Best Waterproofing Spray For Outdoor Fabric – Top Rated Fabric Protectors

If you are an outdoor person, investing in an outdoor fabric waterproofing spray could be money well spent. The best waterproofing spray for outdoor fabric is extremely handy for protecting your gear against elements in the outdoors or replenishing old items which require better protection.

The spray functions by adding an extra layer of protection to the surface of your clothing and gear – allowing them to repel water. However, the best waterproofing spray for outdoor fabric will maintain breathability and not lock condensation in.

The best part about waterproofing sprays is that they work for all your outdoor gear fabrics – whether it’s on your boots, clothes, or backpacks. Below, we share an in-depth review of our top picks for the best waterproofing spray for outdoor fabrics to help you find the right protector for your gear.

Nikwax TX Direct Spray-on Waterproofer 500ml

Nikwax TX Direct Spray-on Waterproofer 500mlThe Nikwax TX Direct Spray-On is formulated to add water repellency and diverse breathability to outdoor gear. The spray-on waterproofing agent is specially designed to work on wet weather clothing with wicking absorbent liners. Ideal wet weather clothing includes laminated, coated, microfiber, and breathable waterproof fabrics. 

The Nikwax TX Direct Spray is recommended for Gore-Tex, SympaTex, and eVent fabrics. What makes the spray truly stand out is that it provides a water repellent finish while maintaining the fabric’s breathability for long-lasting durability and performance.

 

Pros
  • Recommended for Gore-Tex, SympaTex, and eVent fabrics
  • Adds durable water repellent for long-lasting protection from water
  • Enhances the breathability and maintains internal wicking properties
  • The spray is affordably priced
  • Water-based, biodegradable, and non-flammable formula
Cons
  • It leaves a slight vinegar-like smell on the fabric, which can be a turn off for some people
  • The water-like consistency makes it a little difficult to apply

Nikwax Softshell Proof 300ml

Nikwax Softshell Proof 300ml​If you have softshell clothing, the Nikwax Softshell Proof waterproofing spray is an ideal option. The water-based waterproofing spray is recommended for all softshells, including Gore Windstopper, Windbloc, Schoeller, and Polartec. The waterproofing spray is formulated as a wash-in waterproofing agent.

When added to your clothing, it adds water-repellency and revives the breathability of the fabric. Its water-based, biodegradable, and non-flammable formula allows you to use it on a fabric multiple times without affecting the appearance. In addition, the softshells waterproofing spray features a spray-on method for easy and convenient application.

 

Pros
  • The spray is specially formulated for softshell fabric
  • Easy spray-on application method
  • No heat activation is required
  • The spray doesn’t affect the appearance of your gear
  • It maintains breathability and moisture-wicking performance
Cons
  • The spray isn’t long-lasting – it typically wears off in weeks
  • Not ideal for hardshell clothing and gear

 

Granger's Performance Repel Plus 275ml

Granger's Performance Repel Plus 275ml​For tactical outdoor enthusiasts, the Granger’s Performance Repel Plus Waterproofing Spray is a good investment. The spray is formulated to restore water repellency in technical fabrics. The waterproofing treatment follows a spray-on method to make it easy and convenient to apply.

You can even apply it to your gear on the go. The Bluesign approved waterproofing spray adds durable water repellency whilst maximising breathability.  Plus, the waterproofing spray is effective without heat activation.

 

Pros
  • Adds durable water repellency while maximising breathability
  • Designed for all technical waterproof apparel
  • Bluesign approved formula – for environmental and health safety
  • Functions without heart activation
  • The Convenient and secure spray bottle allows you to apply the spray on the go
Cons
  • Wears out easily
  • You need to use a large amount for the spray to be effective

 

Grangers Fabsil Waterproofer 600ml

Grangers Fabsil Waterproofer 600ml​The Grangers Fabsil Waterproofer is formulated for individuals who want a universal protector. The universal protector works for sheepskin, suede, leather, and fabrics. You can use the Waterproofer on any gear ranging from tents, folding campers, and clothing to footwear.

Integrating a special formula, the waterproofing spray protects against water and stains. The formula also works by mimicking the original water repellent finish on any kind of outdoor gear. Its high-performance silicone-based waterproofing treatment creates a perfect seal for long-lasting protection.

