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Winter Clothing Options
Priscilla86
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 2:05:50 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 5/28/2014
Posts: 902
Neurons: 4,009
Location: Lavender, Singapore
I'll be visiting a place with subzero temperature (about -5 deg Celsius) and heavy snowfall next year. This will be my first time and I don't know what to expect.

Most articles suggest getting a down (some say 'puffer') jacket and snow boots for this type of weather but I'm wondering if I could just make use of some of the autumn clothing I already have. In addition to being expensive, these specialty winter clothing will definitely end up somewhere in my closet where they won't probably see the light of day again for a while.

I have an autumn jacket (made of polyester) and I'm thinking of just layer a few thermal tops underneath (the new ones are quite thin so they won't add too much bulk), coupled with the usual gloves, scarf, and beanie.

As for the footwear, I have knee-high faux leather boots that I intend to wear with socks on top of the usual leggings.

Will these work?

A few more questions:
- Will your gadgets (cell phone, camera) behave differently in this type of weather?
- Can you wear makeup like lipstick and mascara or will they freeze and make you uncomfortable? (Sorry if this sounds stupid)
- Between the top of my boots and the hem of my jacket, there will be a couple inches where my thighs will be exposed. Would leggings suffice?
- Any other things I need to know?

FYI, it's a town area, not somewhere in the wilderness but I'm sure I'd still want to spend some time outside to play in the snow.

Thank you.

The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.
Sarrriesfan
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 2:20:27 AM

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Joined: 3/30/2016
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Location: Luton, England, United Kingdom
The batteries of electronic devices such as phones do not like the cold weather, I would wear it in an inside pocket near the skin so it stays as warm as possible.

I wear layers of warm clothing in such weather, but coming from the UK I am used to colder temperatures than you are, it might be advisable to wear a big coat to be warm enough for yourself.

I lack the imagination for a witty signature.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 2:55:25 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 26,896
Neurons: 146,892
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
Hi!
Like Sarrriesfan, I'm 'sort of used to' cold weather in winter, but for you, minus five will be quite a change, I'm sure.

I see a lot of 'oriental' visitors - one VERY popular item is the 'knee-length parka'


This one is duck-down and $140 or so, I'm sure that an acrylic fibre one would be cheaper.

An ordinary Parka doesn't keep your legs warm.



Trousers are probably a good idea, rather than tights and a skirt. You even see some girls here wearing jeans and a skirt on top.

Wearing several layers is perfect - as you go from -5 outside to +3 or so in a 'kiosk' to +20 in a hotel lobby, you need to be adaptable.

Good shoes are (to my mind) vital, even in the city. Snow can be very cold on the feet, especially if your shoes and socks become damp. Walking in four inches of snow is similar to walking in four inches of water - if your shoes are less than waterproof then your feet become wet and the heat rapidly dissipates.

Added:
The pocket just near the girl's right elbow in the first photos is waterproof on the outside (so it stays dry in the rain and snow) but is not usually insulated on the inside (so it stays at the same temperature as your body) so is perfect for your mobile.

Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
will
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 8:31:38 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/29/2009
Posts: 1,036
Neurons: 4,152
Silly but it’s never occurred to me that some people have never experienced snow… how exciting!

If you don’t mind my asking, where are you going? Because there’s snow that’s fun and beautiful and magical, and then there’s the cold, wet miserable stuff; I hope you get the first type.

.
Priscilla86
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 9:25:48 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 5/28/2014
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Neurons: 4,009
Location: Lavender, Singapore
Thanks Drag0, sarriesfan...guess I should get that down jacket and those snow boots after all...=\

will wrote:
Silly but it’s never occurred to me that some people have never experienced snow… how exciting!

If you don’t mind my asking, where are you going? Because there’s snow that’s fun and beautiful and magical, and then there’s the cold, wet miserable stuff; I hope you get the first type.

.


Northern Japan, and I should hope so because I couldn't escape the word 'powder' whenever I do my research about the place.

The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.
thar
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 10:02:20 AM

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Joined: 7/8/2010
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Can I just reiterate that footwear is very important. Most other things you can put up with, there is nothing that makes you miserable and immobile as quickly as cold, wet feet. It doesn't have to be expensive (not special 'snow boots' or anything fancy) but it does have to be waterproof, have a sole of decent thickness and grip, and be big enough to wear two pairs of socks with (one thick, one thin). No jeans - if they get wet and the wind is up, there is no quicker way to hypothermia (and chafing!) Whistle .

The jacket is actually not massively important, in my experience. Often a sweater is enough as an outer layer. You layer underneath it, not rely completely on the outer layer. A jacket for something windproof available if necessary, and any loft for warmth is a bonus. (I don't know if Japan is particularly windy - I speak from experience of places where it is always the wind that does the damage! - but that is generally true of any cold place you go to.)

And a hat. Be prepared to buy a local variety if you can. You will look like a plonker but it is part of the fun. Whistle

(and you can hire any kind of kit you need, nowadays. No need to buy stuff you won't need again).
A few gaps around the legs are fine. Leggings may feel cold as they don't trap any air, so they provide little insulation.

Hope you have a great time while you are there!

Do what the smart locals do, and find a hot spring to lie in...

TL Hobs
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 12:26:04 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 4/16/2009
Posts: 1,374
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Location: Kenai, Alaska, United States

A lot of what you will need depends on how much you like cold weather. I grew up in a hot climate and had enough of that by the time I was 10 years old and have lived much of my adult life in northern climates. I can always put on more clothing to get warm, but can only remove so many clothes to keep cool before I get arrested.

