What we like:
- Waterproof and very wind-resistant.
- Lifetime warranty from a reliable brand.
- Affordable, yet made from durable materials.
What we don’t:
- Poor breathability.
- Heavy and doesn’t pack down to a compact size.
- Elastic sleeve cuffs are too loose.
16.2 oz / 460 g
10 x 6 in / 25 x 15 cm
17600 mm / 25 PSI
750 – 800 g/m2
70D Nylon with Polyurethane coating, 40D polyester mesh, 75D polyester, 50D polyester
Detailed In-Depth Review
We’ve been testing the North Face Resolve 2 rain jacket for a while now. It’s been through cold nights and heavy rainstorms, and now we’re ready to reveal all the good and the bad about this jacket.
Weight and Packed size
Unlike many other rain jackets, this one doesn’t pack inside its own pocket. Instead, you can roll it up inside the hood. It’s not the best solution, and it’s still very bulky in a packed state, but it does the job just fine.
In a packed state, it measures at about 10 inches / 25 centimeters in length and 6 inches / 15 centimeters in diameter. If you pack it inside a compression sack or squeeze it any other way, you’ll be able to squeeze it in a ball that’s 5-6 inches / 12-15 centimeters in diameter.
Compared to other rain jackets that pack into their own pockets, the Resolve 2 is very bulky. In the picture above you can see how it compares with the North Face Venture 2 rain jacket in a packed state.
Personally, I own this jacket in medium, and it weighs 16 ounces / 460 grams. For a rain jacket, that’s pretty heavy, as most of them weigh about 11 ounces / 300 grams. so if you’re looking for a rain jacket for ultralight hiking, then you should consider other options instead, such as the Marmot Precip.
Fabrics and Seams
For this rain jacket, North Face has used its DryVent fabrics, which are made to be fully waterproof and windproof. The outer layer is made from 70D Nylon with a waterproof Polyurethane coating. The fabric consists of two layers, with the outer one being the PU coated Nylon, and it’s lined with polyester from the inside.
The body of the Resolve 2 is lined with 40D polyester mesh fabric. They’ve used 75D polyester for lining the hood and the sleeves, and it’s lined with a 50D fleece-like, polyester material in the collar, which feels really warm and soft to the skin.
One reason why this jacket is so heavy is because the fabric feels really thick and really rugged. From our initial tests and experience, we’d say that it will last a long time, even when doing wilderness backpacking on unmarked trails.
As you’d expect, there aren’t any issues with the seams and stitching from the North Face. We didn’t find any loose threads or production defects on this jacket. All the seams are sealed from the inside, so there shouldn’t be any water leaking through.
The North Face Resolve 2 is machine washable in warm water.
The side pocket zippers and the main zipper are made by YKK, which means that they’re very durable. They open and close very smoothly, and so far I like everything about them.
They aren’t waterproof, but the main zipper is protected with a fabric velcro cover that stops any rain from getting inside. The side pocket zippers are only partially protected, so we’d recommend keeping your phone in a Ziploc bag if you’re keeping it in the side pocket and don’t want it to get wet.
On the top, the North Face Resolve 2 has a collar and a hood. If you want to, you can actually hide the hood inside the collar, by rolling it up inside and closing it off with the velcro clip at the back. When you do that, the collar feels a bit thicker, but in a way, it acts as an additional layer of insulation for your neck.
The hood is pretty large, and it covers your whole head, so no rain can get inside. You can tighten the hood on each side with these bungee chords, depending on the wind speed. Personally, we really like this hood, because when it’s very windy, or when you’re riding a bicycle, you can tighten the hood, so it doesn’t flop around, and adjust it more loosely when there’s no wind.
This jacket has one side pocket on each side, which feels pretty large, but they aren’t fully waterproof. Also, there isn’t a key loop in the pockets, so you have to always remember to close the pockets fully if you’re keeping your keys in there.
At the bottom, there’s an adjustment cord on each side for tightening the bottom part of the jacket.
The sleeves are sealed off with elastic cuffs, with no additional way to tighten them. They do feel a bit loose, so if you’ll be wearing this jacket when you’re doing something that requires your hands to be up, some water will get through the cuffs. This could be improved with velcro adjustment straps, as you see on the North Face Venture 2, which can be adjusted as tightly as you need to.
Comfort and Fit
So you can get a good understanding of how the North Face Resolve 2 might fit for you, my personal measurements are as follows. I’m 170 lbs / 77 kg in weight, 6 feet / 184 cm in height, 37.4 inches / 95 centimeters in chest size, 38.5 inches / 98 centimeters in the waist, and 33.5 / 85 centimeters in sleeve length. I purchased the Medium version of this jacked, based on the sizing chart on their website. You can see how this jacket fits me personally in the picture above.
In terms of fit, the sleeve length is just perfect for me. Around the waist and the chest, it does feel a bit loose, but at the same time, it’s not too loose. This gives me a lot of room to wear additional layers underneath in case it gets cold.
