Clothing to Wear in the Snow
The clothing you select for a visit to the snow depends on what you are going to the snow for, if your intention is just to hook up with friends and spend time lounging around the open fire in the lodge or spending time in the bars and restaurants, fashion is properly the priority.
However the essential thing is when travelling to and spending time outside in the snowfields is to stay warm! - That's not to say one can't look trendy and wear the latest fashions at the same time.
Fashion is normally the lower priority, with some of the more die-hard skiers and board riders. Let's face it when the snow is good it's time to play and who really cares about what one wears as long as it is warm, protective and wet weather proof.
COVERING THE BASICS
Firstly stay away from Jeans and cotton or vinyl gloves, they do NOT give adequate protection against the elements, wind, rain or snow. To stay dry or dryer you might select fleece over cotton, it is best to wear air-trapping middle layers then cover everything with a windproof layer including you head, more heat escapes form the head than any other part of the body and don't forget hands and face as well.
Getting back to fashion let's face it some of us do like to wear the best, look the part on and off the slops. So fashion can play a part in choosing ski wear. As stated, while low in priority, the way to go is not to freeze so go with style first including warmth.
Before heading off to the snow make the decision and decide honestly what you need in clothing, and go buy it. Keep in mind high fashion can sometimes means more money.
COVERING A BIT MORE THAN THE BASICS
Clothing can be divided into two layers:-
* The inner, insulating layers;
* The outer, windproof and waterproof layer.
When in the snowfields and the cold weather the insulating layers of clothing are the most important. By wearing a number of thin layers you are able to trap the warm air especially if they are made of material that will stay warm, even when wet, are much better than two thick bulkier layers.
The weather has a bearing on how many insulating layers you wear and of course you must consider the amount of activity you are intending to participate in.
While it does not sound attractive wearing thermal underwear will defiantly assist in the insulating process against the cold.
Off the sheep's back WOOL is a fantastic natural fibre, however some of the manufactured fibres like polypropylene and fibre pile will hold the warmth better. Socks in the these materials are well worth a look.
Right! We have kept you warm with the inner layers, now you need to stay dry and ensure the wind chill effects are reduced, and if you must, this is where fashion plays its part. The outer layer assists by trapping the warm air in the inner layers next to the body.
The outer layer consists of a waterproof and windproof jacket, over pants, some prefer bib and brace, gloves, eye protection and head covering. Some skiers have been known to wear larger rubber dishwashing gloves over woollen gloves help to keep hands warm and dry on the very wet days.
As a point of interest all types of windproof and waterproof outer clothing can be hired from most ski hire outlets, if you don't own your own.
SKIN AND EYE COVERING OR PROTECTION
Even in the winter sun or wind burn can be a very serious problem, even on the cloud covered days. The reflection off the snow and glare can cause burning. You will often see other skiers that had been on the snow showing redness around the face with whitishness around the eyes were a ski mask or sun glasses have been. We have covered why it is important to set up your clothing in such away that you remain warm, the face area is just or even more important.
Some say a tanned face is a healthily look?? But a red burnt face is something else again! Include in your planning and packing a good quality sunscreen and be sure to apply it before going out on the snow to protect your skin that is exposed to direct or reflected sunlight.
Bright glary days on the slops can cause issues with the eyes which can lead to 'SNOW BLINDNESS' Good high quality sunglasses or goggles are really essential. On the very bright days wearing a cap with a extended peak is a good idea.
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