The 10 Best Women's Active Base Layers

Updated December 15, 2016 by Brett Dvoretz

10 Best Women's Active Base Layers
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 25 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. For all you ladies who live in regions that get a fair share of cold weather, and for those who spend a lot of time skiing, hiking or camping, our selection of women's active base layers should give you enough options to stay warm wherever you are. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best women's active base layer on Amazon.

10. Icebreaker Oasis

The Icebreaker Oasis features offset shoulder sleeves that prevent them from rubbing against a backpack, making it ideal for hiking, as well as an elliptical hem for added coverage. Unfortunately, it can shrink in the washing machine.
  • good wind resistance
  • compresses small for packing
  • neck area feels a little tight
Brand Icebreaker
Model 100514
Weight 10.9 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

9. Duofold KMW3

The Duofold KMW3 may not have many embellishments, but it remains a top-rated base layer shirt for its durability and comfortable, mid weight thickness. It combines the softness of cotton with the performance of polyester, but it's not very form fitting.
  • will not shrink in the wash
  • good for mildly chilly weather
  • sizing runs somewhat large
Brand Duofold
Model KMW3
Weight 16 ounces
Rating 3.5 / 5.0

8. Terramar Thermasilk Scoop Neck

The natural silk knit of the Terramar Thermasilk Scoop Neck feels luxurious and is hypoallergenic, so it's good for those with sensitive skin. Its fabric is also very strong and rip-resistant, while still boasting a fair amount of stretch.
  • great at insulating heat
  • attractive pointelle pattern
  • has an itchy tag
Brand Terramar
Model S484
Weight 7.2 ounces
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

7. Ibex Outdoor Woolies

The classic crew neck style of the Ibex Outdoor Woolies looks good on its own, and also fits nicely under layers. It has a close-to-the-body fit that moves with you, and its ribbed fabric keeps its shape after plenty of wears and washes.
  • extremely lightweight
  • helps with temperature regulation
  • the arms run long
Brand Ibex
Model 0169S-8966-M
Weight 16 ounces
Rating 3.5 / 5.0

6. Paradox Performance Merino

The Paradox Performance Merino feels very soft on skin, and is the perfect thickness for layering. It wicks away moisture efficiently, and dries quickly when it gets wet. It's design also forgoes shoulder seams, for a nice slender look.
  • keeps the wearer very cozy and warm
  • fits larger chested women well
  • only 11 percent merino wool
Brand Paradox Performance
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

5. RBX Active Space

For those looking for a little extra warmth at a very low cost, the RBX Active Space fits the bill. It features youthful neon seams and ultra light construction that facilitates ease of movement. The four-way stretch fabric adapts to most shapes and sizes as well.
  • fabric resists fading
  • comes in six stylish colors
  • material breathes well
Brand RBX
Weight pending
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

4. Smartwool NTS Mid 250

The Smartwool NTS Mid 250 comes in 15 stylish patterns that will make you want to wear it with no top layer. It features a long torso, so there's no worry about cold air making its way into your mid section, and is made from 100 percent wool.
  • semi locking slider on the front zip
  • fit is very flattering
  • flatlock seam construction
Brand SmartWool
Model SS222-709-S
Weight 10.4 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

3. Hot Chillys Lamont Zip-T

Those who want to stay warm, but also know sun damage is possible in cold climates, will appreciate the 40+ ultraviolet protection factor of the Hot Chillys Lamont Zip-T. Plus, the elastic sleeve cuffs keep air out and easily slide into jackets.
  • odor blocking properties
  • suitable for extreme cold
  • convenient thumb holes
Brand Hot Chillys
Model pending
Weight 16 ounces
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

2. Ekouaer Winter Set

With both a top and bottom for under $40, the Ekouaer Winter Set is the perfect option for layering under all of your clothes without looking too bulky. The top's deep crew neck hides well under sweaters, and the fitted leggings tuck into shoes easily.
  • shirt is tagless
  • soft fleece lining
  • comfortable to sleep in too
Brand Ekouaer
Model EK001552
Weight pending
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

1. Arc'teryx Rho AR

With its zip-up neck that closes at the chin, the Arc'teryx Rho AR will keep cold air off your whole torso, but also allows for rapid ventilation when you overheat. It comes in twelve colors, so there is one to match nearly every outfit.
  • good warmth to weight ratio
  • trim design aids thermal efficiency
  • has a sleeve pocket
Brand Arc'teryx
Model 11273
Weight 8.8 ounces
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

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Last updated on December 15, 2016 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.

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