North Face vs Columbia

North Face vs Columbia

North Face vs Columbia. When it comes to cold weather accessories and outdoor gear, Columbia and The North Face, also simply referred to as North Face, are two of the most known and most successful brands. Both have been around for decades and are popular among outdoor enthusiasts and those who just like to stay warm in the chillier months!

Like any brand comparison, the better brand depends mostly on the preference of the buyer. However, in this article, we will dive into comparisons of many aspects of the two brands in order for you to make an informed buying decision!

North Face vs. Columbia Jackets – Which is Better?

One of the first products buyers think of when they think of these two brands is coats and jackets. Both brands are known for their fleeces, light jackets, and heavy winter coats.

Again, the better brand depends heavily on preference, but there are many factors to consider when deciding what your personal preference will be. 

One of the most important factors in deciding on a jacket is warmth. Both companies make warm jackets, which contributes heavily to their successes.

However, North Face tends to use more modern technology to make their coats extra warm while Columbia sticks to a more classic, but still warm, design. Additionally, the price points of the jackets are different, with North Face being the more expensive brand.

A good north face jacket can cost between $200 and $300, with long parkas or ski coats on the higher end. Columbia jackets average at about $150 depending on the design.

The North Face also has about 11 different jacket and coat categories while Columbia has 10. The wide variety in both brands means it’ll be likely for you to find a jacket that meets your needs.

Whether you’re a skier, climber, or just live in a cold climate, having a jacket you love is of the utmost importance. 

North Face vs. Columbia Rain Jacket

Rain Jackets are one of the most important jackets to own. Whether it’s spitting or storming, you’ll want a jacket that keeps you both dry and comfortable, instead of sweaty and sticky as many rain jackets do. 

Columbia Watertight II Jacket - Men's Black
Columbia Watertight II Jacket | Source: Amazon

One of Columbia’s rain jacket designs is the Watertight Jacket. This jacket is breathable, which helps you avoid that feeling of wearing a plastic bag or tarp in the humid rain.

It usually runs at $100 but is currently on sale in select colors. The seams are made of high-quality fabric and stitching, so even in a thunderstorm, you will stay dry!

The North Face Men's Venture 2 Jacket, Monterey Blue, XS
The North Face Jacket | Source: Amazon

North Face rain jackets can be a little pricier. They start in the $100 range but can go up to $200. Like Columbia, the company advertises its jackets as being lightweight and breathable.

They have multiple different options for different activities and temperature levels, but all are supposed to hold up against heavy rain. 

Overall, the best rain jacket depends on your preference and what you want the rain jacket for. For example, if you’re an avid climber or hiker, you may want to opt for a North Face jacket since they have different lengths and styles for outdoor activities.

If you need a jacket for everyday wear or running and jogging, Columbia may have a jacket for you at a better price point.

North Face vs. Columbia Boots

Columbia mens Newton Ridge Plus Ii Waterproof Boot Hiking Shoe, Light Brown/Red Velvet, 7 US
Columbia Waterproof Boot Hiking Shoe | Source: Amazon

In regards to boots, North Face and Columbia are both popular among hikers and climbers for their shoe options. Both companies make great hiking boots that can brave the weather and elements. 

Columbia boots often come with their Omni-Heat inner lining that helps keep your feet warm as well as a waterproof liner. In turn, North Face boots feature PrimaLoft insulation which is comparable to the Columbia Omni-Heat liner.

They are ideal for warm-weather hikes as well because the insulation doubles for cooling. 

North Face vs. Columbia Coats

Columbia Men's Bugaboot III Snow Boot, Graphite/Black, 7
Columbia Bugaboot III Snow Boot | Source: Amazon

As mentioned above, North Face and Columbia coats are up superb quality. While North Face coats may run slightly more expensive, the quality makes up for it.

Both brands have coats in dozens of styles and insulation levels so you can find a coat that’s best for you. 

