Outdoor Research Helium Jacket - Men's


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Our most compressible storm shell is so light it practically floats, or at least it's so light that you won't notice you're carrying it until a sudden downpour bursts into your day. When a big, exposed objective puts you on route for a full day stretching into dark, this jacket packs into its own pocket and can be clipped to your harness for quick access if you need protection from rain, wind, or cooling temps. And it includes all the features needed for true functionality, without any bulky excess. Avg. Weight (oz./g): 6.8 / 193(size large)


  • Ultralight, waterproof/breathable 2.5-layer 20D Pertex Shield DS ripstop fabric
  • Fully seam taped
  • Single-pull hood adjustment
  • Ultralight, water-resistant zippers
  • Front zipper has 7.5"/19 cm inner stormflap
  • Zippered napoleon pocket
  • Stuff pocket at side hem with hook/loop closure and webbing loop
  • Elastic cuffs
  • Single drawcord hem adjustment
  • Pertex Shield Fabric: Combines technically advanced face fabric technology with a proprietary PV film laminate, it balances the best performance in breathability, waterproofness and water repellence with excellent durability.

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Review Summary

4.5 out of 5

12 Reviews

  • Great design: 8
  • Build quality: 6
  • Great value: 6
  • Performance: 5

  • Bad design: 1
  • breatheability: 1
  • fit for a short guy: 1
  • may be less rugged than other jackets i have: 1
Quality: 4.6 / 5
Comfort: 4.3 / 5
Durability: 4.2 / 5
Water Protection: 4.4 / 5
Wind Protection: 4 / 5
Fit: 2.9 / 5

12 Ratings & Reviews

Comfort: 4 / 5
Durability: 3 / 5
Quality: 4 / 5
WaterProtection: 4 / 5
WindProtection: 4 / 5

from Western NC
25-34 yrs

Take it everywhere!
November 07, 2011

Better safe than sorry, right? Well that's what most people say but who wants to take a bulky rain shell when there is only a 30% chance of rain? Your attitude will change if you purchase this jacket. It packs down small enough to fit in a cargo pocket (in it's own stow pocket), weighs next to nothing, sheds water very well and is not too clammy, even during strenuous hiking. Whats the catch? To save weight this is a minimalist shell, the laminated brim is flimsy, hood is not very adjustable, and the fabric will not withstand much bushwhacking before showing signs of wear. I always am conscious of trailside briars when wearing this shell. Fit is great with enough room for a base and/or light insulating layer. I am 5'5" 140lbs and I ordered a Small. Bottomline: Don't buy this if you live in Seattle and need a shell to be used everyday. Do buy this if you live somewhere that afternoon showers are always possible and typically short lived. You will forget you have it in your pack until you need it, and then you will be thrilled it is there.

Pros: Great design, Performance, Great value
Comfort: 4 / 5
Durability: 4 / 5
Quality: 4 / 5
FitClothes: 2 / 5
25-34 yrs

Weight is very light.
September 02, 2011

I was surprised because it was very light first. The functionality is also perfect. Because the price is also low, we will recommend it. I will be able to spend the day of rain by this comfortably.

Pros: Ease of use
Comfort: 2 / 5
Durability: 5 / 5
Quality: 5 / 5
FitClothes: 3 / 5
WaterProtection: 5 / 5
WindProtection: 5 / 5
from Boulder, CO
25-34 yrs

Storm Proof but Unbearable
September 08, 2011

OR makes GREAT products, and this one has wonderful craftsmanship, but it is the least breathable jacket I have ever put on. You couldn't walk 100m without feeling like you are wearing one of those sweat jackets for wrestling. It IS extremely light; the lightest I have held, and I could see this as an ultralight emergency jacket, but that's it.

