November 14, 2013

Guest Post | Learning to Breathe, Stay Warm, and Stay Dry: Choosing the Right Clothing Materials for Your Outdoor Activities

Dan Howell is a clothing guru. He especially enjoys helping people make smart clothing choices for specific needs.
(image: Pinterest)

Fabric and material are not immediate associations regarding outdoor adventures or vacations. Excitement sometimes overshadows practicality, but improper planning can quickly turn a great experience into a displeasing one. For example, are you going to ‘layer’ yourself with cotton clothing? If you’re preparing for outdoor sport in cold weather, that’s a big mistake. Though extremely comfortable, cotton maintains moisture, becoming horrible in protecting the body from the cold.

Those who spend hours outdoors learn to breath, stay warm and especially dry. Choosing the right clothing is a practical precedent to ensuring the excitement of your next outdoor adventure.


Before the invention of sweat-proof materials, waterproof and windproof outer shells withstood temperatures and elements, yet skiers and other outdoor performers risked breathable, limiting performance. In the mid 1970s, Gore-Tex made for breathable material while guarding wearers from cold weather and water.

Some winter and outdoor sports, such as hiking and skiing, require much effort. The breathability of one’s gear has a direct influence on one’s performance and tenacity. Modern-day performers rely on breathable materials, offered by a number of manufacturers, for better comfort and sport.


While a durable and warm jacket is often the first garment thought of regarding outdoor clothing, address of extremities is crucial. Performers, perspiring, lose body heat through sweating; a majority of sweat is produced below the neck, yet the head releases heat. Therefore, a comfortable and warm hat is integral, with some people complementing hats with earmuffs. Other face and head protection, such as that guarding the neck, mouth, and nose, are also available.

Additionally, good-fitting, warm socks and gloves are outdoor necessities. Skiers often wear liner gloves under another pair of gloves to ensure hand warmth, a nagging to serious concern for those spending long periods outdoors. A durable set of gloves and warm hat are staple items of any cold-weather outdoor adventure. It is better to have the option of taking articles of clothing off rather than come unprepared.


As mentioned in the introduction, wearing cotton for outdoor, cold weather activity is a mistake. Cotton quickly absorbs moisture and loses ability to insulate the more one sweats. ‘Moisture-wicking’ synthetic material grows in popularity, offering comfort as well as practical protection against sweat, facilitating dryness. Keeping moisture away from the skin, synthetic materials keep the skin dry and warm.

When it comes to essentials, an inner-wicking material is a top priority according to outdoor experts. Aside from any athletic participation, the abundance of layers makes wearers sweat, susceptible to cold sensations.

Nothing ruins potentially fun times more often than improper planning. This is a rampant truth regarding outdoor, winter sports and engagement. Preparing for breathability, warmth, and dryness ensures no outside elements spoil a good experience. Spend ample time planning your next outdoor adventure. In addition to the information offered above, visit other online resources and speak with in-store employees about preparing for specific destinations and activities. Preparation is hardly a preconceived notion, yet extremely influential regarding the enjoyment of destined activities. 

Interested in being a guest blogger? Please let me know!

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