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December 27, 2019 7 min read

The Ultimate Guide to Women's Ski and Snowboard Headwear

Here at Latitude we are committed to helping you find the best kit for your Winter adventures. If you love to head to the mountains, whether for skiing, snowboarding or just to hang out and enjoy the beautiful snowy scenes you'll need to make sure you have the right gear to brave the elements. Our guide to Ski and Snowboard headwear is designed to be comprehensive and we will cover everything from Women's beanies to balaclavas to neck warmers and face masks in this blog post. 

 

What is a Balaclava?

A Balaclava is a type of hood or face mask that covers and protects the whole head leaving a space for your eyes, nose and your mouth. The name originates from the Battle of Crimea and was used by soldiers to protect them from the extremely cold conditions. Originally made from cloth or wool, nowadays Ski Balaclavas tend to be made from synthetic performance fabrics such as polyester or nylon blends and come in a variety of designs. Whilst many brands will offer a unisex balaclava, we have tried to include as many women's balaclavas in this blog as possible. Most balaclavas are made of thin and lightweight material and fit well under your ski or snowboard helmet, with the added benefit that the balaclava will protect the chin from any chaffing of your helmet strap. However, there are also warm and fleecy balaclavas available that are great if you are in the mountains and don't need to wear a helmet, in other words, perfect for apres-ski!

When should you wear a Balaclava?

On a sunny or warmer day in the mountains we don't tend to wear a balaclava, but as soon as the wind picks up or in colder temperatures it is a must. Either way, most performance balaclavas are lightweight and easily fit in a pocket or backpack, so we take one out every time we go skiing or snowboarding, as the weather can change quickly in the mountains. As many women experience, your skin can dry out in colder temperatures, particularly when it is windy or snowing, so balaclavas are a great way to protect your skin too.

Our favourite Women's Balaclavas

Turtle Fur Womens Pink Balaclava

Turtle Fur Ninja Performance Balaclava

There are a lot of black balaclava's on the market, but we love Turtle Fur's brightly coloured range. This is their Ninja performance pink balaclava, but it also comes in evergreen, storm and amethyst. Made from a polyester / spandex blend this Women's balaclava is sweat wicking, breathable and lightweight. Turtle Fur was founded in the 1980s in Vermont, USA and has been making headwear and accessories for the snow sports and outdoor markets ever since!

Eivy Mandy Sherpa Balaclava £40

 Amazing for Apres-ski, perfect for hiking around the snowy mountains, you won't be fitting this Balaclava under your ski helmet, but it oozes mountain style! Made with a Sherpa style teddy fabric this balaclava is warm and cosy. Designed by Eivy Clothing, from the mountains in Sweden, this is a great addition to their collection of stylish base layers, perfect for any Winter adventure.

Buff Womens Balaclava

Buff Dryflx Women's Balaclava £44

This is a great technical option for Skiing or Snowboarding. With a seamless construction and with a 4 way stretch, breathable fabric you will keep warm and be super comfortable too. Buff make an awesome selection of accessories from neckwarmers to beanies to balaclavas and facemasks, packed full of fun designs!

Nikita Women's Backstreet Balaclava

 Nikita Clothing is an iconic girls streetwear and outerwear brand that brings style and rebellious confidence to girls from the streets to the mountains. Their Backstreet Balaclava is a Hood style balaclava and so not suitable for fitting under a helmet, but a great option for keeping warm in any mountain resort!

Burton Cora Hood

Burton Cora Hood £40

A Sherpa fleece style hood from Burton, this stylish piece of headwear will keep you warm and cosy this Winter. With a drawcord closure you can adjust for the conditions! The Cora Hood comes in 4 colour ways, the Fawn, shown above has to be our favourite. Snowboard brand Burton has a great range of outerwear and accessories and their collection is definitely worth checking out!

What is a neck warmer?

 Also known as a neck gaiter or a buff a neck warmer is a tube of fabric worn around the neck for warmth. We always wear a neck warmer when skiing or snowboarding in colder conditions, particularly when it is windy or snowy. We love the versatility of neck warmers, as they can be pulled up over your mouth and nose giving great protection from the elements. We would advice buying a lightweight neck warmer made from a performance fabric such as polyester which will wick away sweat and be soft on your skin. A synthetic fabric such as polyester will also dry quickly should it get wet with snow or ice. 

Many neck warmers are reversible and tubular in design and can also double up as a headband too!

Even on a hot day we will throw our neck warmer in our back pack or pocket as they don't take up much room! They can also double up as a useful protector for goggles or sunglasses too!

Our favourite Women's neck warmers

 

 Eivy Women's Neck warmer £25

 Eivy originates from Are, Sweden and their designers know how to keep out the cold! Their collections are filled with fun prints and their products designed for "multiFUNctional" use. Their base layer fabric is super soft, lightly brushed on the inside, moisture wicking, fast drying and stretchy making an ideal neck warmer or gaiter. Long enough to pull up over your nose and mouth, keeping you warm when the snow comes down!

