Found: The Perfect Sporty Puffer

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I’ve been on the hunt for a short, sporty puffer to wear with my most casual outfits. I’ve tried a few, but none were quite what I wanted, so they’ve all gone back.

Then I was at the mall last weekend sourcing products for today’s post with Nordstrom, and I spotted this Zella ultralight reversible puffer jacket with removable hood. *cue angels singing*

It’s exactly what I’d been looking for, and that’s even before I realized it’s reversible — an added bonus! I love the option to wear it on the olive side, rather than always on the black.

This channel-quilted puffer jacket is made from recycled materials, and it’s slightly longer in the back than the front.

The black side features a chest flap pocket and dual side-seam welt pockets that are positioned perfectly for keeping your hands warm… or achieving the perfect nonchalant hands-in-pocket fashion blogger stance, ha!

Here’s how it looks from the back. It has just enough shaping through the body to be flattering and not too puffery, but it’s still very much on trend.

You can see the contrasting olive green lining, or the hood is also removable if you don’t care for the extra bulk.

And here’s how it looks snapped in the front. It does fasten completely in my usual size small, but it’s snug. If I want to wear this over a bulky sweater, I would need to size up to a medium.

I actually wish I’d tried the medium; I think it would still fit in a flattering way, and it would probably allow me a bit more versatility as far as what I wear underneath. I may go back and see if I can make the swap.

It works fine over lightweight tops, though, like the one I’m wearing here. This is Zella’s Liana long sleeve performance t-shirt, and I’m also wearing their Restore soft pocket joggers.

This performance tee is perfect for outdoor running/walking in mild spring or fall weather, and it also makes a great base layer for colder temps underneath a zip-up jacket or vest.

It’s made of the softest moisture-wicking material for supreme comfort and breathability, and it comes in tons of colors. I sized up to a medium in this tee.

And these Restore soft pocket joggers are similar to the Zella Live-In pocket joggers, which I’ve talked a lot about, but they’re an inch and a half shorter with a slightly wider leg opening.

Either length works fine for me, but if you’re petite, you may like this pair better.

As you may have noticed, the olive side of the jacket is not quilted, but has a smooth finish. It also has two flap pockets on the front.

The olive color is super versatile, and having the option to wear it on either side gives you even more bang for your buck, even though the jacket is already very affordably priced at just under $100.

It also comes in a really pretty grey/blue combo. I almost got that one, but I decided this black/olive combo would work better with my wardrobe. If you have enough black in your closet, the grey one might be a good option!

With so many of my outings these days being just casual errands like the grocery store and doctor appointments, I’m finding myself gravitating more and more to stylish activewear looks like this one.

This sporty puffer jacket is the perfect topper for this type of outfit, and it will look just as good with jeans and sneakers.

Shop the Post:

Zella reversible puffer // Liana performance tee // Restore soft pocket joggers // On Cloud X training shoes // Longchamp Le Pliage tote

As always, when you shop at Nordstrom, you get their free shipping and free returns. And don’t forget about their BOPUS (Buy Online Pick Up in Store) and contactless curbside pickup options.

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photos: Alison Cornell

Join the Conversation

29 thoughts on “Found: The Perfect Sporty Puffer

  1. In your post the sleeve length looks okay but on the online module the appear short and flared. What is your opinion?

    1. I feel like it’s fine. There is no extra length there, but they don’t feel too short. I do think I’m going to go in and try the medium, though. It might be a better fit overall. In other words, if in doubt, I would recommend sizing up.

    2.  Linda, the models are usually 5’9” and so sleeves are short. They seem fine on JoLynne.

      I’m happy you found the perfect puffer JoLynne. It fills that gap in your jacket wardrobe. 

  2. Do you love those shoes?  A similar pair from that brand was coming in my trunk club box and I decided not to have them sent.  Then I started seeing them everywhere and am regretting not having them sent! 😄 Thoughts?

    1. I do love them! 🙂 They’re very comfortable, and they’re stylish enough to wear with athleisure outfits, but also practical enough to work out in. I wear them for both purposes. To be clear, I don’t run in them, but I do strength training in them. (They do have running shoes; these are the trainers.)

  3. This looks like a really nice jacket. How warm is it?  When I checked it out, I saw that they also have it in gray/sapphire.  I think I might like that even more!  If someone has enough black, that might be another option. 

