Marmot vs L.L. Bean: Which is Better?

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Marmot vs LL Bean outdoor gear comparison

Are you in the market for some new outdoor gear? Marmot and L.L. Bean are both household names when it comes to outdoor apparel and equipment.

Marmot, founded in the 1970s, is renowned for its technical gear, perfect for the avid hiker, climber, or outdoor adventurer. With a history of innovation and a product line tested by real-world conditions, Marmot offers high-quality materials and advanced insulation technologies.

On the other hand, L.L. Bean dates back to 1912 and is a staple for outdoor enthusiasts and casual adventurers alike. Known for its classic style and a wide range of products that blend performance with comfort, L.L. Bean prides itself on practical design.

In this article, we’ll compare these two brands to find out which is better and when! Let’s get started!


1. Marmot Outdoor Gear

History of the Brand

Marmot official website
Marmot official website

Marmot, an American brand born in the 1970s (1974), specializes in technical apparel and outdoor gear for activities such as hiking, climbing, camping, and other outdoor pursuits.

Founded by Eric Reynolds and Dave Huntly, two students from the University of California Santa Cruz, the Marmot Mountain Club was conceived during a school project in Alaska.

The duo initially developed the first technical products and, with the assistance of Tom Boyce, converted an old building into a retail store for outdoor clothing and accessories, giving rise to the Marmot Mountain Works brand.

Later, the brand gained recognition thanks to its Golden Mantle Parka being featured in a Clint Eastwood movie. Next, Marmot expanded its offerings to include high-quality products for trekking, climbing, and outdoor enthusiasts, catering to men, women, and children.

The product line has jackets, sleeping bags, tents, backpacks, and various accessories. Marmot products undergo testing by alpine guides and elite athletes in real-world conditions, contributing to ongoing brand innovation.

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Materials, Fabrics, and Production Process

Marmot utilizes high-quality materials in its apparel and gear, including Nylon and Polyester, which are common in the outdoor industry. One notable technology they employ is Gore-Tex, known for its ability to repel water while allowing body-generated water vapor to escape, ensuring breathability. This makes it suitable for extreme activities and ensures resistance to water.

In terms of insulation, Marmot utilizes high-capacity insulating materials such as natural down and PrimaLoft synthetic insulation, effectively separating cold air from hot air. Additionally, they have developed technologies like Marmot MemBrain and NanoPro, focusing on high performance, breathability, and waterproofing.

To address sustainability, Marmot emphasizes environmentally friendly production processes and materials such as EvoDry and Featherless, the latter being a down insulation alternative. You can read more about Marmot’s sustainability efforts on their website.

Marmot | WarmCube: Innovation

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Read also: Marmot vs Mountain Hardwear (Side-by-Side Comparison)

Where is Marmot outdoor gear made?

Marmot’s outdoor apparel and equipment are mostly made in Asian nations like China and Vietnam.

Recommended Products

Marmot Women’s GORE-TEX Orion Jacket

Marmot Womens GORE-TEX Orion Jacket
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The Marmot Women’s GORE-TEX Orion Jacket is a high-performance ski jacket designed for those who enjoy conquering powder and ski resorts. Built from recycled 3-layer GORE-TEX® material, it delivers waterproof, windproof, and breathable shielding, ensuring dryness even in harsh conditions.

It’s equipped with a RECCO® Avalanche Rescue Reflector for enhanced mountain safety, a helmet-compatible adjustable hood for coverage, and a fixed powder skirt to prevent snow from entering inside. For active skiers, the PitZips provide adaptable ventilation, while water-repellent pocket zippers safeguard your objects.

The fit is adjustable with VELCRO® cuffs, and articulated elbows guarantee unrestricted movement without sleeve slippage. This jacket is engineered to offer comfort and protection, whether you’re savoring off-piste powder or gliding down groomed trails.

Read next: Marmot vs RAB: Which is Better for Outdoor Gear?

Marmot Men’s WarmCube GORE-TEX Golden Mantle Jacket

Marmot Mens WarmCube GORE-TEX Golden Mantle Jacket
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The Marmot Men’s Golden Mantle Jacket combines advanced technology and fashion, engineered for extreme winters. It incorporates cutting-edge WarmCube insulation for effective temperature regulation, ensuring warmth during inactivity and breathability during movement.

The windproof GORE-TEX Infinium fabric protects while maintaining comfort, and the 700-fill-power down with Down Defender treatment offers improved water resistance and warmth.

The jacket features an adjustable hood with an insulated muff for protection, ample storage with dual-entry handwarmer pockets and zippered pockets, and a customizable fit with VELCRO cuffs and an internal elastic cuff. This jacket is suitable for urban and outdoor environments due to its warmth, lightness, and versatility.

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With a dedication to the outdoor community, Marmot prioritizes ensuring specific performance standards, resulting in materials of above-average quality. Their jackets are available at prices ranging from $100 to $650, while the cost of equipment such as sleeping bags and tents varies based on the specific product type. On average, Marmot is positioned as a brand with mid-to-high pricing.

Are Marmot products worth the price?

Yes! We believe that every one of their pieces is worth it, and many other internet reviewers share the same view. The materials are durable and the products of high performance.

Read also: Marmot vs Canada Goose Jackets: Which Brand is Better?

2. L.L. Bean Outdoor Gear

History of the Brand

LL Bean official website
L.L. Bean’s official website

L.L. Bean‘s origins date back over a century to 1912 when it was born in Freeport, Maine, where it is still headquartered. The founder, Leon Leonwood Bean, was an outdoorsman who initially created and marketed the Maine Hunting Shoe, a waterproof and lightweight rubber boot for hunters and anyone spending extended periods outdoors.

