A fun day on the slopes can turn from fun to misery within seconds without the proper knowledge of what to wear for snowboarding or skiing. Wearing proper layers can keep you warm and comfortable all day even in the most freezing temperatures. In this article I will be breaking down how to dress for snowboarding and how to properly layer to have the most fun day on the slopes.
Your base layer is the first layer of clothing you put on. For colder weather you want to wear a base layer that is tight against your skin to keep in body heat, preferable under armor or some tight stretchy material of the sort. For warmer weather your base layer won’t be as important as you don’t need to keep in body heat as much as colder weather. So for warmer weather you could probably get away with just a long sleeve or a t-shirt. For 50+ degrees F and fairly sunny I would probably just roll with a t-shirt as the base layer. For your lower body wearing thicker wool socks works for cold days and thinner socks for warmer days. For your legs, I recommend long johns or leggings for colder days and for warmer days just underwear of your choosing.
Your insulator layer is the layer between your base layer and your outside layer. That could be a shirt over a base layer, sweaters, hoodies, flannels and anything else that is soft and can help keep you warm or cool. For really cold days the insulator layer will make the difference on keeping you warm and comfortable or cold and miserable. For ultimate warmth on freezing days, a long sleeve shirt over a base layer with a warm hoodie will keep you toasty in the coldest weather. For warmer temperatures you don’t want too many layers or you will get hot too quick. With really warm temperatures ( 50+F) you could have your insulator as your outside layer too as there isn’t a need for an outside layer on really warm days. For your lower body on colder days I recommend joggers, sweat pants or any loose comfortable pants. On not so cold days I just wear some comfortable shorts for the insulator.
Your outside layer is your ultimate defense from the outside elements. Most of the season your outside layer will be a waterproof jacket of some sort. Typically, you want something that is very waterproof/windproof and breathable so you don’t overheat. Snowboarding specific jackets, depending on price are very waterproof and have many other specific features for snowboarding. They can include powder skirts, vents, goggle wipes, plenty of pockets, thumb straps, media pockets, and many more features to make your day on the slopes more comfortable. There are some jackets that are just shells, which is just a very thin waterproof material. Shells are great for warmer weather as they aren’t’t as thick. If you don’t want to spend the extra money for a snowboard jacket you could use any other jacket that is waterproof and windproof. Usually a basic winter jacket will work for a casual day on the slopes. For your lower body you definitely want something that is very waterproof as you will be on the snow a lot. Snowboard specific pants work best as they are very waterproof, but again if you don’t want to pay high prices for snowboard pants, some snow overalls will do just fine.
Always choose your layers according to the weather. For colder day you are going to want to wear more base layers and insulators. Choose each layer according to what you think would keep you warm enough but not too hot to where you overheat. For warmer days wear fewer layers and wear more breathable clothing to allow yourself to cool off. Mix and match different layers to find out what works for whatever weather. I recommend to always bring or wear extra layers than you think you’ll need because you can always take layers off or put layers on to adjust to the weather. So before you go to the resort check the weather and plan your layers accordingly.