10 Best Neck Gaiters for Running | 2021 Buying Guide
From keeping you warm during cold weather running, to protecting your face and neck from harmful UV's during blistering hot runs in the sun, and even a way to keep your neck cool when dampened with water. You'll get multiple uses out of a neck gaiter while on a run.
When testing and selecting the best neck gaiters, we took care to identify options with comfortable and durable material but could be as versatile as possible. Peruse our picks below before buying.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Neck gaiters have different features. Some of these features are:
Many neck gaiters are made in a way that when worn they can comfortably fit around the neck and keep it warm, always. This means that you need to have the perfect fit for your neck gaiter. Something too loose will mean that it cannot cover your whole neck and it will loosely hang on the lower part. An option that's too tight will make you uncomfortable and probably cause a skin rash. The best fit is when you can comfortably move your neck without any feeling of discomfort.
Some neck gaiters can be adjusted to fit you the way you want them to. They may have additional material or may just be stretchy and flexible enough to fit you snuggly and securely.
Many runners are intimidated by the idea of running in the cold, which is fair. Running in cold weather isn’t just an inconvenience, it can be dangerous. Keeping warm while running means you have a dozen or so other factors you need to account for, from wicking to ventilation.
On top of keeping warm, running in winter endangers something else as well: your skin. Runners already have a plethora of skin concerns, blisters and infections that can develop from the excess of heat and moisture. Cold weather adds to it with blistering and chaffing caused by the low temperature and the wind. Not to mention the dangers of frostbite and exposure.
A neck gaiter can pull sweat from the neck and face to prevent rashes, irritation, and infections. Its insulated construction doesn’t only protect you from the cold, it can prevent cracking and blistering from the wind as well as sunburn during the hot months.
If you plan to run in snow or in wet, muddy conditions, you’ll want to get a gaiter that provides you with some weather resistance. Make sure that your neck gaiter is wind and water-resistant.
Light is right when it comes to running gear and accessories. With the current technology, you will definitely find a durable neck gaiter that offers amazingly lightweight features while still granting warmth and protection.
We know that not all neck gaiters are the same, and while lightweight is typically the way to go, some of you may benefit from a neck gaiter that is bulkier and a little heavier. On the other hand, if it is hot out you need to make sure that it is lightweight, breathable, and moisture-wicking.
The best neck gaiters should be really versatile and easy to use. Many of the neck gaiters on our list can be used during both the cold and hot months--so you can literally use them all year long. Most of the options on our list have the ability to be used in many different ways, including as a face mask, beanie, scarf-like, and bandana.
10 Best Neck Gaiters for Runners
What we loved most about this design from INFINI2 is that it boasts sleek design features that keep you warm and protected as you run. It features innovative designs in the mouth that allow you to breathe easily and is composed of stretchy materials that hold in place as you workout. It cost a little bit more than some of the other options that we have seen, but we feel that it is well worth the extra cost.Read more
The most notable feature of this design lies in the mouth. This option is made especially for runners that need materials on the mouth that allow them to breathe easier. The loose-knit around the mouth works to hold in heat while stiff offering maximum breathability.
We also like that this design is composed of thick and stretchy materials that help to hold in the heat without a lot of extra bulk. It boasts a sports design that fits tightly on the head and necks so that it stays firmly in place no matter how much you move.
If you are in the market for something that will protect your neck from the sun in the winter as well as keep you warm, this is a great option. It is composed of premium materials that work to hold in the heat without affecting your ability to breathe. It is ideal not only for running, but more intense outdoor activities as well.
2. Tough Headwear
What we love most about this option from Tough Headwear is that it is specifically designed for those that like to take to the trails in the middle of winter. It is composed of incredibly warm materials that help to hold in heat and has accents on the mouth that allow you to breathe easily when you start to pick up the pace. Plus, it comes in at a super affordable price point that won’t break the bank!Read more
There are quite a few features that make this design ideal for winter running. First, it is composed of lightweight and heat-retaining materials that wick away snow while holding in the heat. The long frame lifts up over your ears while still keeping your neck nice and toasty.
Our favorite feature is that it has small air holes around the mouth and nose that allow you to breathe easily. Many winter designs can be a little difficult to breathe in, especially when running. This design boasts air holes that are large enough to allow air in, but not too big that heat will escape.
For those in the market for something that keeps you warm as well as protects you from the sun, this design from Tough Headwear is a great option. We love that it is specially designed with athletes in mind, and comes in at a super affordable price point.
3. MISSION HydroActive MAX
If you are a little concerned about putting on more gear when the temperatures climb, this design from Mission is a great option. This unique design is actually built to keep you cooler when the temperatures climb, as well as keeping you protected from the sun. It is composed of lightweight and easy materials that are incredibly versatile, and it is composed of fabrics that are super lightweight as well.Read more
What makes the HydroActive MAX stand out from the pack is that it is designed to stay up to 30 degrees cooler than your body temperature. Simply soak it in water, wring it out, and the wind that is generated from your running keeps this fabric incredibly cool. Then, as needed, simply wet it again for another boost of cooling fabric around your neck and face.
Not only does this design work to keep you cool, but it also protects your lungs from dirt, dust, wind, and debris. It also boasts a UV protection rating of 50+, making it an ideal design to keep your head and neck properly protected from the harsh ray of the sun.
If you want the ultimate UV protection but are worried about extra gear making you too hot. This design from Mission is a great choice. The smart fabrics work to actually keep your cool when the temperature starts to ride, and the stretchy and durable fabric can be worn in a myriad of ways.
