People who live in cold climates may already be well versed in the nuances of choosing and wearing thermal underwear, but for people coming from warmer climates who are traveling to a cold place, this breakdown of things that you need to know about thermals may be very timely. Layering clothes is a simple way of protecting yourself from cold weather.
The base layer is the one closest to your body. Investing in a base layer such as a good pair of thermal underwear goes a long way in keeping you warm in chilly to extremely cold weather.
Factors to Consider
There are a few factors to consider when choosing a good pair of thermals. For one thing, it should be durable. Another factor to consider is the freedom of movement it gives to its wearer since wearing a bodysuit that restricts mobility is counterproductive even if it does keep its wearer warm. Keep in mind that most thermal wear comes as a set of upper body and lower body thermals. This is to make it easier to wear the set, but then they combine to cover most of your body in warm insulation. Consider the softness and comfort of your thermal’s fabric since chances are that you will be wearing them for quite some time. Your comfort will also be affected by your thermal’s ability to wick away sweat, meaning it has enough breathability so that your sweat does not become trapped and cooled next to your skin.
Searching for Thermal Underwear
On your quest for your personal set of thermal underwear, you will come across a wide range of available options. It is important to understand the different types of thermal underwear so that you don’t buy the first pair that you see. A very helpful website that can help you weigh the pros and cons of many brands of thermals is Undywear.com. Understanding the different features of thermals will equip you with the information to make an informed choice.
The thermal underwear that you choose does not need to have all the possible features, just the ones that you need specifically. The price of thermal underwear will vary depending on the features that they have. For some people, spending more on thermal underwear is a justified cost because of its importance in keeping a person warm in cold weather conditions. Other people may be content with thermal underwear that has less features than others but is friendly to their budget. At the end of the day, you know your needs and the cold weather environment that you will be exposed to more, so the decision is yours to make.
Finding the Perfect Fit
Thermal underwear acts like a second skin that creates an insulating layer between your body and the fabrics of your other garments. In cold weather, form-fitting underwear traps the heat generated by your body. A poor fit will create warm pockets instead of evenly distributing heat in your body. Another reason to find thermal underwear that fits very well to your body is that this allows you to wear more layers over it so that you can add insulation and warmth to your body even in extremely cold weather.
Fabrics for Thermal Underwear
The type of fabric used for thermal underwear affects how comfortable it is and how well it can keep you warm. These fabrics come in different weights and materials. We have ultra lightweight or micro weight, lightweight, mid-weight, and heavy-weight fabrics which affect how warm you will be in cold weather. Materials need to be soft yet resilient. The common fabric materials for thermal underwear are synthetic thermal fabric, wool thermal fabric, silk thermal fabric, and cotton thermal fabric. Cotton thermals are usually cheaper but not so comfortable because they do not stretch well and they have a tendency of trapping moisture. The more expensive synthetic thermal fabrics tend to be more comfortable and breathable.
Functions of Thermal Underwear
Thermal underwear should be able to serve certain functions such as loft and moisture-wicking for better comfort in cold weather. Loft refers to the density of the woven fabric. Good loft means that the fabric keeps your body heat while remaining flexible. Your body is insulated well when the loft of your thermal underwear is good. Moisture wicking refers to the ability of thermal underwear to keep you dry as well as warm. You will lose warmth if sweat cannot escape outside your thermals and then cools. The cool-down phase after exertion is when the body loses the most temperature, that is why wearing a set of thermal underwear with good moisture wicking is important, it allows you to remain dry and keep your body heat.
This breakdown of what you need to know about thermal underwear should give you enough of a background to get you started in finding yourself the right base layer for a trip into colder climates.