Best Golf Base Layers 2024

Megan Trainor knew it was “all about that bass” back in 2014, and we couldn’t agree more, which is we’re still singing about the best golf base layers in 2024.

Jump To: Best Golf Base Layers | Buying Guide | FAQs

Wearing the right clothing for the conditions is vital, and a good place to start is with a quality golf base layer, an essential garment, just like one of the best golf jackets, for every year-round golfer’s wardrobe.

A good golf base layer is absolutely fundamental if you’re planning to play in cold conditions as keeping your body at a comfortable temperature will always help you perform better and give you the best chance of shooting lower scores. It’s all very well protecting yourself from the rain with one of the best waterproof jackets, but if you’re only wearing a loose-fitting polo shirt underneath, then then you still run the risk of feeling a damp chill.

Best At A Glance

Best for warmth with comfort: Galvin Green Ethan Base Layer | Buy Now – US | Buy Now – UK

Best for style: J.Lindeberg Aello Soft Compression Base Layer | Buy Now – US | Buy Now – UK

Best for breathability: Nike Pro Dri-FIT Base Layer | Buy Now – US | Buy Now – UK

Tiger Woods holds the record for the longest time as a World No.1 in golf.

And, thanks to moisture-wicking fabrics and UV protection, the very best base layers can also help keep the body cool and dry when the sun does decide to shine. We believe that if you buy one of the best golf base layers it will stand the test of time and you won’t need another for years to come. Furthermore, it’s a highly versatile garment that you will get loads of use from, whether you are golfing, hiking, or even skiing.

Of course, a base layer won’t protect you and your equipment from all of the elements, which is why we’ve produced guides on protective garments such as the best golf mid-layers.

But for now, let’s take a look through the best golf base layers in 2024.

Best Golf Base Layers 2024

A premium, high-tech turtleneck base layer for comforting protection

Best for warmth with comfort
Price: £69.00 / $109.00 RRP
In our book, a roll or turtleneck design is absolutely imperative for any winter base layer. The extra material just gives a little more comforting protection around the neck when the conditions turn nasty.

Galvin Green produces fantastic products to ensure you can remain comfortable on the golf course regardless of what the weather throws at you and the Ethan is the ideal starting point for your winter layering. It has a relaxed fit, is stretchy and breathable, and also quick drying.

Pros

  • Turtleneck helps heat retention
  • Lightweight and moisture-wicking
  • Bluesign approved fabric

Cons

  • Runs slightly on the small side
Sizes S-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors Navy, Grey

Provides soft compression to help your muscles perform their best

Best for style
Price: £65.00 / $95.00 RRP
For many, spending this amount on a base layer will be hard to justify, but we are big fans of the Aello. The bold, block color options do the job perfectly well but it’s the unique, eye-catching print designs that really put this base layer in a league of its own, working brilliantly under a polo in warmer temperatures or as part of a multi-layering system in the winter.

Not only does it look great, it’s extremely comfortable with a four-way stretch for movement in every direction. Slim fit, fast drying and providing 30+ UV protection, it has the J.Lindeberg name on the sleeve and the famous bridge logo on the front and back of the high neck.

Pros

  • Moisture-wicking and quick-drying
  • Soft compression
  • Good color options

Cons

  • Some of the designs may be too loud for some
Sizes S-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors <meta charset

An extra breathable base layer constructed from recycled materials

Best for breathability
Price: £38.00 / $35.00 RRP
This Dri-Fit base layer from the US sports giants hugs you in a lightweight fabric that's highly breathable thanks to the mesh over high-heat areas at the back, sides, and armpits, allowing air to flow to prevent overheating.

The fabric is stretchy so you never feel as though your swing is being restricted, and has been constructed with 75% recycled polyester. Although not the warmest base layer featured in this guide, it layers well underneath a polo shirt and mid-layer, so is perfect for those rounds that start chilly and finish warm.

Pros

  • Built-in breathability
  • Moisture-wicking
  • Easily layers under other tops

Cons

  • Not as warm as other base layers
Sizes S-4XL
Material 92% Polyester, 8% Spandex
Colors Black, White

Traps heat inside while keeping the exterior dry

Best for trapping heat
Price: £45.00 / $50.00 RRP
Under Armour started the whole baselayer trend, so you really won’t go wrong by plumping for one of their models. ‘Infrared’ technology uses a thermo-conductive pattern on the inside which absorbs and retains body heat. The polyester and elastane material also wicks moisture away from the body quickly to ensure you stay dry and fresh throughout your round.

