How To Bundle-Up For Winter Like A Canadian

7 January 2018

Heya my lovelies!

I hope everyone is enjoying the fresh start to a new year. I've got all my resolution lists written out for goals I hope to accomplish in the next 12 months, and it is super motivating! Unfortunately, we have been hit with frigid temperatures and mountains of snow here in Cleveland. Today, I thought I would share my tried and true tips for surviving winter without sustaining any cold injuries. This will be particularly focused on weather below -20˚C (-4˚F). I have been working in the Emergency Department this month, and the amount of frostbite I've seen has been astounding! Friends, protect yourself and each other!
VOGUE Japan 2017

1. Invest in a warm, long parka. The least amount of body area exposed to the elements the better. Good brands make a difference; particularly in construction and insulation. I have reliably purchased warm parkas since I was young, but frequently from fashion brands. This year I got one from North Face (an outdoor company specializing in clothing for extreme sporting conditions) just because it was the parka with the slimmest fit. To my big surprise the difference in overall warmth is HUGE compared to my past purchases! There are grip sleeves inside the actual sleeves, magnetic strap devices to decrease air gaps, high insulated collars, waterproofing and air venting, etc. North Face knows their shit.
PS. Get a size that allows you to fit a thick sweater underneath!
I have the Tremaya Parka in XS, Graphite color (it's sold out on The North Face website, and Nordstrom but save the links in case they re-stock!)

VOGUE Russia

2. Extremities - these are the quickest areas of your body to get frostbite because the vessels in your body vasoconstrict in the extremities to preferentially keep your core organs warm (in some temperatures, you can get frostbite as quickly as 10 minutes!!).
  Hands - Thick, fleece-lined gloves are my go to. I stopped wearing single knit gloves mid-December because it was gosh darn freezing. Mittens are even more ideal because they conserve heat by having all your fingers lying close together!

  Feet - Get yourself a solid pair of winter boots. My pretty over-the-knee leather boots are just not cutting it right now, no matter how many warm socks I wear. I'm hunting for a pair of tall snow boots this week, and hoping they get delivered ASAP. My favorite winter boots whilst in Toronto were the Cougar brand tall snow boots; the brand is very reliable and I was super toasty. There is a huge difference in build of winter boots vs fashion boots. You need them to be lined, insulated, waterproof and tall enough on the shaft to avoid getting snow inside. Update 2/1/2018: I got these Aquatherm boots (now on sale!), and after using them for a few weeks I can vouch for their brand: my boots are very warm and insulated, waterproof, and the leg opening is small enough for my skinny legs while allowing me to adjust it even tighter with laces and pulls. Also, these boots have prevented me from slipping and falling; there is great grip in the rubber sole.

  Face (especially ears, tip of nose): I typically favor a thick toque and a scarf I can wrap high enough to cover my nose so only the eyes peak out. If it's not scary cold like we are getting now, then I forgo the scarf and hat, because my parka has a high collar and a warm hood.

3. Wear an 'under outfit'. I always have leggings on under my pants (fleece-lined are obviously the best)! I also like wearing the Zara slim tanks under my sweaters, or a close fitting t-shirt if there is enough room. The more layers the better! Update 2/11/2018: I've tried these heattech socks by Uniqlo and they are great for sweat wicking whilst keeping the feet warm. I tried the heattech leggings, and I am not a huge fan. I feel any fleece-lined leggings are warmer and get the job done for a cheaper price.

4. Avoid drinking too much alcohol and don't do drugs (ever!). This has landed a ton of my patients in our ED beds with horrible frostbite, and some on the brink of hypothermia because of misguided beliefs that they were invincible whilst under the influence. Careful at those parties! Also, if you are walking past a homeless person in frigid weather conditions, please find the appropriate organization to call, and find these people a warm place to survive another day!
winter parka
source: unknown

I hope you found these tips useful! They are mostly for deep freeze temperatures, so remove a few layers if you're getting too hot and sweaty. Tell me some of your winter survival tips!


1 comment

  1. I discover I enjoy reading you so much! It’s a pity we don’t have those temperatures ar Madrid! Love all you showed in your post, thanks for sharing


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