Nikwax retailer Nevisport on planning your walking outfit…

Founded in 1970, in the shadow of Ben Nevis, by climbers Ian A. Sykes MBE and Ian D. Sutherland, Nevisport has grown to become one of the country’s leading outdoor speciality retailers, with a strong tradition of quality, value for money and genuinely caring for their customers.

Here, they share their tips on how to put together your perfect walking outfit – and how to care for it using Nikwax…

Finding the perfect walking outfit doesn’t need to be complicated; if you follow these simple steps, you will easily put together an outfit that works for you. You will need:

  • Breathable base layer
  • Insulating mid-layer
  • Waterproof outer layers
  • Waterproof walking footwear
  • Good quality accessories

Base layers
It is a misconception that base layers are only for insulation! Actually, their purpose is to wick away moisture and keep you dry, even during exertion so you don’t get clammy. You should avoid cotton tops for this initial layer (cotton naturally absorbs and retains moisture) and instead choose a garment designed specifically for moisture wicking.

Once your base layers have been worn a few times and are starting to smell, clean them with Nikwax BaseWash® to deodorise, freshen, soften, and enhance their drying and cooling performance.

If, during colder months, you choose to wear woollen base layers, then keep these performing with Nikwax Wool Wash. Unlike household detergents that cause wool to retain moisture, Wool Wash maintains the delicate, natural properties of wool. When you get hot, sweat will spread quickly and dry faster, whilst Wool Wash also deodorises to keep garments smelling fresh.  

Mid-layers

Your mid-layer should keep you warm, and fleeces and micro-fleeces are the best insulators for your top half (although you can definitely go old school with a thick wool jumper in extra cold conditions). Fleeces are also lightweight, so you can pack them away easily when the weather warms up.

Nikwax PolarProof® leaves a flexible water repellent treatment on individual fleece fibres that allows moisture vapour to pass through, maintaining breathability and optimising performance in wet weather. It also inhibits pilling of fleece fabrics, so your fleece stays newer for longer.

For your bottom half, we recommend quick drying walking trousers or running tights as these won’t get damp and leech the heat out of your legs. Avoid wearing jeans, which can stay wet and heavy for a very long time, leaving you feeling damp and very uncomfortable!

Outer layers
These will protect you from bad weather and a technical walking jacket paired with over-trousers (optional) are best for the job as your windproof and waterproof layers. In dryer weather however, you might prefer a softshell water resistant option. Look out for jackets with breathability vents (especially in the armpit areas), comfortable hoods, and good pocket space.

Nikwax Tech Wash® is an easy-to-use and highly effective cleaner that will also revitalise the Durable Water Repellency (DWR) of your jacket and maintain its breathability. When Tech Wash alone does not revitalise the DWR, re-proof with Nikwax TX.Direct®.

Footwear
Good quality walking boots are the best choice for most hiking trails, though you can go with lighter, more comfortable walking shoes on well-maintained paths.

Nikwax Footwear Cleaning Gel will remove dirt and bring life back to your waterproof footwear, whilst Nikwax Fabric & Leather Proof will replenish Durable Water Repellency on fabric and leather combination footwear, ensuring your feet stay dry and your footwear lasts longer.

Accessories
Finish off your outfit with hiking accessories to ensure you stay as comfortable as possible. Choose moisture-wicking walking socks that provide cushioning, without being so bulky they crowd your toes, and seek out windproof gloves – incredibly important on cooler days. In cold weather, mittens are better at trapping heat.

You should also cover your ears with a water resistant hat for protection from wind chill and wear a snood to protect your neck, which will also allow you to cover the lower part of your face in harsh wind.

Lastly, a good quality, fully adjustable walking rucksack can make a world of difference, allowing you to easily distribute weight and reduce rub, which can be a lifesaver on longer walks.

Shop the full walking and hiking gear range at Nevisport today!

Photo: toomas-tartes – Unsplash