If you have a child that likes playing in the rain and the mud, you know that children's rainsuits are not all made the same. Over the years you may have seen the cute little Muddy Buddy rainsuits, and thought, what a great idea. Well, rainsuits have come a long ways. Some improvements include Oakiwear Dry Tyke and Trail rainsuits as well as Splashy rainsuits. Each has its own design and purpose.
Oakiwear Trail Rainsuit
Oakiwear has brought some amazing kid's outerwear products to the US market over the years. Like other companies though, Oakiwear is constantly changing and updating products balancing cost and quality. We are a big fans of Oakiwear products, but we want you to be aware of recent changes to one of their most popular products, the Oakiwear Trail Rainsuit. Oakiwear offered their incredibly popular one piece Dry Tyke rainsuit through 2014. The rainsuit was an instant hit, offering parents an amazing opportunity to keep their kiddos clean and dry from head to foot when outdoors in wet muddy conditions. The durable nylon outer layer, the well designed cuffs and hood, as well as the durable zipper set this rainsuit on a pedestel above the cheaper Muddy Buddy. The Dry Tyke line was a 2-layer nylon fabric with a PU (PolyUrethane) coating inside offering waterpoofing and breathability; seams were sealed with clear seam tape. In 2015, the rainsuit was discontinued. A redesigned Oakiwear rainsuit came in its place, the Trail rainsuit. The Original Trail rainsuit was a visually appealing high quality product. It was immediately recognizable by the quality ripstop nylon shell, and the soft gray tricot inner lining (image on left).
Original 3-Layer Trail Rainsuit on left and New 2-Layer Trail Rainsuit on right.
Original Oakiwear Trail Rainsuit features include:
- 3-layer high quality construction
- 240T pongee (tough ripstop nylon outer layer) with a transparent TPU membrane (middle waterproof layer)
- 30D tricot membrane that won’t wear off with washing (tough but soft weaved inner most layer)
- Tricot seam tape (gray matching the tricot inner lining)
- Ultra-tear resistant (ripstop nylon)
- Waterproof rating of 10,000mm (one of the highest waterproof ratings available for a youth rainwear product)
- Breathability rating of 3,000g/m2/24hrs
- Soft and flexible for comfort, tight weave for durability
- ½ elastic cuff, plus Velcro adjust on wrists for easy on and off
- Neoprene cuffs with Velcro adjust (allows leg to hang straight to accommodate growth)
- Toggle/elastic cording adjustable waist
- Reflective tape across chest and arms
- Elastic in sides of hood to provide a natural fit, cord free for safety
- Higher construction cost and thus higher retail price
In early 2017, the Oakiwear Trail rainsuit was redesigned due to some reports of seams leaking along the relatively stiff seam tape. We have not heard this concern from customers, but Oakiwear did receive some customer concerns and wanted to redesign the rainsuit again. The new Trail rainsuit product images look identical, but please note that rainsuit construction changed.
The New Oakiwear Trail rainsuit features include:
- 2-layer construction
- Nylon Taslon PU coated fabric (no longer ripstop, but still highly durable; we noticed it is slightly stiffer than the Original ripstop nylon; no inner soft tricot layer, the PU coated nylon surface is now the inner most layer)
- Waterproof rating of 8,000mm (light pressure; lesser rating than the original rainsuit)
- Breathability rating of 3,000mvp
- Fully taped seams (durable clear seam tape)
- Draw string cinch around waist
- Hood attached
- Reflective tape on arms and chest
- Adjustable neoprene ankle cuffs for excellent coverage around rubber rain boots
- Velcro straps on wrists and ankles for a customized fit
- Waterproof Zipper (actually water resistent; smaller teeth than the original Trail rainsuit)
- Lower construction cost and thus a lower retail price
So which Oakiwear Trail rainsuit is for you? We believe both rainsuits will offer great breathable waterproof solutions for your kids, but there are some trade-offs. We like the soft feel of the original Trail rainsuit, both outside and inside. The waterproof layer is protected by the tricot inner layer, and waterproofing generally remains stronger over time because of this tricot. The zipper on the original rainsuit was very tough and held up well to kids tugging on it, but it's not considered water resistent. The New Trail rainsuit seems to be a little less durable, but only time will tell. Without the inner tricot layer, the inside PU coating isn't soft. Body oils from bare skin can reduce breathability over time on 2-layer fabrics such as this.
Two bright spots with the New Trail suit are the highly durable seam tape and the water resistant zipper. We don't know yet how durable this zipper will be to kids tugging, but the idea that it keeps more water on the outside is a good thing. If you are interested in a toddler rainsuit, but want a little more affordable option, you may be interested in the new Splashy Rainsuit. From what we have seen, these new Splashy rainsuits are a bit more durable than the original Muddy Buddy's and should last longer.
Splashy One-Piece RainsuitSimilar to the Oakiwear Trail rainsuit, the Splashy is also a 2-layer Nylon with a PU waterproof lining. Splashy features include:
- Taped seams
The key differences between the Oakiwear Trail rainsuit and the Splashy rainsuit are in the zipper structure, the cuffs, and the price. The Splashy rainsuit has two lightweight zippers that are not as water resistant, and the cuffs are standard nylon with elastic inside. Additionally, there's no reflective features and no inner drawstring on the Splashy rainsuit. However, the price is better on the Splashy.
Overall, the Oakiwear New Trail rainsuit and the Splashy rainsuit are expected to perform similarly in wet conditions. The New Trail rainsuit construction is a little more durable, but if it's only used periodically, you may find the Splashy will work great for your needs. Have a great summer outdoors everyone!