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What are the Different Types of Rain Gear?

By Sheri Cyprus
Updated May 21, 2024
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Rain gear refers to items worn on the body to help keep dry in rainy weather. Raincoats, rain hats, ponchos, and boots are common types of rain gear. Many raincoats include hoods to cover the head, but separate rain hats are also available. A rain poncho is a piece of waterproof material with openings for the head and the arms and it drapes over the body. Rain boots help keep feet dry.

Rain boots are usually made of rubber or synthetics and unlike snow boots, are often unpadded. They are made in all sizes from children's to adult. Children's rain boots are available in fun colors and patterns and are a must in rainy weather since many kids seem to love to play in puddles. Keeping the feet dry in wet weather is important, as wet feet can make a person feel very cold and uncomfortable. Since rain boots are a type of rain gear that isn't usually well insulated, thick socks may be needed to keep feet warm and comfortable.

Rain ponchos are a type of rain gear often worn by people that work outdoors in rainy weather such as school crossing guards. Some rain ponchos have storage pockets and a hood. Some advantages of wearing a rain poncho are that it fits many sizes and can be worn over warm jackets or layers of sweaters. Rain coats are also usually unpadded, but tend to be more fitted in style, although some are still designed to wear over sweaters or jackets.

Parkas, unlike plastic rain coats, are usually padded Parkas are hooded jackets that offer warmth as well as rain protection. Some parkas have a removable fleece lining, so that the jacket can also be worn as an unpadded raincoat. A windbreaker is a very thin jacket that may or may not have a hood. Windbreakers are usually worn in warmer rainy or windy weather.

A Southwestern, or "Southwester," style of yellow synthetic rain hat is known for its large flap-like brim that fits over the ears. This type of rain gear is popular with fishermen on the high seas because it protects the head from both wind and rain. The snug fit over the ears, as well as the straps under the chin, helps keep the rain hat on in stormy weather. Other types of rain hats include bucket-shaped caps made from waxed cotton or synthetic materials.

Although they aren't worn on the body, but rather are held above it, umbrellas could also be considered a type of rain gear as they help direct rain away from the body. Umbrellas feature a main metal post and handle attached to a fabric covered system of spokes that open and close by pressing on a lever on the main post. Umbrellas are made in both children's and adult's sizes in a variety of colors and patterns.

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