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Hunters can endlessly debate the different types of camo for deer hunting. Everyone seems to have a favorite. The thought processes and technology that go into the design of modern camouflage patterns have also advanced a lot in the last 20 years. Much of that is due to scientific improvements that have taught us more about how whitetails and mule deer see the world. Today’s camo outfits do an outstanding job of helping hunters melt into the background vegetation better than our forefathers could have ever dreamed.

With a bevy of camo types on the market, it might be hard for some hunters to pick the one that’s right for the terrain they are hunting. Today we will break down our picks for the best camo for deer hunting, covering a variety of budgets and scenarios.  

How We Made Our Picks

To determine the best camo for deer hunting, we looked at a variety of factors that are important to hunters. More specifically, we understand how deer hunting varies state by state, and how the pursuit of different subspecies may necessitate a different style of camo or clothing. As someone who has hunted deer since 1999, many of the patterns and clothing options here were picked based on my own direct experience from testing in the field. Other major factors considered for these picks include:

  • Materials: What type of insulation is used? Is the clothing waterproof? What types of zippers does it have?
  • Noise: Does the material make noise that could spook game?
  • Pattern design: Is the camo heavily detailed or open concept? What colors are used in the design?
  • Value: What is the cost of this clothing? If you are paying a premium price, are you getting your money’s worth?

Best Camo for Deer Hunting: Reviews and Recommendations

Best Overall: Kuiu Verde Proximity Line

Key Features

  • Jacket Weight: 1 pound, 15 ounces
  • Pants Weight: 2 pounds, 4 ounces
  • 3DeFX+ insulation
  • Brushed face outer fabric


  • Extremely quiet
  • Warm and durable
  • Very effective on close range deer


  • Expensive
  • Dries slowly

Kuiu’s Verde pattern is a little darker, with more of an emphasis on contrasting blacks, greens, and greys. It is designed for evergreen environments, but I found it worked very well in hardwoods too. In fact, I hunted with this high-contrast pattern during a couple of snowstorms last season and ended up dropping a non-typical Michigan 9-pointer while wearing it. Michigan’s deer are notoriously jumpy, but they were none the wiser when I was wearing this camo, even at ranges as close as 10 yards.

The Proximity line was specifically designed with a brushed fabric for treestand usage, but I found it works just as well on the ground. I wore Proximity during near whiteout conditions deer hunting in late November, and it kept me toasty warm. Although the material is water-resistant, it is not waterproof. If you get it wet, it will need to dry. Unfortunately, that does take a little time. However, for those who are worried about stealth in cold conditions, you’ll be hard-pressed to find something quieter.

Best Insulated: Kuiu Valo Super Down

Key Features

  • Water-resistant Quixdown insulation
  • Adjustable hood
  • TORAY DWR water treatment
  • Jacket Weight: 13.4 ounces
  • Pants Weight: 16 ounces


  • Extremely warm
  • Lightweight
  • Great for wet conditions


  • Price
  • Material is a bit noisy

The Kuiu Valo pattern is a simple design with browns, tans, and greys that is at home in both the sagebrush of the American west and the deer woods of the Midwest. I’ve personally used the Kuiu Super Down here in Michigan, and I’ve found it works quite well for puzzling the eyes of whitetails both on the ground and in a treestand well into November. The Super Down line is well insulated for when the weather gets chilly. At the same time, you’ll be shocked by how lightweight the jacket and pants are. I was pleasantly surprised that despite the weight, the jacket and pants are quite toasty when the temperature dips. In fact, I found I don’t need to layer up quite as heavily as I had to in the past while using the Super Down. This keeps me a lot lighter on my feet in cold conditions. It matters because it means less sweating on the walk into the stand in the morning and less scent that can spook deer. The downside is that the material tends to swish a bit as you walk, making it a bit noisy for bowhunting. We like this camo best for hunters who might hunt a variety of terrain in multiple states over the course of a season. Combine it with a good pair of hunting gloves and a hat, and you’re set for whatever mother nature throws at you.  

Best Wind Resistant: Sitka Subalpine Jetstream

Key Features

  • Weight: 26 ounces
  • Gore Windstopper fabric
  • Fleece interior


  • The best wind protection out there
  • Excellent comfort
  • Purpose-built for spot and stalking


  • Expensive
  • Not as good for more frigid conditions

Sitka’s Subalpine pattern is designed with a range of light greens, dark greys, browns, and tans for spot-and-stalk style hunting at higher elevations with green vegetation. This camo also does well in transition zones where the tree cover is thinning. Sitka builds the Jetstream jacket—featured in subalpine—using Gore-Tex Infinium, a windproof, breathable, and water-resistant material that still manages to be light and comfortable. I like this jacket for those windier western states like Wyoming and Montana, where it really starts gusting around September and October. The downside is the Jetstream jacket isn’t built for frigid temperatures often present later in the season. However, Sitka makes men’s and women’s versions of this jacket, providing something for everyone.

Best Waterproof: First Lite Cipher Omen Stormshelter

Key Features

  • Jacket Weight: 26 ounces
  • Pants Weight: 30.25 ounces
  • 80/30 DWR repellent
  • YKK zippers


  • Coated to shed a lot of water
  • High quality zippers
  • Vented to release extra heat


  • Pants are a little heavy
  • Expensive

First Lite designed their Cipher pattern with a series of natural browns and tans that help you disappear in both the fall foliage of the Midwest and the sagebrush of the West. There is nothing fancy about it, but that’s what helps it break up your outline so well. I like this jacket and pants for hunters who are continually hunting in extremely wet, snowy, and rainy conditions. A perfect setup for blacktails in the Pacific Northwest. That is thanks to the 80/30 DWR protection that helps make the clothing waterproof. The features that set this aside from other forms of camo rain gear are the large vents and chest cowl on the jacket. It is nice to be able to stow an expensive rangefinder or binocular in a protected location beneath your rain gear.

