H₂No® Performance Standard

H₂No® Performance Standard is Patagonia’s benchmark for waterproofness, breathability and durability.


The H₂No® Performance Standard is Patagonia’s benchmark for waterproofness, breathability and durability. Backed by our Ironclad Guarantee, the H₂No Performance Standard ensures the highest level of long-term waterproof performance.

When we began investigating breathable waterproof materials, we wanted to eliminate the common problems we saw in the industry with these types of fabrics—durability, delamination and a drop in overall performance. Our goal was waterproof protection at the highest level. To get there, we had to run a lot of tests.

In the fabric lab at Patagonia, we use highly controlled tests to simulate actual use of our garments. While the tests we create in the lab can’t perfectly mimic Mother Nature, they are extremely useful in helping us develop materials and then consistently compare their performance characteristics.

We test a fabric’s water repellency in two ways by simulating both light and prolonged rain. Waterproofness is tested by forcing water through the face of a fabric. We test breathability by measuring a fabric’s Moisture Vapor Transmission Rate (MVTR). And we test durability by subjecting fabrics to a “Killer Wash.” The Killer Wash is Patagonia’s wet flex and abrasion test that simulates years of use in drenching conditions. If a fabric passes our rigorous tests, it achieves H2No Performance Standard status.

Where We Are

All our H₂No fabrics use recycled inputs and endure rigorous field-testing in addition to lab testing.

We continue to use the H₂No Performance Standard because it’s the best measure for durability on the market. We have added new metrics that help us make sure our new products hold up to hydrolysis (a chemical reaction that occurs in hot and humid environments). These criteria were added because we noticed that certain polyurethane materials could degrade more quickly in these environments. We've extended the life of some of our newest H₂No products by addressing these concerns.

What's Next

We’re always looking for ways to improve our waterproof products. How can we build this highest level of performance products and create fabrics that don’t use fossil fuels and don’t negatively impact the environment? We continuously evaluate our standards to ensure they are high enough to satisfy the needs of our customers without being impossible to meet. And we ask ourselves what are the causes of degradation in our products and how can we keep our gear in play longer.