The North Face: Jackets, Hoodies, Backpacks, and T-Shirts Ideal for Adventurers
The North Face is one of the world's biggest manufacturers and retailers of jackets, activewear, footwear, tents, and backpacks. Based in California, it supplies elite athletes and everyday hikers alike, making it easy to enjoy nature no matter what the weather throws at you.
This buyers guide will introduce the company and its main product areas, offer some tips about finding the right products, as well as handy information about how to save money on your next purchase.
The History of The North Face
The company was founded in San Francisco in 1966 by husband and wife team Douglas and Susie Tompkins, before being bought a few years later by entrepreneur Kenneth Klopp. At first, it was just another California outdoor retailer, focusing on summer backpacking, before branching out into ski gear and camping in the 70s and 80s.
In the meantime, the firm was purchased again, this time by the global VF Corporation, which also features JanSport among its companies, creating a base for worldwide expansion. As hiking and camping activities became more popular, and niche markets opened up, the company assumed a leadership position among activewear and camping brands.
At the same time, it has expanded its retail operations continuously, and become a leading retailer in the UK (you can find out about their locations here). Nowadays, there's no better brand to go to when you want to equip yourself for adventures.
What Kind of Features Mark North Face's Outdoor Products Out From the Crowd?
The North Face are about a lot more than capitalising on their Californian roots. The reason they have become such a revered brand all over the world is because their products are engineered for hikers, skiers, climbers and campers, providing the qualities they require to handle different weather conditions.
One way that they manage to do this is by including Gore-Tex as standard in their clothing and bags. This speciality material is the gold standard for activewear, providing a high degree of water protection while remaining extremely breathable, so their products will be cool in the summer and can deal with a few downpours too. The company also offers a versatile range of Gore-Tex materials, from the Paclite used in their lightweight raincoats or bags to three layers XCR, which provides pretty much the ultimate in rain protection.
Many also contain Dryvent materials, which take Gore-Tex even further, achieving a breathability rating of 600 g/m²/24 hours. Again, they use the right variety of DryVent for the task in hand. There's no sense of “one size fits all”. Each item of clothing, tent or bag is engineered using the right combination of fabrics to fulfil its purpose.
Finally, there's DWR, a chemical treatment to the outer layer of some of the brand's clothing, which repels water without impairing breathability, adding yet another layer of protection.
The combination of these advanced materials and precise design methods is what sets their products apart. While other firms use materials like Gore-Tex, they use fewer varieties, and tend to be more generic. Instead, you know that you'll encounter a wide range of boots, shirts, or coats, offering options for whatever situation you intend to tackle.
The North Face Product Range
So, what kinds of products will you actually come across at the company's hotukdeals listings? Here's a quick summary of the company's main product areas to help you sift through the discounts.
Jackets – Probably the core of the company's range, their jackets are a fixture on hiking trails, ski slopes and anywhere the weather is a little bit unreliable. They offer jackets for men, women and kids, with full zip, half zip and gilet style options, as well as a range of padded and non-padded designs. Some are well-suited to wearing around town in the winter, such as the Thermoball padded full-zip model, while others are definitely intended for wilderness trips, such as the Tanken zip-in jacket. Prices vary within jacket styles, with premium options that include down fill as well as cheaper synthetic fills. The best way to find a jacket that you like is to visit their online Men's Catalogue and Women's Catalogue, then filter by “benefit”, which zeroes in on properties like wind or rain protection, ventilation, or sun protection.
Men's and Women's Casual Clothing – The brand also stay close to their California roots with their casual clothing collection, offering plenty of checked shirts, t-shirts, blouses, vests, hooded tops, polos, fleeces, trousers, skirts, shorts, and training gear. If you need to buy a new collection of jogging clothing, they have what you need, as well as anything gym-goers could require, but their casual clothes appeal across the spectrum. Rugged, durable and visually attractive, the North Face style has a timeless appeal that works in rural and urban settings, and is always handy to have around.
