Outdoor Research Helium II Jacket – Women’s

We’ve read the reviews across the web for the Outdoor Research Helium II Jacket – Women’s and summarize the results below:

Universal Ranking

PeakScore: 86 (out of 100)
User Rating: 4.3 stars 
Expert Rating: 4.3 stars

Number of Ratings Reviewed: 265

Pros & Cons

Reasons to buy:

User Reviews

  • This jacket is ridiculously lightweight.
  • Can cinch the hood down for adjustability and a tight fit.
  • Stores into own pocket for easy stowing.
  • Waist has a draw cord to cinch it tightly.
  • Wrists have elastic to tighten and maintain snug fit to the arms.
  • A no frills jacket that allows the weight to remain extremely low.
  • Multiple reports of chest size being true-to-size.

Expert Reviews

  • Features a cinch cord at the crown to keep your hood in the desired position.
  • The stiff visor on the hood shields from the elements.
  • The fabric is thin and breathable enough to allow perspiration to exit.
  • Features a protective flap on the inside of the zipper to keep your chin comfortable and prevent chaffing.
  • The weight of the jacket makes it ideal for backpacking and other light and fast trips.
  • The most compact and lightweight jacket in this space.
  • Zippered chest pocket for protected storage.
  • Carabiner loop for easy-clipping.
  • The seams on the body, hood, and arms are all fully taped, increasing waterproofing.
  • The jacket can be loose enough to fit a down jacket underneath.

Reasons NOT to buy:

User Reviews

  • No hand pockets.
  • No Velcro straps at the wrist for adjustabliity.
  • Multiple reports of the fit being short.
  • Reports of questionable waterproofing qualities.
  • Will need to size-up to be able to layer underneath.
  • Reports of the zipper breaking.
  • No pit zips for breathability.
  • The sleeves tend to run a bit short for some body types, so may need to size-up so the length is appropriate.

Expert Reviews

  • Not a jacket for serious rain or for keeping you warm on colder days.
  • Allows a full range of motion but rides up if you’re wearing it with a backpack or harness.
  • The material loses some rigidity over time.
  • The size of the main zipper on the front is a bit small.
  • 30-denier nylon rip-stop is not durable enough to withstand intense activities.


The Outdoor Research Helium II Jacket for women is so lightweight and compact that you can throw it in your pack and forget about it… until you need it. Then, the jacket provides no-frills protection from rain and wind.


Note: User and expert rankings were reviewed across the web, including here: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.