The four-way stretch fabric allows you to swing freely while the UA Storm tech also helps to repel water if you’re caught in a shower before getting your waterproofs on. Decent colour options help you match it to your chosen outfit so you can always look the part, even on the days when your game doesn’t!

Pros

  • Traps heat with its dual-layer fabric
  • Moisture-wicking and dries fast
  • Anti-odur technology

Cons

  • Sleeves come up slightly short
Sizes S-2XL
Material 87% Polyester, 13% Elastane
Colors <meta charset

Maintains body temperature while reducing muscle fatigue

Best compression-fit
Price: £47.99 / $52.99 RRP
It's important for a base layer to keep you warm on the golf course, but nobody wants that feeling of being too hot – particularly as it's not exactly easy to remove a base layer mid-round.

This Mizuno base layer offers the perfect combination of warmth and breathability thanks to Breath Thermo and Thermal Plus technologies. It's a compression fit but stretchy enough to not restrict movement during your swing. It also helps to reduce muscle fatigue through its snug fit and pressure.

Pros

  • Maintains warmth
  • Breathable
  • Not restrictive

Cons

  • The snug fit will not suit everyone
Sizes S-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors <meta charset

A fitted and highly comfortable moisture-wicking base layer

Best for versatile use
Price: £39.99 / $49.99 RRP
This Lyle & Scott base layer offers good warmth with moisture-wicking to ensure you don't get hot and sweaty during the round.

It's a slim fit but is highly comfortable and has been constructed with a four-way stretch for ease of movement. The large branding on the sleeve won't be to everyone's taste but does give it a sporty appeal.

Pros

  • Eye-catching design for a base layer
  • Very comfortable
  • Moisture-wicking

Cons

  • Branding might be too loud for some
Sizes S-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors White, Black

The World's warmest baselayer, and we're not going to argue

Best for warmth
Price: £6000 / $90.00 RRP
Zerofit is a Japanese invention designed to be warmer than any other base layer on the market, negating the need for multiple additional layers.

Technologically enhanced ‘Heat Threads’ inside the garment are activated through movement, gently brushing against the skin to generate heat instantly. Unlike every other baselayer, the Ultimate does not work on the basis of ‘compression for heat’ – so not only does it provide greater warmth for golfers, but they also don’t feel restricted by an inability to move freely.

And if you don't believe us then find out what a group of our readers thought when they put Zerofit to the test.

Pros

  • Outstanding level of warmth
  • Unrestrictive movement
  • Soft, premium feel

Cons

  • Some might find the heat threads a bit itchy
Sizes XS-3XL
Material <meta charset
Colors 6

A non-restricting thermal layer to help regulate body temperature

Best for durability
Price: £44.99 / $59.00 RRP
There’s a lot more to FootJoy than golf shoes, as this tech-packed layer proves. The ProDry uses thermal tech to ensure that cold and moisture is never an issue, fitting closely to the skin to help regulate body temperature without interfering with the golf swing.

It comes in a regular fit with the mock neck featuring the famous FJ logo. The impressive easy-care fabric ensures a long life, and the double-stitched seams offer added durability.

Pros

  • Very durable construction
  • No restriction on the range of motion
  • Anti-odur and easy-care fabric

Cons

  • Not as warm as some models
Sizes XS-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors <meta charset

Offers exceptional protection for the most challenging weather conditions

Best for insulation
Price: £65.00 / $99.00 RRP
It’s no surprise that Galvin Green features more than once in our best golf base layers. We love the Swedish brand and believe they produce some of the very best apparel to help protect you against the elements and enjoy golf, even in the depths of winter.

The latest base layer concept in Galvin’s Skintight range (which uses compression to stimulate blood flow), the thermal Elmo has been developed to provide genuine warmth in very cold conditions, and, in our experience, it really works. It’s among the most breathable base layers they have ever produced and draws sweat away from the body. Pairs well with the Elof Thermal leggings featured at the end of this guide.

Pros

  • Superb warmth and comfort
  • Breathable and moisture-wicking
  • Versatile use for any outdoor activity

Cons

  • Limited color options
Sizes S-2Xl
Material <meta charset
Colors Black, White

A compression-fit base layer offering thermal protection for chilly rounds

Best for color options
Price: $33.01
The ideal base layer for golfers who like to coordinate their Sunday Medal outfits with seven color choices. This long-sleeve, crew-neck Urban uses a compression-fit and Stuburt’s ‘Dri-back;’ technology to absorb and retain your body heat to keep you warmer for longer.

