The Big Baselayer Breakdown

As we head further into the year, transitioning from winter to spring, the weather gets weird. We’re entering that strange not-quite-winter, not-quite-spring temperature zone where things are starting to heat up, but you’ll still need to wrap up. This is the season of baselayers. The humble baselayer is a multi-faceted commodity, offering extra heat, easy removal, breathability and a great look (if you get the right kind). At this time of year, we consider baselayers a wardrobe essential; allowing you to warm up and cool down simultaneously. Here at Grangers, we felt like championing the stoic baselayer, showing it the love and appreciation it so rightly deserves as we head into spring.

You want to stay warm when you’re keeping active in the great outdoors and baselayers are an excellent way of trapping and maintaining body heat. But with all that activity and movement, the body heat builds and suddenly you’re sweltering. If you picked the right baselayers, this shouldn’t be an issue. Properly performing baselayers should allow your skin to cool effortlessly, offering both insulation and breathability whilst acting as a comfortable, temperature-regulating second skin.

One very popular baselayer material is Merino wool – and for very good reason. There are so many benefits to Merino. Firstly, it’s a natural, renewable and durable fibre, that’s renowned for its insulating and hardwearing properties. The fibres in Merino wool are porous, helping to resist odours and prevent sweat by wicking it away and stopping you from feeling damp and clammy after getting active. Merino wool is excellent at keeping us warm in the wild, not only as baselayers but also as some wonderfully thermal accessories, such as hats, gloves, scarves and socks. It is important to not neglect our extremities as we move into spring – we still need to keep them toasty from the last of the winter frost. Rab crafts with the mountains in mind, meaning Rab clothing can perform under pretty much any condition. Their Merino Beanie and Primaloft Glove are incredibly thermal and lightweight, protecting your head and hands in a supersoft, woollen cocoon.

Helly Hansen produces a range of baselayers with varying properties, including insulation, breathability, lightness and durability, helping you to pick the right fit for you. Their LIFA® ACTIVE Crew Base Layer is a perfect example of a baselayer that offers superior breathability, ideal for activities such as skiing, mountaineering, camping, hiking and general commuting. Another brand that creates excellent baselayers is Berghaus. For flexible baselayers that mould to your body, allowing for easy movement and excellent wicking, Berghaus is for you. A wardrobe essential for every outdoorsman, the 24/7 Tech Tee Long Sleeve Half Zip features ARGENTIUM® fabric to help with moisture control and odour prevention.

Baselayers are so versatile – they aren’t just tops and t-shirts. They can cater to virtually every part of our body. From boxers and bras to tights and leggings, the baselayer possibilities are endless. Acai is a sustainable clothing brand aimed at keeping women comfortable and protected in the outdoors. Their Thermal Seamless Base Layer Tights are insulating and flexible, not restricting the wearer’s movements, and easily wick away moisture to prioritise comfort.

We also need to remember that baselayers aren’t just for strenuous outdoor pursuits but can be utilised in our everyday wardrobe: warming us on a chilly commute, regulating our gym sweat and layering under our regular clothes to lock in heat and ensure comfort throughout the day. So whether you’re up in the mountains or walking to work, ensure your baselayer game is on top form!