Best Base Layers for Skiing
Skiing and snowboarding are famous and interesting snowboards but demand a lot of safety attire to prevent injury and damage to the body. One of the most important clothing item for snowboarding and skiing is the thermal base layer. They are designed to be used under the ski jacket and the mid layer to maintain body heat. This thermal base layer should be comfortable and lightweight and keep the user dry and warm.
An ill-fitting base layer with poor design can make the snow trip extremely uncomfortable and leave the wearer cold and damp at the end of the day. For those who wish to enjoy a sweet time in the snow, it is important to choose the best base layer by following our buyer’s guide. We have also chosen the best thermal layers of skiing to ease out the process of reviewing the top one individually.
Best Base Layers For Skiing
Quick Answer: Top 5 Best Base Layers for Skiing – 
- ColdPruf Men’s Platinum Dual Layer
- WoolX Glacier – Men’s Merino Wool Base Layer
- MERIWOOL Men’s Merino Wool Midweight Baselayer Crew
- Minus33 Merino Wool Men’s Chocorua Midweight Crew
- SmartWool Men’s NTS Mid 250 Zip T Top
Best Base Layers for Skiing Reviews
The Cold Pruf Dual layer long sleeve crew neck top is of 100% CPT performance polyester at its insides and 70% polyester at the outside. It’s base layer also features 30% Merino wool. The garment features base layer underwear closure and is the tagless garment with flat seams for comfort.
This base layer offers true sizing for accurate fit and its thermal-choice system helps the user to stay warm in very cold to extreme cold weather. Its ring spun yarns offers exceptional softness and its coldpruf technical fiber with silvadur intelligent freshness keeps the odor off.
The Platinum garment is engineered specifically with cold pruf technology to trap the air between the layers of fabric to offer a natural warmth shield. As it is blended with polyester on the outside and combines CPT polyester on the inside, it offers the maximum warmth, comfort, and dryness along with odor control.
The color-coded therma choice system has a color coding table on the basis of activity and weather. This system helps the user to take an intelligent and uncomplicated decision on which protect best fits one’s independent needs.
For Women Base Layers : ColdPruf Women’s Quest Performance Base Layer
The Woolx heavyweight base layer is a must when the weather hits freezing temperatures. This is an ideal base layer or mid layer clothing for snowboarding, skiing, hiking, camping, playing snow sports and winter hunting. The Merino wool crew shirt was built for extremely cold temperatures even temperatures below freezing point.
They are also lightweight and weigh only 17.6 ounces for a comfortable warmth without bulk. It features a wool base layer and thus pulls moisture away from the body rendering incredible comfort and odor control naturally.
The base layer includes 3-inch cuffs and discreet thumbholes that get layering and additional warmth possible and easy. The layer is extremely soft and durable, the ultimate difference what a 100% merino wool can make.
The fabric is ultra-soft and will not shrink or stretch during machine wash as well. Its underarm gussets help with a complete range of motion. Its slight backdrop helps the layer to stay tucked with no riding up. This no-itch fabric comes with money back guarantee with no risks if the users are not satisfied with the product
For Women Base Layers : WoolX Alpine Top – Heavyweight, Moisture Wicking Women’s Merino Wool Base Layer
The Meriwool Men’s mid-weight base layer is of 100% natural and superfine 18.5-micron merino wool. It ensures a comfortable all day performance with no itch guarantee. This long sleeve crew top shirt is easy to wash in the machine and is dryer safe as well. It is available in different size options, starting from XS to 3XL.
The base layer is of breathable fabric, keeping the person cool in summer and warm in winter. The merino wool interlock knit layer can come to use as a base layer or mid layer without weighing the user down.
Merino wool has natural odor resistant and moisture wicking properties to keep the user dry and comfortable in cold weather. This is the most breathable fabric and absorbs moisture with its moisture wicking properties.
