Meriwool Merino Thermal Pants - Women's Review
Cons: Stretches out over time
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Our Analysis and Test Results
If you're seeking a stellar deal, the Meriwool Merino Pants for women are a 250 g/m² 100% merino wool option you should consider. Designed with a comfortable and stretchy fit, this pant will fight to keep your body dry in cold temperatures. Wear it through cool to cold weather under a pair of snow pants or on its own. For the price, you'll be hard-pressed to find a better deal.
Loaded with 250 g/m² of 100% merino wool, this midweight thermal pant is warm and thick enough to be easily worn with a pair of uninsulated or insulated pants. We tested it into single-digit temperatures as a layered system and on its own. Through all circumstances, it kept us as warm as other options with the same fabric and weight.
We tested this pant while teaching all-day outdoors for three weeks during the late Fall to early Winter in Southwest Colorado. We wore them under varying outer layers through temperatures ranging from 0 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit. In all conditions, it did an excellent job moving moisture from the skin to keep us dry, keeping us warm in frigid conditions.
We also wore it under a skirt while hiking and running in windy conditions during a mid-Fall weekend in Ouray, Colorado. As we hit 13,000 feet, the wind started to blow. The material weave of this fabric offered some wind resistance, keeping our skin toasty, even when worn on its own. The weave isn't super tight, but the fabric thickness is ample.
If you're planning on hitting the resort this winter or you're thinking of a winter camping expedition, this thicker base layer will provide much ample warmth when layered appropriately with snow pants. For active sports, it's also a good choice, but only when the temperatures are pretty cold and upper layers have appropriate ventilation. This is a warm base layer. Plus, if it gets wet, it still insulates due to the inherent properties of merino wool.
The thickness of this pant is about average, with a medium to tight fabric weave. While this pant is protective and warm from cutting winds (on its own), it still provides great breathability.
When holding the pant up to the light, you can see the little holes in the fabric that offers great airflow. When worn on its own or with a well-ventilated pant, you'll feel nice and dry. While it's breathable, it's not the most breathable option on the market, given that the fabrics are thicker than the lighter weight options we've tested.
We tested this pant while wearing it on its own and in a layered system. We hiked with it underneath a fleece-lined soft pant and on its own on mountain ridges. In both conditions, when temperatures went about freezing and into the 50's F, we still felt dry. Warm, yes - but not sweating out. We ran with this pant in 60 - 70F weather for distances ranging from 5 miles to 15 miles. While we got hot and sweated, the fabric still moved moisture and kept our skin dry. Overall, this pant is breathable and offers a wide range of thermoregulation - similar to any pant made from 100% merino wool. However, it does heat up faster than other lighter contenders with a thinner construction.
Comfort and Fit
This pant is super cozy and comfortable on the skin. Since it has a 100% merino wool construction, there is no itch, and ready for all-day wear. It also doesn't stink if you can't wash it for a few days. The only caveat—it stretches out over time in our experience.
The fit of this pant is versatile, fitting bodies of different shapes and sizes. The waistband is very stretchy with inches of giving, making it a good choice for most women. The fabrics are also quite stretchy, which at first feels great. The fit is also true to fit at first but stretches to be a bit larger. As a result, if you like a super tight fit, we'd even recommend sizing down if you're on the fence between sizes.
On a hike-run adventure, we noticed after just a half-hour of activity that the fabrics began to stretch out. The fabric no longer sat tightly against our skin and sagged around the glutes and knees. We found ourselves constantly pulling them up and adjusting them to get a better fit. On this particular adventure, we were wearing them on their own under a skirt. We also experienced this on a day of work at an Outdoor School. Our lead tester found herself constantly pulling the pant up under her softshell pants.
While the pants are comfortable to wear all day and don't smell, even after not being washed for a week, they will eventually stretch out. Even after putting them into the dryer, the material did not return to its original state that we had out of the packaging. As a result, this isn't our first choice to wear on its own, simply because it looks stretched out. However, it still performs and does the work it needs to under a pair of pants.
This pant proves to have lackluster durability because it stretched out during our testing period. After just three weeks, its shape is completely different. We also washed it several times and noticed some pilling after the first wash. However, we still don't see any serious holes or tears, even after some serious abuse directly to the face fabric. So, this pair doesn't overwhelm us in this metric, but it passes our basic tests.
We wore this pant constantly over our testing period, both on its own and under a pair of pants. We took it into the bush, bushwacked, and even scraped the material across rocks while scrambling around on hiking missions. The only real signs of wear and tear after all this is stretching out and some pilling. Our experience with merino wool is it needs to be taken care of, with uses avoiding sharp or friction-y surfaces. This would be our recommendation for your use as well. So far, though, this pant seems to be holding up after our tests. We think this is in part to its thicker fabrics. If you seek a more durable construction, be sure to check out options made from synthetic materials, which typically feature more durable fibers.
You'll be hard-pressed to find a better deal on a pair of super warm merino wool long john pants. While this pant stretches out in our experience, it has the same range of thermoregulation and warmth as our top contenders at a fraction of the price. Our conclusion is that the value is exceptional and should be considered, especially if you're on a tight budget.
The Meriwool Merino Thermal Pant is a midweight 100% merino base layer pant with excellent value. While it eventually stretches out with use, you can still enjoy the cute colors and excellent performance at a wonderful price. This is our top recommendation for those seeking a great deal on a thicker merino wool base layer sufficient for cool to cold days.
— Amber King