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Base layer to Merino or not...

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I’ve always bought cheap under armour base layers for my ski trips but now not on a budget so can look at the merits of getting better items to layer with.

I am quite a sweaty person so need to understand from someone who’s worn both synthetic and merino base layers what is best for which make up of person.

Am I going to need a set for every day like my present set up?

Thanks
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Synthetic base layers move sweat away from the body effectively keeping you warm and dry . Merino and merino mixtures are less effective but perhaps more comfortable to wear but become more easily sodden. They are far better than cotton in this respect.

The MAJOR advantage of merino or merino mix base layers is that you can generally wear them for several days without stinking the place out when you take your outer layers off in a cafe.

I think merino is far more suited to multi day hiking use rather than single day use where a synthetic base layer can be washed and dried much faster overnight.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Cheers
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@DanFuller, You can pick merino tops up from about £20 if you shop around (try Sport Pursuit or even Sports Direct). Different amounts of merino fibres are available – some are 100% wool, others a mix with other wicking fibres. Mixed ones can be less itchy, if that bothers you.

You can wear one for two or three days, so don’t need to take one for every day. Try one or two out on your next trip and see how you get on.
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
It might be worth considering that if you consider yourself "quite a sweaty person" you might well need to reconsider what/how much clothing you are actually wearing while skiing .
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I really like the Aldi merino base layers, they are cheap enough that you can get multiple sets. I find that they dry overnight if washed in the evening. I don't get particularly hot when skiing though.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I find the Helly Hansen Lifa Merino base layers to be excellent. The layer next to your skin is Lifa to wick the sweat away; with the merino on the outside. It works a treat for me and doesn’t whiff after two full days skiing. I wouldn’t go three days though. But that’s just me.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Another +1 for the Aldi merino stuff. There are a few of those tops me and my husband wear throughout the year not just skiing and they are such nice tops.
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Nothing less than 100% superfine merino. V good bit of kit and worth the money.
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Roguevfr wrote:
It might be worth considering that if you consider yourself "quite a sweaty person" you might well need to reconsider what/how much clothing you are actually wearing while skiing .


Ha I sweat even walking the dog.
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It’s probably personal choice, but for sport I always prefer synthetics. Rab Baselayers are my favourite followed closely by Helly Hansen.

But everyone on here will have a different personal preference!
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
As well as clothing, consider a product called perspirex. 1 or 2 applications and you'll not sweat from wherever you apply it Happy
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Merino wool is a fantastic fabric. A good write up of its advantages can be found at Switch Back Travel.

For skiing I do prefer using my hybrid merino sets (Helly Hansen Lifa Merino and Devold Duo Active) as they do hold their shape better compared to my 100% merino wool stuff.

My 100% merino wool stuff are the more lighter items (150g/m2) I use in spring/autumn.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I got the other burton expedition.
She says they are to warm to do any activity in them.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Synthetics wick sweat away from the body much better than Merino. Synthetics which have Silver Ion (or similar) treatments do not smell, I wore a single base (synthetic Patagonia Capilene 3) layer for 11 days on one trip as an experiment and got the other half to do a 'stink check' at the end of each day. It was only the thought of putting it on again that made me change..........
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
DanFuller wrote:
I’ve always bought cheap under armour base layers for my ski trips but now not on a budget so can look at the merits of getting better items to layer with.

I am quite a sweaty person so need to understand from someone who’s worn both synthetic and merino base layers what is best for which make up of person.

Am I going to need a set for every day like my present set up?

Thanks


I also run "hot", when skiing.

Something I started doing last season was drop the mid-layer.

Even at -15, I just use one or 2 baselayers. This made a HUGE difference in my comfort throughout the day. try it. Yes, you will be a bit colder on the first lift, but after that, pure heaven.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Lilledonmarco, im like you

I only ever run a base layer and shell. Mid layer goes on for the coldest of days only
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Yeah at present I am

Base layer
Lightweight fleece or insulator
Shell

I still get hot even down to -15
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@DanFuller, having played around with this, I prefer synthetic next to skin and then merino above that.

Being someone whose synthetic tops need either boil washing or shooting to get rid of the stink, I can confirm that Lululemon men's anti-stink tops work very well. They are pricey, but good value from their "We made too much" section of the web site - https://www.lululemon.co.uk/c/men/_/N-7qzZ1z141w8?mnid=mn;en-GB;men;collections;we-made-too-much
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
DanFuller wrote:
Ha I sweat even walking the dog.