If you’re looking for a coat, it may be helpful to try some on in both stores so you can get a true feel for the material, length, and thickness!

North Face vs. Columbia Winter Boots

The North Face Women's Chilkat 400, Simply Taupe Brown/TNF Black, 8.5
The North Face Women’s Chilkat | Source: Amazon

A good pair of winter or snow boots are integral in the cold weather. Both brands’ boots run in the $100 to $150 range and feature innovative technology to keep your feet warm and dry.  

North Face boots have slip-resistant soles. They also give you extra traction when going through snow or ice.

Columbia snow boots are advertised as lightweight and breathable as well as waterproof. They too are great for ice and snow.

If you are looking for a modern and innovative pair of snow boots featuring new warming technologies, North Face is the way to go. If you want a more traditional but dependable boot, opt for Columbia. 

North Face Chillkat vs. Columbia Bugaboot

Columbia Men's Bugaboot III Snow Boot, Graphite/Black, 7
Columbia Bugaboot III Snow Boot | Source: Amazon

The North Face Chillkat and Columbia bugaboot are both snow boots that are very popular and widely purchased. Both are waterproof and warm, the most important quality of any good snowboot. 

The Columbia Bugaboot is slightly more expensive than the North Face option, but reviews say that the boot is warmer and worth the price difference.

North Face vs. Columbia Ski Jackets

The North Face Men's Barr Lake Insulated Hooded Ski Snow Jacket (New Taupe Green Heather/New Taupe Green, Medium)
The North Face Ski Jacket | Source: Amazon

Columbia and North Face both have great jackets, especially for outdoor sports like skiing. Traditionally, people opt for North Face due to their advanced warming technology.

However, Columbia jackets are appreciated for their consistent construction over time and are known to be long-lasting. The better choice for you will depend on what you are looking for– high-tech or simple and warm?

North Face vs. Columbia Sizing

Sizing can be hard sometimes, especially when shopping for coats or winter gear where you may be wearing various layers underneath your jacket. When it comes to sizing, reviews for Columbia and North Face are all over the place!

For Columbia, some customers said they had to size down while others had to size up in popular styles. Overall, the majority of people say Columbia runs a bit small and to size up, especially if you plan on wearing things underneath it.

For North Face, customers say the clothes run more true to size. Some things may feel small due to layers underneath, but for the most part, you can feel confident getting your regular size.

Like everything else, it may be best to try on clothes in-store to get the most accurate fit for both brands. 

North Face vs. Columbia Hiking Shoes

Columbia womens Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof Amped Hiking Boot, Light Lichen/Canvas Tan, 8.5 US
Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boot | Source: Amazon

Hiking equipment is a big part of what these companies are known for. Hiking shoes should be comfortable and reliable, which these two companies know a thing or two about. 

Columbia hiking shoes are very popular among hikers. They are sturdy, reliable, and good for wide feet!

This is especially good for hikers because a narrow shoe could cause a lot of pain during a long hike. 

North Face hiking shoes are popular due to their lightweight. They do not feel heavy on your feet during a long hike, but they also do not give up any traction.

They are ideal for those who want to keep their hiking equipment as light as possible. 

Are North Face Shoes True to Size?

When shopping for outdoor shoes like snow boots or hiking boots, you want to make sure you have an accurate and comfortable fit. Most customers say North Face shoes fit true to size.

However, many outdoor enthusiasts prefer their shoes to be a little roomier to account for thick socks or foot swelling. If this is the case for you, order a size up!

Does Columbia Omni Heat Really Work?

Columbia Men's Midweight Half Zip Omni Heat Top Black Shirt (M)
Columbia Top Black Shirt | Source: Amazon

Almost a decade ago, Columbia introduced their Omni Heat line. This heating technology is essentially a bunch of mini metallic dots on the lining of fabric to generate heat, similar to a space blanket.

As you move around, your body generates heat. The Omni Heat dots then work to retain that heat rather than release it into the cold air outside of the clothing.

