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Water Proofing Levels

Level 1 Water Proofing

Level 1 Water Proofing - Shower Proof

Product has been treated during manufacturing with an un-detectable water repellent treatment usually involving a silicone based washed-in or sprayed on treatment that helps to reduce the amount of rain absorbed into the garment.

This kind of treatment is applied to all sorts of garments from Hoodies to Jackets.  This kind of protection is ideal for light rain or where there might be some possibility of a shower or when the air is damp with fog or mist.

This treatment will ultimately wash out over time through washing with detergents.  Water repellency can be re-introduced quite successfully with wash in products that re-establishes the resistance to water penetration of which there are several on the market including NikWax ranges.


Level 2 Water Proofing

Level 2 Water Proofing - Fully Rain Resistant

Product has been treated with an un-detectable water resistant silicone treatment at manufacturing but is also a garment specifically designed for outdoor use in wet conditions.  The garment exterior is usually a Soft-shell or Hard Shell fabric face finish and usually a 2 or 3 layer construction thereby keeping the garment away from the skin.  Often classified as "breathable" garments, they often involve an integrated plasticised membrane that is usually impermeable to rain. 

Again when washed, the silicone treatment can often was out with the continuous use of detergents but can be re-generated using appropriate products to revitalise the fabric such as the products available from NikWax.


Level 3 Water Proofing

Level 3 Water Proofing - Full Storm Protection

Product is constructed using a 2 or 3 layer system with excellent external water repellent capabilities from the introduction of a silicone based treatment that offers reduced water penetration capabilities.  In addition, garment construction is usually a Hard Shell fabric finish offering excellent wind protection as well as rain resistance.  This level of garment quality is usually found in high end outdoor products and golf waterproofs.

This quality of protection is applied to garments where the use is guaranteed to be in very bad weather conditions and where exposure to severe rain or water exposure is assured such as out at sea.

Additionally, garments almost always have bonded seams and storm flap pockets meaning the seams are far less likely to allow water penetration.  Most importantly the very best garments of this nature usually have a GoreTex breathable membrane as well which offers the best water resistance available due to the unique trademarked properties of GoreTex.

Whilst the external shell is usually always treated with an un-detectable silicone treatment such as that supplied by NikWax which can wash out over time as with other rain resistant garments, the GoreTex properties will still allow the garment to maintain much of its waterproof characteristics and performance.



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