It’s the most wonderful time of the year… the snow season. Winter is coming – and if you’re planning on heading to cold climes for a snowsports holiday or to work a season, you’ll need to kit yourself out with winter clothing designed specifically for skiing and snowboarding. I’ve been busy reviewing the best new ski jackets, salopettes, baselayers and goggles for The Independent, and these are my top picks for staying warm, dry and stylish on and off the slopes and suitable for all budgets and abilities.
The best women’s ski and snowboard gear for winter 2018/2019
My tried-and-tested top picks for for the 2018/19 season, tested for The Independent, will all do you proud. Kit yourself out with a great ski jacket, waterproof salopettes, cosy base layers and technical snow goggles and you’ll be ready to explore the mountains. Below I’ve introduced each kit category and mentioned the essential features to look out for, and there’s more info included in each article. See you on the slopes!
A great ski jacket should be warm, comfortable and fully waterproof, able to keep you out in the elements all day, even if you’re skiing or boarding in a snowstorm. Ski jackets are insulated and much warmer than a simple waterproof jacket, and whilst they aren’t cheap, they are worth investing in for a snowsports trip – especially because they’ll double up as outerwear in the winter back home. Look for a jacket with Gore-Tex or a waterproofing rating above 1,500mm, multiple pockets, a snow skirt and a decent hood. I like a longer length for extra warmth.
Whether you call them ski pants or salopettes (the former sit low on the hips and are favoured by boarders, the latter are high-waisted to keep snow out and often sported by skiers) a good pair of warm and waterproof trousers are a must on a ski holiday or a ski season. They should have a fully waterproof outer membrane (look for a rating above 1,500mm of waterproofing), decent pockets, kick panels and snow gaiters.
It may sound like something your granny would advise but it really is worth investing in a great set of thermals for cold weather. A cosy, soft set of thermal top and leggings worn under your jacket and salopettes will help trap in heat and keep you skiing longer. I love merino wool base layers, as merino naturally wicks away sweat and repels bacteria.
Snow-specific goggles are an essential on the slopes. They’re spendy, but look after them and they’ll last you for years of skiing adventures. The key factor when shopping for new goggles is which colour lens you pick. Yellow lenses are best for cloudy conditions, and dark colours make it easier to see on sunny bluebird days. Look for the VTY (visual light transmission) number – the lower the number, the better suited to sunshine. Multiple lenses are useful for swapping in changing conditions, and make sure your goggles protect from UVA and UVB light. Good-quality lenses are also treated with anti-fog and anti-scratch technology, and it’s worth keeping them in a cloth bag when not wearing them. Goggles are often unisex, but smaller female-specific models are good for smaller faces. Make sure your goggles sit flush with your helmet to avoided the dreaded goggle gap tan.