Over time, their product line expanded to meet increasing demands for top-notch goods. Currently, L.L. Bean operates over 50 retail outlets in the United States and Japan, in addition to its globally accessible online stores.

The brand has gained exposure in various television programs and productions and has established the Outdoor Discovery Schools, aimed at instructing people in outdoor skills and leading them on educational outings.

Renowned for its ingenuity and superior craftsmanship, L.L. Bean produces a diverse array of products, some of which are unique to the brand.

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Materials, Fabrics, and Production Process

Brands like L.L. Bean, which prioritize the development of high-performance products, do not solely depend on conventional fabrics such as polyester or nylon for their performance items. Instead, they integrate established technologies and occasionally create their own.

For instance, L.L. Bean relies on some of the finest fabrics currently accessible in the market, including Gore-Tex, known for its exceptional durability, weather resistance, and breathability. They also utilize fabrics by Loomia and PrimaLoft synthetic insulation.

Next, L.L. Bean uses waxed cotton to enhance weather resistance in lightweight, comfortable jackets. Their winter coats feature natural down and PrimaLoft’s premium synthetic insulation, ensuring optimal warmth in challenging weather conditions.

L.L.Bean 100th Anniversary

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Read also: Eddie Bauer vs L.L. Bean Outdoor Gear: A Comparison

Where is L.L. Bean outdoor gear made?

L.L. Bean produces a significant part of its gear in the USA, particularly in Maine. This includes a range of the company’s traditional and unique designs, such as their boots. However, a substantial portion of their additional items are manufactured in various facilities worldwide, mostly in Asia.

Recommended Products

L.L. Bean Men’s Maine Warden’s 3-in-1 GORE-TEX Parka

LL Bean Mens Maine Wardens 3-in-1 GORE-TEX Parka
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The L.L. Bean Men’s Maine Warden’s 3-in-1 Parka is a versatile jacket built for cold conditions, leveraging the knowledge of Maine wardens. It showcases a durable GORE-TEX outer layer for waterproof and windproof shielding and features a detachable, down-insulated inner jacket for added insulation.

The parka is engineered for good coverage, extending below the waist, and has an array of pockets for functional storage. The outer shell of the parka is made from ripstop nylon, while the inner components are mostly nylon and polyester, and the entire garment is machine washable for effortless maintenance.

It has a classic fit, intended for wearing with medium-weight layers, and incorporates elements such as a removable hood, side zippers for flexibility, and an adjustable waist to retain warmth. The parka’s 3-in-1 configuration enables the layers to be worn together or separately, for various weather conditions. The parka maintains a manageable weight, rendering it a practical option for outdoor use.

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L.L. Bean Women’s Ridge Runner Backpack, 48L

LL Bean Womens Ridge Runner Backpack 48L
Check it out at

The L.L. Bean Women’s Ridge Runner Backpack is crafted for weekend backpacking adventures. It’s designed to provide a comfortable fit for women, available in two sizes to accommodate different torso lengths. With a 48-liter capacity, this backpack offers ample space while remaining lightweight, ideal for a range of hiking trips.

Built from durable 100D triple ripstop nylon with a 210D nylon lining, it is made to endure the demands of the trail. The backpack’s structure is reinforced by a back panel with pre-bent stays, while comfort is prioritized with a mesh-covered foam back panel and shoulder straps that enhance airflow.

The pack includes a spacious main compartment with an easily accessible zipper, stretch mesh water bottle pockets, and additional gear loops. For added convenience, it features a front shove-it pocket, a fleece-lined pocket for delicate items, and an interior pocket with a key fob. The hydration sleeve supports up to a 2-liter bladder.

Read next: L.L. Bean vs The North Face: Which is Better?


L.L. Bean offers a wide range of prices. Their jackets are priced between $70 and $500, while their backpacks range from $50 to $220. This wide pricing spectrum provides many options for different types of clients.

Are L.L. Bean products worth the price?

L.L. Bean has built a strong reputation for the comfort and quality of its products. Depending on your needs, the price of their designs is usually worth it. Their jackets are built for comfort and performance and come with simple designs.

Must read: 9 Expensive Hiking Brands for Clothing and Footwear

3. Which is Better? Marmot or L.L. Bean?

Here is what you should keep in mind when deciding between these two brands:

  • Marmot specializes in outdoor and adventure apparel and gear, while L.L. Bean has a broader product range including home goods and casual apparel in addition to outdoor gear.
  • Marmot is known for its high-quality and technical outdoor clothing and equipment optimized for activities like hiking, climbing, and skiing. Their products tend to be more expensive but very durable.
  • L.L. Bean offers a wide range of outdoor apparel and gear at mid-range prices. Their products are generally high quality but not as technical or performance-focused as Marmot. Their signature is reliability and durability.
  • Marmot uses premium materials like Gore-Tex in their waterproof and breathable outerwear. L.L. Bean waterproof gear may use coated nylons instead of name-brand membranes, although they also have Gore-Tex jackets.
  • Marmot has an edge for outerwear and clothing for cold-weather activities. L.L. Bean offers a greater selection of gear for warmer weather like camping and canoeing.

In the end, Marmot is more technical and expensive while L.L. Bean is more casual and affordable. Marmot is usually better if you need high-performance gear for mountaineering, winter sports, etc. L.L. Bean is a good choice for recreational and more general outdoor activities.

Read next: 12 Best American Outdoor Clothing Brands

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