Columbia Rain Protector vs. Waterproof

Understand the differences between water-repellent, water-resistant, and waterproof rainwear.

Considering buying Columbia rain jacks but are perplexed by the various terms? You are not alone.

Columbia rainwear offers three levels of rain protection:


This is the lowest level of water protection. Rainwear in this category uses fabric that prevents saturation and sheds water. OMNI-SHIELD is Columbia’s water-repellent line.


Rainwear in this category uses fabric that resists saturation and penetration, meaning it takes a little while before it starts to soak in. 


This is the highest level of water protection. Rainwear in this category uses impenetrable materials and construction simply won’t allow water in, meaning it can stand up to a LOT of rain. OMNI-TECH is one of Columbia’s waterproof lines.

Is the Columbia Rain Protector waterproof? The short answer is, no, it is water-resistant, NOT waterproof.

Columbia Rain Protector

Columbia Rain Protector rainwear falls under the water-resistant category. It is best for moderate exposure to light rain and wet conditions.

Columbia Waterproof

If you see the above waterproof label, then you know for sure that your rainwear will stand up to extended or extreme exposure and will keep you dry over time.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.