The wide array of options for ski apparel can be pretty overwhelming but choosing the appropriate clothing shouldn’t be complicated when you have guidelines to follow.
Use this article as your checklist when you decide on what to wear for your skiing trip.
You might already have an idea about what to wear for skiing but you have to ask yourself, are these appropriate for the activity?
First of all, there are certain things that you have to do to ensure that you are not only dressed correctly with sufficient insulation from the cold but stylishly as well; functional and fashionable ski wear.
One of the basic things you need is long underwear specifically designed for use in winter.
This is usually cotton-thermal or woolen long underwear that is breathable, fast drying, and wicking so you don’t shiver when you start to sweat.
This underwear is the base that has to be contoured to your body and have a fitted form so it doesn’t bunch up under the rest of your ski outfit.
Worn over long underwear and under the ski pants and jacket, the mid-layer should be made of fleece material to prevent the cold and chill from reaching your skin.
You can opt to shed this mid-layer on days that are warmer but you can’t afford not to wear it in cold temperatures.
You can also wear a fleece ski vest that helps keep your body warm with the obvious bulkiness.
Best Ski Jackets
Investing in a waterproof or water-resistant, breathable, insulated, and well-fitting ski jacket goes a long way to keep you warm, comfortable and dry.
Choose a ski jacket that enables you to be mobile and not constricted. See to it that it is long enough to cover your arms and torso.
Although most skiers choose neutral colors, there’s no rule against ski jackets in bright colors.
Best Ski Pants
Ski pants that are insulated, long enough to pull over ski boots, and waterproof are mandatory.
A comfortable and contoured fit is also essential.
Ensure that the pair you get allows you to bend your knees and hips so that you don’t pull up your ski pants after your every run.
They should be very durable not only to resist the wear and tear of tumbling but to prevent cuts and scratches.
Best Ski Socks
Forget old pairs of cotton socks that have thinned out or are “bald” in the heel and toe areas.
To keep feet dry and warm, get socks that are slim-fitting, breathable, fast drying, and wicking under your boots.
Woolen socks with some blend of nylon would do the job of keeping your feet warm and dry.
The newer ski socks are less bulky and fit underneath ski boots excellently.
Ski Gloves, Ski Gaiters, Ski Snoods, Ski Headtubes
The initial amount you spend on skiing apparel may be a tad more expensive but you will really save money when you buy ski gloves specifically designed for the coldest of weather and skiing.
Ski gloves can either be made of insulated synthetic filling, wool or traditional fleece or a combination of the three.
The rule of thumb here is to find which one offers the best volume of protective insulation.
Manufacturers label how much insulation each pair of gloves can provide as well as the type of insulation it has by levels of warmth.
Gloves made from traditional fleece as a stand-alone type of insulation usually has some synthetic material for additional warmth.
Fleece, on the other hand, will feel cozier than a majority of synthetic materials because it warms up more quickly.
Neck warmer or ski gaiter, its purpose is to keep your neck as well as your face warm and protected against the cold, whether it’s “snow” cold or “wind” cold.
Most ski outfits for women consider a gaiter more of an accessory than a mandatory item for protective ski dressing. Try skiing with a gaiter and then without so you can see the difference.
Gaiters are a safer option than scarves since the latter can become tangled on ski lifts or unravel on ski slopes; they are also much thinner in fabric and won’t do much for giving you warmth on really cold days.
Better yet, get ski headtubes or ski snoods since these don’t have loose ends that can unravel or get caught on ski lifts and tangle.
Ski Helmet and Ski Goggles
Needless to say, a ski helmet offers protection against head injuries. Just remember all those famous people – Sonny Bono and Michael Kennedy, among others — dying from head injuries from slamming into tree trunks because they didn’t have ski helmets on.
If your head gets a chill under the helmet, wear a skull cap or helmet liner with an extra layer of insulation.
Don’t be misled by the cold temperature because the sun’s rays can still remain strong even on mountainsides.
Bright snow, in fact, can reflect sunlight, and higher or mountainous altitudes only mean that the ultraviolet rays (UV) from the sun are even more powerful.
Protect your eyes with ski goggles that have polarized lenses to reduce the glare from these UV rays while skiing.
Shopping for Ski Clothing
Ski apparel is not cheap, which is why you have to be discerning when selecting the items to include in your ski wardrobe. In fact, ski clothing can cost even more that a pair of boots or a pair of skis.
It is to your advantage that you know most, if not all, of the “skills” required of a smart shopper for ski clothes. Here are some tips you may want to consider:
Go to end of season sales where you get ski jackets for half their original prices.
Even if you opt for luxury ski wear from high end boutiques, do your shopping off-season since this is the time when shops and stores get rid of their previous season’s stocks.
Okay, so you missed out on the off-season sales; you can still snag a high quality but low-cost ski jacket
Best Ski Clothing Brands
Brands such as LL Bean, Lands’ End or Columbia have decent price tags for what you can consider “dependable” ski clothing, albeit they are not as high performance as their more expensive counterparts.
You can also invest in those so-called “Three in One” ski jackets from Spyder, Patagonia, and The North Face. These jackets are designed with insulated mid-layering and waterproof shells.
Or buy ski outfits for men from last year’s collection. Most of the time, the only details that are changed in a manufacturer’s clothing line are their colors or patterns.
You can save more than 50% on last year’s ski wear if you shop for deals like these late in the summer when most ski shops offer steep discounts, free shipping, price cuts, and other perks for Labor Day.
High End Ski Clothing
You can always go window shopping to get some ideas on the design, pattern, color scheme or style you want in ski wear and scour the internet for pieces which resemble those you want.
You can view high-end ski apparel that is trending on the current market online as well.
Ski jackets by Arcteryx, Bogner, Canada Goose normally comes at a price tag of above 500 USD.
You can check out Arcteryx skiing clothes here.
If you have decided to invest some serious money into ski wear, see to it that you get value for your money.
Function and fashion are usually the hallmarks of the best ski wear brands and they never come cheap.