Prepare for the winter ahead with clothing layers

Layering is key in keeping warm and staying fashionable.Layering is key in keeping warm and staying fashionable.

If you have never experienced a winter in Erie, brace yourself. With the Mercyhurst campus as small as it is, most students walk everywhere. Though you may have a short distance to walk, keeping your body warm and dry is vital, especially if you’re out or away from your apartment or dorm for long periods of time.

With the onset of winter here, several clothing staples are necessary in the average student’s wardrobe for the inevitable cold weather. Layers of clothing are essential.

It’s easy to keep the upper part of the body warm. Women, invest in camisoles and turtlenecks. A camisole will keep your core warm while the turtleneck does the rest. And, they’re classic when worn with a pair of dark jeans or under a vest. Men can stay fashionable in thermals and sweaters.

Both genders can stylishly wear puffer vests. They’ve been around for years, and they keep the body’s core warm, which is vital. It’s always a good idea to dress in layers when the snow begins to fall. Plus, layering is in style, and you can take a layer off when you get to class and start warming up.

Remember wearing long-johns as a kid? Invest in a pair. Women, you can parody this with leggings or tights. Though wearing a pair of millimeter-thin nylons under your jeans sounds odd, you’ll be surprised by how warm they keep your body.

A quality pair of boots will keep your feet warm and dry. There’s nothing worse than having damp feet after a long night of being out, plus, if they’re wet, they’re bound to be colder than the rest of your body.

What makes a quality pair of boots even more effective is the type of socks worn under them. According to Douglas H. Richie Jr., a journalist for the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine, socks composed of cotton retain moisture 10 times longer than acrylic when exposed to ambient air. Therefore, it’s best to wear socks with wicking ability, or materials that whisk moisture up and away from the skin. It’s also beneficial to wear a core layer with this sort of material to prevent large amounts of sweat, keeping you more dry and warm.

If you don’t already own one, invest in a thick, quality coat. Winters in Erie are windy and a jacket that blocks the breeze as you traverse to class will surely be a staple in your cold-weather wardrobe. Plus, a coat with a good label will last for years.

Senior Piasha Chanda recalls a Columbia jacket she received as a Christmas present in eighth grade that she still wears. “It’s perfect for windy days, plus the pockets are lined with fleece. I don’t even need gloves,” she said.

Small accessories can make a big difference too. Thick gloves will provide comfort and warmth to your hands and arms in the chilly temperatures that are sure to arrive. Scarves and hats can make an outfit more stylish while keeping your upper body warm. Heat escapes from the body through your head fast, so wearing a hat will aid in keeping you warmer and more comfortable.