BASE LAYER - THERMAL WEAR
Also known thermal clothing or thermal wear,
is a Long sleeves and legs underwear designed for warmth. Also, know as base layer because it is the bottom layer commonly worn by
people under outerwear when the weather turns cold. Longjohns is another style of base layer which is can be a
one piece garment.
For comfort, thermal wear is often sewn with a box type weave from a blend of polyester and cotton or pure cotton. Some thermal wear, especially
longjogns which are often referred to as union suits, are also made from
flannel. A union suit is a
type of one-piece long-underwear or longjohn which was first made in
Utica, New York as women's wear. The Union Suit or longjohn is an
alternative to constricting garments, and its comfortable fit soon
gained it popularity.
Many manufacturers use wool blends or even 100% wool, especially Merino or other wool of superior quality to reduce the itch of wool. Modern thermal wear often includes a thin layer of polyester to which body moisture and transport it away from the skin.
A two-ply fabric of
either a wool layer and an artificial fiber or two layers of only artificial fibers is often referred to as thermal underwear or thermal wear. The double layers trap air and it is this "dead air" which also traps
body heat to insulate against cold air.
Introduced in 17th century England, the one piece base layer know as long johns hopped across the Atlantic in a snap. Originally this apparel was most often worn as loungewear but this comfortable, warm idea soon became sleepwear as well. The comfortable, lose fit of long johns made them enormously popular and they had become common sleepwear throughout the civilized world. by the 18th century.
The name long johns may have come from a well known knife fighter who long underwear when fighting. Or perhaps the name came form the original long johns manufacturer, the Lea Mills of John S, located in Matlcok, England in the county of Derbyshire. This mill is said to have created the garment, and since it has been in service for over 225 years, that is quite possible.
And, if not named after the company, then there is a story that says the company named them after the heavy-weight boxer of the day, John L Sullivan. It has been proposed that the "john" in the item of apparel may be a
reference to Sullivan, who wore a similar-looking garment in the ring.
This theory, however, can not be proved and the word's origin is