Pros: Build quality, Ease of use, Great value, Cons: Bad design
Comfort: 4 / 5
Quality: 5 / 5
FitClothes: 2 / 5
WaterProtection: 4 / 5
WindProtection: 4 / 5

from Bay Area, CA
45-54 yrs

light but runs small
November 09, 2010

I wear men's small in ArcTeryx, Marmot, Mountain Hardwear, but needed a medium in this. It isn't quite as small as Montbell, but close. The jacket is very light, noticeably lighter than the Marmot Mica. The North Face Triumph anorak is substantially lighter, though...if you don't need a full zip. Build quality is very nice. I wish the cuffs had hook-and-loop adjustable closures instead of elastic. It would weigh less and be more useful, especially in wind. The Pertex shield fabric is interesting: rather more breathable than GoreTex. The "Pilsner" color looks yellow on the web but is golden in reality. Not wild about it. The "Fossil" is darker on the web than in reality.

Pros: Build quality, lightweight
Comfort: 4 / 5
Durability: 3 / 5
Quality: 4 / 5
WaterProtection: 4 / 5
WindProtection: 3 / 5
from Seattle, wa
25-34 yrs

the "Just in case" jacket
December 27, 2011

light as a feather and perfect for those moments when the unexpected rain comes in. it isnt a everyday jacket that will take care of you in severe weather but for light rain and wind it works awesome.

Pros: Great design, Great value, Cons: breatheability
Comfort: 5 / 5
Durability: 5 / 5
Quality: 5 / 5
FitClothes: 3 / 5
WaterProtection: 4 / 5
WindProtection: 4 / 5
from WA
25-34 yrs

August 25, 2011

I love this jacket. I own 2, one Mushroom and one True Blue. Packs small and is super light. Perfect for outdoor activities and every day use. At 5'-6" and 140lbs the medium fits perfect.

Pros: Great design, Performance, Ease of use
Comfort: 5 / 5
Durability: 4 / 5
Quality: 5 / 5
from Upstate New York
55-64 yrs

Well made jacket
November 05, 2010

I needed a light weight waterproof jacket for a backpacking trip. This is a very well made jacket and amazingly light in weight. I was very happy with the performance of the jacket on my trip and would recommend this jacket when you're looking for a good light weight packable jacket.

Pros: Great design, super light weight
Comfort: 5 / 5
Durability: 5 / 5
Quality: 5 / 5
FitClothes: 2 / 5
WaterProtection: 5 / 5
WindProtection: 4 / 5
from Columbus, OH

August 22, 2011

Comfortable, breathes better than traditional rain gear. Wind-proof and waterproof through downpours. Thin, incredibly lightweight, and packs into its own pocket. Overall, it's the perfect rain jacket for long hikes or daily wear.

Pros: Great design, Build quality, Performance, Great value
Comfort: 4 / 5
Durability: 4 / 5
Quality: 4 / 5
FitClothes: 4 / 5
35-44 yrs

just a little too big
May 18, 2011

i'm 5'6" and the sleeves were too long and the elastic cuffs weren't tight enough to keep the sleeves in good position. i was very disappointed because it otherwise seemed to be exactly what i was looking for. super light, well builty, compressible....i bummed to send it back! guess i need the velcro at the sleeves.

Pros: Great design, Build quality, Great value, Cons: fit for a short guy

Perfect stealth protection from unpredictable weather
August 18, 2010

Super light and very packable in its own pocket makes this a very practical jacket that you will take with you in every adventure, be it in your ruck out in the woods or in your book bag at school or in your briefcase for work. The only cons I have is that it gets very wrinkled when you stow which is not a problem in the woods but is a bit of a bummer when trying to impress the ladies -- but it's better than being cold and wet.

Comfort: 5 / 5
Durability: 4 / 5
Quality: 5 / 5

from Red River, NM
45-54 yrs

Never Leave Home Without It
March 07, 2011

Wow is this jacket fantastic! It's so unbelievably light and packs down so small I take it any time I travel. It's super stripped down to just the essential chest pocket and internal pocket for stuffing it into. Looking around at other brands no one even comes close to the quality and weight of this jacket. I wouldn't consider this a hard core backpacking jacket as it's so lightweight, but for urban travel, adventure travel and day hikes you cannot beat it.

Pros: Great design, Build quality, Performance, Ease of use, Great value

Great Jacket
March 30, 2010

Awesome, just wish it had some side pockets for storage

Also Available

Outdoor Research Men's Helium Jacket Photo

True Blue.

Available sizes, while supplies last, include size and size extra large: xl, .

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