Footwear – As you would expect from an international activewear brand, the company manufactures some high-quality walking and hiking boots. Models like their Berkeley and Edgewood boots are stylish options for guys, but their footwear collection goes beyond boots. Check out their winter running shoes, with added insulation, their “mountain sneakers” (which are great for orienteering and endurance runners), their slipper-like Thermoball Traction Modules, and their premium Endurance running shoes. And, if you are venturing off piste, their Verto alpine boots are top of the range, as well. There are also women's footwear options to think about, too, such as the suede leather Nuptse Purna boots, insulated Traction Booties, and women's running shoes, so explore the range and focus on shoes that fit your favourite activities.
Men's and Women's Accessories – When you head out into the great outdoors, having the right accessories can make or break your trip. In the summer, the company offers wide-brimmed hats and baseball caps, but it's winter when their accessories collection really comes into its own. Check out their Sherpa Beanies and traditional beanies, as well as their high-grip E-Tip gloves and neck gaiters to provide extra insulation.
Tents – The brand is one of the world's biggest tent manufacturers, helping millions of hikers to explore the wilderness every year. They offer rugged mountain tents, which keep a low profile and cling to wind-blown mountain slopes, and can be enhanced with extra protective sheets to screen hikers against the most severe storms.
Bags – Backpacks are another of the firm's specialities, and their packs can be seen in airports and hotels across the world. Options range from tiny rain cover bags, through to high capacity trekking bags, and most now include laptop compartments which allow you to use them off-season for business trips as well. There are also suitcases, duffels, washbags, and wallets, so pretty much every travel storage issue is covered by their product range.
That's a basic introduction to what's on offer, but it's also helpful to look at some of the company's most important brands, to get a picture of which products to go for.
Thermoball – If you see a Thermoball product listed, it will most likely be a comfortable cold weather jacket. Designed to be lightweight, Thermoball jackets are ideal for walks in the countryside or prolonged hikes, the material packs away really small, and most come with zips to provide extra ventilation when the weather turns warm.
Ventrix – Ventrix products are all about temperature regulation, so are perfect for trips when you aren't quite sure what the weather is going to do. They use an innovative pattern of “micro-vents” to achieve breathability without compromising on warmth, which is why they are often used as an outer layer by skiers and climbers.
Climatch – Climatch is focused on customisation. When you purchase a Climatch jacket, you can choose the colour of the exterior and interior, and pick from a variety of materials for both, coming up with totally unique clothing.
Ultra Series – One of the firm's flagship footwear ventures of recent years, the Ultra Series has been engineered for demanding situations such as ultra-marathons, hence the name. They always feature Gore-Tex materials and colourful designs, try to stabilise feet as much as possible, while providing optimum flexibility during runs and hikes.
Slipper Mules – Another recent focus has been these cute little slipper shoes, which feature Thermoball-style uppers and keep your feet nice and snug when padding around your tent and getting ready for a day of climbing.
Back to School – Not really a brand as such, but a key part of the firm's website none the less, the Back to School section is a great place to hunt for laptop-compatible backpacks and accessories to equip secondary school pupils and uni students alike.
How to Choose a North Face Coat or Jacket
When you're shopping for jackets, it's easy to make a wrong move. How many of us have bought a waterproof jacket that looks the part, but can't actually protect us properly during a downpour, or chosen a jacket that feels clammy and chilly as soon as the weather turns? Now, almost all of the company's clothing will be of a high-quality. That's not in doubt. But there are different options for different needs. Let's have a look at some of them.
Firstly, if you're looking for a summer jacket, go for something that is breathable, lightweight and affords sun protection. Something like the Berkeley Shell Jacket is stylish and folds up very small, and it has a hood which is always advisable. However, the Mountain Jacket 1985 is the only model that promises active sun protection, which may be influential for some buyers.
