I love all the sun and warmth we get in South Africa! However, as someone who feels cold a ridiculous 10 months of the year, highveld winters can be tough. I’m always on the lookout for products that can keep me warm (and sane) without adding too much bulk and discomfort. My favourite products so far during winter 2018 in South Africa, have been:
1. Snugglesox – I feel like this is obvious as this site is dedicated to it, however I’d like to stress that I cannot go one (1) day without my heatable Snugglesox. They are used every day.
2. Very fluffy pajamas – I used to swear by Woolworths fluffy fleece pajamas (and I can still recommend them), however I was extremely impressed by the warmth of these blue heart PJs I found at Pick n Pay clothing. You know those fluffy throws they sell at all home decor shops? Well the PJ bottoms feel like they are made from the same material, as opposed to fleece or cotton, and the moment you put them on it feels like they start generating heat against the skin. Important feature: These pajamas have a soft elastic ribbing around the ankles and sleeves so they don’t pull up while you are asleep. My only complaint is that one feels like a teddybear while wearing them and the fabric doesn’t really stretch, so they aren’t the most flattering. However, they ARE warm…like, sleep-with-one-less-blanket warm. They are my new favourite pajamas.
3. A gown with a hoodie: Overall, I am not a gown-fan. I have tried a few over the years and always end up donating them to someone who can use it. I usually just wear a tracksuit hoodie top and a scarf over my pajamas during winter because I prefer it to some bulky impractical gown with drapery that gets in the way. However this year I have gone all Obi-Wan Kenobi, as I am loving this awesome hooded gown I recently also bought from Pick n Pay clothing. It is extremely soft and cozy; it has a generous hoodie which can be pulled over your head or just bundled up around your neck like a scarf, and it has 2 pockets for your hands. There’s nothing I don’t like about it. It’s like being tucked into bed.
4. Warm non-itchy socks you can wear with boots: Unfortunately I cannot wear my Snugglesox 24/7…at some point I need to wear shoes. The search for the perfect pair of winter socks continues each year. Over the years I have tried, without much joy, the following:
- several fleecy socks: warm but too thick for shoes
- cotton socks: stay away, cotton doesn’t retain heat
- hiking socks: pricy and uncomfortable, and often they are not long enough up the leg
- diabetic socks: comfortable as there is limited elastic, but not very warm
- wool blend and mohair socks: NOPE too scratchy
- wool socks with thinner liner socks underneath: complicated but ok, had reasonable success because wool is very effective in retaining heat
- long pantihose stockings under thicker socks: pantihose do keep your legs quite warm, but I hate them so much and they don’t do much for my cold feet
But I finally found something! My biggest favourite socks at the moment are the heat holders ‘lite’ socks they sell at Dischem. They are very comfortable and warm, up to 7x warmer than regular socks, according to their website. They do not contain any scratchy wool. They can pull up long but aren’t too tight. I have a ladies’ pair as well as a mens’ pair which pulls up to just under my knees and fits my size 6 foot fine. They also have them in a thicker weight which is too thick for shoes, so I definitely prefer the ‘lite’. Look for the label on the socks to ensure it is the correct brand. I have only seen them for sale at Dischem in South Africa, but they also have a footprint (ha!) in other countries.
PS Other than the Snugglesox, I don’t receive remuneration for promoting the other products. They are just my favourite products.