Breathable fabric reduces condensation and fogging. Material is soft and warm, not scratchy. Lightweight, but still provides good insulation.
Size is definitely small, may not fit larger female or male users. Merino wool material described as very thin. Price point is higher than expected.
Sold as an economical two pack. Soft inner lining is very well insulated. Does not reduce visibility for outdoor work.
Fit is definitely on the larger, looser side. Shorter length, does not cover both neck and face. Material can irritate skin.
Very effective as a windbreaker for lower face. Print designs are stylish. Lightweight, can be worn indoors comfortably.
Tight-fitting, not a stretch material. Length is shorter than expected. Inexpensive material does not insulate well.
Can be doubled for additional insulation. Also protects ears, mouth and nose. Double layer resists condensation formation.
Neck fit is tighter than expected. Material can shed and fall apart at seams. Breathability is an issue for some users.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
Even with a heavy coat, the winter chill can find a way to seep inside and leave you shivering. A neck warmer is the perfect solution to braving the frosty months. Unlike a scarf, a neck warmer is a continuous piece of fabric, so there are no gaps to let the cold in and no risk of it blowing off on a windy day.
Not all neck warmers are created equal, though. It’s important to know what features to look for to ensure you stay warm no matter how low the temperature drops. With so many of these cozy accessories on the market, how do you find the right neck warmer for your weather?
If you’re ready to purchase a neck warmer, you can find our top five picks in the product list above. For more on what to look for in a neck warmer before you buy, keep reading.
A neck warmer, also known as a neck gaiter or buff, is a tube of a fabric that fits around your neck for added warmth. It is similar to a scarf, but a neck warmer stays comfortably around your neck even in high winds and doesn’t have any gaps.
A neck warmer isn’t wrapped like a scarf but pulled over your head.
Neck warmers are available in a variety of lengths, and some can be pulled up to cover your mouth and nose. Some neck warmers are long enough to be pulled over your head to cover your ears as well, with an opening for your eyes to maintain visibility.
A neck warmer offers a snug fit with no gaps, so it provides better protection from the cold than a traditional scarf.
Because a neck warmer is a continuous loop of fabric, it won’t fly off or come undone on a windy day.
Neck warmers are typically made of very soft materials, so they’re comfortable to wear.
If you choose a long neck warmer, you can cover your chin, mouth, nose, and ears for extra warmth.
If you suffer from regular neck pain or stiffness, a neck warmer can keep the muscles warm and loose in cold weather, so the pain is reduced.
A neck warmer is ideal for vigorous activities like running or skiing because it won’t come unwrapped like a scarf.
Some neck warmers are only long enough to cover your neck. Other styles are long enough that you can pull them up over your chin, mouth, and nose, so the neck warmer can serve as a face mask and provide additional warmth on particularly cold days.
With a long neck warmer, you don’t need to add a hat or earmuffs to your winter gear.
For a neck warmer that’s especially effective at keeping out the cold, choose one made of fleece. You can also find cotton or merino wool neck warmers with fleece insulation to increase their warmth.
If you plan to use a neck warmer in milder weather while running or riding a motorcycle, a cotton style is the most breathable.
To ensure that a neck warmer has enough stretch to pull up over your head, look for one that contains spandex.
A neck warmer should have a snug fit to keep the cold out, but it shouldn’t be so tight that it’s uncomfortable.
Most neck warmers aren’t available in multiple sizes, though. Instead, there’s one size with some stretch to it, so it can accommodate a range of body types.
Some brands do make men’s and women’s neck warmers to account for the differences between men’s and women’s bodies. If you’re particularly large or small, you may want to look for one of these neck warmers to get a better fit.
Some neck warmers are made from fabric that’s treated with UV protectant. These neck warmers protect your skin from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. This is an important feature if you’re outdoors for long periods, such as when skiing, snowboarding, shoveling snow, or sledding.
If you plan to use your neck warmer for vigorous activities like running or skiing, it will probably get sweaty. Look for a neck warmer that’s treated with an antimicrobial coating, so it resists bacteria growth and won’t develop odors.
For the most versatility, choose a reversible neck warmer. Some feature a solid color on one side and a pattern on the other, while others have different colors or patterns on each side.
Neck warmers vary in price based on material, insulation, and coverage, but you can typically expect to spend between $10 and $40.
For a small, uninsulated neck warmer, you’ll usually pay between $10 and $20.
For a medium-length neck warmer with some insulation, you’ll usually pay between $20 and $30.
For a large neck warmer with insulation, you’ll usually pay between $30 and $40.
To keep the winter chill from seeping inside your coat, pull your neck warmer up to cover your chin and the back of your neck.
A neck warmer can protect you from the sun as well as the cold. Just be sure to pull it up all the way over your neck in both the back and front.
You can pull your neck warmer up over your mouth to serve as a face mask if you need protection from dirt and dust in windy environments.
A neck warmer can double as a helmet liner if you’re biking or riding a motorcycle in cold weather.
Neck warmers are ideal for children because you don’t have to worry about them coming loose and falling off like scarves.
Q. Are all neck warmers one size fits all?
A. Neck warmers usually come in one size. However, some one-size-fits-all neck warmers are larger than others. Some neck warmers are available for men or women, with the men’s sizes slightly larger.
Q. What features should I look for in a neck warmer for hiking or running?
A. For outdoor activities, look for a long neck warmer that you can pull up over your mouth and the top of your head if the temperature drops and you need extra warmth. It’s also a good idea to choose a neck warmer made from UV-resistant fabric, so it can protect you from the sun’s rays when you’re outdoors.
Q. Are neck warmers only suitable for winter use?
A. Neck warmers are used primarily to keep you warm during cold weather. However, some people find they come in handy year round. If you own a motorcycle, dirt bike, or ATV, you can use a neck warmer as a face mask to protect you from dirt and dust or as a liner for your helmet.