The company features the technology on dozens of designs including jackets, pants, and shoes. 

According to reviews, the Omni Heat technology works very well and has only improved throughout the years. It works well to keep you warm in even the coldest of settings.

They also make Omni Heat designs for kids, to keep them warm while skiing, snowboarding, and playing in the snow. Overall, Omni Heat is one of the most successful technologies Columbia has employed in recent years and truly boosts the effectiveness of the products. 

Is Columbia Omni Heat Waterproof?

Despite the advanced heating technology, Omni Heat products are not waterproof. The metallic dots do great to retain heat, but they do not keep out moisture.

However, Columbia has a ton of other waterproof gear you can bundle up with!

North Face Thermoball vs. Columbia Omni Heat

The North Face Men’s Thermoball Eco Insulated Jacket - Fall or Winter Coat, New Taupe Green/TNF Black, S
The North Face Thermoball Jacket | Source: Amazon

While Omni Heat is successful at keeping you warm in the extreme cold, it is still in competition with North Face’s Thermoball technology. The Thermoball technology is equivalent to 600 fill goose down, which is really warm.

The technology is also made completely out of recycled consumer polyester. This means it is good for the environment and keeps you warm!

The better option, in this case, maybe the North Face Thermoball while Omni Heat is just as warm, you can’t beat warmth made from recycled material!

Which North Face Gloves is the Warmest?

The North Face Men's Montana FUTURELIGHT Etip Glove, New Taupe Green, S
The North Face Gloves | Source: Amazon

The North Face has dozens of different glove designs. Some are warmer than others, due to their intended purpose.

The warmest all-around gloves may be the Montana Futurelight Etip gloves. These gloves are meant for extreme cold weather and are great for outdoor adventures.

They also have etip technology so you can still easily use your phone or other touch screen devices. 

Many wearers prefer these gloves for skiing and snowboarding. They keep their hands warm while still allowing for easy movement.

They are a great pair of gloves that will be reliable in the cold and last you many years. 

North Face Apex Bionic vs. Columbia Ascender

The North Face Apex Bionic and Columbia Ascender are both great softshell jackets for colder weather. Due to their soft shell, they are not good for skiing or other snow activities, but are good for everyday wear!

The North Face Apex Bionic is intended for casual wear. It is a looser fit and is good for layering.

The Columbia Ascender is also a casual softshell. At $70, it is a very reasonable price and can also be used for layering.

In both cases, there is nothing above average about either jacket, but they are both good for everyday wear.

North Face Triclimate vs. Columbia Interchange

Both the North Face Triclimate and Columbia Interchange are 3-in-1 jackets. This means you can wear them and layer them differently depending on the look or insulation you are looking for.

They are great jackets for different climates.

For the Triclimate jacket, the shell and inner jacket are both very breathable. The shell is also waterproof which makes it great for outdoor sports and activities.

The Interchange uses Omni-heat technology throughout the layers, which is great for keeping the heat in. Overall, the Triclimate will work best for keeping you extra warm and dry. 

Columbia vs. North Face Snow Pants

The North Face Men's Freedom Pant, Aviator Navy Binary Halfdome Print, Small Regular
The North Face Freedom Pant | Source: Amazon

As for snow pants, both brands use their innovative warmth technologies to keep you warm and dry. North Face snow pants tend to be a bit higher in price, but are very reliable and great for outdoor sports.

Columbia snow pants are also waterproof and wind-resistant. Coming in multiple styles, the brands will definitely have snow pant that works for your needs. 


Both North Face and Columbia are great and popular outdoor and winter sports brands. Their years of commitment to the brand and constant innovation to new styles is why both brands have remained successful. 

When it comes to comparing most of their products, there is not a clear answer most of the time! Each brand has product features that cater to different audiences. Overall, as long as you feel dry, warm, and comfortable, it’s a good piece of outdoor clothing.  

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