Winter is coming and it’s getting harder to go out without being cold. To guide you in the choice of your pullover, heres a small guide of materials to stay warm.
1. The choice of materials
The biggest challenge of winter ? Stay warm. Instead of buying a thousands pullover and try to think about a way to stack them, you better choose wisely a few ones. Materials are the keys to be warm : forget about thin cotton pullovers and polyester materials. From naturals to synthetics, heres the good ones.
A. Natural materials
Wool is a natural material from animal origin (sheeps or goats). It’s a moisture absorbant fibre and an excellent thermal insulator. Wool quality is variable depending on sheeps. There are various wool type with different properties. Here’s 4 of them particularly efficient.
– Alpaca wool
Alpaca wool is made out of the fleece of alpaca sheeps.The fiber of this wool is very fine, which makes it a product with good isothermal qualities. In ready-to-wear clothings, alpaca is often mixed with sheep’s wool to increase its strength and hold.
Advantages :softness, warmth, resistance, lightness
Disadvantage : It’s costly
Famous wool known for its isothermal qualities, resistance and ease of maintenance. It is obtained from angora goats, which produce a hair that is 3 to 4 times thinner than a human hair.
Disadvantage: soft toys, traces of hair, loses a lot of hair
Advantages :soft and shiny, light, insulates from the cold
Disadvantages : traces of hair, loses a lot of hair
Angora wool is obtained from angora rabbits. This fiber with recognized qualities and extraordinary softness, is often mixed with wool of sheep (about 70% angora for 30% of wool), in order to increase the robustness and the holding. The best products are mixed with merino wool for example.
Advantage: very soft, fine and warm
Disadvantage : leaves hair on other clothes
Cashmere wool is made by the pashmina goat living in the highlands of Nepal and Tibet. It is thanks to this frame of cold life that this wool is among the hottest. The fiber is very fine. This wool owes its name to cashmiri traders who are the first to have worked this fiber.
Advantages : softness, shine, lightness, warmth
Inconvénient: Very costly
B. Synthetic materials
Less expensive but also very effective against the cold. If we do not have the budget to invest in sweaters made of natural materials, the following is for you.
It’s a textile technology made of synthetic fibers. Its protection from cold is due to the hollow fibers which insulate and keep the heat. Ultra effective to keep warm, the fleece has thermal insulation capabilities superior to wool. For clothes or linens, fleece is very pleasant in winter.
Advantages :very hot, insulating, dries quickly
Disadvantages : electrostatic, does not protect from wind and flammable
Thermolactyl combines Gore Tex, Damart and Heat Tech materials. It is the friction of the textile against the skin which creates the heat. This is a material used in underwear, accessories (gloves, socks), clothing (T-shirt, shirts …) and even coats, with the famous Uniqlo jackets that fold like a pocket square.
Advantages : warm, comfortable, dries very quickly
Disadvantages: Keeps the smell of perspiration (to wash after each use)
Originally neoprene is a synthetic rubber. It has the particularity, in addition to the heat aspect, to be waterproof. Its lightness is very much in demand during outdoor activities.
Advantages : insulating, waterproof, warm
Disadvantage : little breathing, wear something under it for when passing in warm places
Be careful, sweaters displayed in stores as being in these materials may be of poor quality due to the treatment of wool or blends. In general the price is a good indicator of quality, except for some brands using their name to full you (Bash, Maje or Sandro for example).
2. For even more warmth, wear an underside
To be even more sheltered from the cold or to protect your skin from irritation caused by textiles such as wool, wearing underwear can be a solution. Silk is a very effective material against the hot and the cold. Less expensive solution : HEATTECH technology found at Uniqlo are also effective.
In a more general case, lay layers of clothing to be warm.
If you like to wear loose sweaters, be aware that the clothes close to the body keep better heat. Not to give up, some tight pieces to put under your sweaters can work as well.
Thanks to the great Margot Debaisieux for these photos and the shop Scotch and Soda Toulouse for their sweet sweaters. ♥