hello new skin. i'm sure we'll get along fantastically.

one of the biggies of living in northern japan for 18 months is that i'm to be blessed with a cold winter. a snowy, freezing, icy, negative degree winter. on my to-buy list were boots, wool socks, thermal underwear, beanies, earmuffs, ski gloves, light gloves, and a heavy duty coat that would go mid-calf. their winters are serious business. and that stuff is seriously so expensive.

i knew the boots wouldn't be cheap so i was prepared for that. but the thermals! there were cheap thermals but $5 but i didn't think those would cut it in -20 degrees. the next cheapest ones were $25, for tops and bottoms alike. there were 100% silk thermals and merino wools and polyester with wicking. i wanted thin ones so i wouldn't look too bulky as well as breezy enough to not sweat like i was wearing a plastic bag. i looked through quite a few and these are the ones that i ended up with.

for tops:
-the varitherm, duofold by champion. they're for high activity, odor resistant, and have moisture control.
-baselayer by koppen. it provides insulation and is supposed to recycle heat energy back to the body (i'm wearing this in the picture).

for bottoms:
-cloud nine performance base layer by hottotties terramar. they have contoured seams, jersey fabric for added comfort, and have quik-dri comfort control. (i'm wearing this in the picture and have been all day, they're so comfy!)
-omni heat baselayer by columbia. these were pricey but they have the omni heat reflectors inside the pants (same as what emergency blankets are made out of) and are still breathable.
---other than the terramar brand (which i bought at big 5), i bought my thermals at dicks sporting goods.

for wool socks, i bought heat holders and powersox. the inside of the heat holders feel like fleece blankets and the powersox are cushioned and are designed to support your feet. i bought all of them at big 5. for boots, i bought sorels on sale at dicks sporting goods. when my brother saw them, he raised his eyebrows and asked if i was going to antarctica haha.

a part of me hopes this is all overkill. i mean, will i seriously need all of this stuff? but the wimp inside reminds me that i don't like being outside for ten minutes during the winter, let alone eights hours. plus, the riding a bicycle in a skirt part means cold breezes up the legs.

none of this is sponsored, i just wanted to share what i learned so maybe others won't have to go to three different malls to try and find quality at a decent price :)

**disclaimer:  it's not cold enough in seattle to test just how warm these are in freezing weather but i've worn them; so far they're comfortable and, of course, have kept me warm :)


  1. Tivoli's. Nice choice.
    Girl, you are rocking those thermals!!

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