When you’re shopping for outdoor gear, you may wonder whether merino wool is warm for cold weather. Keep reading to find out the answers.
Common items like wool, cotton, and polyester typically come to mind when people think of shopping for warm clothing. Merino wool, on the other hand, is a product that has recently drawn a lot of interest from those searching for a potentially superior alternative. But is Merino wool warm, and is it appropriate for winter?
Merino wool is suitable for use in cold winter weather because it is warm. One of the main advantages of Merino wool is that, despite being light and thin, it has excellent insulation properties, making it simple to layer.
Continue to read our guide to explore whether merino wool is warm for cold weather.
Is Merino Wool Warm?
Due to its warmth, breathability, and moisture-wicking properties, Merino wool is a good material for winter clothing.
Because of their fineness, density, and inherent crimp, Merino wool fibers help trap heat and keep wearers warm by forming tiny air pockets within the fabric. Merino wool serves as a good insulator as a result and can keep you warm even in extremely cold temperatures.
In addition to being breathable, Merino wool can assist in controlling body temperature because it allows air to pass through it.
Even when you are engaged in vigorous physical activity, it can wick moisture away from your skin to keep you dry and comfortable. When it’s cold outside and there’s a high chance of hypothermia, it’s crucial to avoid overheating and clamminess.
Merino wool is also naturally odor-resistant, making it a fantastic choice for layering since you can wear it for several days without washing it and it won’t smell. Here is a Merino Wool Washing Guide.
Numerous articles of cold-weather clothing, such as base layers, mid-layers, and outer layers of sweaters, pants, long underwear, socks, and even hats, can be made from Merino wool. It’s also cozy to wear close to the skin thanks to its softness and itch-free nature.
Is Merino Wool Warmer Than Regular Wool?
Compared to regular wool, Merino wool is much warmer. Merino wool has a special fiber structure that makes it warmer on its own, unlike normal wool, which relies on thickness to produce heat.
Although Merino wool and regular wool are equally warm when wet, there is a significant difference in warmth. When exposed to water, Merino wool sweaters retain an enormous amount of heat.
Regular wool cannot be used as a base layer, which is another factor in favor of the Merino version over regular wool. It is so thick that it is nearly impossible to layer some clothing over it. But because of the thinness of its fibers, Merino wool avoids this issue.
Is Merino Wool Warmer Than Cotton?
Cotton is much less warm than Merino wool. Cotton is primarily a summer fabric and cannot be worn during the chilly winter months. On the other hand, due to its clever heat-management abilities, Merino works well all year round.
Once wet, cotton loses all thermal efficiency. It quickly becomes saturated and begins to cling to the body. This can be a serious issue if you enjoy hiking or camping because it makes the wearer feel even colder.
Cotton’s only benefit over Merino wool is that it’s thinner, which makes layering more effective. However, there are lots of extremely fine, premium-quality Merino sweaters that can be used in place of cotton.
Is Merino Wool Warmer Than Cashmere?
The answer is that cashmere is not warmer than Merino wool. Cashmere would be a better choice for harsh winters because its fibers are much better at retaining heat.
Similar to Merino wool, cashmere keeps its warmth after getting wet. It keeps giving off the heat while not adhering to the body. However, in my experience, wet Merino wool sweaters work better at warming the human body.
Advantages of Merino Wool in Winter
Merino Wool is Highly Insulative
Merino wool is excellent at keeping the heat in during the winter. An article of clothing made of Merino wool can help retain body heat.
No, a shirt or sweater made of Merino wool won’t be enough to keep you warm in extremely cold weather by itself. However, Merino wool makes a great layering piece because it is both good at insulating and doesn’t add much bulk to the body (making it simple to wear underneath other layers).
Merino Wool Wicks Moisture
In the winter, one of the quickest ways to start feeling cold is to get wet. Biting temperatures will be caused by moisture in the winter, whether it be from perspiring, getting wet, or taking an unplanned dip.
Natural moisture-wicking qualities exist in Merino wool. Merino wool, which is made of naturally porous fibers, wicks sweat and other moisture from your body and releases it as a vapor to keep you dry and at a more comfortable temperature during the winter.
The terms waterproof and moisture wicking are not interchangeable. Merino wool aids in wicking sweat away but is not waterproof.
Merino Wool is Lightweight
The fact that Merino wool is thin and thus very simple to layer is one of its main advantages. In order to stay warm during the winter, it is essential to wear layers. While maintaining your mobility, it can be challenging to add enough layers when your clothing is heavy, bulky, and cumbersome.
Merino wool has much finer fibers than other types of wool, which makes it feel lighter. When wearing base layers, you can add additional layers of protection without feeling constrained. This can be especially helpful when wearing socks, where the lighter feel can make walking more comfortable.
Disadvantages of Merino Wool in Winter
Merino Wool Can Be Expensive
Despite being a fantastic, all-natural product, Merino wool has a few disadvantages that should be taken into account before making a purchase. One of them, regrettably, is cost.
There is no getting around the fact that Merino wool clothing will set you back significantly more money than clothing made from other types of materials. There are a number of reasons for this:
- It takes time for wool to grow, with most Merino sheep only getting shorn once or twice a year
- Raising sheep costs money, which is absorbed in the higher cost of the wool
- Due to the fine nature of the fibers, it takes a large amount of Merino wool to produce a garment–which obviously means more Merino sheep are required
- It is quite labor-intensive to get Merino wool ready for market
When all is said and done, it is not unusual for a basic Merino wool shirt to cost more than $50.
Softness Depends on Personal Preference
One of the main advantages of buying Merino wool clothing is its softness, according to numerous blogs and user reviews. But there’s some room for disagreement here.
While some users prefer the smooth, airy feel of Merino products, other users claim to prefer the feel of cotton. Merino wool is therefore softer than regular wool, but there may be other materials that have a softer feel to the touch.
Uncertain Ethics and Sustainability in Production
Merino wool has the potential to be an organic fabric for clothing, but before making any assumptions, you should definitely do some research on the manufacturer.
In order to make an informed decision about whether the company produces its Merino wool clothing using ethical and sustainable practices, some customers find it helpful to research issues related to the raising and harvesting of wool.
Conclusion: is Merino Wool Warm?
The fiber of Merino wool naturally crinkles. Your body heat is trapped in air pockets by the crimp, keeping you warm for a longer period of time. Taking care of your Merino wool properly can also keep it last longer.
The warmth that is trapped around the body is increased when a Merino base layer is worn under a Merino shirt for added warmth. If you want to pack light, look for clothing made of Merino wool because it provides excellent warmth for its weight.
Is Merino Wool Warmer Than Lambswool?
Dry lambswool (or virgin wool) retains more heat than merino wool. However, merino wool is warmer than lambswool when it is wet.
Is Fleece Warmer Than Merino?
Feather is much cooler than Merino wool. If it rains, fleece loses its ability to keep you warm because it quickly becomes saturated.
What Temperature Is Merino Wool Good For?
They can withstand temperatures ranging from -20 C° up to +35 C°. Merino wool also produces exceptional fabrics that outperform materials like cotton or synthetics on all counts when combined with contemporary spinning technology and fiber treatments. Merino wool perfectly balances performance, comfort, and style.
Is Merino Wool Good for Extreme Cold?
Merino Wool, in particular, is one of the best-rated fabrics to keep you warm in cold weather due to its natural ability to wick away moisture and breathability. There is a good reason why wool is used most frequently in beanies, sweaters, boots, socks, scarves, and mitts.