 

Pros
  • Suitable for any type of gear, including large equipment such as tents, garden furniture, and protective covers
  • Mimics original water repellent finish of any fabrics
  • Works on any type of material, including leather, suede, sheepskin, and fabric
  • Affordably priced
  • Easy to use aerosol bottle and silicone-based treatment
Cons
  • Not very long-lasting
  • Doesn’t properly waterproof some gear

 

Grangers Fabsil and Gear Care Kit

Grangers Fabsil and Gear Care Kit​The Grangers Fabsil and Gear Care Kit is a perfect all-in-one solution for your next camping, backpacking, or hiking trip. The tent care kit features a sponge, cleaner, and universal protector. With the full kit, you can clean and provide long-lasting repellency to your equipment.

Furthermore, the formula offers full UV protection – preventing your gear and clothing from becoming discoloured.  The kit is designed to work for all types of tents, gear, and equipment. The cleaner and protector can cover up to 9 square meters of lightweight nylon materials and up to 3.5 square meters of lightweight canvas materials.

Pros
  • Silicone-based treatment for tents, boat covers, parasols, garden chairs, umbrellas, and clothing
  • The kit contains a cleaner, universal protector, and sponge
  • Offers high levels of water repellency and UV protection
  • The filling can cover over 9 square meters of material
  • Removes dirt, dust, and stains
  • Replicates the original water repellency of a fabric
Cons
  • The cleaner is not as powerful – it only removes surface dirt
  • The cleaner comes in a 500ml bottle, whilst the protector comes in a 1-litre bottle

 

Nikwax Down Proof 300ml

Nikwax Down Proof 300ml​Using the Nikwax Down Proof 300ml helps enhance wet-weather performance for your clothing, footwear, and other gear. The waterproofing agent is formulated to add and renew water repellency whilst reviving breathability and moisture-wicking performance.

Furthermore, the formula helps to maintain insulation without damaging the structure of the down. Additionally, it also minimises weight gain on your fabrics. Thanks to its effective performance, the waterproofing agent helps prolong the life of your material and gear. Plus, the proofing agent is straightforward to apply and use. In fact, you can even use it in a washer.

Pros
  • Formulated to work on feather and down fabric
  • Water-Based and environmentally friendly formula
  • Adds and renews water repellency while reviving breathability
  • Can be used in a washer
  • Maintains the insulation and minimises weight gain on your fabric
Cons
  • May not work effectively for materials such as leather
  • Not a very strong waterproofing formula for some down garments

 

Buying Guide – How to Choose the Best Waterproofing Spray For Outdoor Fabric

Even the highest quality waterproof clothing and gear require reproofing. Using gear that has lost its water repellency in the outdoors leaves you vulnerable. In fact, fabric that has lost its water repellent properties will quickly lose its durability.

This is why it’s important to invest in a waterproofing agent to help preserve your clothing and gear. In the buying guide below, we’ve shared key features for choosing the best waterproofing spray for outdoor fabrics. In addition, the guide walks you through selecting a spray formulated for your gear.

  • Ingredients

Waterproofing sprays integrate a choice of two ingredients. They comprise silicone-based or water-based sprays.  Due to the lighter and somewhat runny consistency, water-based sprays function best for more lightweight gear such as clothing and shoes. On the other hand, silicone-based sprays work best for heavy-duty fabrics such as tents or furniture covers. 

Nevertheless, all waterproofing spray formulas feature some kind of chemical. Thus, contact with the spray can cause skin irritation. You may also inhale the sharp odour during application– although it’s not harmful.

Therefore, you should make it a point to apply the spray to your gear in a well-ventilated area. If you have pets or small children, avoid having them in the room when applying the waterproofing spray. When done using the waterproofing spray, store it where your children or pets cannot access it.

  • Protection

The best outdoor fabric waterproofing spray is designed to add or renew the water repellency of a material. The functionality scope of the spray depends on its formula. Some spray work for a particular type of fabric, whilst others feature a universal solution. 

This means that they work for almost all fabrics – such as nylon, canvas, leather, and so on. Additionally, some waterproofing sprays work best for gear such as your clothes, footwear, and backpacks. Other waterproofing sprays are more heavy-duty – allowing you to use them on your tents, equipment, and furniture covers.

Furthermore, you may find waterproofing spray formulated with extra features. For example, you may find waterproofing agents such as scotch guards that protect your gear against sun damage, thanks to the UV protection it offers. However, as their scope of use increases, so does their price.

  • Performance

There’s no doubt that the best waterproofing spray for outdoor fabrics delivers superior water repellency and protects the longevity of your fabrics. These proofing agents are designed and advertised to leave fabrics as they are.

However, in reality, this is further from the truth. This is because even the best waterproofing spray for outdoor fabrics will cause some colour changes on your fabric. The good news is that you shouldn’t occupy your mind too much with this. You will only notice slight colour changes during the coating and curing process.

