Extreme cold equals extreme layering, right? Not with this sleek set. Columbia’s new Omni-Heat 3D packs a whole lotta warmth into a fairly light package, keeping us toasty during single-digit snowshoe treks to New Hampshire’s Tuckerman Ravine. The magic comes from the combo of Omni-Heat—a shiny aluminum lining that reflects body heat back to the skin—plus tiny puffs of polyester fibers (the 3D part), which trap extra air. One tester estimated the set was about 30 percent warmer than other baselayers of similar weight.
The polyester/ elastane material is good but not great at wicking; the interior has a tacky feeling, which made us sticky at the small of the back and elbows when temps reached the 30s (it dried quickly, though). The trade-off for such lightweight heat: Some testers found the tight cut restrictive.
“These didn’t get a wash for a week skiing in Banff, but there was no weird stretch- ing you’d expect after wearing the same layer for 15 hours a day,” notes a tester.
Weight: 7.6 oz.
Sizes: Men’s S-XXL, Women’s XS-XL
See more of the best Baselayers for Winter 2018
See the entire Winter Gear Guide