Winter has come, which means it will only get colder every day. In order not to freeze in severe frosts and at the same time experience complete comfort, you need thermal underwear. And so that you do not get confused among the huge assortment, in this article we have collected all the important information about such clothes.
When a person sweats during the cold season, the sweat does not evaporate. It impregnates clothes, and that, sticking to the body, creates inconvenience and takes away heat. Because of this, we freeze, and this is precisely the problem that thermal underwear solves. It is water-repellent – wicks away sweat, but does not get wet by itself. The skin is dry and can breathe, so high-quality thermal underwear is warm and comfortable.
That is, the main task of such clothes is to absorb excess moisture, and not create heat. The body copes with this perfectly by itself. And the special structure of the fibres of the fabric contributes to the fact that air is retained there. It is heated by body heat and creates a warming layer between the skin and the outer layers of clothing.
Underwear with a thermal effect is simply a must-have in sub-zero temperatures and in any winter sports or hiking – where there is no opportunity to change.
Thermal underwear can be conditionally divided into three categories:
- to keep warm;
- to remove sweat;
- hybrid type.
It is not hard to guess that the first option retains natural body heat well, the second eliminates sweat, and the third combines both effects. Different models of each type at the same time differ in the material of manufacture (natural fibre, synthetics, mix); the density of the fabric (one or more layers); and also in terms of functionality – different underwear is suitable for different sports.
Which model with a thermo effect to choose so that you feel warm?
Let’s start with the fabric. It is generally believed that natural is always preferable, but this principle does not work here. Wool and cotton are definitely warm materials. But they have a significant disadvantage: they are completely unsuitable for moisture removal. After the slightest physical activity, a woollen or cotton thing will simply be saturated with sweat and will cool you instead of warm you. Therefore, 100% natural fabrics for thermal underwear are not the best choice.
But synthetics are another matter. It will collect excess sweat and will last longer with regular washing. And it is often worth washing thermal underwear, especially synthetic ones. Microfiber, polyester, lycra, fleece are the most optimal materials. However, such a long walk is not worth it, and some people are allergic to synthetics.
If this is about you, choose combined fabrics made from natural and artificial fibres. And look for the word “Allergic” on the packaging, which means hypoallergenicity. In general, the combined composition is considered universal.
The number of layers is also important. One is usually used to remove sweat. Single layer kits are not only suitable for winter. In the tropics, where the air humidity often reaches 100%, they are also indispensable. Off-season models are labelled with the word “Cool”. But in order to feel comfortable in the cold, choose multi-layered things. The “Warm” mark means that you can completely rely on thermal underwear in temperatures down to -25 ° C.
True, several layers are worse at absorbing sweat than one. For some winter activities, this is not entirely appropriate.
Therefore, we will analyse which thermal underwear should be chosen for different sports:
- skis and snowboard – hybrid type;
- winter fishing – high wool content;
- hockey – a lot of elastin in the composition;
- mountaineering – completely made of polypropylene;
- rafting and surfing – 100% synthetic.
If you choose it for every day, it’s easier. The main thing is that you feel comfortable, and the fabric fits nicely to the body. It’s good if you have at least two sets: for a normal day in the city and outdoor activities. Please note that thermal underwear must be selected by size. Take into account the length of the sleeve, bust and waist. Too narrow will prevent you from moving normally. And if you take it “for growth”, sweat will collect in the folds of the fabric.
When choosing a thermal kit, do not trust the sellers at their word, because they often sell ordinary underpants and T-shirts under the guise of winter sports underwear. Study the label: the composition of the fabric, the layers, pay attention to the markings. Move: raise your hands, sit down – make sure that nothing is shaking and not dangling.
The last important detail is the seams. The fewer the better. On some models, for greater wear resistance, the elbows and knees are made denser, and the areas of increased sweating are thinned. If you plan to actively play sports, it is better to take just this one.
A little about maintenance
Thermal underwear, like many other details of the “under” wear, requires a delicate wash. It is better to do it manually, or at the gentlest mode of your machine. The water temperature should not exceed 40 degrees. After washing, the laundry must not be wrung out or ironed. Drying on a battery is also undesirable.
If you choose the right kit and adhere to the rules of care, it will serve you faithfully for several seasons. Thermal underwear is the thing that you shouldn’t save on, especially if your winter is always very active.