Who says cold weather is miserable? It's hard to know the mercury is dipping below the zero mark if you have the right gear.
And, well, having the right gear is essential. After all, why suffer in a cotton sweatshirt when you can luxuriate in a heat-trapping, odor-fighting, moisture-managing pullover that'll stow your MP3, give you hip, street-smart style and high-tech performance, all without breaking the bank? With the freeze upon us, check out the latest layers to fend off the big chill.
Under Armour ColdGear Sub Zero Mock & Frosty Tight
Best known for outfitting burly football players, Under Armour is now giving women their due, with 60 women-specific products launched in 2005. ColdGear is a sweat-sweeping, double-sided base layer designed for temps under 55 degrees. The soft brushed-poly inside feels great and UA's trademark ultra-tight "compression" fit provides extra support for muscles. Mock available in 11 colors, tight in two. www.underarmour.com
Sugoi Wired Top & Glo Tight
Your MP3 stows in the zipped sleeve pocket and the headphone wire exits at the neck. You also get hug-the-body fit, a fleeced inside layer and sleeves that stretch over the hands for extra warmth. Wear alone or over a base layer. In arrow (pictured), tag blue and black. The water-resistant Glo Tight has light-reflecting accents, matching chafe-reducing flat seams, locking ankle zippers with cuddly brushed poly inside. www.sugoi.com
IllumiNITE Esprit Flora Jacket
The Flora will draw attention for more than its pretty rose petal print design. IllumiNITE light-reflecting particles are woven into the fabric itself, so cars will see all of you, not just a few shiny strips. Two exterior zipped pockets and large interior pouches keep valuables safe, and a Teflon coating keeps wind and water out. A soft brushed-fleece collar, adjustable Velcro cuffs and draw cords at the hem finish it off. In floral powder blue and black. www.illuminite.com
Mountain Hardware Flip Jacket
The Flip is packed with Primaloft insulation to regulate heat and has a windproof exterior fabric that's soft and quiet (no loud whoosh-whooshing through the ski lodge). Side and underarm TufStretch panels invite you to you tear down the slopes, and chamois-lined collar and hand pockets keep you extra snuggly. In China blue, red onion, rosie and grasshopper (pictured). www.mountainhardwear.com
Heidi Kelchner is managing editor of Her Sports.