    1. Yes, I should have mentioned that. I’ll add it. That was actually the one that caught our eye first. I was with Becca, and she pointed it out. She told me I needed a pop of color. 🙂 So funny to have teenagers with fashion advice – she is usually on point too! But I really wanted the black/olive. It just works better for my wardrobe. But yes, the grey/blue is really pretty in person! A great option.

  4. What a fun coat! I actually like the gray, which is interesting because I tend to go with dark colors, even in the summer. I have tons of jackets and coats though. Hmm. What can I get rid of? lol. I’m doing the “item in the closet, item out” thing these days, preparing to seriously downsize this year.

  5. I am so happy that you finally found the perfect puffer jacket that you have been searching for.  It does have a lot of very nice features.  I prefer extra room in my jackets to accommodate thicker tops.  I have just decided that I need to order the joggers you have on because I wear nice joggers more than I wear jeans, so that’s what I should spend my money on.  The cost per wear will be pennies.  Enjoy the sunshine!

  6. I almost wish I had a reason to buy this jacket! It’s so cute! It’s going to be 65 degrees here today. I’m not complaining, but I do love this jacket! 

  7. I love this top, but when I went to website , it’s $49 for the small that i need, plus all others.  Wonder what’s up. 

    1. It took me a minute to figure out what you meant. I see it, now. The shopping widget says the top is $24. It looks like the only color that is marked down is “black combo” which of course is mostly sold out. 😒

      I can’t control how the prices show in that shopping widget – I guess it shows the lowest possible price. I can set the widget to not show prices at all, but I can’t change them, unfortunately. Sorry about that!

  8. I say you’ve found a winner with this jacket!! Love the reversible option and those colors. I’m going to look into those joggers and shirt.. I’m tired of joggers that pill after awhile and these look like they are worth the price.. my price is a little higher on the Nordstrom Canadian site 😉. Love this whole look:) 

  9. I’m sure you’ve shared this with us before, but I’m looking for a longer (but above the knee) puffer that doesn’t make me look like the michelin man. Thanks, as always, for your great tips and advice!

  10. I am going to buy this jacket in the grey and blue. I wish the website showed the reverse colour better, thankfully you did so I know the look just not the colour when it’s a full coat.  How bright is it?  My question is because I am in Canada I shop Nordstrom.ca which I can’t get to through shopstyle and I want to buy in Canadian $ and no duties!  Is it possible to have shopstyle link to a Canadian location?  I would like to support you if possible. 

    1. Hey Catherine, I appreciate that! I don’t think so, but I have emailed my Shopstyle rep to ask.

      I would not call these colors bright – but the grey/blue is kind of light/bright, but in a good way. It’s very pretty.

    1. I use it mostly to carry things to and from my photo shoots, lol. I got it thinking I’d use it for travel, but then Covid. It’s a really nice carryall, but I don’t really use it as a purse.

  11. I’ve been looking for a silver or gray puffer to replace my old one, and I believe you’ve found it for me! This looks so cute on you, and not over-stuffed. I appreciate your modeling it, because I can tell that i need to size up.
    I love the blue contrast color on the gray jacket. Plus, it has a hood (which I wanted) and the hood is removable.
    I like that it’s polyester, and washable. I’ve had mixed experiences with down.

  12. I’ve been looking for the perfect casual puffer too. I want all black though. The olive color looks terrible on me and doesn’t go well with my wardrobe. I love my daughters Patagonia puffer because it’s not too thick, but hate to get same as her and  I prefer not having name of brand on my coat so bright. I might look at REI. I was tempted to order the black in the REI one you have the red in and use your link but so many reviews said the down gets all over their clothes every time. Does yours do that?  I need to get to a store to try on. I do love your Zella one. Glad you found what you were looking for. I’m so wanting to get to a store to shop. I already ordered the black live in joggers you posted before but I really like these too. Shorter would work for me. :). 

  13. I too have been looking for years for a cute, short puffer coat. When I read your post I knew I had to order this. I usually wear a medium but followed your advice and went up to a large. The coat arrived the next day and it is adorable. Had a chance to wear it this morning as it was 29 out and I felt great. Thanks Jo-Lynne for my cute new coat.

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