If the men’s crew top doesn’t work up to one’s satisfaction, then the money will be returned within 30 days. The product comes with a hassle-free exchange, refund and replacement along with one year manufacturer’s warranty against material defects.
For Women Base Layers : MERIWOOL Women’s Merino Wool Midweight Baselayer Crew
This thermal base layer is of 100% Merino Australian wood of 18.5-micron strength and 230/m interlock knit construction. It is machine washable and dryer friendly. This base layer is super soft and comfortable and is extremely versatile. It is available in different size options starting from XS to 6XL.
The fabric is extremely resistant to cold weather and can withstand up to minus 33 degrees keeping the person warm and comfortable. The brand is a 100+-year-old USA based company that brings in the best thermal layer at the most reasonable cost.
This thermal base layer is of high-quality merino wool with interlock knit construction and flatlock seams. It is the bestselling thermal base layer brand that offers the best warmth breathability and ultimate comfort for the wearer irrespective of the weather condition.
People can use it as a layering system in colder temperatures or as an only garment during warm weather. It stretching rib knit cuffs helps in keeping the sleeves in place and allows easy layering of the gloves and the jackets.
For Women Base Layers : Minus33 Merino Wool Women’s Ossipee Midweight Crew
The smart wool Men’s NTS Mid Zip T top base layer for skiing is the perfect base layer to fight the battle against frigid temperatures. The layer features a modern cut that follows the body contours. It is extremely breathable thanks to its interlock knit fabrication and moisture wicking properties.
The garment offers UPF 50+ protection during all outdoor activity. Its long sleeves and zip through stand collars help in extending warmth and protection. There is a front zip for three quarters for ease of wearing and removing. Its shoulder panels eliminate the need for top shoulder seams.
The flatlock seam construction of the base layer has the best design to eliminate chafing. The fabric is of 100% merino wool construction. It is okay to machine wash the fabric and tumble dry low. The thermal layer is available in pure black color and is thus capable of attracting more heat waves and keep the user warm during cold days.
It fits snuggly on the skin and is neither too loose or tight. They are very durable and can be used for many seasons with proper maintenance.
For Women Base Layers : SmartWool Women’s NTS Mid 250 Zip Top
Buyer’s Guide for Best Base Layers for Skiing
What to look for in the thermal Base Layer for snowboarding and skiing:
The thermal layering system is complex, what works on one person may not work on another. Layering is the most important thing to keep a person warm on a snow mountain. It needs to be more versatile and effective. The following are the key areas to concentrate on while choosing a thermal base layer.
- Odor prevention
- Speed of drying
- Comfort and fit
The thermal base layers for skiing are more than mere clothing under the jacket or snow pants. Merino wool is a popular material as it is warm and wicks moisture better. It is also resistant to odor and is biodegradable. Synthetic base layers are also the best alternatives for merino and they tend to dry faster and are also durable. Bamboo fabric is also slowly making it mark in the industry of thermal base layers as it is sustainable, super soft on the skin and is bactericidal.
Apart from the thickness and the weight of the layer, it is its ability to keep the person warm in cold weather that matters. For those who are going on a ski during cold weather, it is important to use a heavier layer. The user should also use appropriate outer layers based on the weather and their skiing plan.
Most of the ski base layers have exceptional breathability function irrespective of the clothing that one wears. One important factor in managing moisture is the choice of the outer layer. Skiing gear with inner leg zips and armpit zips allow maximum airflow when the base layer is regulating to evaporate the moisture.
Merino wool base layers excel in pulling away moisture from the skin and thus less sweat builds up and there is very less odor. For those venturing on an extensive backcountry trip and cannot carry multiple base layers or rinse them at night, then merino is the best base layer to consider. Other synthetics do fine for odor prevention as well, provided that people are not working up for a huge sweat.
Speed of Drying:
Base layers of polyester material tend to dry faster than most others. Cotton has the worst drying speed and thus it is good to avoid cotton fabrics and cotton garments. Black color layers are best as they absorb more heat energy from the sun and has quick drying times.