4. ROCK BROS
If you find that many of these designs just won’t stay in place as you stay active, this option from ROCK BROS is made to stay firmly in place. It is composed of super stretchy and lightweight materials that work to cool you down and protect you when running on hot days. The addition of the ear loops means that this design will stay firmly in place, no matter how much your move.Read more
What makes this option stand out from the crowd is the addition of the ear loops. This design slips up over your ears to hold firmly in place. This option is ideal for those that are incredibly active and need something that won’t slip down as they move. Plus, it is super lightweight and incredibly comfortable.
We also like that the materials used for this design work to keep your face cool and dry when running in hot weather. This stretchy and cooling fabric wicks moisture away from your face as it protects your skin from harsh UV rays and dust. Users love that it is super stretchy and can be worn in a variety of ways.
If you are in the market for something that stays securely in place as you move while protecting your skin from the sun, this design from ROCK BROS is worth checking out. We love that it is super comfortable and lightweight, and comes in at a price point that won’t break the bank.
This neck gaiter is great for those people who are looking to keep away moisture. The main characteristic of this option is the wicking fabric of wool that naturally removes moisture from your skin and still keeps you warm. It’s great to find a product that stays dry as well and doesn’t have an odor after use.Read more
This neck gaiter is easily adjustable and can be worn in many ways. It is double knotted for additional warmth and is designed to fit most people.
Since it is made of Merino wool, it will definitely keep you warm during those cold weather runs. It is a little heavier than other options since it is double knitted--but this is what makes it a perfect choice if you are trying to stay warm during all of your runs.
It's available in only black and since it is adjustable and stretchy, it will definitely be a versatile option.
6. Buff Multi
Lightweight and thin, the Original Buff gaiter is a versatile, durable and compact option. This is one of the most versatile gaiters thanks to its flexibility and ease of use. It is so small and lightweight that you can store it in your pocket whenever not needed.Read more
This neck gaiter is perfect for the hot summer weather. It is breathable and lightweight--and its moisture wicking capability will ensure that you stay cool and dry whenever you wear it. It's the perfect size for almost anyone. It is lightweight and minimalistic--and made to fit most neck sizes. Lightweight and compact, it can be easily stored in the smallest of pockets.
This option is also extremely versatile. While many of the neck gaiters are adaptable, the Original Buff is ideal for almost all uses. There were some complaints about the durability and loose fit but overall, it's worth every penny.
If you need something for extremely cold weather, you might want to consider another option.
7. Outdoor Research Trailmix
The Outdoor Research Trailmix Ubertube is the perfect gaiter for outdoor enthusiasts and those of you who love to hit their favorite trails. It's made of soft fleece, super warm and breathable. It effectively wick away moisture while keeping you warm and protected from all weather elements. It prevents odor from forming--even if you are someone who sweats profusely.Read more
It's perfect for your favorite trails and for the coldest months. It comes with a thermo-regulating feature that grands extra warmth while also cooling you down once your body temperature rises as a consequence of running or any other outdoor activity such as hiking, snow sports, climbing etc.
This is the perfect size gaiter for almost anyone. It fits snuggly and securely thanks to its stretchiness and will give you a comfortable fit.
The best part about this gaiter is that you can wear it several different ways-- so you can pick and chose the function, versatility, and style depending on what your needs are.
8. Wow Towel
Need something that is lightweight and breathable for those hot summer runs? What we loved most about this design from Wow Towel is that it is composed of stretchy and lightweight fabric that can be used in a myriad of ways. It provides users with excellent sun protection without feeling too hot. Plus, it comes in at a super affordable price point that won’t break the bank.Read more
Users love this option because they are available in a pack of 6 that comes in a wide variety of unique color options. They are composed of 95% polyester (that is a cinch to toss into the washing machine) 5 percent spandex and microfibers for an easy, lightweight, and comfortable fit.
This design is incredibly lightweight and the perfect pairing for a hot and sunny day. These materials help to protect your neck and face from the hot summer sun, and they work to wick sweat away from your face where it quickly evaporates on the surface.
What we love most about this simple design is that it is incredibly versatile and can be worn in a variety of ways. It works to keep dust out of your lungs, and harsh UV rays off of your skin. Users love that these designs are incredibly durable, and wash up well when needed.
9. Columbia Fast Trek
The Columbia option is a comfortable yet tight-fitting winter wear neck gaiter. It is made of a moisture-wicking, durable, and breathable polyester. This neck gaiter is not as versatile as other options out there since it is much shorter, so perfect for those who need a basic option for their neck.Read more
This is is an excellent moisture-wicking neck gaiter that will keep you comfortable, warm, and dry in cold weather.
While this neck gaiter is designed to fit most neck sizes, it is shorter than other options on our list so it will mostly just cover your neck.
Really lightweight and portable, you can wear it anywhere--and if you need to take it off while you are out you will be able to just stash it in the smallest of pockets.
10. Turtle Fur
The Turtle Fur is a double layered gaiter made of a specially processed 100% acrylic material that gives it a soft feel.
Designed for very old weather, this neck gaiter will definitely keep you warm and toasty. we love the many color choices which include bright options, great for visibility.
Its double-layered construction is an important feature since it grants ultimate warmth in cold weather conditions, perfect for those who love winter sports and those who won't give up running even when very cold outside. The microfleece material is moisture-wicking and soft against the skin.
This neck gaiter will fit most and is the perfect size for those of you who want something they can pull up to cover their face as well. Keep in mind that although it's pretty lightweight, it's also a little bulky compared to other neck gaiters on our list.
While this neck gaiter comes in lots of color options, users have complained the color is slightly different than what advertised.