Base layers are an important part of an outdoor-lover’s winter wardrobe, especially if you’re a walker, biker, hiker, climber or camper who likes to be out for long periods of time. They are close-fitting, making them compact and efficient beneath other layers, but are designed to trap a thin layer of air between the fabric and your skin; your body then heats this trapped air, providing an extra level of warmth to your torso.
EDZ’s merino wool base layers – the men’s Merino Wool 200g Base Layer Zip Neck Top above, and the almost identical women’s Merino Wool Base Layer Zip Neck below – are solid and relatively affordable merino wool top, warm and comfortable with a handy zip on the neck.
Merino wool dries quickly and has remarkable anti-odour properties – so it seldom needs washing. The base layer is medium to light in weight and the fit is close, without being tight, so there is good freedom of movement. There are well-placed thumb loops on the cuffs, and a half-zip on the neck can be pulled down to the chest, allowing you to release heat quickly and easily if needed. (DG)
Facts at a glance:
- Fabric: 100% superfine merino wool, 200 g
- Care: Machine washable
- Weight: 200g
Helly Hansen LIFA Merino Midweight 1/2 Zip LS Top
This base layer has the all-important crew neck to keep out drafts, as well as a half zip allows you to regulate temperature; and the outer fabric is 100% odour-resistant merino wool – so far similar to the EDZ baselayer above. What it adds is an extra inner layer, bonded to the wool: a synthetic fabric designed to wick moisture away from the skin, so it feels dry even when you are perspiring from exertion. Men’s and women’s versions are available. (JP)