Versatile protection and durable
This shell is so useful and so effective! I use it for everything: sport and alpine climbing, hiking/backpacking, wearing around town, and even motorbiking! It's durable enough to wear shimmying up cracks and chimneys and stylish enough to wear in town. At 11.2oz, it's not the lightest, most packable shell on the market, but arguably more versatile and durable than something lighter. It is, however, light-weight enough that I took it with me to Thailand in lieu of other jacketsand it proved it's value there too as it's not too hot, but adds just the right warmth when needed and blocks wind so well. I often replace it for my rain jacket too since it has proven effective to keep me dry in light rain storms. Love the stretchy fabric and side zip pockets (they are big enough to hold anything I want). At 5'3 and 135lbs, I got a medium, which is pretty baggy, but still looks good and has plenty of room to layer, which was important for me. For a more fitted look, I'd go with the small. The length is good for staying put underneath a harness to block wind too.
lightweight protective shield
I too was surprised that this hoodie was so lightweight given its "soft shell" claim and price, but it has become one of my favorite spring/early fall jackets precisely because it is lightweight. It's moderately wind & water resistant, and wrinkle resistant too, so it looks smart around town as well as on the hiking trail. It works well with one layer underneath, or two thin ones. Sleeves are long enough for me (broad shoulders, long arms), and there is a cool detail of elastic on the underside of wrist but not on top so you keep those sleeves secure and wrists warm without the puff sleeve effect! Nice. I'm 5'6" 125 lb and size M is perfect, just a little roomy but not baggy. Liked it so much I bought a second one.
It was a little lighter weight than what I tough but it will definitely work for who it's for. It's for a Christmas present.