Best Budget: Realtree Edge Hunting Bomber Jacket

Key Features

  • 150 grams of insulation
  • Drawstring hood
  • Cotton ripstop fabric


  • Affordable
  • Available in larger sizes
  • Camo pattern is easy to match


  • Not great for frigid heat retention
  • Cuffs could be nicer

I was a Realtree guy for years, and my two biggest bucks were both harvested while wearing their patterns, so I can attest that their gear works extremely well. Edge is a classic “sticks and leaves” camo for deer hunting that isn’t overly busy. This pattern will work for most Midwestern hunting scenarios. Combine it with some proper base layers, and it will keep you warm late into the season.

The Bomber jacket is one of the more affordable options and a good choice for old school hunters who don’t need or want all the bells, whistles, and extra pockets that are packed into many modern hunting jackets. It also comes in a wide range of sizes for all types of hunters.

Most Comfortable: Mossy Oak Bottomlands Hoodie

Key Features

  • Polyester/spandex blend
  • Large front pocket
  • Adjustable hood


  • Simple and easy to wash
  • Extremely comfortable
  • Can be used as a base layer


  • Mostly a southern or early season option

Mossy Oak Bottomland might be responsible for more deer harvests than any other pattern on the market today. I like this classic pattern for hardwood scenarios, especially in southern states like Georgia or Mississippi. In most cases, the weather down there is mild enough that something like this is all you’ll need. It is our top pick for comfort because it doesn’t get much better than a hoodie. The downside is that it won’t work as an outer layer in the North where the temperatures start to dip. Although it can be a solid mid-layer option.

At $45, this hoodie is highly affordable for just about any budget. Mossy Oak also offers this hoodie in sizes up to 3XL, making it an option for the bigger guys to get out into the woods in comfort this season. Not to mention it can double for great casual wear while working around the home or fishing on a chilly day.

Best for Odor Control: Scent Lok Divergent in Mossy Oak Terra Gila

Key Features

  • Carbon odor control tech
  • Primaloft insulation
  • Microfleece lining


  • Does an amazing job absorbing odors
  • Safety harness port helps with better fit
  • Neck gaiter offers great protection


  • Extremely expensive

Terra Gila is one of Mossy Oak’s newer patterns that embraces more of the open-concept camo for deer hunting that is so popular these days. It’s a pattern that is equally at home in dense forests as it is out on the plains. And Scent Lok does odor control better than anyone else out there. They pioneered carbon technology, and I know more than one hunter who swears by the brand. Hiding from a whitetail’s eyes is one thing, but hiding from their nose is just as important, and this camo does it better than any other option on the market. The downside is the lofty price tag. At $400 each for the pants and jacket, this is an item most hunters might need to save up for before they can add it to their arsenal.

Things to Consider When Buying the Best Camo for Deer Hunting

Modern camo gear is usually designed for specific weather scenarios or regional areas. Having the right pattern for the terrain is important. Today’s modern camo patterns are moving away from the “sticks and leaves” concepts of the late 90s and early 2000s. That’s mostly because we understand a little bit more now about deer vision. We now know they likely see the world in a series of mostly blue and grey tones. And those tones are likely much blurrier than what we see. If the patterns get too “busy,” they can become blotchy and give away your outline to deer quicker. That’s why many newer patterns have more of an open concept. The less vegetation in the area you are hunting, the more open you might want your pattern.

However, don’t just put all your emphasis on patterns. It’s just as important to have the right insulation and water protection for the worst-case weather scenarios. The best patterns in the world will do you no good if you are freezing and shivering in your treestand. It makes no sense to buy super-quiet clothing for stand hunting if you’re spot-and-stalking in wet and windy conditions. On the flip side of the coin, heavy rain gear is not going to be an optimal choice for stand hunting in a dry, warm state like Texas. Regional differences matter when choosing materials as much as the pattern.


Does camo really help with hunting?

While there are plenty of hunters who have killed deer without camo, in my experience, the right camo pattern helps significantly in preventing a deer from picking up your outline faster. Camo becomes vitally important in helping hunters hide their movements at close ranges when bowhunting.

Does camo color matter for deer?

To a degree, it does. It’s helpful to match your camo to the terrain and seasonal colors of where you are hunting. However, the design of the pattern itself might be even more vital in helping fool the eyes of a deer, which sees the world primarily in blue and gray.  

Is military camo better than hunting camo?

The big difference is that military camo is designed for hiding humans from other humans. Hunting camo is designed to hide humans from animals. Military-style camo can work for deer hunting, but hunting camo is usually more desirable because it is purpose-built with comfort and features hunters need in the pursuit of wild game.

Final Thoughts

My pick for overall best camo for deer hunting is the Kuiu Verde Proximity. I’ve hunted with a lot of patterns over the years, but I haven’t used another camo that seems to confuse whitetail deer quite like Kuiu’s patterns. The fact that I’ve won several of those dreaded stand-off situations with mature does in the last couple of seasons proved to me both the Verde and Valo patterns work. Although I will note that almost all of today’s modern patterns are significantly better at breaking up a hunter’s outline than the patterns I started hunting with back in 1999. It’s easier than ever for a hunter to meld into the forest or sagebrush using these modern patterns.

Why Trust Us

For more than 125 years, Field & Stream has been providing readers with honest and authentic coverage of outdoor gear. Our writers and editors eat, sleep, and breathe the outdoors, and that passion comes through in our product reviews. You can count on F&S to keep you up to date on the best new gear. And when we write about a product—whether it’s a bass lure or a backpack—we cover the good and the bad, so you know exactly what to expect before you decide to make a purchase.