If you’re planning to snowboard this winter, you’ve probably started looking into the necessary winter clothing and gear you’ll need to stay warm and dry on the slopes. Whether you’re a beginner or have been snowboarding since you could walk, a good pair of pants can make or break your experience while snowboarding. We created this guide to the best women’s snowboarding pants and bibs so you can find the perfect pair for your experience level, preferences, and budget.
In general, snowboarding gear doesn’t differ too much from ski gear, but having high-quality snowboarding pants do make a huge difference. Why? Because snowboarders generally spent a LOT more time sitting (and wiping out…) in the snow than skiers do. A good pair of snowboard-specific pants will help you keep your legs perfectly warm and dry, without inhibiting edge movement.
To create this guide, we meticulously researched and tested several pairs of women’s snowboarding pants to bring you our top recommendations for the best pairs. Read on to learn how we evaluated each product and which ones we’d recommend the most for female snowboarders.
What to Look for In Women’s Snowboarding Pants
Weatherproofing, along with warmth (see below), is one of the most important features to look for in a pair of snowboarding pants. Weatherproof pants will protect your body from all of the usual winter suspects – wind, snow, cold air, and moisture. The materials used in the pants’ outer shell, as well as its construction and weatherproofing features, are what will keep you warm and dry inside. This is especially important for snowboarders, who spent lots of time sitting in the snow to get bindings on and off.
Material is key when it comes to weatherproofing. The outer shell of any pair of snowboarding pants should be waterproof and windproof, using a synthetic or waxed material to keep cold air out and warm air in. Some of the most popular outer shell materials include:
- Gore-Tex (our top pick for outer shell material, but also the most expensive)
The pants’ construction is also a huge contributor to its weatherproofing capabilities. Many pants come with cinches for your ankles that are designed to keep cold air out by adjusting the fit of the pants to your own body. Reinforced seams are also an important feature to look for, as moisture and water can seep in through them if now reinforced properly.
Depending on where and how you ski or ride, another important feature in women’s snowboarding pants is warmth. Wind and frigid air are par for the course when it comes to skiing and snowboarding, and it’s critical to have pants that will keep your legs warm and comfortable in sub-freezing temperatures.
Depending on where you live and ski/ride, different pants may make sense. For example, the alpine temperatures of the Rockies differ from the extreme lows of the Midwest and the Northeast, which will differ from the warmer temperatures of California and Mid-Atlantic resorts. Additionally, if you’ll be resort skiing, you may need a different level of warmth and insulation than backcountry skiing.
Because of this, some snow pants are non-insulated – these are for skiing in warmer temperatures or for using on top of separate mid-layers and base layers. If you prefer to layer rather than having one thicker pair of pants, a non-insulated pair of shell pants may be a good choice for you.
If you do opt for insulated snowboarding pants, some of the most common insulation types you’ll see include:
- Primaloft (& variations)
- Wool or Merino wool
While it may seem counter-intuitive, breathability is an essential feature of a good pair of snowboarding pants. Why? Because non-breathable pants will hold in sweat and moisture, and will make you feel like you’re swimming in a swamp the whole time you’re wearing them. (If you’ve ever spent hours sweating in a cotton t-shirt in 80+ degree weather, you’ll know what this feels like.)
Materials and construction also play a huge role in the breathability of a pair of pants. Breathable fabrics like Merino wool and certain synthetics wick sweat and provide air to flow freely through. Adjustable cinches and zippers provide fresh air in places that need it throughout the day. In our review of each pair, we’ve tried to gauge breathability from the specific features built for moisture wicking and distribution of air.
Comfort, Fit, & Style
Although it’s highly individualized, the comfort and fit of the snowboarding pants should absolutely factor into your decision. You’ll want a pair that fits your specific body well without being too tight or too baggy. If you’re planning on wearing lots of layers underneath your pants, you’ll want to factor that into your buying decision by looking for a pair that provides space inside to wear whatever you’d like. Here are some of the comfort elements people look for:
- Internal lining material softness
- Fit of the pants on your body
- Number of pockets and storage areas
- Style and color
While it might seem silly, color and style should be a part of your purchasing decision, too. Some people prefer muted tones and dark colors, while others enjoy wearing bright colors or patterns. If you’re going to spend hundreds of dollars on a pair of women’s snowboarding pants, you’ll definitely want to make sure it matches the aesthetic you’re looking for! Just make sure that you’ve considered the other functional aspects – weatherproofing, warmth, and breathability – first.
