- Layering. You are better off with several thin layers of clothing that trap warm body heat between them than you are with 1 or 2 thick layers. Consider a camisole/t-shirt under a thermal layer, such as 1-2 layers of silk turtle neck, another thin long-sleeved shirt, and/or a vest, with closed jacket over that. Leg warmth can be achieved by wearing tights or leggings or thin thermal layer under pants. Consider “leg warmers”.
- Keep your core warm. Wear layers that cover your buttocks. Mix in vests and/or sleeveless layers, which leave your arms and legs less bound or restricted in movement. Drink warm beverages (not alcohol).
- Keep your hands and feet covered and warm. Make sure that the hand and foot gear are loose enough to accommodate the layers you are wearing, but snug enough to hold the heat close to your skin. If your gloves or boots are too tight, you will not get the circulation you need to keep them warm.
- Keep the places where your blood vessels are close to the surface covered. These include your wrists (ever notice that an ice cube over the palm side of your wrists does a great job cooling you off in the summer? The same is true in the winter.), your neck, and your head. Wrist warmers and/or fingerless gloves are a very valuable layer to have when you are out in the cold. Wear a scarf AND a hat!
- Stay dry! Wet feet or hands are especially vulnerable. Wear water resistant coverings or change to dry options frequently. Wear fabrics that insulate well, and either retain heat when wet or wick away any sweat that occurs. Silk, cashmere, wool, and many of the new insulating and/or athletic fabrics work well. Cotton is generally not a great insulator.
- Wind breaker layers are essential for protection from the wind chill. For example: Consider warm up pants, over your “dress” layer, which peel off once you get to where you are going. Consider a lined hat with ear coverings.
The best part about layering is that you can peel the layers off. You can accommodate your comfort to wherever you are. You don’t have to suffer when it is cold.