Hawkshead Blog Posts

How to Layer for Skiing Success

Skiing trips are exhilarating and a way to spend some adventurous quality time with your friends and family. While we can’t do much about the worry of the little ones falling over, or the people speeding past on the slopes, we can help you understand how to layer for skiing to keep your family warm and cosy when they need it most.
From ski base layers to the best coats and jackets, read on to learn how to layer for skiing success…

What is a base layer for skiing?

When it comes to ski layers, this is your first port of call. A ski base layer is clothing made from insulating fabric, usually worn close to the skin. This is, as the name suggests, worn underneath your ski layers to regulate your temperature while you’re on the slopes. The insulating fabric acts to try and keep moisture off your skin and stop you from becoming too cold. This is why the order of your layers is really important – so make sure you always put your base layer on first!

Picking the best base layer for skiing

Choosing the best base layer for skiing is the first step to effectively prepping for a day on the slopes. Make sure your base layers are breathable and have good moisture wicking properties for optimum performance. You should have a base layer covering the top and bottom half of your body, which is usually a long-sleeved top and bottoms that fit like leggings.
Base layers for kids should fit comfortably but should remain as close to the skin as possible. Try to avoid wearing base layers that are baggy in areas or lose their shape easily, as this creates an air pocket which can mean the layer doesn’t work as well as it should.

Stay toasty with mid layers for skiing

If you want to know how to layer for skiing, you’ll need to know that the key to staying the right temperature while skiing is to have lots of layers. Worried about overheating? It’s easy to take ski layers off if you become too warm, and it’s just as easy to add them back on should you become cold again. On top of your base layer, you should wear a ski mid-layer. A mid-layer can be anything from a long-sleeved t-shirt, to a sweater or a performance vest. This is really down to your personal preference, but we recommend wearing something you know will keep you warm and won’t irritate you while you’re out and about on the slopes.

Keep the cold out with a fleece
If you’re prone to feeling the cold, you can add a fleece or soft-shell jacket at this stage in your layering. This one might make you too hot if the weather is warmer, but the beauty of ski layers is that you can take them off if this happens. This is an optional layer, which will keep the whole family warm on particularly cold or windy days on the slopes. Check out our men’s fleece and women’s fleece collections for toasty yet lightweight mid layers for skiing.

The best outer layer for skiing

Don’t forget your coat!
Arguably the most obvious part of ski layers is your outer layer. The best outer layer for skiing is usually a ski jacket and a pair of ski trousers which protect you from the elements. Make sure that both are waterproof, as that will stop water from seeping in and giving you a chill. Insulated jackets are also available to add a layer of warmth and shield you from the wind.
Ski trousers (or salopettes) should be durable, waterproof and large enough so that you can still move freely. These can also be insulated and should keep your legs warm. We recommend your outfit to be weatherproof, meaning it should be waterproof, insulated and the seams should be sealed or tapered. Where possible, try to choose ski layers that will stand out against the snow – something to be especially aware of when choosing ski layers for the kids.

Other ski trip essentials
When deciding on the best layering system for skiing, it’s important to consider the other bits and bobs you’ll need. Before you hop onto the ski-lift make sure that you’ve got the following essentials:
• Waterproof ski-gloves
• Ski-goggles
• Ski buff/neck-warmer
• A warm ski hat
• Durable ski boots
• Comfortable ski-socks
However, you choose your ski layers, make sure that you’re able to add or remove items as your temperature changes so you can adapt to the weather. But most importantly, don’t forget to have fun!

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