During last year’s Polar Vortex, I found myself woefully unprepared for the harsh elements, icy roads and power outages. So this year, I vowed to get a game plan together before the winter weather blows in. While I’ve never been one to wear heavy coats, gloves or hats (I prefer comfort over confinement), last year’s snowstorm had me white-knuckle driving through streets of abandoned cars wearing only a light sweater, jeans and flip-flops. After learning that the rain, snow and ice are expected to be just as bad — if not worse — this winter, I got proactive and sought out wardrobe advice from the survival experts over at Alabama Outdoors (seriously, many of them are trained and certified in rescue and survival techniques!). Here are the winter weather wardrobe staples — all available at Alabama Outdoors — you need to survive this year’s cold-weather onslaught.
Wicking base layers + good socks
The name of the game here is to stay dry and warm. Wicking base layers that pull moisture away from the skin are essential and no, cotton is not a wicking fabric. In fact, cotton is not your friend at all, as the fibers absorb and hold onto wetness. There are many amazing synthetic fabrics out there today that are breathable, wick moisture away from skin and dry quickly. Add a good pair of wool socks to keep your feet dry and toasty, too.
Hats, gloves and scarves
Just as important as keeping your feet warm, it is essential to keep from losing body heat by protecting your head, neck and hands.
Coats and jackets
A high-quality winter coat is a must, and is often difficult to choose, as there are so many options. Since no coat is created equal, it’s important to consider your lifestyle and needs when making your selection. Ask yourself these questions: Will you be packing this coat? Do you plan to wear it as a raincoat? Will you be physically active while wearing this jacket? And don’t be afraid to rely on the knowledge of the sales staff in getting pointers when you shop.
Don’t get left out in the cold! Start planning now for the upcoming cold, wet and windy weather!