While we aim to keep price out of the equation when we’re evaluating each of the individual products, it’s absolutely an important factor to consider when you’re choosing a ski helmet for yourself.
There’s no sugar coating it: snowboarding gear can be expensive. Typically, you’ll find that high-quality snow pants range from $100 to over $500, with premium materials and features stacked in the higher end of that range. However, just because a pair of pants costs less does not mean that it isn’t suitable for your needs.
For the purposes of this review, we’ve grouped these pants and bibs into three price tiers:
- $ = Less than $200
- $$ = $200 to $400
- $$$ = Over $400
Best Women’s Snowboarding Pants for Every Budget
To narrow down our list of the best women’s snowboarding pants, we performed our research just like any customer would before making a buying decision to bring you the most practical, down-to-earth, and realistic information about each pair. We know research can be time-consuming and overwhelming, so we sifted through hundreds of reviews and tested several products in-store, at home, and on the slopes to bring you this list of fantastic women’s snowboarding pants.
Our main goal with this guide is to help you make an informed decision on the best snowboarding pants for your own activities, budget, and style. Here are our picks:
Patagonia Powder Bowl
Best Women’s Snowboarding Pants
- Price: $$$
- Materials: Gore-Tex outer shell
- Notable Features: Knee stretch for unrestricted movements, mesh-lined outer thigh vents
- Pros: Lightweight and completely weatherproof, fantastic for backcountry or resort, comes in short sizes
- Cons: Expensive, few colors
Patagonia makes some of the best outdoor gear on the market, and their Powder Bowl pants are, in our assessment, the absolute best women’s snowboarding pants. A shell-style construction with mesh lining for ultimate breathability, these pants are a great companion for most conditions at the resort or in the backcountry. Weatherproof and moisture-wicking, these pants are great for layering on super cold days or for warmer days with the zippered leg vents open.
Moreover, the pants come in both regular and short sizes, perfect for the petite ladies out there looking to shred the gnar without tripping over their pants. Fit is a huge issue with a lot of snowboarders, and the variety of lengths and sizes that Patagonia offers makes finding the right fit a lot easier.
While they’re nowhere near the most expensive pants on our list, the Powder Bowl pants do run a bit pricier than many of the models we have listed here. Additionally, while there are 4 pockets, we would have liked to see 2 back pockets or a cargo pocket for slightly more storage space. Aside from those minor issues, we’d wholeheartedly recommend these pants for any snowboarders who ride in a variety of conditions and want a durable, lightweight shell pant to accompany them.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR PATAGONIA POWDER BOWL:
Burton Gloria Gore-Tex
Best Insulated Women’s Snowboarding Pants
- Price: $$
- Materials: Gore-Tex outer shell, Burton Living Lining insulation layer
- Notable Features: Gore-Tex construction, 4 pockets for plenty of storage, weather sealed seams
- Pros: Fantastic weatherproofing, comfortable lining
- Cons: Runs large, low rise construction is not suitable for all body types
Burton is the king of snowboard brands, and their Gloria Gore-Tex pants are the perfect companion for snowboarders looking to step up their game. Gore-Tex is the best of the best in terms of weatherproofing, so these pants will help snowboarders keep moisture and snow at bay without sacrificing warmth or comfort.
The slim fit is really flattering for many body types, and we found these to be some of the most comfortable snow pants we tried on! Some customers have cited issues with fit – that these pants run large or that the rise is too low are a few of the chief complaints. As we always say, it’s critical to try these on before committing if you can!
The bottom line? Serious snowboarders should consider investing in a pair of very weatherproof insulated pants, and the Burton Gloria Gore-Tex pants are some of the best options. Note that the Burton Gloria comes in a non Gore-Tex version, but we’d recommend spending a little extra to get the real deal!
