Stio Women’s CFS Jacket Review
If there is one thing that every outdoor lover needs in their quiver of gear, I would say it’s a light weight jacket to block the sun, wind, and elements from your skin when the clouds roll in, when it starts to drizzle, or when it gets downright gusty. I’ve owned and demo’d countless jackets during the last many years, everything from your standard windbreaker to typical fleece zip-ups and rain slickers. But, I can honestly say I have never owned anything as awesome as the incredibly versatile Women’s CFS Jacket by Stio. This sucker is both a hoodie and jacket, zips up high enough to block out the elements, and is one of the coolest fabrics I’ve felt. It’s also made for a women’s curves, which I have to say, is not something most jackets in this category offer. It’s incredibly flattering to wear, whether you’re layering-up or simply need to toss it on over a tank top when shit hits the fan.
Before I dive into details, let’s talk about Stio. Founded by Steve Sullivan, Stio hails from my favorite place on earth, Jackson, Wyoming. As you may or may not already know, Mr. Sullivan also founded Cloudveil, which he sold off years ago. After selling Cloudveil off to a private equity group, he wasn’t super stoked on where that brand was headed. Wanting to get back to producing high-quality durable mountain gear, he gave birth to Stio, which puts focus back on the mountain obsessed athlete and less so the general outdoor masses. With the goal of inspiring individuals with connections to the outdoors through beautiful, functional products, Stio’s vision is to create apparel that “you can live in – in both the epic and quieter moments of outdoor life”. Clearly, they’ve hit the mark and Stio has moved to the top of the “favorite brands list” among our team.
OK, so let’s get back to the Stio CFS Jacket. When I first opened the package, I was immediately stoked on the “evening blue” color, which is more of a purple than a blue. I love purple (obviously) and was pretty pumped with the green zipper details, a nice contrast to the jacket’s neutral colored grey zippers. But, life isn’t a fashion show and I was really interested to see how this jacket would fit, what the fabric was like, and where I could get the most use out of it.
Fit: I’m a pretty standard medium when it comes to clothing, usually wearing either a size 6-8 and I am about 5 foot 4 inches on a good day. The CFS Jacket that I tested was a medium and couldn’t have fit any better. According to the Stio site, the Women’s CFS Jacket is a “medium cut” which is roomier than their “trim cut”, but designed with feminine athletic performance and comfort in mind. The adjustable fixed hood is large and will go over a helmet with ease, and also has a custom Stio draw cord that can be used to cinch the hood down if needed. I also really love the wrist cuffs, which are snug, but not too tight. This is a great feature for climbing as the jacket stays exactly where it should while your moving around. Another thing I really love about how this jacket fits is that it has a zipper starting at the bottom of the jacket and runs up along the left side. With the zipper pulled closed, the jacket was perfectly fitted to hug my waste and allowed the jacket to move with me during my activities. This is a great feature for mountain biking, climbing, and even golfing because you don’t want to deal with material catching on things like trees or rocks, but you still like having the room when needed, such as pulling the jacket on and off, or for slipping it over a thicker layer, or even, in my case, consuming far too many post-ride nachos and beer. But I digress, let’s talk about the fabric…
Fabric: Aside from color, the soft feel of the CFS Jacket was the first thing that immediately caught my attention. It’s so soft! I really dislike when jackets are crinkly sounding and/or feeling. But, that’s far from the case with this lightweight stretch anorak. Made from extremely durable materials, Stio decided to use Sphero HO Stretch Poplin fabric when designing the CFS Jacket. Sphero HO is a plainweave poplin with a mix of polyester and high spandex, which makes this both stretchable for comfort, but maintains it’s shape and durability. What more? It dries very quickly and is even coated with a WR finish. That makes it pretty close to perfect in my book. My only desire would be for a completely waterproof CFS Jacket. That said, if it’s pouring out, you may want to grab something more waterproof, but the WR finish should do the trick in most daily outdoor situations.
Technical Features: The Stio CFS Women’s Jacket can handle pretty much all outdoor activities and is full of awesome technical features, making it both durable and useful for autumn hiking, spring skiing, twilight golfing, and devouring misty morning singletrack. But even cooler (literally), is that it has a UPF rating of 50+ and is exceptionally breathable. That makes it perfect to wear during bluebird days when the sun is blazing. You can wear this, protect your skin, and not die from overheating. It also features an adjustable hood, draining mesh pockets, a custom Stio gripper hem (which is the best for keeping the jacket from rising up when lifting your hands!), and YKK reverse coil semi-locking zippers at the center front and hand pockets. What more, it’s less than 10oz and squishes into most small packs (yes, stuff-ability is très important!).
If you’re looking for a perfect “must-have” piece of outer wear for your adventurous pursuits, it’s pretty hard to go wrong with the Stio CFS Women’s Jacket. It really does fit great, has a very soft-touch and pleasing to feel fabric, and much more importantly, stands up to the outdoors. With summer coming to an end, I am super stoked to have this for the approaching fall season to keep me dry and active while exploring Utah’s incredible hiking trails. As mentioned, this isn’t completely waterproof, so you may want to try something else if you’re planning to play in the rain all day. But, for the everyday outdoor adventurer, this gets the job done! Oh, did I mention they also have a men’s version? Yeah, check out the Stio Men’s CFS Jacket for the handsome devil in your life.
*Disclaimer: Stio provided the author with the CFS Jacket as a sample product (at no cost) for testing purposes.
Buy the Stio Women’s CFS Jacket from Stio.com
Fall weather can bring rain, wet snow or bluebird days. Be ready for whatever Mother Nature throws at you with this lightweight stretch anorak. The perfect layer for crisp fall hikes, trail runs or late summer fishing excursions, this lightweight layer boasts a UPF rating of 50+ and exceptional breathability. Features an adjustable hood, draining mesh pockets, custom Stio® gripper hem, and a unique back zipper for easy on and off.
- Sphero™ HO Stretch Poplin, 89% Polyester 11% Spandex, 75 denier, 152 g/m2 with WR finish
- Classic anorak silhouette
- YKK® Reverse coil semi-locking zipper at center front and hand pockets
- Custom cording zipper pullers ease zipper use
- Mesh pocket bags ventilate and dry quickly
- YKK® Reverse coil semi-locking zipper at back body for easy on and off
- Adjustable fixed hood with custom Stio® drawcord with logo silicone tip
- Custom Stio® gripper elastic at back body to keep hem in place
- Kiss cut heat transfer Stio® and Pinecone logos
- UPF 50+ provides excellent sun protection
- Center back length 27”, size M
- Weight: 9.5 oz.
- Regular Fit – Our medium cut. Roomier than Trim but designed with feminine athletic performance and comfort in mind.