This is a review of 15 different items of EDZ clothing, to see how suitable it is for hiking and wild-camping in the UK.
EDZ is an independent specialist clothing brand based in Cumbria, and they’ve been making performance outdoor clothing since 1995.
My first experience of EDZ clothing was a pair of their merino wool briefs that I used on my 1200 mile Land’s End to John O’Groats and 3 Peaks walk. I was so impressed with them that I purchased another pair and various other items when I returned from the walk. Many items are now standard on my Winter Gear List and others used year round.
Comparison: EDZ vs Icebreaker
In my opinion, EDZ merino wool clothing provides a cost-effective alternative to the higher-priced Icebreaker clothing. The Icebreaker items have less prominent seams and the merino wool is possibly very slightly softer, but I honestly can’t tell much of a difference while wearing them. When you factor in the price difference between EDZ and Icebreaker, I would recommend EDZ for value for money.
Below is a list of all the EDZ clothing I have, with a brief review of each item and links to full reviews.
Clicking on the heading for each item will take you to the EDZ website, and clicking on the link within the review will take you to the product as listed on Amazon. I earn a small commission from the Amazon link, which helps to keep this site running and would be much appreciated. There is no additional cost to you.
EDZ 200gsm 100% merino wool briefs – Black – size M – 69g (2.4oz).
This was my first EDZ purchase and I love these pants. I’ve tested them extensively over the last few years (they were my only pants for 1,200 miles! on my Lejog walk) They fit to size and are nicely supportive but not overly tight. They’re made of superfine 100% merino wool (200gsm) with flat seams. They are absorbent, they wick moisture and most usefully they dry fast. I think they are good value for merino wool and are great for hiking, but could easily be used as everyday wear too. They are suitable for both summer and winter.
EDZ merino wool boxers. 200gsm 100% merino wool boxers – Indigo blue – size M – 90g (3.2oz). Available in various colours.
EDZ merino wool boxers with fly. Superfine 100% merino wool (200gsm), absorbent, wicks moisture and dry fast. They fit to size and are very comfortable, neither compression tight nor too loose. Long term, I’m expecting them to be as good as the EDZ briefs (above) which I like a lot.
I wore the boxers for a few days walking in Cumbria over Christmas and they were perfect. Very comfortable with no over heating or rubbing issues. Like the briefs, I think they are good value for merino wool and are great for hiking. They could easily be used as everyday wear too.
EDZ clothing merino wool leggings. 200gsm – size M – 215g (7.6oz).
The EDZ base layer leggings are made from 200gsm wool, so they are pretty warm. Being 100% merino, they can be worn for a long time without washing before they smell. This is essential on long distance wild-camping trips.
They have flat seams and a high back rise on the waist to keep your lower back covered. This means they can be comfortably be worn while hiking with a rucksack on, but I tend to wear them to sleep in for extra warmth. This also protects my sleeping bag from sweat so that I don’t need a liner.
Read my full review of the EDZ leggings here.
EDZ clothing crew neck top. 200gsm 100% merino – size M – 235g (8.3oz).
EDZ 200gsm merino base layer long sleeved crew is made from 100% superfine merino wool, is soft next to the skin and comfortable to wear. The crew neck fits me very slightly looser than the Icebreaker Everyday 175 and 200 tops. It’s a good base layer or could be used as a mid layer with a thin T-shirt underneath.
The arm length is perfect, even when using the thumb loops. I think the EDZ crew neck top is good value for merino wool, is a great hiking and everyday base layer.
Read my full review of the EDZ crew neck top here.
EDZ clothing merino wool zip neck top. 200gsm – size M – 254g (9oz)
EDZ 200gsm merino wool long sleeve, zip neck base layer is 100% merino wool. It is suitable for both hot and cold conditions, warmer than synthetics and has awesome anti-odour properties. This is great on multiday wild-camping trips when I’m unable to wash it regularly.
The slim fit means it’s comfortable to wear as a base layer, but it’s still roomy enough for a thin short sleeve t-shirt underneath. I’ve found this works really well for added warmth and breathability in extremely cold conditions (and also during the shoulder seasons when I’m using the EDZ top as a mid layer). This works extremely well with my Paramo jackets. Reviewed here.
