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Base layer bottoms

How to choose base layer bottoms

Whether you’re shredding the downhill, hiking in subzero temps or keeping cozy in your tent, base layer bottoms help keep moisture and the cold off your lower half. Constructed with merino wool or a synthetic blend, these bottoms provide insulation, wick sweat and regulate your temp for enjoying any weather in style.

With the lightest base layers for the sweatiest activities or the thickest wool layers to keep you cozy, there’s a few features to consider when choosing your new base layer bottoms:

Considering temperature, activity level and any personal preferences towards materials are key when choosing a base layer bottom (and a base layer top to pair it with).

Material – each material has its own benefits, like quick-drying properties and durability for a synthetic blend or excellent insulation and a natural odor resistance for merino wool.

Weight – base layers can be lightweight, midweight or heavy weight (tip: MEC base layers are color-coded to help you distinguish which is which), lightweight base layer bottoms are perfect for high-intensity activity or light layering, and heavyweight base layer bottoms are geared towards keeping warm while hiking to your camping spot or getting cozy in your tent.

Other features like breathability, odor resistance and layering compatibility are things to look out for when choosing your new base layer bottoms from brands like Smartwool, Icebreaker, Patagonia and Kari Traa.