After the process, you will notice your fabric colour returning to its original shine. Additionally, to ensure the colour change isn’t permanent, make sure you evenly apply the waterproofing spray across the entire fabric with the same thickness.

Another factor you will notice in some waterproofing sprays is the odour. This is a more common occurrence in silicone-based waterproofing sprays rather than water-based ones. Nonetheless, after the proofing agent dries out, the smell tends to disappear.

  • Breathability

Good quality waterproof gear designed should offer good breathability and moisture-wicking properties. So, when applying the spray, you don’t want it to affect breathability. The best option should provide adequate water repellency. Yet, it shouldn’t seal the fabric too much so that it compromises its breathability.

The spray produces liquid formula. So, compromising breathability will ultimately affect the durability of the fabric. This is because, with the lack of breathability, the waterproofing agent creates a humid environment. A moist environment acts as a perfect breeding ground for bacteria.

  • Application

You want to ensure you apply the waterproofing agent correctly as this affects its effectiveness. Waterproofing spray comes in either a spray bottle or a can, allowing you to apply it directly. A spray can is much easier to handle as it applies the agent evenly on the entire surface.

Nonetheless, the choice of either a bottle or can entirely depend on you. You want to keep the spray can or bottle at least 15 to 20 cm away from the fabric’s surface during application. Additionally, you want to apply a single layer of mist across the entire surface. You may, however, find spray options that require you to apply more than one layer.

  • Drying

When applied to your clothing or gear, waterproofing spray doesn’t dry instantaneously. Depending on the formula, different sprays have varying drying times. Thus, you want to consider the time when picking the right option to invest in as well.

Some of the best waterproofing sprays take about an hour or two to dry. However, others take as long as 48 hours. On average, waterproofing sprays designed for light use on clothing, shoes, and similar gear takes about 2 to 8 hours to dry up.

  • Washability

Waterproofing sprays are applied to clothing and gear to enhance their water repellency. Hence, it would be impractical to have a waterproofing formula that isn’t washable. But, some silicone-based coatings can easily be washed off by detergents. Therefore, you want to avoid these types of sprays. Alternatively, you can reapply the spray after every wash with a detergent.

  • Duration

The frequency at which you apply waterproofing spray depends on their composition and how often you use them. Generally, you should apply waterproofing spray at least once or twice weekly on light items such as clothing, shoes, bags, and tents during the wet season.

You don’t have to apply the spray as frequently on furniture covers since you won’t be taking them out to extreme weather. Likewise, during the dry seasons, you don’t have to apply the waterproofing spray as frequently. You only want to apply it from time to time to protect your gear from stains.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What Are The Benefits Of Using A Waterproof Spray For Outdoor Fabrics?

Waterproofing sprays come with numerous advantages. Amongst them include;

  1. Offering protection from the rain
  2. Protection from stains
  3. Cost-effective – you don’t have to invest in new items such as clothing or shoes
  4. Enhances the longevity of your clothing and gear
  5. Protects you against moisture and sweat build-up
  6. Improves the comfort your clothes or shoes offer

2. How Do I Apply Waterproofing Spray?

Different waterproofing sprays have varying application methods. However, the principles are pretty much the same. For most waterproofing sprays, follow the steps below:

  1. Position the spray about 15 to 20cm away from the garment or gear and spray it evenly across the outer surface
  2. Hang dry the garment or gear as soon as you are done applying the Waterproofer
  3. Observe the entire fabric to make sure the entire outer surface is evenly coated
  4. Wipe off any excessive waterproofing spray oozing from the fabric using a damp cloth and let it continue to dry naturally

3. Can Waterproofing Spray Damage My Fabric?

Yes, if used incorrectly, waterproofing spray will damage your fabrics. Typically, poor quality waterproofing sprays can damage the fabric and its appearance. But, even with good quality water spray, the incorrect application will lead to discolouration.

4. Will My Waterproof Spray Expire?

Yes, a waterproof spray does have an expiry date depending on the formula. Over time, some of the active ingredients in the formula may lose their strength and properties. Therefore, you should always check the expiry date on the packaging to ensure the waterproofing spray is effective.

Conclusion

Waterproofing your gear goes a long way to keeping you comfortable and even boosting your performance, whether you are out camping or hitting the nearby hiking trails. With a layer of fresh waterproofing agent on your gear, you can stay warm throughout your outdoor expedition. In addition to the waterproof protection, waterproofing sprays offer a cost-cutting solution.

This is because they help to prolong the longevity of your gear. So, to keep yourself well protected every time you are outdoors, invest in a proofing spray. Our recommended picks for the best waterproofing spray for outdoor fabric is an excellent place to begin your search.

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