The Helly Hansen Skagen Offshore Jacket is a full-on traditional full length offshore jacket, which is made of heavier two-layer fabrics, plus a separate quick drying lining made mostly of a lightweight mesh
The Helly Hansen Skagen Offshore Jacket is part of the Norwegian company’s mid-level ‘Performance’ range and is competitively priced. Yet it shares ergonomics and features with the brand’s top specification Ægir collection that sells for two or three times the price.
The high fleece lined collar includes an effective storm flap with fleece fabric under the chin that maximises comfort and minimises chafe.
There’s also a two-way main zip, with Velcro fastened storm flap, plus plenty of reinforcement in high wear areas around the elbows and lower back.
Despite the obvious bulk of the Helly Hansen Skagen Offshore Jacket, articulated arms and shoulders facilitate ease of movement.
The high visibility hood proved effective and for night sailing there are six strips of retro-reflective tape. This is a feature that’s all too often lacking in other kit that’s described as being suitable for offshore use.
In addition to two useful cargo pockets, there are chest level hand-warmer pockets with fleece linings, while double cuffs help ensure sleeves stay dry.
Detailing includes a big and obvious hanging loop. This may sound like a small point, but can make a big difference when coming off watch in the early hours of the morning on a boat that’s bouncing around in a big sea.
On a late autumn day in the English Channel, with gusts the wrong side of 30 knots, this jacket was very cosy to wear. And the extent to which it eliminates wind chill is impressive at the price.
The fabrics average around 50 per cent recycled content, including some from marine rubbish such as discarded commercial fishing gear that would otherwise litter the oceans.
Another important factor is the durable waterproof coating that’s made without the use of Perfluorocarbons (PFCs). These have long been used to waterproof fabrics but environmental and health concerns mean manufacturers are developing other solutions.
Helly Hansen’s Skagen Offshore Jacket is available in both men’s and women’s sizing.
It’s an excellent option for anyone who needs a full specification, full length offshore jacket, without paying the steep premium for one made of lighter and more streamlined three layer fabrics.
Want to see what else is available? Take a look at our full guide to the best offshore jackets