No good with no hood.

11:52 p.m. on January 26, 2014 (EST)
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I can't think of many tops that wouldn't benefit from a hood. I used to be a hat only guy but its so much easier to store a hood when you aren't using it plus they keep your neck warm so why do so many manufactures omit this important feature?  So many decent jackets and shirts would be SO much better with hoods. When you need peripheral vision I admit hoods suffer but they are hard to beat in a good storm.

Besides being cheaper is there any other reason to be hood-less? Have you ever caught yourself saying, "Gee whiz, I love this jacket but I wish it didn't have this infernal hood"?  My Mrs. says sweaters are useless with hoods but I find that debatable even. 

Your thoughts?

12:52 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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Sounds like you've got an invention to produce and make you millions. I agree a hooded jacket whether it be down or a sweat shirt style is more comfortable with a hood. I wear one now more than I ever did.

So anyway start a shirt design with a hood and maybe you can be the next hoody man?

3:42 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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Like many things, it depends. I have a hood on my down parka (a big deep winter parka), my rain jacket, a new Marmot jacket I just picked up and a fleece hoodie I just wear around the neighborhood. Unless the weather is really bad, as in raining, snowing or just cold and windy, I'd rather wear a hat or a beanie because I find a hood to be too confining. I'd never wear one skiing; too hard to see out of and usually not big enough to cover my helmet anyway.

I think part of the thing about hoods, at least around here, is that you look like the Unabomber (go look him up if you don't know who he is) or about to stick up a 7-11.

4:14 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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I LOVE hoods...they're mandatory on any jacket I buy exclusively for backpacking. A hood is not useless on a sweater at all...I covet the hoods on my base and they allow for numerous layering possibilities for my head just as they do my torso...and hooded base and mid-layers are few and far between sadly...for men particularly:-(

7:07 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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I HATE hoods attached to a jacket. I do love hoods, just not attached ones. I mean I utterly despise them. I hate my vision being restricted since most of them dont fully move with you...lingering effects from my specwar days i guess.

I use a synthetic hood from an old hunting jacket. It was one of the ones detachable with snaps. So I now just snap the neck portion of the hood together and slip it over my head. Works awesome, and it moves with me.

When I'm in the market for an item other than a rain shell I dont want a hood on it.

7:31 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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Attached to something that will always be the outer layer they make perfect sense.  On items I want to layer under other layers hoods get in the way unless the hood is designed to roll up into the collar.

9:27 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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I just bought a jacket WITHOUT a hood. I was specifically looking for one WITHOUT a hood.

Its part of my layering system and I find that if everything has a hood then I end up wearing 3 hoods, or having hoods bunched up against my neck, even if I am wearing 1 or 2 of them.

Sometiimes a hoodless layer is a great thing. I wear a baselayer, then I started wearing a First Accent Accelerant jacket WITH HOOD (excellent design on this hood) then I'll wear an insulation layer (NO HOOD) and then an outer shell WITH HOOD.

The F.A. Accelerant hood easily fits under the shell hood, and is very comfortable, but I wouldn't want 3 hoods. Sometimes, like when I'm on the tractor in cold weather, I'll just use the Accelerant's hood, then a pair of sound deadening muffs over the hood, and leave the shell hood down.

10:29 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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I find a hood on my rain jacket/ wind layer to be sufficient. My beanie takes care of the rest.

10:35 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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I prefer a quality hoodie under an outer jacket for my layering system.  I usually buy outer jackets without hoods as well.  It can be annoying to have more than one hood as melendad stated.  I have found I can handle many different weather conditions with a good baselayer (patagonia capalene), a t-shirt, a good hoodie, and then an outer jacket.  My outer jacket often varies depending on the weather conditions but my Mountain Hardwear windstopper tech jacket usually fits the bill in most cases.  In real cold weather I will wear a beenie under the hood of my hoodie for additional warmth.  

11:09 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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most of the time, i'm fine with a hood on the outer layer for things i use for hiking/climbing/canoing....if the jacket is (a) primarily serving to deflect precipitation or high wind or (b) for cold weather, so i'm trying to stay warm.  i don't feel like i need one on everything i get.  for example, i like having fleece jackets and a down sweater that don't have a hood.   

i also appreciate having a hood on sweatshirts when i work out - in case i forget a hat. 

detachable hoods - depends on what i am using them for.  i like the snap-off hood on my older down parka, but i'm equally happy with the fully attached hood on the new one. 

i have one mid-layer with a hood, a wool full-zip layer.  i like having that hood in case i don't have a hat handy. 

11:25 a.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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You picked up one of those ibex nomad hoodies didn't ya andrew?  I have been looking at those hoping to find them on sale at some point.  How is it treating you so far?

5:24 p.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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Short answer: agreed, provided they've an adjustable drawstring.

Otherwise you're like a little league batter, wearing a helmet meant for the varsity team.

6:25 p.m. on January 27, 2014 (EST)
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Clearly there are a lot of folks that prefer no hood:-) This should be obvious since manufacturers offer most items (other than rain-shells) without hoods. In fact..."hooded" items are usually the optional model...and the lack of this option is some of the reason I have opted more and more to make my own stuff..