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR BURTON GLORIA PANTS:
Flylow Foxy Bib
Best Women’s Snowboarding Bib
- Price: $$$
- Materials: Intuitive & stretch Stormshell
- Notable Features: Hip and thigh ventilation, drop seat, waterproof seams
- Pros: Thorough ventilation, lots of pockets, stylish
- Cons: Expensive, bib construction not for everyone
For those bib aficionados out there, there are few better options on the market than the Flylow Foxy Bib. Weatherproof, comfortable, stylish, and durable, we recommend the Flylow Foxy as one of the best women’s ski bibs. It’s got all of the best features in a bib, including lots of pockets, a dropseat, waterproof seams, and fantastic ventilation on warmer days or in the backcountry. Plus, it’s designed specifically for women and has a stylish fit that lots of women absolutely adore.
We absolutely love the Flylow Foxy bib, and couldn’t find much we didn’t like about it. The fit is stylish but loose enough to provide plenty of space for layering and moving around in the pants. However, it’s a steep price to pay if you’re not absolutely sure you like the bib-style pants. Some customers say the thighs fit tight, so we’d recommend trying this bib on and moving around in it before committing to it on the slopes.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR FLYLOW FOXY BIB:
The North Face Freedom Pants
Best on a Budget
- Price: $
- Materials: DryVent outer shell, 60g Heatseeker insulation (insulated version only)
- Notable Features: Zipper vents, built-in gaiters, 4 zippered pockets for added storage
- Pros: Affordable, high-quality construction and materials, fantastic resort pants
- Cons: Ventilation systems not as suitable for backcountry, slightly baggier than some other models
For those wanting a solid pair of snowboarding pants at a decent price tag, there’s no better option out there than the North Face Freedom pants. These pants come in two different versions – insulated and non-insulated – and provide great weatherproofing for cold, snowy conditions. Additionally, they’ve got the most useful features you may need on the slopes, including plenty of pocket space across 4 pockets, zippered vents for warmer days, and boot gaiters to prevent snow and moisture from entering.
We love the North Face Freedom pants for a few reasons: they’re well-constructed, affordable, and come in a variety of sizes and lengths that are suitable for the variety of women’s body types. We didn’t find any other pants that boasted such spectacular weatherproofing, warmth, and ski-specific features at a price tag that’s accessible to most skiers.
The bottom line? While there are definitely more high-tech and weatherproof pants out there, the North Face Freedom Pants have our vote for the best women’s snowboarding pants because they offer the most superior value for the price. Despite what many ski websites will have you believe, not everyone needs the highest-end, most tricked-out snow gear. If – like most people – you are a casual skier or rider who hits the slopes a handful of times each year, the North Face Freedom pants are the perfect companion, and you won’t have to spend an arm and a leg to get your hands on a pair.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR NORTH FACE FREEDOM PANTS:
Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bib
Best for Backcountry
- Price: $$$
- Materials: Gore-Tex shell
- Notable Features: Stretch panels, drop seat, outer thigh vents
- Pros: Fantastic ventilation, top-notch weatherproofing
- Cons: Extremely expensive, overkill for most casual snowboarders
Designed specifically for the backcountry, the Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bib is a well-made bib for advanced snowboarders looking to upgrade their equipment. This Gore-Tex outfitted bib is fantastic for keeping snow and moisture out, given its reinforced seams and tough construction. However, for sweaty backcountry adventures or warmer days on the slopes, there are ventilation zippers on the outer thigh that move hot air out. The stretch fabric construction provides optimal movement, which can sometimes be difficult to find in shell pants designed for durability.
