Meet REI Co-Op 650 Down Vest 2.0: A Straightforward, Recycled Puffy

The REI Co-Op 650 Down Vest 2.0 embodies what REI has set out to do with a large range of its products: create something useful, with low environmental impact, that does its main function very well.

A down vest should be compressible, lightweight, reasonably warm, and versatile. The REI 650 Down Vest 2.0 is all of those things, especially versatile. It has a more casual fit than some higher-end down vests, which we prefer for more daily use, as it allows you to layer with a fleece or long-sleeve. But its weight — 7.2 ounces — is low enough to make it an extra fluffy friend on any backpacking trip (even an ultralight one).

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The REI 650 Down Vest 2 has large hand pockets, warm puffy squares, and a full neck guard.

This is coupled with 650-fill down, stitched into squares, which helps keep the warmth locked in place and well distributed about your body. The vest has an elastic hem to help trap in warmth, and a full length zipper that goes up to the chin. This helps cut the chill off your neck, and allows you to vent heat if needed.

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Simple zipper for breathability and layering.

The REI 650 Down Vest is made in a few colorways and a ton of sizes.

See the Men’s REI 650 Down Vest 2

See the Women’s REI 650 Down Vest 2

See the Plus Size REI 650 Down Vest 2

Unique Features of the REI Co-Op 650 Down Vest 2.0

You may notice the distinctive “2.0” in the REI Co-Op 650 Down Vest. REI has recently launched a number of 2.0 products — part of it is a new year, but a bigger part is REI’s push towards sustainable fabric and sourcing.

The new REI 650 Down Vest uses a recycled nylon taffeta exterior and lining fabric, which have been bluesign approved. The vest was made in a Fair Trade Certified factory, and the 650-fill down was certified to the Responsible Down Standard.

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Layer the REI 650 Down Vest 2 with a fleece or long-sleeve for a lightweight versatile system.

REI’s whole product line is moving towards these certifications, so while it may feel common, it’s not. The fact that REI is retooling its products to be more sustainable, while keeping the quality high and the price relatively competitive is a real standout.

The REI 650 Down Vest, in particular, is quite affordable for what you’re getting. On sale, it’s a steal.

Basic REI Vest, Lots of Pockets

There are two large zippered hand pockets on the REI 650 Down Vest, which warm the hands and can hold a phone, the day’s snacks, or a headlamp. There are also two massive interior drop-in pockets. We love this extra storage, and tend to store small lightweight items here, like chapstick, gloves, or a wallet.

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Two massive interior drop-in pockets are excellent for extra storage.

The left-hand zippered pocket was also made for stuffing. The entire 650 Down Vest stuffs into the zippered pocket, making it quickly and easily packable in any environment. There’s a zipper closure for the vest once stuffed, so you can tie it off on a carabiner if needed.

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Stuff the vest into the left-hand pocket with ease.

See the Men’s REI 650 Down Vest 2

See the Women’s REI 650 Down Vest 2

See the Plus Size REI 650 Down Vest 2

Who is REI Co-Op?

REI Co-Op doesn’t really need an introduction — it’s the in-house brand of the largest U.S. outdoor retailer. The company is known for creating thoughtful, sustainable products that rival (and often beat out) big brand competitors.

The 650 Down Vest 2.0 is REI’s go-to versatile, affordable down vest.

See it for men, women, and in plus sizes.


This article is sponsored by REI Co-Op.

Backpackers.com Affiliate Policy: This guide contains affiliate links, which help fund our website. When you click on the links to purchase the gear we get a commission, and this goes a long way to creating guides, gear reviews, and other excellent content.

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