The North Face – ThermoBall Eco Hoodie


Review by Patsy Lourens

For its size and weight, you would be hard pushed to find another jacket that does a better job than the Eco Hoodie. It’s a synthetic jacket that feels and behaves like a down jacket – keeps you just as warm, and compresses really small. But, with the added advantage of keeping its warming properties even when it is wet. The ThermoBall Insulation reduces heat loss and increases warmth, even in the coldest temperatures. The cut and design is comfortable and slim, and the full zip comes all the way up, giving your neck good, warm protection. The hood is also snug and helmet compatible, and can be pulled on and off without releasing the zip, due to its elasticated hem – something I really liked! For its size and weight, the Eco Hoodie packs a lot of punch. Essentially it is a light to midweight jacket, but the quilted design, which holds the insulation into individual baffles and the ThermoBall technology, generates warmth far above its pay grade. And the fact that the jacket is designed to cover your bum, and you can seal it off by cinching the cord around your lower hips, adds to the insulation and cosiness.

The cuffs are elasticated, fitting nicely under a pair of gloves, and the hand-warming pockets are nice and big, offering good storage space, and snuggling your hands into when cold. The internal chest pocket is a winner – great for the storage of items with easy access.

The Eco Hoodie is the perfect jacket for hiking in the mountains, belaying at the crag and climbing in light alpine conditions. It’s streamlined, warm, water and wind resistant, offering a huge warmth to weight ratio. It gives you great protection in chilly conditions, and will work really well in colder, or more inclement conditions when coupled with a good outer shell. Of course it will also look really chic as an urban jacket in winter.

If you are looking for a high performance jacket, that can by squeezed into tight corners in your pack, hung off your harness and be confident that it will keep you warm and protect you against the elements, the Eco Hoodie scores very high. It even squishes into its own pocket to make a small cushion on those uncomfortable bivvies.

Fabric: Body – 100% Recycled Nylon
Insulation – 11 g/ft², ThermoBall™ Eco,
Avg Weight: 390 g
• 2×2 quilt pattern
• ThermoBall™ Eco insulation for warmth even when wet
• Fixed hood
• Reverse-coil centre front zip
• Packs into chest pocket
• Concealed, secure-zip hand pockets

RRP: R3 399
Available from:

What is ThermoBall?
ThermoBall™ is a revolution in synthetic insulation technology. Unlike traditional, continuous-filament synthetic insulations, the small, round synthetic fibre clusters closely to mimic down clusters, trapping heat within small air pockets to retain warmth.

Previous Black Diamond – Coefficient Fleece Hoody
Next The North Face – Glacier Pro Full-zip Fleece