Lightweight and soft to the touch, it also pulls excess moisture away from your skin to leave you sweat-free and comfortable throughout your round. The Urban also offers solid value for money too making it an extremely appealing option.

Pros

  • Excellent thermal insulation
  • Lightweight and moisture-wicking
  • Great choice of colors

Cons

  • Compression-fit won't suit all
Sizes S-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors <meta charset

A high-performance base layer offering excellent thermal protection

Best for moisture-wicking
Price: £39.99 / $49.99 RRP
Oscar Jacobson produces some of the most stylish apparel in golf so it’s no surprise that this base layer not only looks fantastic but performs brilliantly, too.

The Hamilton provides excellent thermal protection with a compression fit and quick moisture-wicking capabilities to deliver highly effective body temperature regulation in cold climates. The lightweight polyester blend fabric contains generous levels of stretch to move with your swing, whilst a soft inside fabric gives next-to-skin comfort.

Pros

  • Excellent thermal protection
  • Moisture-wicking and lightweight
  • Stretches with your swing

Cons

  • Some may prefer a lower-neck collar
Sizes S-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors <meta charset

A thermal base layer to make everyday playable

Best for ventilation
Price: £60.00 / $68.00 RRP
Technological advancements are nothing new for FootJoy who have been moving the needle in their shoes and apparel for years. The Phase One base layer doesn’t buck the trend, using Hexatherm Graphene fabric to help regulate temperature and heat retention through advanced thermal conductivity while also pulling moisture away from your body to keep you dry.

We love the use of mesh under the arms, which provides added ventilation where it’s needed most, while the four-way stretch material makes swinging easy even in an extra layer.

Pros

  • Excellent body heat retention
  • Non-restrictive
  • Built-in ventilation to allow excess heat to escape

Cons

  • Very tight fitting
Sizes XS-2XL
Material 100% Polyester
Colors White, Black

A performance base layer engineered for next-to-skin comfort

Best for milder conditions
Price: £45.00 / $55.00 RRP
The Baxter is a great Spring/Summer offering, using Ping’s brilliant Sensorcool Technology. The innovative performance fabric is designed to ensure that every item responds to your body’s requirements.

We love the mock neck design and it’s extremely comfortable thanks to the flatlock seams and stretch materials that ensure swinging is free and easy. The crease-resistant tech ensures it looks smart and it also features UV protection to protect you when the sun is shining.

Pros

  • Adapts to your body's requirements
  • Moisture-wicking and quick-drying
  • Crease-resistant fabric

Cons

  • Woven seams may not be for all
Sizes XS-3XL
Material <meta charset
Colors Black, White

A fantastic value base layer for all-season protection from the elements

Best value base layer
Price: £24.99 / $30.00
This is a great base layer for the price point! Constructed with stretch fabrics to help you swing freely, the Alpha offers the highest levels of comfort thanks to its moisture-wicking properties.

It’s a multi-purpose base layer and can be used as part of several layers for warmth in the winter or under your polo for protection from those summer rays thanks to its UPF 50 protection. It has reflective branding and color-contrasting side panels.

Pros

  • Moisture-wicking
  • UPF 50 sun protection
  • Reflective branding

Cons

  • Not as high-tech as some models
Sizes S-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors Black, White

And don’t forget your legs…

Thermal leggings developed especially for golf

Best thermal leggings
Price: £59.00 / $99.00 RRP
Considering the role your lower body plays in the golf swing, keeping it warm on the course is just as important as the upper body. Thankfully, Galvin Green realize that, and their Elof Skintight thermal leggings are fantastic. Made from a revolutionary thermal insulating fabric the leggings trap body heat and the advanced knitting techniques and highly technical fibers allow for complete breathability. The incredible moisture-wicking tech moves any droplets of water or sweat to the outer layers where they can then evaporate.

Paired with a decent upper body base layer underneath your normal winter golf clothing, they ensure the cold never becomes an issue and allow you to focus on your game rather than your temperature. Elof are exceedingly lightweight and their stretch construction ensures a comfortable fit for all.

Pros

  • Lightweight warmth
  • Highly breathable
  • Super stretchable

Cons

  • May feel unnatural for those not used to leggings
Sizes S-2XL
Material <meta charset
Colors Black

Best Golf Base Layers: Buying Guide

It’s easy to overlook a base layer and its value to your golfing wardrobe. If chosen correctly, it is a garment you will reach for time and time again, and not just when the weather is at its coldest. Below are a few things to bear in mind when purchasing your next base layer.

