The 5 Best Men's Ski & Snowboard BibsPublished on 07/12/2023 · 8 min readGear up for the slopes with our expert guide to the best men's ski & snowboard bibs. Stay dry, warm, and stylish with these top recommendations!
Photo by Yanick
Well, well, well, if it isn't another brave soul ready to slide down a mountain in the freezing cold, all in the name of fun. If you're reading this article, you're probably on the hunt for the best ski and snowboard bibs. Or perhaps you're just a masochist who enjoys reading gear reviews. Either way, you've come to the right place. I'm your friendly neighborhood Ski Expert, and I’ve spent an unhealthy amount of time strapping planks to my feet and hurling myself down snowy slopes.
When it comes to ski and snowboard bibs, you may be thinking, "Aren't those the things that toddlers wear?" Well, you wouldn't be entirely wrong. All joking aside, bibs are a godsend on the slopes. But they aren’t all created equal. Let's dive in and find the perfect pair for you. Or at least a pair that won't make you look like you've borrowed gear from a 1980s ski movie reject.
What are Ski & Snowboard Bibs?
Ski and snowboard bibs, often simply referred to as bibs, are a special kind of outerwear designed for snow sports. If the word 'bib' makes you think of drooling babies or a midwestern farmer's overalls, you're not entirely off the mark. But instead of catching strained peas or being paired with a plaid shirt, these bibs are crafted to handle snow, sleet, and the occasional wipeout on the slopes.
So, what exactly are bibs? Think of them as snow pants on steroids. They cover your legs like regular snow pants but go the extra mile (or, more accurately, the extra few inches) by extending past your waist, usually to your chest, and fastening with straps over your shoulders. This dungaree-style design is what distinguishes bibs from your run-of-the-mill snow pants.
They're not just about coverage. Bibs are a masterclass in functionality. They're designed with a range of features to make your time on the mountain more enjoyable. This typically includes waterproof yet breathable fabrics, insulation for warmth, vents for temperature regulation, and a bunch of pockets for stashing personal items — from your lift pass to your emergency Snickers bar.
Crucially, the design of bibs provides several significant advantages. First, they do an exceptional job of keeping snow from getting inside your gear, a godsend when you take a spill or are skiing in deep powder. Second, they offer improved freedom of movement, as you don't need to worry about your pants slipping down or your jacket riding up. Lastly, they provide an extra layer of warmth around your core, which is always a plus in cold conditions.
In a nutshell, bibs are a blend of form, function, and fashion — a combination that's hard to beat when you're hurling yourself down a snow-covered mountain. They're not just for the bib-curious or the retro-inspired skier; they're a solid gear choice for anyone looking to stay warm, dry, and mobile on the slopes. Now that we've gotten the 'what' out of the way let's delve into which bibs you should invest in and what to look for in finding the right pair.
What to Look for in Ski & Snowboard Bibs
Picking out the perfect bib is about more than just finding one that matches your beanie. You'll want to consider several key features to ensure your chosen bib can stand up to your on-mountain exploits.
Ski and snowboard bibs need to be waterproof yet breathable. This usually means a material like Gore-Tex or a similar synthetic fabric. It's worth checking the waterproof rating (usually between 5,000 and 20,000mm) — the higher the number, the more waterproof the bib.
Are you always freezing, or do you heat up faster than pizza in a microwave? Some bibs come with built-in insulation for extra warmth, while others are shell-only, designed to provide protection from wind and water while letting you manage your own layers underneath.
3. Fit and Comfort
Ski and snowboard bibs come in all shapes and sizes. Some offer a relaxed fit with room for layering, while others have a slimmer, more tailored fit. Make sure to consider the fit around your boots and whether the bib has gaiters (those nifty internal cuffs that prevent snow from creeping up your legs).
Many bibs come with zipper vents, typically on the inner or outer thigh. These can be a lifesaver when you work up a sweat on a challenging run or during a spring skiing session.
Pockets are the unsung heroes of any bib. They provide a place to stash your essentials. Look for bibs with a good array of cargo pockets, including secure ones for valuables.
Look for features like reinforced seams and high-denier fabric (a measure of thickness and durability). After all, skiing and snowboarding can be rough on gear, and a cheaply made bib will fall apart faster than a snowman in the Sahara.