One of my friends can get a sweat on walking back through a ski resort from restaurant to hotel, while it's snowing, wearing just a cotton shirt!
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@DanFuller, I tried a merino base layer for the first time last season and can recommend it. The fabric was 100% merino and classed as "heavy weight" at 340g/sqm. I found it very comfy, with good stretch, quick drying (yep, I get sweaty at the slightest hint of exercise) and warm. I thought I'd have to wash it at some point during the week but it never got smelly. I'm now a merino convert and plan to add more merino layers to my ski wardrobe.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
One merino baselayer for me and that's one too many.

TK Maxx synthetics all the way, got another today (UnderArmour coldgear anyone?).
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Wrote this a few years back now, but I think it's still pretty accurate: https://www.luex.com/magazine/2014/11/18/base-layer-101/

These days I mostly use the Norrona Falketind Superwool (https://www.norrona.com/en-GB/products/falketind/falketind-super-wool-shirt-men) stuff rather than HH as I prefer the fit, and actually I prefer it to the standard Norrona wool base layers too (which are also a 'hybrid' with 89% merino).
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Good overview @clarky999, that's filled in some gaps in my knowledge/experience.

I'm just considering what to add to my kit so very useful.

Thankyou.
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@clarky999, Good article, will help people more than some shop staff ever could!!

@DanFuller, As the article says, merino can get wet (although it retains warmth) so you have the odd situation of seeing moisture beading on it but not feeling cold.

I have several merino baselayers - long and short sleeve - and wear them for cycling (I have one on now as was on bike earlier), walking and skiing.

They work for me - in your situation, I would suggest taking two and wearing on alternate days.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
clarky999 wrote:
Wrote this a few years back now, but I think it's still pretty accurate: https://www.luex.com/magazine/2014/11/18/base-layer-101/

These days I mostly use the Norrona Falketind Superwool (https://www.norrona.com/en-GB/products/falketind/falketind-super-wool-shirt-men) stuff rather than HH as I prefer the fit, and actually I prefer it to the standard Norrona wool base layers too (which are also a 'hybrid' with 89% merino).


Brilliant. Thank you
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
As a side note, using an 'unoderant' like Bionsan which reduces the bacteria/fungal bloom that likes to live and multiply in a warm sweaty evironment, but without blocking the production of sweat (an essential part of healthy body heat regulation). Can allow you to wear synthetic base layers for more than a day or two without getting offensive.
You can be cheap too by putting regular unscented 'bath salts' into a small pump sprayer, topping up with water and use that instead. Works well up to 4 days.

Those of you who suffer from external fungal infection/sweat rashes can benefit from a light application of Vicki Vaporub to the usual places before the day's exertions. Especially to feet and hands.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Quote:

Synthetic base layers move sweat away from the body effectively keeping you warm and dry . Merino and merino mixtures are less effective but perhaps more comfortable to wear but become more easily sodden. They are far better than cotton in this respect.

The MAJOR advantage of merino or merino mix base layers is that you can generally wear them for several days without stinking the place out when you take your outer layers off in a cafe.

I think merino is far more suited to multi day hiking use rather than single day use where a synthetic base layer can be washed and dried much faster overnight.


This is exactly right.
I generally wear merino because of its antistink charcteristics but if I wanted something to keep me alive in extreme conditions I'd perhaps choose synthetic.
I cycle ~75 minutes a day as part of a bike/train/bike commute. I almost always wear merino mix jerseys and/or merino base layers because if I wear synthetic they will already be stinky when I put them back on for the cycle home.
For skiing I generally wear merino base layers and given lift served skiing is a pretty low energy activity I can happily wear them for 2-3 days without them getting stinky. Synthetic would be smelling after 1 day.

Where merino becomes a problem is when I have an unplanned burst of high energy activity and get really sweaty. Then my top can get too wet to dry out naturally. For example this season I did a long untracked off piste descent on a powder morning. The route has a long flat/slightly rising track out which is fairly painless when the track has been put in but when you are polling and shuffling through knee deep powder and the sun has come out it is warm work. I ended up soaked and took my top off at lunch time (swapped for the spare midlayer in my rucsac)
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Started wit synthetic and although I still pack it for my ski trips I do not wear it anymore. Merino all the way!
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Good point about merino getting soaked during hard work; happened to me at first. Ventilation is crucial.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Sweaty betties should try mesh (made by the likes of Aclima or Brynje)
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I wear Odlo base layers. They have silver woven in so no bacteria stinkiness.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
bar shaker wrote:
I wear Odlo base layers. They have silver woven in so no bacteria stinkiness.


I think other folks nearby ought to be the judge of that. It's too easy to tell who's wearing synthetic baselayers.
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