The Hygge Apparel Our Gear Editors Love
This winter, staying warm and cozy may be more important than ever. Here are a few of our favorite outdoor pieces for doing just that.
Outside's long reads email newsletter features our strongest writing, most ambitious reporting, and award-winning storytelling about the outdoors. Sign up today.
Winter always calls for warm, soft clothes. But this season, as we prepare to spend the cold months working from home and happy-houring outdoors, the hygge portion of our wardrobes seems more important than ever. At Outside, we consider ourselves connoisseurs of the fleecy and fuzzy. Here are the pieces that our editors use most.
Patagonia Woolyester Fleece Pullover ($140)
I am a gear editor with a certain affinity for warm things, which means I have a lot of stylish fleeces, flannels, and sweatshirts in my closet. And yet, invariably, when my hands go numb at my desk, the Woolyester is the one I pull on. It’s made from a blend of nylon, polyester, and recycled wool, with a quarter-zip opening and a stretchy ribbed hem and cuffs. Somehow its moderately lofted material manages to feel at once cozier, lighter, and more breathable than any other lifestyle tech sweater I’ve tried. It has the warm, comforting feeling of a crocheted throw blanket—perfect when things get chilly but not downright frigid. It also has the homey looks to match. These days, I find that comforting, too. —Ariella Gintzler, associate editor
Mountain Hardwear Monkey Woman 2 Pants ($150)
As a person who runs perpetually cold, I subscribe to the notion that there’s no such thing as a layer that is too toasty. I’ve been known to sleep comfortably in a zero-degree bag on 40-degree summer nights. Fifty degrees in the shade at the crag? Better pack a puffy. The Monkey Woman (and Monkey Man) pants were made for people like me. They are so gloriously, ridiculously, over-the-top fuzzy that just looking at them makes me warmer. They’re exactly what I want to keep my legs from going numb while cooking dinner on late-fall camping trips. They even have deep zippered pockets and reinforced nylon knee patches, so you can kneel on the ground without issue to start a fire. It only seems extra until you put them on. —A.G.
Patagonia Men’s Reversible Bivy Down Vest ($199)
It’s no secret that I’m a vest guy. To my mind, there’s nothing more practical than keeping your core warm while your arms are free to go about their business. That certainly applies for outdoor activities, but I’ve also found it to be true while riding my desk chair. My go-to this season has been the Reversible Bivy. I wear it with the partially recycled fleece pile lining on the inside and the durable recycled nylon on the outside, both for looks and comfort. It’s insulated with 600-fill recycled goose down, which bumps up your chest temperature significantly and has been just as welcome while I’m in front of my computer in our old house as it has been around the campfire. —Will Taylor, gear director
GoLite Men’s ReActive Boxer Briefs ($28)
I’m very picky about my underwear. In fact, as I’m sure you’ll be thrilled to read, for many years I didn’t wear any because I found most options unbearably uncomfortable. That’s changed over the past few years, with myriad companies making very comfortable performance undergarments. I get to test a lot of great underwear as a result of this golden age, but when I need a little extra comfort, I reach for the ReActive. Thanks to a partially recycled polyester-spandex blend, these are the softest pair of briefs I’ve ever worn. That material hasn’t sagged or faded after countless washes, while the Polygiene treatment fights off odors on a long hiking weekend or after a marathon day at work. They’re so good that I put them on just to write this review. —W.T.
Deckers x Lab Women’s Ko-Z Snpr Mid Wedge Slippers ($150)
This sneaker-slipper hybrid has become my go-to house shoe. I slide into them first thing every morning. With their mix of EcoTan sheepskin and a recycled wool-polyester blend in the lining, they provide warmth without the sweatiness that so often follows. The cushioned, rockered midsole and memory-foam insole make them easy on feet and calves after a long day of adventuring—and they’re downright luxurious for everyday wear. Plus, thanks to a grippy, sneaker-like outsole, they’re ready to go if you ever leave the house. For a bit of bonus joy, I went all in with the red floral-patchwork color, but there are lower-key black and white versions for those who want a more subtle look. —Maren Larsen, assistant editor
Outdoor Research Men’s Trail Mix Snap Pullover ($89)
Grid-style sweaters are not new, but the Trail Mix is so soft that it made me rethink how plush a fleece pullover could be. It doesn’t have an outwardly fuzzy appearance, but once the collar is popped and fully snuggled around my neck, I’m in a cocoon of warm, polyester coziness. This is the first sweater I reach for when hanging around the house, but I also layer it beneath a thicker jacket on low 40-degree days at the crag. At just 11.3 ounces, it’s also surprisingly light for the amount of warmth it offers, making it an easy choice when I’m packing for an outing and want to save space in my bag. The kangaroo pocket and thumb loops are welcome features when I need an extra boost of comfort. —Jeremy Rellosa, reviews editor