- The first waterproof jacket was invented by Charles Macintosh, blending a fabric with rubber. His name was adopted for all raincoats in the UK, and is still used today.
- Rather than being waterproof, mammals that live in water form a waterproof barrier due to the denseness of their coats and the oil in their glands. These two factors combine to form a thick layer as close to a waterproof jacket as you can find in the wild!
- It is thought that cormorants hold their wings out to dry as they are unable to produce the levels of waterproofing oils for their feathers that other water birds rely on.
- The very first waterproof jackets made by humans are likely to have been made from vegetable fibres or seal intestines. The seams were sealed with glue made from boiling an animal’s connective tissues. Waterproof jackets are nothing new – they’ve simply evolved over time.
- The greatest challenge when making a waterproof jacket is to make it breathable – waterproof materials are all around us so keeping the rain off is the easy part. Stopping you from drowning in your own sweat whilst keeping dry is another matter, however.