Skiing/snowboarding puts high demands on our clothing and equipment, as it's not just the temperature in the mountains that can fluctuate, but our activity level too. Our clothes need to keep us warm when we're sitting still in a cold lift on the way up the mountain, and at the same time let the heat out when we run fast down the mountain and start to sweat. At the same time, we need to be able to move freely, be light and flexible, and most importantly, be comfortable all day long. It's not an easy task.
But merino wool can do just that, and with the right layers, you'll be ready to face any weather.
The inner layer
The most important thing about the inner layer, or baselayer as it's often called, is that it can effectively wick moisture away from the skin so you don't get cold and sweaty.
What you wear on the inside plays an incredibly important role in whether you'll be able to stay warm, dry and comfortable throughout a day when your activity level may variate. Wool has fantastic moisture wicking properties, making it ideal to wear right next to your skin.
As an inner layer, we would recommend our Longsleeve 220 T-shirts, as they are relatively close-fitting, but still have a little ekstra warmth that can keep you warm in the cold mountains. It can quickly absorb moisture and keep you dry and warm. As it is made of 100% wool, you also get the full effect of the wool's good properties. If it's really cold, you can use several layers, which in many cases will work better than one thick layer. Combine a long-sleeved merino T-shirt with our short-sleeved T-shirt, like T-OSS 220 or W-220 Short Sleeve.
Wear our merino underwear under your baselayer
For men, our B-180 merino boxers are a perfect choice as they are close fitting and will therefore help maintain a comfortable climate, regulate temperature and quickly absorb moisture out to your baselayer.
For women, our Soft Bra and merino Hipsters are a great choice. In addition to the great properties of the merino wool and the high comfort level of the set, both bra and hipsters are equipped with an elastic band, which makes sure everything stays in place when skiing, so you don't have to wear a sportsbra.
The middle layer
The middle layer has several tasks. It must be able to insulate against the cold and thus keep you warm, but also be able to transport excess heat and moisture away from the body. Unlike the inner layer, the middle layer should be thicker and fit looser since it creates a better air circulation.
Your choice of middle layer depends primarily on two things: Where you're going and how thick your jacket is. It is therefore important to check the weather conditions at your destination. How cold is it, how much snow is falling and how humid is it?
Here we recommend our Merino Zip Neck, which has some of the best thermoregulating properties, of all the fabrics we have tested. This is because the back of the fabric is made up of loops, which means that a proportion of the fibres are perpendicular to the skin - just like fur is. The vertical air channels allow the textile to easily dissipate excess heat. You will therefore find that the sweater is neither too hot nor too cold.
In addition, the Zip Neck has some great details that are really practical in the mountains. The small finger hole keeps the jersey and inner layers in place when you throw on your ski jacket, making sure it all stays in place no matter how fast you run down the slope or how much you move. The little zipper "garage" is also incredibly useful, as it spares your skin from the icy cold zipper.
On the bottom, our matching merino sweatpants in the same textile will work super well as a middle layer on top of a pair of merino baselayer leggings. Remember to never wear you baselayer leggings or merino sweatpants in your skiing boots - it it a big cause of pain and inflammation in the shin.
On the colder days or if you are only wearing a thin shell jacket our merino FV-280 Fleece vest is great to wear on top of your Zip Neck for a little extra warmth.
The outer layer
The outer layer is the layer that keeps out the wind and weather, i.e. it must be windproof, waterproof and breathable. We do not have a product that is perfect for the outer layer, but we recommend that you find a good environment friendly shell jacket with a breathable membrane.
Around the neck and on your head
Our all-in-one NW-135 merino neck warmer is a really great item for skiing due to its versatility. The neck warmer can be pulled up around the mouth and nose and stuck under the skiing mask, if you want to keep extra warm and leave no skin bared in the cold mountain breeze. It takes up no space and can easily be kept in your pocket in case it gets too hot. You can also wear it as a headband or a beanie if you take of your helmet.
Alternatively you can bring our Merino beanie with you in the pocket of your jacket and wear it during your lunch, afterskiing or whenever you take of your helmet. It is good insulating and warming. It is also thin enough to wear under a helmet, if you like that.