I recently had the opportunity to test Patagonia’s Micro Puff jackets with a buddy. We wanted to see if these lightweight, packable down pieces would be perfect for our upcoming backpacking trip in Europe this winter.

We put the iconic Patagonia Nano Puff® jacket to the test. We liked that it was lightweight, warm, and came with a fantastic guarantee from a recognized company, even though it was fragile and hoodless. Patagonia has now improved its game by introducing a hooded version of the Nano and, more recently, the Micro Puff®, a lighter synthetic down jacket.

Patagonia Micro Puff Aesthetic Patagonia Micro Puff Aesthetic Patagonia Micro Puff A

You’ll note that the Micro Puff looks suspiciously like the Nano Puff. It also looks suspiciously like the Ultralight Down Jacket. Which looks suspiciously like the down sweater and down sweater top…

We don’t blame you if you’re presently perplexed by Patagonia’s jumble of trendy-named puffy coats. Unfortunately, we had to make our FBI-style inquiry to weed through everything, and we’re still not sure we have a firm hold on it.

They’re all pretty much the same when it comes to the Micro, Nano, and Ultralight Down. So you’ll probably be alright going with whatever looks or feels best to you if you’re not too worried about the technical details. But, of course, that’s not how we operate, so we had to dig a little further. Each of the three coats has a somewhat different weight, warmth, and material possibilities. The following is a short rundown of our results.

Ultralight Down: A down jacket with limited functionality. In 50°F temperatures, it’s too hot, but in cooler temperatures, it’s perfect. When it comes to layering, this isn’t the best option. When wet, it’s a no-no.

Nano Puff is a multi-functional synthetic jacket. In 50°F temperatures, it’s comfortable, and in colder temperatures, it’s simple to layer. When wet, it stays warm, and it’s lighter than the Ultralight (though maybe it wasn’t that light after all).

Micro Puff: A multipurpose synthetic jacket comfortable in 50°F temperatures and simple to layer in cooler temperatures. When wet, it stays warm—said it’s more insulated than the Nano when it comes to water. It isn’t nearly as warm as the heavier Nano Puff, but it is the lightest group and has the most excellent warmth-to-weight ratio. It’s also the most costly.

Women's Patagonia Micro Puff In Detroit, MichiganPatagonia Micro Puff For Women In Detroit, Michigan

You’re better off with one of the synthetic choices for one-bag travel, so we can’t be bothered with the Ultralights (yet, at least). The Micro and Nano are adaptable jackets that may be used as your primary layer if you have a few layers. The Patagonia Micro Puff is your best pick if you’re worried about weight.

If you’re still undecided about which jacket to wear, we will get a little geeky with you. Fasten your seatbelts.

Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody HoodPatagonia Micro Puff Hoody Hood Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody Hood Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody

Nano Puff vs. Micro Puff

We chose to try the Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody since our Nano review left us wanting more protection for our head and neck. Patagonia also offers a hoodless Micro Puff jacket for people who desire greater cranial mobility.

The untrained eye may have difficulty distinguishing between the Micro Puff and the Nano Puff, but fortunately for you, we are (very modest) specialists in this field. The Micro is substantially shinier than the Nano (which we’re relatively sure is simply an aesthetic difference—we’ll leave it up to you to judge if it looks better or worse). The Micro Puff shell comprises a 10-denier 100% ripstop nylon Pertex Quantum® with a DWR (durable water repellent) finish against a 22-denier 100% recycled polyester with a DWR finish on the Nano. The DWR on both sheds rain nicely for short periods, but neither should be mistaken for a rain jacket. The quilting design on the Micro is also much more extensive—we’ll get to that in a minute.


The Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody’s hood, in our opinion, is a significant improvement over the previous variants. The stretchy material matches the sleeves and does a beautiful job of sealing in warmth. However, it could have used a drawstring to tighten it up. There are two outside zipped pockets and two interior zippered pockets. The YKK zippers with pulls are always a bonus, and the main zipper is a YKK 45CL for those as meticulous as we are. We felt the fit to be less boxy than the Nano after putting it on.

Details about the Patagonia Micro Puff Elastic Hood and Sleeves

Wait (weight?) till you experience the Micro Puff if you thought the Nano Puff was light. The Patagonia Micro Puff in the same size (medium) is nearly 2 ounces more delicate than the 11.1 ounce Nano—and that includes the hood. While the Micro’s synthetic 65-g PlumaFill® polyester insulation has an outstanding warmth-to-weight ratio, it didn’t keep us as warm as the Nano’s 60-g PrimaLoft® polyester insulation. The Micro is most comfortable in temperatures between 35 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit, but you’ll work up a sweat if you’re on the go. If the weather is regularly chilly, you should go with the Nano, or at the very least layer something hefty below.

Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody PocketPatagonia Micro Puff Hoody with Pocket Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody with Pocket Patagonia Micro P

So what’s the big deal about switching from PrimaLoft® to PlumaFill®? The groundbreaking PlumaFill, according to Patagonia, remains warmer when wet, retains heat, and compresses better for optimum packability.

Patagonia Micro Puff Patagonia Micro Puff Patagonia Micro Puff Patagonia Micro P

The Micro’s ability to compact securely into the left pocket—a trait shared by the Nano—is a huge plus when it comes to packability. This is a significant plus for one-bag travelers and those who want to preserve a little more room (who doesn’t? ). We observed the Micro to be more rectangular (rather than square) when packed than the Nano. When compressed, it’s a bit “larger,” but it’s less firm and more forgiving (meaning it takes up less space overall). If you wish to make the tight jacket more accessible, a convenient loop allows you to tie it to a carabiner.

Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody CompressedPatagonia Compressed Micro Puff Hoody

The lightest materials make us a little concerned when it comes to the jacket’s longevity. The visible ripstop isn’t flimsy, but you’ll still want to be wary of stray branches while hiking in the woods, and it’s a good idea to place it within a packing cube for added protection from zippers or other objects in your backpack. The good news is that Patagonia’s Ironclad Guarantee, which covers assistance with repairs and returns of damaged merchandise, is always available. If you’re near a Patagonia shop, go in and explain your situation—we’ve had great results with exchanges and repairs (a gold point for Patagonia’s customer service).

If you’re in a pinch or don’t want to deal with a time-consuming repair, have some repair tape on hand—we suggest Tenacious Tape. This product works on nearly any surface, and we can attest to its effectiveness in repairing rips and tears in down (or synthetic down) coats. Keep in mind that most of the colors have a matte finish so they won’t match up well with the glossy finish on these jackets—but hey, when people inquire about your patches, you can tell them about how you nearly missed death by leaping off of a moving train. Alternatively, say that you lost a battle with the cat that lives in your Airbnb.

We’re not going to sugarcoat it: the Patagonia Micro Puff will cost you a penny. If you’re going to spend any money on a jacket, you should go with a respected brand like Patagonia. The Nano will save you some money, but it is still rather pricy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Patagonia Micro Puff discontinued?

A: Yes, Patagonia has discontinued the Micro Puff jacket. However, it is still possible to purchase them on their website and at some retailers in small quantities.

What temperature is Patagonia Micro Puff good for?

A: Patagonia Micro Puff is suitable for any temperature, as it does not have a specific temperature range. The softness of the wool can be manipulated by changing how much water you add to the mix when kneading with your hands.

Is the Micro Puff warm?

A: No, the Micro Puff is not warm.

Related Tags

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  • Patagonia micro puff hoody
  • Patagonia micro puff vest review
  • Patagonia micro puff women’s
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