The bottom line? The Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bib is the best fit for experienced snowboarders looking for a high-end bib to use in the backcountry. In our opinion, it’s probably overkill for beginners or those who primarily ride in resort environments, especially given its colossal price point. However, if you’re looking for a best-in-class bib that you can take with you everywhere there’s snow, the Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bib is a fantastic choice.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR OUTDOOR RESEARCH HEMISPHERES BIB:
Volcom Aston Gore-Tex
- Price: $$
- Materials: Gore-Tex and polyester shell
- Notable Features: 6 pockets, zipper vents on thighs provide lots of breathability
- Pros: Gore-Tex and sealed seams keep moisture out, while zips enable great breathability
- Cons: Baggy, longer fit doesn’t work for many body types
As a shell-style set of women’s snowboarding pants, the Volcom Aston Gore-Tex pants are a popular and fantastic option for snowboarders looking for more technically sound gear for inclement weather conditions. The Gore-Tex outer shell provides top-tier weatherproofing, while lots of zipper vents provide the option for superior breathability. They’ve got a whopping 6 pockets – more than most of the other pants on our list – which are great for storing things like credit cards and IDs while you’re on the slopes.
The Aston Gore-Tex pants are similar to the Burton Gloria Gore-Tex pants, but don’t provide as many size options for different body types. Many reviewers complained of an extra-long fit that didn’t work with their body types and leg length. While we love how well-constructed the Volcom Aston pants are, the fit issues are a serious concern, especially for petite women. Additionally, the baggy fit may not be preferable for those who prefer a slimmer, sleeker look. However, if you’re looking for a great pair of women’s snowboarding pants and you have a taller-than-average physique, these could be a great option for you.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR VOLCOM ASTON GORE-TEX:
Dakine Remington Pure 2L Gore-Tex
- Price: $ to $$
- Materials: Gore-Tex outer shell
- Notable Features: 3 pockets, mesh-lined leg vents, light, breathable insulation
- Pros: We love the light insulation – it’s not overbearing but it still helps you stay warm on extra cold days
- Cons: Weird fit issues, not suitable for petites
Dakine is a popular snow sports gear brand, and they make some of the best women’s snowboarding pants out there. The Remington Pure 2L Gore-Tex pants are some of their best, most weatherproof pants for snowboarders who like to rough it on the slopes. One of our favorite things about these pants is the light insulation. It’s very comfortable and warm without being overbearing and bulky. Paired with the Gore-Tex outer shell and mesh ventilation, it’s a perfect combination for most resort and backcountry riding.
We didn’t love the comparatively smaller pocket space in these pants, especially compared to the 4-6 pockets available in other models. Additionally, many customers complained of fit issues with the Dakine Remington Pure 2L pants. Namely, they mentioned that the fit is tight for the size, and that the legs tend to run long. If you’re a petite, we’d forego both of these products in favor of the Burton Gloria Gore-Tex or the North Face Freedom pants, which both have short options.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR DAKINE REMINGTON GORE-TEX:
Norrona Lofoten Gore-Tex Pro
- Price: $$$
- Materials: Gore-Tex outer shell
- Notable Features: 3-layer construction for optimal weatherproofing
- Pros: Arguably the most weatherproof pants on the market
- Cons: Very expensive, harder shell than other pants, overkill for a lot of casual snowboarders
For those who often hit the slopes in extreme conditions, finding clothes that offer complete protection can be a challenge. If this sounds like you, the Norrona Lofoten Gore-Tex Pro hardshell pants are some of the best pants for snowboarders. These non-insulated pants are tough as concrete when it comes to adverse conditions, and hold up the best against moisture, cold air, and snow out of any pants we looked into. They’ve got leg vents and 4 pockets for storage, and all seams are fully sealed against moisture and cold.
Without many cons, the Norrona Lofoten pants are the ideal companion for snowboarders. Realistically, though, these pants are the most expensive on our list, and we just don’t see these super tough pants being necessary for the average snowboarder who only goes a few times a year or rides exclusively in resorts. If you ski or ride in high alpine areas, or extreme cold like Alaska or the Arctic Circle, or are often in the backcountry for long stretches of time, these pants are a fantastic option. However, if you’re budget-conscious at all and don’t ski in the most extreme weather, there are less expensive options that may be more suitable for you.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR NORRONA LOFOTEN GORE-TEX:
Arc’teryx Sentinel AR
- Price: $$$
- Materials: 3-layer Gore-Tex with 70D nylon, flannel lining
- Notable Features: Zippered side vents, watertight seams and zippers, Gore-Tex hardshell construction
- Pros: Weatherproof, comfortable, fantastic ventilation system for backcountry exploring
- Cons: Very expensive, overkill for a lot of casual snowboarders
For serious snowboarders who ride in a variety of conditions, the Arc’teryx Sentinel AR pants are the absolute best women’s pants for snow sports on the market. With top-of-the-line Gore-Tex construction and fantastic ventilation, these pants are perfect for cold and snowy days, whether you’re crushing the resort slopes or hitting up the backcountry. Its superior features do command a hefty price – these are some of the most expensive pants on the market – but for avid skiers and riders, these durable, versatile pants provide the best in comfort and weatherproofing for years to come.
