To find the best ones, we tested 20 top-rated umbrellas across three price points and waited for nimbostratus clouds to form so we could evaluate each umbrella on rain protection, portability, wind resistance, style, comfort, and ease of opening and closing. Was it a long, drawn-out process? Yes. Was it worth the water-logged socks? Absolutely.
Whether you’re in the market for a stick umbrella or something more compact, we discovered that the best umbrellas come with trade-offs. If you’re searching for something packable that you can stash in your bag, you’re gonna have to sacrifice some coverage. And if you never want to deal with a rogue umbrella clapping back in your face amid blustery winds, it’s worth considering going for the splurge.
Before you read on, we should note that we did not focus on golf brollies, which include umbrellas that have a straight 60-inch canopy diameter or more. Why? Well, we’ve been poked in the eye by oblivious golf umbrella toters on the street too many times; and beyond being cumbersome, golf umbrellas are too heavy and large for practical everyday use. Simply put? Golf umbrellas are for golf, period.
We still think you’ll dig our picks below. At the very least, a great umbrella is small enough to carry comfortably when not in use, but large enough to keep you dry when the rain hits. After almost a full year of putting umbrellas through light drizzles and rainstorms, here’s how our quest to find the best umbrella unfolded.