Monday, January 16, 2017

What To Wear At A Protest March

The inauguration -- and the Women’s March on Washington -- is less than a week away. And I’ve been asked by many friends and colleagues who are attending the march what to wear and what to bring. They asked for my guidance because this is a travel question, after all. It’s estimated that some 200,000 women are flocking to DC from out of state for this all-day event. It will likely to be frigid. And then there are the security concerns, which means avoiding any large bags that warrant searches. And the security concerns go the other way also given that it’ll be hard to keep valuable safe from the masses surrounding you. Here is what I recommend wearing for this event as well as what personal items to bring. The vast majority are items I’ve reviewed over the years. You’ll see that most of the fabrics are merino wool or fleece which not only provide warmth but they both wick away sweat and remain comfortable when wet.

  • Don’t bring a shoulder bag, hand bag, tote bag, messenger bag or backpack. It’s best to have something exceedingly small and flat (not bulky) that lies securely close to your body. And this bag should contain just your vitals, those items you can’t live without, such as your driver’s license, money, credit cards and other essentials. My atta-Bag fits the bill since it can be worn around your waist under your coat or jacket, or six other ways
  • Everything else you carry, including snacks and personal items, can be placed in zippered pockets in your coat or jacket.
  • Personal items should include flushable wet wipes, Bonine for possible motion sickness on the bus, lip balm, disinfecting wipes, throat lozenges, and sunscreen.  If you take medication, bring along enough for an extra day or so just in case.
  • Healthy snack items: unsalted nuts, dark chocolate, low-fat string cheese, whole grain crackers, peanut butter in an individual squeeze pack (such as Justin’s).
  • Bottled water that you can place in a lightweight water bottle sling holder that you drape cross body, such as those sold by Chico Bag
  • A scarf made of merino wool, alpaca or Polar fleece
  • A cap, hat or beanie that covers your ears and is made from merino wool, alpaca or Polar fleece. 
  • Gloves made of merino wool ORwear a thin glove liner made and atop that wear fingerless gloves. 
  • Socks made of merino wool or alpaca.  
  • A base layer thermal top made of merino wool

  • A base layer thermal bottom made of the synthetic Capilene or merino wool.
  • Atop your base layer top, wear a wool sweater with a hoodie just in case it gets colder than expected. 
  • Atop the sweat, layer both with a thin jacket that protects you from the cold and wind, and a thicker fleece jacket. Both of these should have zippers so you can vent in case you are getting overheated. And the layering option gives you plenty of options no matter how the weather changes. 
  • Atop your base layer bottom, wear a pair of Polar fleece leggings or pants.

  • Footwear should provide insulation and good traction, especially if it snows or becomes icy. This is my recommendation.