When temperatures plunged into the basement this week, I jetted to Uniqulo to stock up on the Heattech turtle necks and tights I wear as layers for winter cycling around town. While rifling through the racks for black (which tends to sell out in NYC) I stumbled on pure genius in the form of Women’s Uniqlo Body Warmers. The simple tubes of fabric come in packages of two for $12.90.

What can you do with them? Like fabled Buff headwear, the question is What can’t you do with them? I’ve been using the smaller size, basically a tube top, to layer under a turtle neck or sweater for extra warmth. I’ve also draped it around my neck to wear as a cowl under my bicycle helmet. The longer tube, positioned over or just beneath a bra, reaches to mid-tush level, so it blocks out drafts that creep in when leaning over drop bars. Pulled down to the waist it becomes a skirt that’s easy to wear over warm tights.

What I particularly like is that I don’t have to undress to take these warmers off indoors. Just pull the tube down, step out of it and tuck it into a bag. Even simpler: Accordion-fold the tube at the waist and wear it as a belt.

The Heattech fabric is woven of polyester, acrylic, rayon and spandex, a combination designed to hug the body and to retain heat, absorb moisture and resist odor (although I don’t find the latter quality as reliable as wool’s). The company’s website notes that camellia oil “a natural skin care aid” has been added to improve softness.

The body warmers come in four color sets, and pack a lot of warmth and fashion options into an economical package.

Uniqulo Women’s Heattech Body Warmers, $12.90 (for two)

Uniqlo heattech body warmers

Photos: Uniqulo

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