Merino wool though considered a superior material for a thermal base layer, lack the durability compared with synthetics. Polyester is slightly more durable but is a weak fabric. So the best solution lies in layers with nylon blend. Nylon is pretty strong and blends well with other performance gear to add strength.
Comfort and Fit:
More the layer or the spandex content in the garment, more is it’s stretch and form fitting ability. These layers hug the skin and if they are not properly sized, they can be uncomfortably tight. Layers that lack spandex can be loose and add more weight to the layering system. It is a good option to choose a garment with flat sew seams for minimal chafing. But, most of the manufacturers make use of a flat sewn seam on all their garments as a standard.
FAQs for Base Layers for Skiing:
Is Merino wool the best material for the base layer?
Merino base layers are good but are not the best at all times. There are few good qualities about this layering system, such as they are naturally anti-odor, they have excellent wicking properties and many love the soft feel of the fabric. But it is relatively fragile, can attract wool moths and are expensive. The best alternative is a polyester base layer, which is also warm, wicking and cheaply available at the local supermarket.
What is the thickness of the base layer that I would require?
Base layers are available in 3 thicknesses, namely lightweight, mid-weight and heavyweight. The thickness a person chooses depends on their activity level, outside temperature, speed of the wind and the other layers that one wears with the thermal base layer. For snowboarding and skiing, a little lighter layer might be sufficient as the higher activity will keep the user warm.
Should my base layer be really skin tight?
All the skiing enthusiast need a skin tight base layer as this will help in wicking moisture away from the skin. Every inch of the skin will be in contact with the fabric that helps to wick away the droplets of sweat. It is also easy to get a mid-layer on top of a good base layer. A layer that is tight and nice will not take up so much space and will not restrict movement while binding with the other layers of the clothing.
What are base layer gloves?
These are thin, skin-tight gloves that go before large and thicker gloves. They are called as liner gloves and can be of merino or polyester. These gloves come handy when it might be required to remove the thicker gloves on the mountain for adjusting the straps and buckles. Ultimately they save the finger from the pricking pain from the snow.
Different Types of Base Layers:
Many different types of fibers are used in the construction of the base layer. However, wool and polyester are the most common and proven fabrics for base layers.
- Polyester base layers
This is one of the two main fibers that are used in the construction of base layer garment. Merino wool is a natural fiber and has a number of advantages to its credit. It is naturally odor controlling and can be used many times without accumulating the disgusting body odors. This is thus awesome during skiing trips as there is no easy access to washing machines at all times.
They basically act as a straw pulling away from the excess moisture from the skin through the fiber core, from where they can easily evaporate into the atmosphere. Their disadvantage is that they are heavily priced and lack durability when compared with synthetic base layers.
Polyester Base Layers:
Polyester is the most common fiber of outdoor performance gear. These fibers are man-made synthetics that render a high level of wicking properties. This property is sometimes achieved by additional coatings applied on the fabric. Polyester base layers are frequently mixed with spandex for additional stretch and form-fitting and with nylon for additional strength. Most of the base layer manufacturers create their fabrics using some blend of the polyester-based layer. Also, polyester is inexpensive, widely manufactured but can build up high levels of body odor rapidly.
Though this fabric is less common compared with the popularity of Merino wool it is still a good choice for warm skiing conditions. Its thin weight and excellent wicking abilities make it the fabric of choice for skiing. A number of silk base layers are now being treated for enhanced wicking and odor reduction functionalities. The main problem with this fabric is that it is fragile, demands hand washing and cannot be put in the dryer. With the extensive use of synthetics and merino wool, silk is not much preferred these days.
Irrespective of the level of expertise, one important thing that remains the same with skiing is the base layer that helps in keeping the skier warm at all weather and seasons. We hope our choice of base layers and their buying guide will help you in choosing the best base layer for your snowboarding trips.