While function should be the priority, let's not completely dismiss style. Bibs come in a variety of colors and patterns. Whether you want to blend in or stand out, there's a bib out there that matches your aesthetic.
Top 5 Most Recommended Bibs
These are five of the bibs I recommend the most. They are some of the best products the ski industry has to offer and will not leave you disappointed.
Overview: The North Face is a brand synonymous with outdoor gear, and its Freedom bib does not disappoint. Designed with a durable DryVent shell, these bibs offer excellent waterproofing and breathability, ensuring you stay dry and comfortable on the slopes. Other key features include a multitude of pockets, adjustable suspenders, and side-entry zips.
Expert Take: The North Face's Freedom Bib is a solid, reliable option that will suit a variety of skiers and boarders. Their relaxed fit and robust construction ensure they'll withstand the harshest conditions while keeping you comfortable and unrestricted. These are a great pick if you're after a no-nonsense, high-performance bib that offers serious bang for your buck.
Overview: The Flylow Baker Bib Pants are purpose-built, blending style and substance in a package that's as comfortable in deep powder as it is in the park. These shell bibs are made from a three-layer Intuitive Fabric and offer top-tier waterproofing and breathability. Standout features include ample pockets, reinforced knees and cuffs, and large inner thigh vents.
Expert Take: If you're the kind of rider who values freedom of movement and isn't afraid of a little off-piste adventure, the Flylow Baker Bib Pants are for you. They're built to last and provide a versatile, lightweight, breathable shell that lets you layer according to conditions. Their solid construction and freeride-inspired design are ideal for those looking to push their limits on the mountain.
Overview: The Roan Bib offers a blend of practicality and relaxed style. These bibs are constructed with a V-science shell using REPREVE recycled fibers and non-fluorinated DWR, which reduces environmental impact.
Expert Take: The Roan Bibs are an excellent choice for riders who want reliable protection and a relaxed fit. They're comfortable, durable, and well-thought-out, with features like Zip-Tech and V-Science. Whether you're a park rat or a backcountry explorer, these bibs have you covered.
4. Burton Men's Reserve 2L Bib Pants
Overview: The Burton Reserve 2L Bib Pants offer a blend of practicality and relaxed style. These bibs are constructed with DRYRIDE 2-Layer fabric for weather resistance and feature fully taped seams to prevent moisture ingress. The design includes plenty of pockets and Test-I-Cool venting for temperature regulation.
Expert Take: Burton's Reserve 2L Bibs are an excellent choice for riders who want reliable protection and a relaxed fit. They're comfortable, durable, and well-thought-out, with features like the Test-I-Cool venting adding to their appeal. Whether you're a park rat or a backcountry explorer, these bibs have you covered.
Overview: The Quiksilver Utility Bib Pants are all about performance and comfort. These bibs use Quiksilver's 15K DryFlight technology for reliable waterproofing and warmth. Other features include mesh-lined venting, a handy jacket-to-pant attachment system, and adjustable straps for a customizable fit.
Expert Take: The Utility Bib Pants offer serious performance at a price that won't break the bank. They're versatile, comfortable, and packed with features that will make your day on the mountain a whole lot better.
Finding the Perfect Ski Bib for You
And there you have it — my top picks for ski and snowboard bibs to keep you warm, dry, and looking good on the slopes. Remember, the best bibs for you will stand up to the weather and also fit your body type, riding style, and personal aesthetic. So, don't be shy about trying on a few different styles and brands until you find your perfect match.
At the end of the day, choosing the right bibs is just one part of the puzzle of gear that makes your mountain adventures all the more enjoyable. The right gear can make the difference between a day filled with wipeouts and cold toes and a day of carving fresh lines in ultimate comfort.
But hey, I know that sorting through the myriad of options can feel like attempting a double black diamond when you're still navigating the bunny slope. That's where we come in. The team at Curated is here to help you navigate the blizzard of options. We have seen it all, tried it all, and are ready to help you find the best gear for your needs.
Whether you have questions about bibs, want advice on other gear, or just need someone to listen to your epic tales of shredding, I’m here for you. Chat with me or one of my fellow Winter Sports Experts here on Curated, and let us guide you toward your perfect mountain setup.