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Golf Baselayer Advice and Guidance


So, you're looking for a Baselayer for golf.  In most cases, people will want a suitable baselayer for winter golf, to keep them warm.  But that's not always the case so we've put some information together for you to help make the right choices.

One thing we have to state here and now from a legal perspective is this.....none of what we suggest is guaranteed to reduce your handicap and we accept no liability for poor rounds......!

On the serious side, a base layer is not necessarily "sports specific".  The very nature of a base layer means that any of the options out there can be worn for almost any activity with a few suggested exceptions.  For example, we'd rarely suggest wearing Merino Wool for football or rugby due to the more delicate nature of the fabric.  The one thing we do say for winter is this.....avoid cotton.  Cotton is cold.  It holds moisture next to the skin and promotes heat loss and thus makes you feel cold.

But other than that, a baselayer for winter golf pretty much takes every variation into consideration.  It's then a question of fit, fabric and preferences for each person.

Winter Golf Baselayers

So we'll assume you want warmth for winter golf and let's also consider garment versatility as a sensible consideration rather than just using it for golf.  If you're going to invest in something, you may as well invest in something you'll get wider use from.

A Merino Wool option such as the Icebreaker 260 which we classify as a "warmest" option is a great investment piece as you'll get tons of use out of it on and off the course.

Some brands do a Merino/Synthetic blended fabric which offers the benefits of both the wool and the added performance of synthetic fibres as well as increased durability.  The Helly Hansen Lifa Merino range is an excellent example of this as is the Craft Warm Intensity range.

Both Under Armour and Canterbury do a pure synthetic option.  The UA ColdGear and Canterbury Thermoreg are great all-use tops in the Warm category but not as warm as either of the previous suggestions.  These are often better suited to higher intensity activities with little or no "down time" during the game.

Then there is true sports compression.  A lot of golfers want the benefit of warmth in winter with the added value of compression to ease the muscles and support vulnerable areas of the body.  For that we suggest two options.

SKINS DNAmic Thermal or the Zeropoint Thermal Compression.  Both these ranges are a higher intensity compressive fit and both have their merits and their negatives.

If you wanted a regular neckline top, SKINS only now does their tops in a half zip rather than a crew neck.  Zeropoint only does their leggings if you needed them, with ankle zips which are a legacy from the Triathlon world where they originated.  Ankle zips for golf are not really an issue though to be fair.

One option that sits in between all of these comes from ODLO.  Their FutureSkin is a Level 1 Mild Compression so less intense than SKINS or Zeropoint but 100% synthetic and warmer than either UA or Canterbury.

Finally Megmeister does a baselayer that is fitted, warm and made using Polypropylene which is drier than Polyester, the preferred material for most brands.  The Megmeister Drynamo Baselayers are a very good option for moisture control.

If none of these offers the result you seek and you want a more "classic" fit Baselayer, then ODLO does a long-standing X-Warm Originals Baselayer that does exactly as it says on the packet.

Classic style, simple cut & sewn structure with a dropped hemline coverage and excellent warmth but less close fitting than many of the performance options.

Any of these will serve your needs for winter golf.

Summer Golf Baselayers

Far less often but still often enough, is a Baselayer for when it's warm.  The key benefits here are moisture control and becoming even more critical these days, sun protection.

A good Baselayer worn over a five hour round in the midday heat in Portugal can be a God send.  The experts are always advising about covering up and the risks of skin cancer from sun burn and to load up with sun screen.

Golfers hate sun screen as we know.  So an option is to cover the body with a technical fabric that keeps the sun off and the sweat away.  Most of us will use a technical polo of some sort but what about the arms in particular?

Again, Merino Wool is a very good option here.   Yes Merino Wool!  Most people consider Merino Wool as a warm thermal fibre and you'd be right.  But in certain formats, Merino is also cool and exceptional at protection and managing moisture control.  It is after all, a natural fibre.  Sheep wear it all the time for a very good reason.

Icebreaker  Bodyfit 150 GSM weight fabric is an excellent choice in golf as it does exactly what you need it to do.  Thermally regulating, sun protection and moisture management are the key virtues of this collection.

They also do a more advanced version of this range whereby the wool is wrapped in synthetic fibres for added strength and durability which allows Icebreaker to make this product even lighter at just 130GSM fabric weight, which is lighter than most of the tech polos most of us tend to wear.  So check out the Icebreaker Sphere 130 Baselayer.

ODLO Performance Light Baselayers and Underwear are a 100% Polyester option with exceptional fit, UV protection and moisture control and Helly Hansen does their long-established outdoor LIFA Dry Polypropylene baselayer in a variety of colours that would satisfy your summer golfing needs.

The established players in this sector are Under Armour who have their HeatGear Compression Baselayer.

Perhaps the most effective option is ODLO's F-Dry which is aimed specifically at protecting the skin whilst offering excellent moisture control with a 40+ UPF sun protection rating, one of the highest in the market and from a seriously lightweight fabric too.

Craft also has an established CTM Baselayer that has been around in Cycling for decades in various formats.  This is equally as light as ODLO's version and offers a very open body structure that makes it gossamer thin.

Most of these options here have long sleeve and short sleeve options available if you don't need or want sun protection but do seek moisture control.


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