In recent years, Canada Goose was transitioned from a smaller brand focusing on functional wear to a very stylish brand that became extremely popular. As a consequence, their flagship jacket, which we are about to review, costs around $1000 and so we want to know, is it really worth that money? How does it compare to other well-known jackets such as Moncler?
Canada Goose History
Just like many others, it started out as a very functional brand for outdoor gear. It was founded by the Polish immigrant Sam Tick in 1957. Interestingly, it was not named Canada Goose but Metro Sportswear. They started producing down jackets in the 1970s but they were primarily focused on jackets for rangers and the police.
By 1985, they decided to produce jackets under their own brand which at the time was called Snow Goose, not Canada goose. At the time, they also manufactured private label jackets for companies like LL Bean or Eddie Bauer. They were growing slowly and in the early 90s, they expanded to Europe.
Unfortunately, someone else was already using the term Snow Goose so they switched their branding to Canada goose. Even though they were forced to change the name, it proved beneficial because of the positive association with really cold Canadian climate. In 2001, Dani Reiss took over as a CEO from his father at Canada Goose. At the time, a lot of companies were still shifting production overseas but he said: “No, we’re gonna produce in Canada”.
At the same time, he began pushing the products internationally and especially in Europe, people didn’t question the high price tag because they associated it was a luxury high-end product. Ironically, the brand Canada Goose flew pretty much under the radar up until about 2010. The brand undertook an aggressive product placement strategy using celebrities such as Daniel Craig. Of course, that was also reflected in their revenue. The company went from 18 million a year to a multiple of that, selling a 70% share for a quarter billion dollars in 2013.
By then, Canada Goose had become so popular that model Kate Upton wore a jacket on a Sports Illustrated cover swimsuit edition. Today, Canada Goose continues to focus on quality and domestic Canadian production. The Canada Goose product lineup has steadily increased and now includes lighter weight jackets as well as pants and other outerwear things. Of course, with the popularity of the Canada Goose brand, also a lot of counterfeit jackets pop in the market just like with Moncler. They also use an authentication system making sure that if you pay top dollar, you get the real thing and not a knockoff. Just like Moncler, Canada Goose is now a status symbol and so we really want to look into it whether the jacket is actually functional and worth your money.
What I’m Wearing…
So I’m wearing the Canada Goose Emory slim fit parka jacket with a coyote trim. In terms of colors, they are less flashy than Moncler and I chose an olive green.
Genuine Coyote Fur Trim
The first thing that distinguishes the jacket visually from the Moncler one is the genuine coyote fur trim. Canada Goose claims that it has a functional purpose in the sense that it creates more turbulent air around your face thus preventing frostbite more than a jacket without the trim. The company claims that the coyote fur is ethically sourced and trapped in Canada. Now, trapping is always difficult and painful for the animals so I know a few people who would question that claim.
The next thing that stands out is the material. It is matte and it’s a lot thicker than the Moncler jacket. Also and I find it quite unpleasant, it makes a lot of noise when you walk! The material is made out of 85% polyester and 15% cotton, it’s water-resistant, durable, and hard-wearing, as well as wind resistant. It’s not quite gore-tex membrane material but it’s definitely thick and much stiffer than what you get from Moncler. That being said, nylon is typically a higher-end artificial fiber and polyester. In my opinion, the stiffness of the fabric is directly felt to the entire jacket and other people would have compared the jacket to wearing that x-ray vest at the dentist’s office.
The ribbed cuffs are quite useful because they prevent cold air from coming in.
Pockets & Zippers
The jacket features an abundance of pockets, has lots of Zamak metal snap buttons that are plastic covered. Of course, all branded. The zipper is an injection molded plastic from YKK, ironically, it’s the same one used at the Moncler Jackets. For some reason though, I find it a lot harder to close. So for a jacket that retails for $1,000, I would’ve expected a higher-end zipper made out of machined metal and not just an average YKK product that I can get on Amazon for about 6 bucks.
Duck Down Feathers
Even though the brand is called Canada Goose, the actual filling of this jacket consists of duck down feathers which are inferior to goose down. So what’s the difference between goose down and duck down? Well, goose down comes in larger clusters, usually traps the air better which means you get a higher fill power and more insulating with a goose than duck. Because this jacket uses duck down, it’s not surprising that there’s a fill power of 625.
Again, low-end fill power would be 300, high-end fill power would be 900. So this jacket sits right somewhere in the middle. It consists of 80% down and 20% feathers which is not as good as the Moncler jacket which is 90% goose down and 10% feathers but both are not as good as some other jackets on the market. For example, the Swedish brand Jöttnar produces a jacket with 93% down and a fill power of 850, and British manufacturer Peter Hutchinson Desings (PHD) boasts jackets with 1000 fill power.
Thermal Experience Index
Unlike Moncler, Canada goose has warmth grading method which is called TEI or thermal experience index. That will help you to find a jacket that is best suited for your needs and your environment and the level of coolness you experience.
Is The Canada Goose Emory Jacket Worth It?
- The construction of the Canada Goose jacket seems more rugged and sturdy. Frankly, I don’t wear these jackets enough to really figure out the difference because when I go skiing, I layer up because that allows me to get exactly the right heat level for the temperature outside. This arctic tech fabric is definitely more sturdy than the nylon one from Moncler and I think over time, it will wear better.
- Unlike Moncler, Canada Goose comes with a lifetime warranty, however, that sounds better than it actually is because it’s just a warranty against manufacturing defects.
- It’s definitely a quality parka, it has a real fur trim, it has a fill power of 625 and it keeps you warm and is well thought through.
- The sound it creates and the noise it makes when I walk, I find it simply unpleasant.
- It’s heavier than the Moncler jacket which is not so great in my opinion but more importantly it’s simply too stiff for my tastes.
- Also keep in mind that you can find warmer jackets with a higher fill power for about half the price of this Canada Goose.
- Overall it’s pretty expensive even though it’s twenty dollars less expensive than the Moncler jacket but at the end of the day, I don’t find any of those jackets really stylish because this one is very shiny and puffy, this one is less puffy but it’s so stiff and just makes me feel like a very unstylish person. So if you really care for style go with a heavy overcoat that will keep you just as warm in the city at the same time you will look a lot better.
In terms of value, one could argue that Canada Goose is better because it has more details it’s more functional and will likely wear longer than the Moncler jacket. That being said, the increased weight, the stiffness of the fabric in combination with a pain in the ass zipper, I don’t think $995 is a good value for this parka.