In this installment of our guide to skiing we look at skiing clothing...
Proper and safe skiing means being properly and safely outfitted so that you are protected from internal dampness, external humidity and, of course, cold temperatures. Packing the right combination of ski clothing can be tricky, but you should be covered if pack the following items for a one week ski trip: Fleece Tops - 3; Goggles - 1; Hat - 1; Headband - 1; Ski Gloves - 1 pair; Ski Jacket - 1; Ski Pants - 1; Ski Socks - 3 pair; Sunglasses - 1 pair; Sweaters - 3; Thermal Underwear - 2 sets.
Rather than wearing one thick layer of clothing, it is recommended that you dress in layers, and stick to the standard three-layers system, which includes a base layer, an insulating layer, and a protective layer. The outer layer should be waterproof and windproof and should be made of a 'breathable' material that allows perspiration to escape.
Wear a fleece, which is warm, light-weight and dries quickly, then add a sweater of acrylic or wool and, over it all, wear either eider or goose-down ski pants and jacket to increase protection from the elements.
Your gloves should be thick enough to protect your fingers and hands from the elements, but must also be flexible enough to allow you to hold your ski poles comfortably, and you should choose a warm fleece hat (make sure it covers your ears), as you always lose a great deal of body heat through the top of your head.
Only wear one pair of socks at a time (wearing more reduces the blood circulation to your feet and makes them colder) and avoid blisters by wearing thick ones made of stretchable material. When it comes to underwear, choose wool thermals, which will provide more protection and warmth than cotton underwear.
The features you will want in a pair of sunglasses are not only that they provide 100% ultra-violet (UV) protection, but your glasses should be shatterproof and should wrap around your head and ears securely. You can wear goggles with your sunglasses whenever you may be skiing in snow or rain.
If your budget allows you to do so, purchasing brand-name ski apparel will net you better quality and longer-lasting clothing and accessories.