The Best Base and Midlayers of 2015

Keep warm, stay happy.

Joe Jackson

(Inga Hendrickson)

Keep warm, stay happy.

Joe Jackson

Nørrona Roldal Warm1 shirt

A stylish collared fleece? Believe it. Nørrona gave the Roldal ($130) an athletic cut and some groovy upgrades like clear snap buttons and a brushed exterior. It doesn’t breathe fantastically, but it’s ideal for everything from riding chairlifts to après-ski beers and burgers. Nice: the massive, zippered chest pocket easily swallows a smartphone or energy bar.

(Inga Hendrickson)


Patagonia Capilene 4 Pro Boot bottoms

These long undies fit and moved so well, we’d put them on and forget we were wearing them. The Pro Boot ($99) skis better than any other heavyweight base layer we tested, thanks to the gusseted crotch and two levels of thickness, delivering more insulation where you need it most—on the seat and knees—and less where you don’t.

(Inga Hendrickson)


SmartWool Funnel Zip Mid 250

We started out thinking the extra-long zipper on this comfy pullover was overkill. Then we wore it on a winter trail run and opened it almost to our bellies, releasing heat to avoid sweating. Thickly woven from 100 percent merino wool, the Funnel ($130) has zero itch factor and features smart details like a high collar that keeps wind off the nape of the neck.

(Inga Hendrickson)


Duckworth Maverick LS Crew shirt

Stitched in the Carolinas from Montana wool, the extremely thin Maverick ($80)—it’s borderline see-through—is one of the most versatile merino-wool shirts we’ve tested. Pile insulating layers over it and the subtle ribs trap air, keeping you toasty. On warm days, the ultralight knit dumped heat as a stand-alone top.

(Inga Hendrickson)


Terramar 3.0 Ecolator CS Full Zip hoodie

Constructed from plush, lofted squares of fleece, the Ecolator ($65) is the warmest piece here when worn under a shell, but thinner material between the squares allows the hoodie to breathe efficiently when used as an outer layer. Note: it’s a bit tough to squeeze under a slim-cut jacket.

(Inga Hendrickson)


Under Armour ClutchFit Compression leggings

With most compression tights, the added muscle support comes with a price: you get clammy. The ClutchFit ($80) avoids this downside by employing hourglass-shaped swaths of breathable (and super stretchy) spandex between patches of more restrictive material, plus supportive mesh along the undercarriage.

(Inga Hendrickson)

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