Whether you are skiing or simply trying to avoid the cold winter, base layers are the best bet. Base layers are always in constant contact with your skin, so they keep the cold away without laboring you with heavy wear. In the same vein, base layers are very classy and stylish. Who said you couldn’t look warm and chic at the same time?
Manufacturers use a variety of materials when manufacturing base layers. These include polyester, wool, nylon, or merino wool. In some instances, they might make a blend of these materials to craft an entirely new blend. With all these materials, merino steals the show regarding base layers.
Benefits of Merino Wool As The Material Of Choice
Merino material ranks among the most common base layer choices for various reasons. First, merino wool has a very durable material that is desirable, especially for garments. You do not want to buy a base layer only for it to tear after a short time.
Secondly, merino wool is soft to the touch and not irritating to the skin. Unlike ordinary wool, which causes a prickly sensation when used in clothing, merino wool is very smooth. Therefore, you can wear the base layers directly on the skin without getting another undergarment. Additionally, the wool does not cause any itching.
Third, merino wool is an excellent odor-resistant material for clothing. Since the base layer is likely in direct contact with the skin, the merino wool comes in handy when dealing with sweat and odor. Merino wool contains lanolin or wool wax, which works on odor-causing bacteria, thus eliminating the odor due to sweating.
What to Consider When Buying A Merino Base Layer
The first thing to consider when buying a merino wool base layer is the thickness and weight of the base layer. Merino wool is typically heavier than other materials such as synthetic wool and polyester. Merino wool gets heavier when wet, primarily due to sweat. Additionally, the material is thick. Thus, when getting merino wool clothing, ensure that the thickness you go for suits the purpose for which you are getting it.
Secondly, consider the sizing of the merino wool base layer. As stated above, the purpose of the base layer will also guide the fit you will go for. A snug or tight fit will do the trick if you want a base layer for the cold season. Looser base layers are better for the warmer season as they are not too close or tight.
The Best Merino Best Layers To Get
There are a variety of merino wool base layers you can get, depending on your needs. Some of the best are listed below.
Woolly Everyday Henley
Manufactured by Woolly Clothing, the Woolly Everyday Henley serves as one of the best merino base layers in the market. The Woolly Everyday Henley comes in different material thicknesses and weights, the Ultralight, Everyday Weight, and Mid-weight. This base layer has a tight fit and is preferable for cold weather. A Woolly Everyday Henley base layer works well for everyday use, backpacking, hiking, mountaineering, or running.
Icebreaker Oasis Long Sleeve Crewe
The Icebreaker Oasis Long Sleeve Crewe is one of the best base layers for multi-purpose wearing. The base layer is made of high-quality non-blended merino wool. Thus, the wool is not mixed with other materials like cotton or polyester. The Icebreaker Oasis Long Sleeve Crewe has a density of 200 g/m2, which makes it heavier than other base layers. Therefore, you can wear the base layer in any year’s season. However, it might be too uncomfortable during the sweltering summers. Like the Wooly Everyday Henley, you can use the Icebreaker Oasis Long Sleeve Crewe for everyday purposes.
Smartwool Mid 250 Crew
The Smartwool Mid 250 Crew base layer is one of the thickest base layers in the market. The base layer has a density of 250 g/m2 and is therefore very good for cold nights and winters. The heat insulation of the material is increased by the tight fit, which keeps the heat in the body. The base layer is suitable for a wide array of functions, provided you do not wear it in the hot weather as it could be uncomfortable. Additionally, the base layer also takes a little longer to dry up after washing since it is made of heavy material and absorbs a lot of moisture.
Ortovox 185 Rock’N’Wool
Lastly, the Ortovox 185 Rock’N’Wool is one of the lighter base layers available on the market. With a density of 185 g/m2, the base layer allows for a comfortable fit while still allowing for ease of use. The German manufacturer of the Ortovox 185 Rock’N’Wool also prides itself on being one of the manufacturers that incorporate both style and utility in the manufacture of base layers, thus ensuring that customers not only enjoy the warmth associated with the base layer but also enjoy a chic look. You can hardly go wrong with a good Ortovox 185 Rock’N’Wool. The base layer is suitable for hiking, trekking, mountain climbing, and running.
Getting a merino wool base layer will serve you well in the long run. However, you must also be willing to take adequate care of the base layer to enjoy the vast benefits of the product. Remember, the fabric of a merino wool base layer is soft. Therefore, you might want to keep it in a pillowcase during washing to keep rougher materials from damaging it.