As others have noted, layers are the best way to go, along with a warm hat and gloves. Your activity level matters, too. I keep warm wearing light weight long underwear and a windproof shell while cross country skiing or shoveling snow. Anything more causes me to sweat, which gets cold when I stop working. If you are always in a city environment where you can get inside a heated building, you won't need to dress heavy. Being chilled for a short time isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Severe cold is another matter, but should not be an issue in Japan. When it gets really cold, way below zero, remember not to stick your tongue on a flag pole. Some folks have to be told to resist the urge to do that, for some reason.

Since this is your first time in a cold climate, get out and enjoy it! Cold air makes your skin tingle, which feels good.

"When you don't know where you are going, you have to stick together just in case someone gets there." - Ken Kesey
almo 1
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 12:42:12 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/16/2016
Posts: 889
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Location: Fussa, Tokyo, Japan

Are you going to Hokkaido?

Niseko is famous for powder snow.

Ski Niseko - Best Snow on Earth

Mt. Yotei, not Mt. Fuji
Priscilla86
Posted: Thursday, December 08, 2016 8:29:46 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 5/28/2014
Posts: 902
Neurons: 4,009
Location: Lavender, Singapore
thar wrote:
Can I just reiterate that footwear is very important. Most other things you can put up with, there is nothing that makes you miserable and immobile as quickly as cold, wet feet. It doesn't have to be expensive (not special 'snow boots' or anything fancy) but it does have to be waterproof, have a sole of decent thickness and grip, and be big enough to wear two pairs of socks with (one thick, one thin). No jeans - if they get wet and the wind is up, there is no quicker way to hypothermia (and chafing!) Whistle .

The jacket is actually not massively important, in my experience. Often a sweater is enough as an outer layer. You layer underneath it, not rely completely on the outer layer. A jacket for something windproof available if necessary, and any loft for warmth is a bonus. (I don't know if Japan is particularly windy - I speak from experience of places where it is always the wind that does the damage! - but that is generally true of any cold place you go to.)

And a hat. Be prepared to buy a local variety if you can. You will look like a plonker but it is part of the fun. Whistle

(and you can hire any kind of kit you need, nowadays. No need to buy stuff you won't need again).
A few gaps around the legs are fine. Leggings may feel cold as they don't trap any air, so they provide little insulation.

Hope you have a great time while you are there!

Do what the smart locals do, and find a hot spring to lie in...



To be fair, you do come from Iceland so you probably have more tolerance to cold Whistle Whistle Whistle

Skiing equipment and apparel, yes...but so far never come across winter jackets and boots rental, though Think

My knee-high boots are actually more of a fashion boots, I have proper hiking boots - waterproof and soles with better traction - but they're only ankle-high and I'm worried about snow getting in.

Those snow monkeys do look warm, don't they?


TL_Hobs wrote:
A lot of what you will need depends on how much you like cold weather. I grew up in a hot climate and had enough of that by the time I was 10 years old and have lived much of my adult life in northern climates. I can always put on more clothing to get warm, but can only remove so many clothes to keep cool before I get arrested.

As others have noted, layers are the best way to go, along with a warm hat and gloves. Your activity level matters, too. I keep warm wearing light weight long underwear and a windproof shell while cross country skiing or shoveling snow. Anything more causes me to sweat, which gets cold when I stop working. If you are always in a city environment where you can get inside a heated building, you won't need to dress heavy. Being chilled for a short time isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Severe cold is another matter, but should not be an issue in Japan. When it gets really cold, way below zero, remember not to stick your tongue on a flag pole. Some folks have to be told to resist the urge to do that, for some reason.

Since this is your first time in a cold climate, get out and enjoy it! Cold air makes your skin tingle, which feels good.


I've been looking at my family history to gauge my tolerance to cold. I do run a little hot, so I'll probably enjoy the cold weather but I don't know, when I was a baby I developed rashes from exposure to cold air and my dad developed all these scratch-like wounds when he was on a business trip in Paris in October.

Oh, and you don't have to worry about me ever sticking my tongue on a flag pole in any temperature, personally have never understood the appeal. Thanks for the reminder, though.


The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.
srirr
Posted: Friday, December 09, 2016 12:15:34 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 12/29/2009
Posts: 5,511
Neurons: 137,859
Location: Delhi, NCT, India
I live at a place which has continental climate. We do not have snow-filled winters. If the temperature reaches 4 or 5 C, we start feeling worst of our lives. :)

I have been to hilly areas a few times to enjoy snow. All I cared about layers of clothing. I too would not like to invest on buying something which would be kept in closet for years. I carried whatever winter clothes I could. I tried carrying the different sizes of clothes, the smaller size in inner layer covered by the bigger size. That worked. Jackets were very useful as I could take them off if the weather permitted sometimes or we got inside the rooms. And shoes (as suggested by others) should be water-resistant. One of my friends took his sports shoes, thinking it would help him in climbing over the hills. After going up in snow, the shoes got wet and he was feeling numb.

One more thing I would suggest is sunglasses. Use them to protect yourself from snow blindness.

Enjoy!


We are responsible for what we are, and whatever we wish ourselves to be, we have the power to make ourselves. ~ Swami Vivekanand
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Friday, December 09, 2016 7:51:41 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/21/2009
Posts: 39,154
Neurons: 285,107
Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
In Finland we just put enough clothes on. As it has been said already here: head, hands, and feet are the essential parts to keep warm.




In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Friday, December 09, 2016 7:59:46 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 26,896
Neurons: 146,892
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
I forgot about that -yes - shades.

In the higher latitudes (till you get to thar's and JJ's level) the sun spends most of its 'above-the-horizon' time shining straight into your eyes. It is not above you, it is in front of you.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
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