The bottom line? We’d recommend the Arc’teryx Sentinel AR pants for advanced snowboarders who ride several times each year in a variety of terrain and conditions. Because of the sky-high price tag, we’d definitely consider these pants as a multi-year investment, suitable for folks who know they love snow sports and are willing to spend money on the best-in-class gear to accompany them. That’s not to say beginners and first-timers won’t benefit from these pants – they’ll surely still love the comfort and weatherproofing – but the value for money may not be worthwhile unless you plan to use the pants often over the course of many years.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR ARC’TERYX SENTINEL AR:
Arctix Women’s Insulated Snow Pants & Bibs
- Price: $
- Materials: Thermalock outer shell, 85 g of Thermatech insulation
- Notable Features: Zippered side pockets, reinforced ankle and hem guards, boot gaiters
- Pros: Very affordable, warm
- Cons: Not waterproof, bulky, no ventilation options
We’d be out of touch if we didn’t consider the #1 most popular budget snow pants on Amazon – the Arctix Women’s Insulated Snow Pants. At under $50, these are some of the best women’s snowboarding pants on a super tight budget, as they are by far the cheapest option on our list. They’ve also got over 13,500 reviews on Amazon (mostly 4 and 5 stars), so you know they’re a super popular choice.
So, we bought and tested a pair and, frankly, we didn’t love them. While they felt well-insulated and relatively comfortable, there are no ventilation zips and the materials seem cheap and poorly constructed. Additionally, the manufacturer claims that these pants are “water resistant,” NOT waterproof, so you’ll definitely end up damp if you spend too much time in the snow in these.
If they’re not great snow pants, why did we include them on our list? We’re huge advocates for trying things out, and snow sports have a HUGE financial barrier to entry. In some cases, not having to buy $100+ pants for a few days a year on the slopes can make the difference between planning a ski trip or not. For complete beginners wanting to try out snow sports without shelling out too much cash upfront, these pants are a suitable budget option. They’re not the greatest women’s snowboarding pants, but they’ll get the job done and if you find you really enjoy skiing or snowboarding, you can invest in a better pair later.
CHECK REVIEWS & PRICES FOR ARCTIX SNOW PANTS:
Best Women’s Snowboarding Pants: Side-By-Side Comparison
|Patagonia Powder Bowl||$$|
|Burton Gloria Gore-Tex||$$|
|Flylow Foxy Bib||$$$|
|The North Face Freedom||$|
|Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bib||$$$|
|Volcom Aston Gore-Tex 2L||$$|
|Dakine Remington Gore-Tex 2L||$$|
|Norrona Lofoten Gore-Tex Pro||$$|
|Arc’teryx Sentinel AR||$$$|
|Arctix Insulated Snow Pants & Bibs||$|
Choosing the Best Women’s Ski Pants For You
If there’s anything you should take away from this guide, it’s that there is no “one size fits all” option for everyone. While we’ve listed our recommendations some of the best women’s ski pants on the market here, some will work better for you than others depending on your circumstances, activities, personal preferences, and body type.
With that said, it’s important to order from reputable websites that enable returns, so you can try on your pick(s) before fully committing to them. For making any big gear purchases, we love REI and Backcountry – both have generous return policies and offer great seasonal sales where you can get many of these items at a discount.
Only you can decide which one of these is the best pair of ski pants for you, so make sure what you go with fits you well, is comfortable and stylish, and keeps you warm and dry.