Shops are full of fabulous fluffy cardigans and sweaters that promise to turn you into an adorable, snug, and warm little angora bunny. So, you swipe your credit card in utter triumph and think:

“THIS YEAR I’m finally gonna be stylish AND warm.”

But, then you’re STILL freezing like a bikini model at a December photoshoot even if you’re wearing a gazillion layers PLUS your new hairy sweater.

The ice-cold truth is that you’ve probably been tricked into buying a woolly looking fashion item in acrylic and polyester – which might LOOK hot in every sense of the word, but has the warming qualities of a black trash bag.

But alas they have another way to trick you too:

Huge posters advertising: Wool Mix.  

This is the ultimate stab in the back because if you end up with a sweater that’s only 20% wool and the rest is a dubious mix of nylon, acrylic, and polyester then you’re in for your very own ice bucket challenge every time you walk out the door.

As a former ski wear designer from the North Pole, I advise you to pick clothes that contain at least 50% wool.

Synthetic fibres CAN be warm and cozy when they have been specially created for it as in insulation thermo leggings for skiing or polar fleece constructed for sportswear. But your regular fashion sweater will NOT do the job, so go for wool if you wanna stay warm.

(Lots of photos and links at the end of the article.)

When your fantastic baggy sweater doesn’t fit under your coat.

Raise your hand if you’ve ever bought a batwing sleeve sweater and then you can’t find a single coat to wear over it. If it’s woolly and voluminous too then it will be even worse.

My solution is to go for slim-fitting wool dresses, sweaters, and cardigans that I can layer on top of each other and STILL fit underneath a winter coat, or even underneath some blazers and leather jackets.

Here are some ways you can style your slim fitting wool pieces:

Get a sleek wool cardigan and wear it over your a summer dress with wool leggings.

This is a terrific way to instantly grow your winter wardrobe.

I’ve got lots of different colors myself that I bought at good ole Benetton. 

If you get a wool dress, then you’ll be stylish and well dressed without having to combine several garments into an outfit. It’s the easiest solution there is.

If it’s extremely cold you can even wear a sweater on top of the dress.

I’ve even been known to layer 2 pairs of wool leggings.

If you get a slim sweater you can wear it under your blazer or leather jacket

– or use it as a base layer underneath a bigger sweater and your favorite Michelin man down jacket.

When you love wool, but your sweaters always shrink.

If your favorite sweaters have emerged from the washing machine in Barbie doll size then look no further. This problem is super easy to fix:

Wool is almost like human hair and should never be washed with regular detergent. That’s way too acidic for wool and is almost like shampooing your hair with washing up liquid.

So, you absolutely MUST get a wool detergent for your sweaters.

The good news is that your regular delicate clothes can be thrown in the same wash (unless they’re very dirty) because regular detergent harms wool but wool detergent doesn’t harm regular clothes.

Wool can also be damaged by hot water and the mechanical movement of the washing machine so use a program for delicates, low temperature, a slow spin cycle, and NEVER-EVER put it in the drier. (Hello Barbie clothes.)

Your sweater will also dry in the shape that you give it, so laying it flat and stretching the sleeves will ensure that it ends up in the right shape.

But now it’s time to check out some wooly goodies for you:

Benetton V Neck Cardigan

UNITED COLORS OF BENETTON

Other colors:

Red, Dark Blue, Black, Dark Gray, Dove Gray

Price: $94

US Shop Link:

https://us.benetton.com/100-virgin-wool-v-neck-cardigan-red-1002D6825_015.html

UK Shop Link:

https://gb.benetton.com/100-virgin-wool-v-neck-cardigan-black-1002D6825_100.html

Benetton Sweater

UNITED COLORS OF BENETTON

Other colors:

Red, Dark Blue, Salmon, Orange, Mustard, Black,

Dark Green, Pink, Light Blue, Green, Brown, Burgundy, Camel, Light Gray, Dark Gray, Dove Gray

Price: $94

US Shop Link:

https://us.benetton.com/100-virgin-wool-crew-neck-sweater-brown-1002D1K01_2C0.html

UK Shop Link:

https://gb.benetton.com/100-virgin-wool-crew-neck-sweater-brown-1002D1K01_2C0.html

Banana Republic Sweater

BANANA REPUBLIC

Other colors:

Gray, Neon Yellow Green, Brown, Hot Red, Burgundy, Olive, White

Price: $79.50

US Shop Link:

https://bananarepublic.gap.com/browse/product.do?pid=518844132&pcid=999#pdp-page-content

UK Shop Link:

https://www.bananarepublic.co.uk/br/washable-merino-ribbed-sweater/000518844.html

UNIQLO

Other colors:

Off White, Gray, Dark Gray, Black, Dark Pink, Orange, Brown, Green, Dark Green, Blue, Navy, Purple

Price: $39.90

US Shop Link:

https://www.uniqlo.com/us/en/women-extra-fine-merino-crew-neck-sweater-418668.html?dwvar_418668_color=COL10#q=wool&lang=default&start=1

UK Shop Link:

https://www.uniqlo.com/uk/en/product/women-extra-fine-merino-wool-crew-neck-jumper-418668COL69SMA005000.html

WOOLOVERS

Other colors:

Pink, Cream, Green, Charcoal, Black, Latte, Gray, Navy, Chilli, Cyclamen, Aqua Marine, Lavender, Coral,

Pepper, Soft Blue, Hunter Green, Purple, Blush, Deep Sky Blue, Frosted Green, Soft Lavender

Price: $65.00

US Shop Link:

https://www.woolovers.us/womens/sweaters/womens-lambswool-v-neck-sweater-green-15098

UK Shop Link:

https://www.woolovers.com/womens/jumpers/womens-lambswool-v-neck-jumper-orange-14622

WOOLOVERS

Other colors:

Black, Gray, Cream, Navy, Dark Charcoal, Pale Rose, Soft Fern, Celadon, Pumpkin Spice,

Boysenberry, Apricot, Lavender, Liche Green, Dark Teal, Denim, Fuschia Pink

Price: $79.00

US Shop Link:

https://www.woolovers.us/womens/cardigan/womens-cashmere-merino-classic-crew-neck-cardigan-red-9284

UK Shop Link:

https://www.woolovers.com/womens/cardigan/womens-cashmere-merino-classic-crew-neck-cardigan-red-9284

PENDLETON

Other colors:

Olive, Rose, Lavender, Aqua, Blue, Black, Navy, Soft Gray, Ivory, Brown, Soft Blue, Cherry Red, Camel, Taupe, Dark Spruce

Price: $99.50

US Shop Link:

https://www.pendleton-usa.com/product/womens-timeless-merino-turtleneck-47755.html?dwvar_47755_color=6768

(Not available in the UK Site)

REI

Other colors:

Pavement

Price: $110

(No UK site but can be shipped internationally)

https://www.rei.com/product/154649/kuhl-vibra-sweater-womens

REI

Other colors:

NA

Price: $78

(No UK site but can be shipped internationally)

https://www.rei.com/product/158307/royal-robbins-highlands-pullover-womens

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