Fleece Jackets - The Insulating Layer
 - Arctic, Antarctic and Mountain Clothing

Fleece is a polyester velour material that creates air pockets so trapping and retaining body heat. There are a wide range of fleeces available, some for real bargain prices. Despite initial appearances, you do get what you pay for. Less expensive fleece fabrics just don't insulate so well or retain their insulating qualities and non-pilling appearance after not very much use and laundering.

Advantages of fleece:

  • Provides warmth without the weight and bulk of traditional insulating fabrics
  • Very breathable to provide comfort in all activities; does not restrict the movement of water vapor
  • Dries quickly to minimize heat loss
  • Machine washable
  • Versatile; appropriate for a broad range of activities
  • Available in light, mid, and heavy weight constructions to provide a choice of insulation level

Many styles are also available with a water and wind-repellent surface that sheds rain and snow. This makes fleeces suitable for use as an outer shell layer in many conditions. However, do not assume that you will be able to get away with using a fleece as a permanent outer layer in all conditions, they are no substitute for a proper wind-proof and water-proof outer shell. In Antarctica (and other environments too) you NEED a fully windproof outer shell.