackets, consider pants that emphasize eco-friendliness. Brands now offer techwear crafted from recycled or sustainable materials, merging environmental responsibility with style.

Choosing outdoor techwear pants is all about balancing your specific needs with the latest in fashion and fabric technology. Make sure to invest in a pair that's as functional as stylish, catering perfectly to the demands of the modern outdoor enthusiast.

Q5. What brands are offering durable outdoor tech shoes?

  • Salomon

  • Keen

  • Vollebak

  • Goldwin

  • Aether Apparel

  • Houdini

  • Snowpeak

  • Arc'Teryx Veilance.

  • Triple Aught Design

  • A-Cold-Wall

  • Gramicci.

  • And Wander

Q6. What are the essential outdoor techwear accessories?

Here are the must-have outdoor techwear accessories to elevate your experience:

  • Functional Backpacks: These aren't your average bags. Equipped with water-resistant or waterproof properties, multiple pockets, and ergonomic designs, they ensure your essentials remain safe and organized.

  • Modular Pouches: Attachable to jackets or bags, these allow for added storage and quick access to vital items, from tech gadgets to tools.

  • Water-Resistant Gloves: Designed with high-tech fabrics, such gloves keep hands warm and dry, providing optimal grip even in wet conditions.

  • Technical Hats & Beanies: These headgear pieces are more than style statements. Made with materials like Gore-Tex, they offer protection against various elements, whether rain, sun, or cold.

  • Breathable Face Masks: In areas with harsh winds or dust, a breathable techwear mask can protect your face without causing discomfort.

  • Utility Belts: Beyond just holding up your pants, these belts come with extra compartments and hooks, making them perfect for attaching additional gear.

  • Performance Socks: These aren't ordinary socks. Made with materials like Polartec fleece, they ensure your feet stay warm, dry, and blister-free during prolonged activities.

  • Techwear Shoe Covers: For those sudden downpours or snowy paths, these covers ensure your shoes remain dry, extending their lifespan.

  • Smart Eyewear: Incorporating tech features such as UV protection, anti-fog, or even augmented reality, these glasses or goggles enhance vision and protect your eyes.

  • Wearable Tech: Think smartwatches or fitness trackers that look good with your techwear outfit and provide valuable data like heart rate, location, or altitude.

Accessorizing with these essential items ensures you're stylish and prepared for any challenge the outdoors might throw at you. With the right techwear accessories, you can handle the urban jungle or the wilderness with equal aplomb.

Q7: Are outdoor technical clothes only for colder seasons?

While many associate techwear with jackets and coats - only for autumn and winter - the aesthetic extends to all seasons.

There are techwear shorts, t-shirts, and accessories designed for warmer weather, all incorporating the same principles of functionality and style.


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