If you want to privilege waterproof qualities, the firm offers a wealth of options. Which one you go for will depend upon the temperatures you expect to encounter, as well as factors like wind. If you know that there will be downpours and wind squalls, something like the Tanken Zip-In Jacket provides all-over protection. But if you want versatile rain protection in a variety of situations, loom at coats like the Mountain Light Triclimate Jacket, which can be worn in a wide range of temperatures.
What about jackets for general urban wear? The North Face produce plenty of options that work just as well at shopping centres and restaurants as on the trail, including a popular range of puffer jacket designs, particularly in their women's section, where padded Thermoball, Nuptse and Tanken jackets all blend weather protection and stylish looks. But there are fashionable puffer jackets for guys (and boys) too, with added features like padded hoods, which provide an all-round barrier against the elements.
Picking the Right North Face Backpack or Bag
Whether you're heading off on a backpacking adventure or you just need a bag for school, picking the right North Face bag shouldn't be a problem. With so many looks and features in their range, there should be something for everyone.
Think about what you're going to be using the pack for before you buy. Prices vary considerably by capacity, which is measured in litres, and it's easy to buy too much. If you're travelling in a warm climate, you won't need as much space as visiting somewhere where the weather varies, and having an unwieldy, large backpack can be a chore. So try as hard as possible to apply the rule: go for the smallest backpack possible, while still meeting your needs.
Some bags are more versatile than others. For instance, modern travellers often need to take laptops along with their casual clothing and toiletries, and some of the brand's bags are better than others at accommodating fragile electronic devices. If you have to carry a laptop, smartphone, camera, chargers, cables and any other electronic accessories, choose one with enough internal compartments and zips to keep them safe and orderly. Some also come with daypacks attached. These compact bags are a great supplement to larger packs, although they add some extra bulk onto the total design. If you are intending to sight-see during the day and want to take essentials with you, they will be a great item to have at your disposal.
Then there are “technical” backpacks. These are ideal for serious outdoor enthusiasts like mountaineers, due to their sophisticated frames which spread weight evenly and have attachments for an essential kit. Sizes vary from around 35 to 65 litres, and not all can carry tents and sleeping bags. So assess the length of your trip and decide which one works for you.
Finally, there are more creative designer backpacks that will suit students and urban explorers. Models like the Jester, the Electra, or the Borealis have visual appeal and all of the features you'll need for books, clothes and snacks, while being rugged enough for the odd walk in the mountains if the need arises.
The North Face: Never Stop Exploring
How and When to Find Cheap North Face Products
All over the UK, the firm's activewear and bags provide protection against the elements, allowing hikers, climbers, runners, and everyday people to get out and about without worrying too much about the weather. But the quality of their clothing and bags comes at a premium. This isn't a second-rate generic brand. It's a worldwide legend, and the prices you pay for their products reflect this status. So how can you find cheap North Face products?
One great option is to explore clearance deals. The company regularly runs sales of lines that are being phased out, and their Sales section is the place to find them. Their sales don't last all year round, though, but whenever you need a hoodie, a fleece, or a t-shirt, there's a good chance you can find it for less.
If North Face themselves aren't discounting the items you need, don't worry. Other retailers probably are, and you can easily find out by consulting the North Face hotukdeals listings. Head over to our listings pages and search for coats, scarves, hats, tents, or backpacks. Whatever you need, you'll find deals from UK outdoor merchants like Cotswold, John Lewis, and Amazon, stretching all across the firm's product range.
Shopping during sales periods is also a great option. For instance, North Face clothing is often discounted when Black Friday comes around in November, and there may be off-season summer sales in autumn, or winter clearances in late spring. With outdoor equipment, it always pays to shop when demand drops off, so shop strategically to get the best prices.
Get Properly Kitted Out for Outdoor Activities with the North Face Discounts at hotukdeals
Whether you need a stylish hiking jacket, a pair of high-performance running shoes, or a backpack to take around the world, The North Face should be one of the first brands you look at. Famous for their outdoor clothing, this California-based brand offers everything you need to get out on the mountain trails, and you can find all of their products for less at the North Face hotukdeals listings.