Since I look to be the minority voice in this discussion I will make the case for why I prefer hoods...which has a lot to do with my particular style and approach...and not necessarily one that is well-suited for my style tends to focus on walking as much as possible (at a slow to average pace)...while taking as few of stops as necessary (since you already need to stop for water and other unavoidable reasons).

1) Loose hoods (like that you might find on a sweat-shirt) are utterly useless...and is not representative of what can properly be called a hood as it is thought to concern outdoor apparel. Contemporary hoods that are intended for outdoor use fit close to the head like a balaclava ("scuba" look) fact...they are balaclavas for all intents and purposes. As such these hoods do not block your peripheral vision (which as Rambler suggested isn't really that important for backpacking and hiking as it is when you're on a kill-mission).

2) My layers form a crucial part of my "sleeping-system" that they provide greater versatility and thermal-regulation than an over-sized sleeping bag (I try to use the very minimum of sleeping insulation I can get by with...and grudge every ounce and cubic inch of it). As such...a tight-fitting hood on a base or mid-layer is essential...because hats of all kinds have the tendency to fall off while I am sleeping...and the sleeping insulation I am using is more likely than not hood-less. Also...finding your hood in the middle of the night is much easier when it is attached than when it is not:-)

3) I prefer having my head-covering readily at hand and also stored out of the need to stop and/or look in my bag...just flip it up without breaking stride. Using a hat does not necessarily exclude this capacity...but I have found that this is more difficult to achieve while carrying a hat...because one needs to have the hat stored in a nearby pocket...and I have very limited pocket space...because I like to fill the few I have with other things like water-treatment+gloves+knife+first-aid/repair+camera+snacks...which I also like to have readily at hand...but do not store as well on the back of my neck:-)

4) The "hoods" I use tend to be relatively thin fabrics...My entire collection of layering pieces are sold as "base-layers" by manufacturers (the only exception being possibly my Ibex Indie). As such...I have never really noticed or been bothered by hoods when they are not is use and stored under additional layers...which is highly unlikely to be an issue anyways...because I would more likely than not put on the hood of a base or mid-layer before adding an additional layer to my torso (which more often than not would require me to stop and dig into my bag).

There are a few more reasons I prefer hoods...but I think the above adds a different perspective from that of others here. I am not saying that hoods are right and hats are wrong...that would be silly. What I am saying is that for me...because I rely on clothing to keep me warm when I sleep...and because I tend to constantly be manipulating my layers while on the move...hoods tend to be more user-friendly for my particular style. Of the very warmest days of summer when I am highly confident that I will not need a hood during the day or at night...then I forgo base and mid-layers with hoods...usually favoring a lightweight long-sleeve zip-neck tee (for camp and sleeping) and an old threadbare short-sleeve button-up cotton shirt (for hiking)...and for my head I bring a visor (heat)... bandana (bugs)...or my Tilley (rain...I use a poncho with the hood down to improve ventilation).

3:14 a.m. on January 28, 2014 (EST)
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I perfer Non hoods..I like less restriction.The only things I have that are hooded is my Rain shell and a mid layer that protects my neck protected.If I don't wear that mid layer I use a versatile buff..I like A hat and to feel the breeze.

2:23 p.m. on January 28, 2014 (EST)
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Jason Ruff said:

You picked up one of those ibex nomad hoodies didn't ya andrew?  I have been looking at those hoping to find them on sale at some point.  How is it treating you so far?

 exactly, that's the mid-layer with the hood.  i like it a lot.  Very warm, very comfortable, great design.  worth noting that the weave of the fabric is milled to be pretty thick, for wool - and that the particular weave they used is a fair bit less stretchy than most comparable synthetic base layers or wool sweaters.  it hasn't been an issue for me, but some people might notice. 

9:06 p.m. on January 28, 2014 (EST)
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I must say I'm a little surprised at the popular opinion. Put me in the boat with Joseph. It is almost mandatory, IMO, to have on a jacket, especially a mid layer. I won't rehash all the reasons as I believe Joseph listed the quite well. Maybe it's my short hair!

5:02 p.m. on January 30, 2014 (EST)
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Jeff, I used to prefer hoodless jackets myself. I upgraded my Montbell Alpine Light Down Jacket to the Alpine Light Down Parka. It was an absolute game changer. From now on, I will always try to buy tops/jackets with a hood!

6:38 p.m. on January 30, 2014 (EST)
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I used to prefer not having a hood on jackets until one day a hood, ever so barely, helped me keep hypothermia at arm's length.  I've since grown to appreciate hoods.  One of my favorite pieces is an Ibex hooded Indie which is basically a quarter zip base layer with a hood.  I also have one by IO Bio and never leave home without one.  I never worry about losing my balaclava and between the hood and the zipper I can regulate my temperature over a very large range.

11:16 a.m. on January 31, 2014 (EST)
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I looked at all of the jackets I currently have - from insulative forms to wind jackets to fleece to rain and all of them have hoods.

For very little weight gain and the ability to move the hood out of the way when not using it, it makes sense to always have it as an option.

April 8, 2020
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