Mons Royale Neck Warmer

Mons Royale Neck Warmer EUR35

 Two layers of 100% Merino Wool for ultimate warmth, this neck warmer makes a great accessory for a day on the Mountains. Mons Royale neck warmers are unisex and they have a great range of colours and prints.

Findra Womens Neck Warmer

Findra Betty Merino Neck Warmer £30

Made from ethically sourced Merino Wool we love the rich colour of the Betty neck warmer by British brand Findra. This is mid weight neck warmer and longer in length for more styling options. Whether you are heading to the mountains, or trying to brave the British weather this has to be one of our favourite neck warmers this year!

Buff Neck Warmer Polar Tubular

Buff Reversible Polar Tubular - Tide Blue

 If you are looking for Women's neck warmers for Skiing Buff has a huge selection. Their classic design is reversible and made with recycled fibres. They use a polar fleece fabric (Polartec) which is very warm and also soft, so perfect for protecting you from the elements. Buff are arguably the original neck warmer brand, founded in 1991 by Joan Rojas they now have a huge range of neck warmers, hats, hoods, balaclavas and scarves and divide their collection into a Sport range and Lifestyle range. They also offer a choice of fabric with merino wool neck warmers, and neck warmers made from recycled fibres too. 

Beanies, hats or toques?

Where to start? Pretty much every Ski and Snowboard brand also offers a collection of beanies, there are a huge range of designs, colours, patterns and fabric; beanies have to be the ultimate and most necessary accessory for life in the Mountains!

We love the huge range of alternate names for beanies - Toques (if you are Canadian), Knitted hat, Watch cap, Skull Cap, Bonnet, Bobble hat, the list is seemingly endless with great historical stories attributed to many of the different names. 

Our favourite though has to be the original knitted (usually by Granny) pom pom hat. Wool and the Gang have some great starter kits if you want to carry on the tradition!

Our Favourite Women's Slouchy Beanie

BBCo Elan Beanie £30

This is our best selling beanie, for good reason, possibly the warmest beanie we've ever come across, the Elan Beanie is made with a soft, chunky knit and half fleece lining. With a large pom pom on the top, this classic design has already sold out several times! The Elan Beanie has a relaxed fit and look, with a slouchy beanie style.

BBCo is a British headwear brand, we love their attention to detail and consideration of the environment within their collection. BBCo's range includes beanies made in Britain - their Merino Wool Cabin beanie and beanies made from recycled materials - the essentials beanie.

Our Favourite Slouchy Beanie - no bobble

Made with a soft Cashmere blend yarn this slouchy beanie will look good with any outfit. Coal Headwear, founded in the Pacific North West make an awesome range of beanies for Outdoor adventures, in fact if you have spend any time at all in Washington State, USA you might have noticed that they are pretty much required uniform if you are going on a hike! Fairly new to the UK market, but gaining a swift, loyal following check out their full collection here.

Coal Headwear Beanie Brown

Coal Ella Beanie Caribou Brown

Our Favourite White Beanie

Eivy Watcher Beanie Off-White £25

The new beanies from Eivy are simple in design, we love their new colourways (with off-white and rust available on our website), just pick one to go with your outfit. 

Eivy are a Swedish brand with a great range of Women's base layers. We love their fun printed designs and excited that they are now extending their range into accessories!

 Our favourite Yellow Beanie

Barts Jasmine Yellow Beanie

Barts Jasmine Beanie EUR29.99

The Jasmine Beanie by Barts is one of their best sellers; gracing the heads of Royals and celebrities like Sarah Jessica Parker and Kate Middleton, it was launched in 2011 and has been a huge hit. 

It is available in 7 other colours including pink, maroon, orchid, navy, white, black, dark heather and heather grey. However, this yellow beanie has to be our favourite with its pop of colour brightening even the gloomiest of Mountain days! Barts has been making and selling headwear for 3 decades. In addition to their beanie collection we also love their collection of Women's headbands.

Our Favourite Reversible Beanie

Burton reversible beanie

Burton Staycay reversible beanie £35

With a fleece lining this is a reversible, fold-up style beanie. With a pop of Storm Blue colour we love the ribbed design from Snowboard brand Burton. The perfect ladies beanie to take you from town to the mountain.

Our favourite Merino Wool Beanie

BBCo Cabin Beanie £40

Made from 100% Merino Wool and manufactured in the UK this is a very sustainable beanie. We love the natural olive colour and simple knitted design. BBCo make great quality beanies and we love their drive to try to source from sustainable materials and sources. 

 In Conclusion

That wraps up our guide to ladies headwear! There are a huge number of options and hopefully this provides you some great styles for this Winter. We haven't covered Women's Ski or Snowboard helmets in this article, but we'd definitely advice reading up and wearing one! Let us know if you have any questions or any other brands or products you would like us to review, just email hi@thelatitude.life.

 

 

 

 


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