woman with mask standing beside pine tree covered with snow

What Can You Wear in Cold Weather Without Being Overheated

woman with mask standing beside pine tree covered with snow

Did you ever travel in winter? It was freezing outside, but it was warm inside. This is just one problem with winter packing. Learn here what clothing tips we recommend to avoid this problem!

Dressing comfortably in cold weather

Help! A reader questions: I am going to the UK for Christmas. Do you have any suggestions for how to dress for cold weather and overheated indoors? My typical outfit would include a thin layer of merino, jeans, a wool blend jumper, or dress, and a coat. This works well outside, but it is difficult to remove the base layer in shops. Australia is where I live and central heating is a problem for me.

This is a fact that we have experienced firsthand as a British resident for the past few decades. Although we have slowly become more comfortable with the cold winter weather, it is still difficult to find the right balance between being warm outdoors and not getting too hot indoors.

These are some tips to help you pack for cold weather travel

These tried-and-true tips will help you dress warmly in cold weather, without overheating indoors.

  • Skip the Base Layer

Skip the base layer if you are planning to spend much time indoors. A wool pullover and a warm coat will be sufficient unless you plan to spend a lot of time outdoors.

While this strategy might not be suitable for every day of your trip, it may work well for shopping or museum days.

Find the perfect down jacket for cold weather travels.

  • Layer after Layer

Layering is the best tip. One reader said, “It’s all in the layers. A scarf and hat keep you warm and are easy to pack.”

Imagine an onion with all its layers. Begin with the thinnest pieces closest to your body, and then work your way to the thicker layers until you reach your coat layer. This may require you to wear a thin shirt underneath a sweater or vest under your coat, depending on the temperature.

It’s important to wear thin layers while indoors. Layers can be stored in a small packing cube that you carry with you.

  • Keep your base layer short sleeved

While thermals are usually long-sleeved, you can also use a sleeveless or short-sleeved top to act as a base layer. A short-sleeved shirt is the worst thing to wear when it’s cold outside. It’s an excellent way to cool off when you go indoors, or head down to the tube, where it can become hot and muggy.

One reader explained that she wears a base layer, a sweater and a coat and then peel it off as necessary. Because I am prone to hot flashes, my base layer is short sleeves. Another reader adds, “I also wear short sleeves, a sweater, and a coat. Then, I have a zip-up long sleeve, and then I put on my main jacket.”

  • Accessories are powerful!

Winter accessories can be used as accents all year, but jewelry is great for adding a stylish touch. Scarves, gloves, and hats are the ultimate accessories heroes. They keep your body warm in ways that other clothing cannot, like your ears and your back.

One reader recommends scarves and hats highly. He explained, “The scarf keeps in about 80 percent of your body heat, and if you get large blanket scarfs you can wear them multiple ways, even indoors. Or wear them like a shawl.”

Another reader added, “A large scarf, hat and gloves will keep you warm until the cold outside is gone. They can also be stored in your bag so they don’t get lost.”

You could combine this strategy with the second one, where you would skimp on the base layer. You should use a bag, tote or backpack that has enough room to hold your warm accessories once you are indoors.

Tip: Use a small scarf such as a neck gaitor to keep warm outdoors, but it can be stored away indoors.

  • Wear a long coat

You can ditch the puffers and jackets for a long, duster coat. They keep your legs and bottom warm which makes it more comfortable to walk outdoors. It’s also easy to remove when you go indoors.

If you don’t feel like a marshmallow, long coats can be a great option. A UK reader said, “I like having longer coats that are warm enough that you don’t need to wear under layers.” If I’m going out for long periods of time, I don’t need to wear layers.

If you want to wear a thin coat, you will need quality underlayers. So make sure you stick with warm fabrics like merino wool.

These are the best women’s winter parkas. They will keep you warm, but they are lightweight and comfortable.

  • Choose the right fabrics

Bundling up is made easier by fabrics. Cotton is breathable but not too warm so it’s important to layer up thicker layers to keep warm. Merino wool, however, insulates heat and keeps you warmer. Look for fabrics that are comfortable, especially when you’re looking for base layers.

Merino wool sweaters are my favorite because they are light and incredibly warm. They have been my favorite sweaters for many years. I still love them even after I have worn them so many times. To keep me warm, I will layer two depending on the temperature.

One reader said that “Merino layers help to combat the damp weather.” While another suggested silk as a base layer and stated, “That’s what you’ll wear to work in the mornings underneath your fancy pants.” Silk is a good choice for me because it provides warmth and wind protection, but doesn’t make me overheat.

  • Take care of your feet!

Our feet and toes are often overlooked when we think of cold weather clothing. It’s more important than ever to keep your feet warm because they are closest to the snowy or wet ground.

Our readers recommend ankle boots as the best winter shoes. We agree. Because boots provide more warmth and cover your ankles, they allow you to wear layers of high socks under your jeans.

One reader said, “Thick socks are essential, waterproof boots are a must. Cold toes equals chill bones!” Wool socks tend to wick moisture, so consider wool socks. A waterproof boot will keep your feet dry and warm in the event of snow or rain.

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