The flat seams and dropped back help with comfort when wearing a pack. I also like the thumb slits in the cuffs for warmth over my hands when it’s chilly; it saves getting my gloves out so often. The arm lengths are perfect for me when using these thumb loops and are still comfortable when they are not needed. The zip neck top fits me very slightly looser than the Icebreaker Everyday 175 and 200 tops. The neck is a good snug fit when fully zipped up.
I think this EDZ merino wool zip neck top is good value for merino wool and is great for hiking in. I’d happily wear it everyday at home too
Read my full review of the EDZ zip neck top here.
EDZ merino wool liner gloves – size M/L – 37g (1.3oz) Available in various colours.
EDZ merino wool liner gloves are thin enough to wear under outer gloves, or can be used on their own. They are a good simple liner glove and being made from merino, will be warmer when wet than a synthetic glove. However they are not windproof, so you’ll need an outer glove in most conditions.
I think the EDZ merino wool liner gloves are OK considering their low price, they are a nice glove. Personally, I would pay the extra £2.50 for the ‘touch screen’ version of this glove for the extra grip when holding equipment and to be able to use touch screen electronics. Fibre content: 97% merino wool, 3% elastane and wash them carefully or they’ll shrink.
EDZ merino wool liner grip gloves (touch screen). black – size M/L – 41g (1.5oz).
EDZ merino wool touch screen grip gloves have rubberised dots on the palms and fingers to give extra grip when holding equipment and are thin enough for dexterity. They are a good basic liner glove and being made from merino wool, will be warmer when wet than a synthetic glove. But they are not in windproof, so you’ll need an outer glove in cold and windy conditions.
I’ve found they grip OK and work well enough with touch screen devices. Bearing in mind their low price, I think the EDZ merino wool touch screen grip gloves are a nice useful glove.
EDZ clothing neck tube. Merino – blue – 51g (1.8oz). EDZ website price £19.99. on 1st February 2021. Available in various colours.
EDZ 200gsm merino multi-tube is 50 cm long and 100% merino wool. It has various uses and can be worn as a neck warmer, hat, bandanna, skull cap, balaclava, headband etc. It’s pretty soft and fits me perfectly around my neck, better than some more expensive makes. I own three other makes of neck tube, and the EDZ merino wool multi-tube is my favourite.
EDZ merino wool Beanie hat. Black – 44g (1.5oz)
EDZ 100% merino wool beanie hat is thin enough to fit under a hood or helmet. It’s made of double thickness 200gsm merino wool. The beanie fits me perfectly with a nice amount of stretch and is surprisingly warm. It’s just big enough to cover my ears.
The beanie a great all year round, light weight hat that doesn’t take up much room in my pocket when it’s not needed. I’ve even found it good for full-on winter conditions, great on it’s own and perfect worn under a jacket hood when it gets windy. The EDZ merino wool beanie hat is my go-to hat since I purchased it. Love it.
EDZ clothing merino wool Balaclava. Olive green – 44g (1.5oz) Various colours available.
EDZ merino wool balaclava is made with 200gsm 100% superfine merino wool. It has comfortable flat seams and is thin enough to fit under a hood or helmet. It fits me nicely, neither tight nor overly baggy and was comfortable to sleep in. I use a balaclava as part of my sleep system, to keep me warm on winter camping trips and to protect my down sleeping bag hood from sweat.
I like various colours of walking kit because it’s then easier to find what I’m looking for, especially in a tent at night.
EDZ waterproof socks with merino lining – calf length – size UK 7-8 – 160g (5.6oz).
The socks fit as sized and are reasonably comfortable, considering they have a waterproof membrane. They feel much like the Sealskinz waterproof all-weather socks, and I tend to wear a thin liner sock in them to make them more comfortable. I often wear waterproof socks in breathable footwear, instead of waterproof footwear. These calf-length socks are worn with non-waterproof, highly breathable walking boots and shoes. This way I can wade deeper rivers without removing my footwear and when it’s drier underfoot, I swap to standard socks again. I find waterproof socks too warm to wear all the time, unless it’s winter. Then I often wear them just to keep my feet warm, not just when it’s wet underfoot.
