Typically, these clothes are targeted to people who hike, climb, travel and do other cool stuff. One can read about the many advantages with merino wool on their homepages (especially Icebreakers) so I will only cover things I personally have noted. There are a million reasons why one could prefer clothes by these brands instead of any cotton brand. Here are a few:
- The merino wool keep its warming capabilities when wet. Have you ever been out jogging, only to be ambushed by a shower-like rain? If wearing cotton in this case, you immediately get cold. Your first instinct when you get home is to “get out of these wet clothes so you won’t get ill”. When I arrive home from rain running wearing a merino wool shirt, I want to keep it on.
- Wicks sweat away from your body. Amazing when exercising in any way.
- Compared to cotton clothing, merino wool clothes do not smell bad at all after use. Especially useful when travelling.
- Merino wool dry fast, and does not feel wet as fast as cotton. Notable when putting on socks after swimming, for instance.
- This applies to the Icebreaker brand rather than the actual material, but still. The Icebreaker shirts look and fit really well. It’s simple to assume that a product targeted for use in the great outdoors would have put the entire focus on functionality, but the look and fit of the clothes are really neat as well.
- I can identify with this product line. We identify ourselves with many things in life: brands, types of music, politics and so on. Earlier I have not identified with anything in the clothes category, but with Icebreaker I can. Combine my Norröna outershell and Norröna fleece with some Icebreaker merino, and I am in the zone.
There should always be a list of negative things when one writes a blog post like this. Based on my own experiences, it can be concluded in three points:
- Merino wool clothing is expensive. There’s a reason we buy cotton. It’s extremely cheap.
- Merino wool is not like ordinary wool, so there are no itching to worry about (as you could imagine based on old memories of wool sweaters). But with that said, I personally think it’s hard to beat the softness of cotton.
- Due to its water repellent nature, it becomes practically impossible to wipe glasses clean with merino wool. (Luckily, this is no problem since my Norröna outershell comes with a built-in glasses cleaning cloth. Yes, I will stop talking about my Norröna outershell now.)