The collar on the North Face Resolve 2 is definitely on the larger side. At times, I feel like it’s too high, and personally, I think that it looks a bit weird. However, the good thing is that from the inside, it’s lined with fleece, which keeps your neck warm and protected from the wind.
From my initial experiences, the North Face Resolve 2 is very comfortable to wear, even when you’re doing something active, like running or cycling. Although the material is pretty stiff, it moves around perfectly, and the back doesn’t roll up over time.
Wind-Resistance, Breathability, and Warmth
In terms of wind-resistance, the North Face Resolve blocks basically all the wind coming through. It’s the first thing that I noticed when I wore this jacket in a storm. Essentially, I felt cold everywhere else, except under the jacket, because it’s so good at wind-resistance.
In my opinion, the largest downside to this jacket is that it isn’t very breathable. If you’ll be doing something that doesn’t require that much effort on your end, like walking through the forests, or simply using it daily for commuting, then it will work perfectly.
However, whenever you start doing something more active, you’ll start sweating a lot. When I was hiking with this jacket, I only got sweaty once the temperature was above 50 degrees Fahrenheit / 10 degrees Celsius. Also, I did get sweaty whenever the trail got rough and required more effort. So for hiking, the Resolve 2 will work fine for low-maintenance hikes and hikes in cold weather below 40 degrees Fahrenheit / 5 degrees Celsius.
I’ve also used this rain jacket when cycling and running. While cycling, I did get really sweaty inside, but it was still bearable. But when I was running, after about four kilometers I was basically dripping inside, while the temperature outside was only 40 degrees Fahrenheit or 5 degrees Celsius. So I definitely wouldn’t recommend the North Face Resolve 2 for running, but you can use it for low-speed cycling or cycling in cold weather.
Because the North Face Resolve 2 is so bad at breathability, it’s very good at trapping the heat, so it’s very warm. Even though it has no insulation, if you wear a fleece jacket underneath, it will feel warmer compared to some winter jackets. So if you’ll be using it in the mountains, you can stack a few layers underneath and you’ll be very warm. You could even skip bringing the winter jacket altogether and save some weight, however, you should test that out in safe conditions first before attempting that.
I’ve used this jacket many times now, even in a rainstorm. From my initial experiences, this jacket feels completely waterproof. One time I was out in heavy rain for about 15 minutes, and I was completely dry on the inside.
They’ve rated it at 25 PSI / 17600 mm of rain, which means that it’s waterproof for a long time in very stormy conditions. I did a shower test with the Resolve 2, and it was able to withstand about 10 minutes of direct water stream pointed at the front part of the jacket. After that, the fabric started to get a little bit damp from the inside.
That said, you’ll rarely get conditions like that while hiking. From my own experience, the North Face Resolve 2 was able to keep me completely dry after a 30-minute rainstorm, and a full day of on-and-off rain. It also dries out pretty quickly.
But even though it’s very water-resistant, you’ll be dry only when doing low-effort activities. In active conditions, you’ll get wet from condensation and sweat, so keep that in mind.
Warranty and Brand Reliability
North Face is a very reliable brand in the outdoor gear industry. They’re the pioneers for winter and 3-season gear, especially clothing. Not only that but lately they’ve also become an icon of wealth and status among regular people.
The North Face Resolve 2 comes with a lifetime warranty against materials and defects. This means that any seams that start to come apart or faulty zippers should be covered under this warranty. What it doesn’t cover, is normal wear, misuse, and accidents. For any repairs, North face covers only the costs for the return shipping.
Let’s start with the pros. First of all, I really like the water-resistance and wind-resistance of the North Face Resolve 2. Based on my own tests and experience, it’s waterproof and windproof. Another thing that I really like is the fit and the looks of this jacket. In my opinion, the North Face Resolve looks good enough to even be used as an everyday rain jacket, not only while hiking. And lastly, I like that it’s made by a reliable brand and that it isn’t too expensive.
And now let’s get into the cons. Personally, I feel like the largest downside to this jacket is the breathability. You’ll get completely soaked if you’ll be running, cycling, or walking a difficult trail in the mountains because it’s very bad at breathability. Another big one is that it’s pretty heavy, weighing almost half a kilo. And lastly, there are a few tiny issues, like the fact that it doesn’t pack down to a small size, or that the elastic cuffs feel too loose.
So would I recommend the North Face Resolve 2 rain jacket? It depends on what you’ll be using it for. If you want a somewhat affordable, fully waterproof rain jacket that looks good enough to be used every day, yet versatile enough to be used out in the woods, then go for it.
But if you want a rain jacket for cycling, running, mountain climbing, or some heavy-duty trails then I’d suggest getting something more breathable. Also, the heavy weight and large packed size is a big turn-off for the ultralight hikers.