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Are Long Johns Warm?

Are Long Johns Warm?


One of the most common questions we receive is whether or not long johns are warm. Long johns have a long history of use and are a preferred clothing item for cold climates just for the very fact that they keep you warm. You may also refer to long johns as thermal underwear or long underwear depending on where you live. Let’s take a look at the history of long johns and what makes them warm.

The Beginning of Long Johns

Long johns have been popular since the nineteenth century for their ability to keep you warm during cold climates. Originally marketed as women’s clothing, they were adopted by men who started wearing the long johns of their wives to work in cold conditions. 

However, these long johns were quite different from what you see on the market today. In fact, the original long johns were made almost exclusively from wool or rough cotton. As you may know, cotton long johns do not have good protective properties. Thus, long johns were initially worn as one of many layers to stay warm.

Modern Long Johns

Modern long johns still help keep you warm, but they do so in a much more efficient way. Today’s long johns can be worn in a number of ways depending upon the weather and what you will be doing. Many people wear them as a base layer to preserver warmth; however, others may choose to wear them as their sole item of clothing when lounging at home or if they will only be in mild cold for short times.

This is because today’s long johns are much more adaptable. They are made from a variety of materials; however, the most effective materials are merino wool, synthetic fibers, or a blend of the two. They are very stretchable and come in a wide variety of different colors and styles. Because of this, they have improved versatility.

Today’s long johns may not seem like they would be effective in keeping you warm because they tend to be quite thin. However, this shows just how far the advancements in designing them have come. Modern long johns are thin while still having multiple layers and often other properties that enhance your warmth.

Final Thoughts

Yes, long johns are very warm. Many people even wear them as a base layer for activities like winter hiking or skiing. Long johns gain their warmth from their careful design, which pairs effective fabrics with comfortable tightness, helping to conserve body heat while preventing cold air from getting to your skin. Try some long johns this winter and see just how warm they can be!

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