EDZ clothing all climate boot socks – size UK 7-8 – 98g (3.5oz) 34% merino, 34% acrylic, 17% elastane, 15% nylon.
These socks are reasonably thick, so best suited to cooler temperatures outside mid-summer. I’ve found them very comfortable walking in temperatures of about -5C to 15C in waterproof walking boots. I had to add waterproof socks over them in freezing temperatures to keep my feet warm when I was wearing non-waterproof highly breathable trainers. They are wearing well and a good sock for hiking in cooler temperatures.
On long-distance walks over several days, socks can become extremely smelly. If you’re unable to wash them every day, I think the merino wool socks are essential. They are also more comfortable than other material when they’re wet and cold.
Check Amazon EDZ socks price here.
EDZ clothing thermal liner sock – size UK 7-8 – 64g (2.3oz) 92% merino wool, 7% nylon, 1% elastane.
These are called a thermal liner sock, which suggests they should be worn under thicker warmer socks. But they are not just thin liner socks; they have extra padding underneath, around the toes and heel. They can therefore be worn on their own as a comfortable warm weather sock. If used as a liner sock, they would be good in extremely cold temperatures and they do fit under the EDZ boot socks. However, this would be fairly bulky and boots would need to have enough volume or sized up to allow for this. They have a high merino wool content so I’ll be using them on long distance hikes in warmer weather. They also make good bed socks to keep my feet warm in my sleeping bag. The merino also makes them odour free on long wild camping trips.
Check Amazon EDZ socks price here.
EDZ Merino Wool Plaid Flannel Shirt – size medium 335g – 100% merino wool.
The EDZ merino wool plaid flannel shirt is not cheap but it’s extremely good value for merino wool. It’s by far my favourite shirt for wearing year round. The only time I would consider a thinner shirt is in a mid summer heatwave. Love it and I’m happy to recommend it for hiking and everyday use. Works well with a T-shirt under it for added warmth and flexibility with your layering.
EDZ 135gsm merino wool T-shirt – size small 113g – 100% merino wool.
I think the EDZ 135gsm merino wool T-shirt is good value for money. It’s a really nice fitting, well made T-shirt and works well under the EDZ Plaid Flannel shirt. I really like it and recommend it for all year round hiking and everyday use.
*A note on EDZ clothing weights and sizes
I’ve found all EDZ sizes on their website to be accurate. I’m average build 5’9″ tall, 32″ waist. I usually buy medium size clothing and some times small if I want it close fitting. The weights that I’ve quoted for each item are from my kitchen scales.
Next steps for testing and reviewing the EDZ clothing
Many of the above items of EDZ clothing will be going with me on my next wild-camping trips. I think merino wool clothing is essential on my long distance wild camping trips, mainly to limit the odour I give off (if not for the sake of the people I meet along the way, but just so I can put up with myself in a small tent). I’ve also found merino wool regulates my body temperature well, so I sweat less. I also don’t need to carry as many clothes or wash them as often as I would have to if I was wearing synthetic clothing.
A perfect example of the benefit of merino wool clothing was the two weeks of rain I had during March 2019 on my 1200 mile LEJOG walk, when it was impossible to dry anything. I had also forgotten to pack a second pair of pants, but found that, because the EDZ briefs were merino wool, I could take them off and wash them in a river and just put them straight back on. They felt chilly for the first few minutes but I was amazed how quickly they warmed up and dried. I was very impressed that they never smelled and survived the whole trip without issue. I then used them again on my 1100 mile Dover to Cape Wrath walk.
Caring for merino wool clothing
Remember to read the labels on merino wool clothing; it needs to be looked after more so than synthetic layers. I wash mine in soap flakes at 30C on easy care in the washing machine or hand washed in rivers while hiking. I also try to keep them out of full sun as they will discolour over time.
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