Material

The fabrics used to construct base layers are chosen specifically for a function, be it warmth, insulation, breathability, stretch, or comfort. Cotton and wool blends are typically geared more towards warmth and comfort, whereas polyester, elastane, and other synthetic materials lend themselves better to performance characteristics such as wicking moisture away, freedom of movement, or preventing the build-up of unpleasant odors. First, consider which characteristics are most important to you for the typical inclement conditions you play in.

Versatility

Just because base layers sit underneath polos, mid-layers, and jackets, doesn’t mean they are necessarily the cheapest item of upper-body clothing. Therefore, think about what other outdoor activities you participate in and try to maximize cost per wear by choosing something that performs equally well for multiple activities.

Comfort

With base layers sitting tightly against your skin, comfort is something you really need to consider as it’s not so straightforward to strip off mid-round if it’s becoming a distraction to your golf. All base layers are designed to cling to your skin so they can perform as intended, however, there are varying levels of tightness from compression fits down to a simple athletic fit. It’s worth trying a few on to make sure you are comfortable with the fit and that it won’t restrict your swing.

Breathability

Most commonly base layers are used as protection on the coldest of days, however, don’t overlook the importance of allowing excess heat to escape as this can be just as uncomfortable as being too cold. Most of the best golf base layers will have excellent moisture-wicking properties and ventilation to keep your skin cool and dry as your activity level increases.

Design

Understandably, as base layers are not ever fully on show (unless you’re riding in the Tour de France), manufacturers tend to stick to blacks, whites, and neutral colors that work well when sticking out from the sleeves of your polo shirt. That said, some of our models listed above come in a variety of bold colors and vibrant prints, meaning there will always be something for those looking to make a statement.

Budget

As with everything in golf, base layers vary in price greatly, and generally, the more hi-tech models with market-leading functionality will command higher price points. As always, we suggest deciding on the non-negotiables you require from the garment, setting a budget, and then narrowing down a shortlist which ideally you can try on before committing to the purchase.

Tommy Fleetwood Open Sunday 23

Best Golf Base Layers: FAQs

How do you wear a base layer in golf?

A base layer is always worn next to the skin as they are designed to fit the natural shape of the body, trapping warmth inside to help maintain core and muscle temperature, reducing the risk of injury and helping you to feel comfortable during chilly rounds. In warm conditions, wearing the base layer directly next to your skin will help wick moisture away from the body to provide a cooling effect.

Should a base layer be tight or loose?

In order for a base layer to work effectively, it needs to lay tightly against the skin. This will allow the garment to wick moisture away from the body properly, and in cold temperatures will trap heat by preventing cold air from getting in between the base layer and your skin which could reduce core temperature.

Do you wear base layers in the summer?

Despite base layers predominantly being worn by those looking to stay warm in colder climates, base layers are actually beneficial in warmer climates as well. Base layers are typically constructed from moisture-wicking fabrics which have the advantageous effect of drawing moisture away from the skin to help keep you warm and dry. Professional cyclists are perhaps the best example of athletes who wear base layers for this reason.

Can you wear base layers for other sports?

Absolutely. The majority of base layers perform equally well, irrespective of the sport or activity that’s being undertaken. They are particularly useful for any sport that takes place outside over a long period of time such as hiking, cycling skiing, or golf, where you wish to remain warm and comfortable, whilst potentially needing to wick-moisture away to prevent overheating as your activity level increases.

READ NEXT 
– Best Waterproof Golf Trousers
– Best Windproof Golf Jackets

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About the author

Ross Tugwood is a Golf Equipment Writer for Today's Golfer.

Ross Tugwood

Golf Equipment Writer

Ross Tugwood is a golf equipment writer for todays-golfer.com, specializing in data, analytics, science, and innovation. He’s also an expert in golf apparel and has a keen interest in sustainability.

Ross is passionate about optimizing sports performance and has a decade of experience working with professional athletes and coaches for British Athletics, the UK Sports Institute, and Team GB.

He has post-graduate degrees in Performance Analysis and Sports Journalism, enabling him to critically analyze and review the latest golf equipment and technology to help you make better-informed buying decisions.

Ross lives in Snowdonia National Park with his wife and 40 kg Bernese Mountain dog! He is a member of Porthmadog Golf Club with a handicap index of 13.8.

Away from golf, Ross enjoys hiking, trail running, and supporting the mighty Bristol Bears.

Ross uses a Cobra King SZ Speedzone driver, Titleist TSi2 3-Wood, TaylorMade Sim2 Rescue, Callaway Apex Pro irons (4-PW), Cleveland 588 RTX wedges (52°, 58°), TaylorMade Spider Ex putter, and a TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball.

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