This is a review of EDZ merino base layers: the long sleeve zip-neck top, the long sleeve crew-neck top and the leggings. All three are 200gsm superfine merino wool. I have tested all three items on numerous hikes and wild-camping trips over the last few years. This winter I spent a 5-day hiking and wild camping in Cumbria in the snow, and I used EDZ’s merino base layers (as well as a number of other EDZ clothing items).
EDZ is an independent specialist clothing brand based in Cumbria, and they’ve been making outdoor clothing since 1995. I have reviewed other EDZ clothing items here, and two of EDZ’s fleece jackets here.
I’ve found EDZ merino wool base-layers to be good value for money and they last well. The high merino wool content of these three items is a benefit, as they stay warm when they’re wet. They also don’t smell too bad on long distance backpacking trips, when I’m unable to wash them very often or I’m likely to be wet to the skin for long periods. I’ve found these perfect baselayers for wearing under my Paramo jackets.
The medium size weighs 235g (8.3oz) and is available in various colours. Click here for the ladies’ version.
EDZ’s long sleeve crew top is made from 100% superfine merino wool. It’s soft next to the skin and comfortable to wear. The crew neck top fits me very slightly looser than the Icebreaker Everyday 175 and 200 tops. It’s a good base-layer for colder weather and 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 money for merino wool and it’s a great hiking or everyday base layer in the winter. I normally use this to sleep in while wild camping, mainly to protect my down sleeping bag from sweat and to provide extra warmth.
The medium size weighs 254g (9oz) and is available in various colours. Click here for the ladies’ version.
EDZ’s long sleeve zip-neck is 100% merino wool for natural climate control and warmth. It’s suitable for hot and cold conditions, warmer than synthetics, and has awesome anti-odour properties. The top is a slim fit with flat seams, dropped back and thumb slits in the cuffs. It is machine washable, durable, fast drying and wicks moisture.
Just like the crew top, 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 and again the arm length is perfect, even when using the thumb loops. It’s a good base layer or could be used as a mid layer with a thin T-shirt underneath.
I think this EDZ merino wool zip neck top is good value for merino wool. It’s great for hiking in but could easily be used everyday too. I wear it most of the year, but I find it too warm as a base layer in mid-summer because of its 200gsm weight. However, it could be worth having in your pack in the summer as a mid-layer. It worked really well with a thin baselayer under it, on my 5 days wild-camping in the Lake District trip. This combination worked perfectly with my Paramo Bentu fleece and Bentu windproof, which I’ve reviewed here.
The medium size weigh 215g (7.6oz) and are available in various colours. Click here for the ladies’ version.
The EDZ superfine 200gsm merino base layer leggings are 100% wool. They have flat seams, a high back rise on the waist to keep lower back covered and include a fly opening. The fit is correct for the size and is a nice close fitting, neither overly tight or loose.
They are very comfortable to walk in and sleep in during cold weather but are too warm for UK summer use. I normally use these to sleep in while wild camping, mainly to protect my down sleeping bag from sweat and to provide extra warmth.
Comparison: EDZ vs Icebreaker
In my opinion, EDZ merino base layers provide a cost-effective alternative to the higher-priced Icebreaker merino base layers.
The Icebreaker items have less prominent seams and the merino wool is possibly a bit 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.
Washing merino wool clothing
Remember to read the care labels on all merino wool clothing. It needs to be looked after differently to synthetic clothing. I wash mine in soap flakes at 30 degrees C, on an easy care cycle in the washing machine. When I’m on a long-distance hike, I hand wash them in rivers. I also try to keep them out of full sun when I hang them out to dry, as merino clothing can sometimes discolour over time.
Disclosure: All the products reviewed were purchased by myself or donated to me by EDZlayering.com with no obligation or financial incentive to promote EDZ.
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