5 Tips for choosing the right farm clothing

30 August 2021

Your productivity and success in any work environment hinges on having the proper clothing. Not having the right clothing is like a carpenter without a high caliber saw, or a painter without a paintbrush. As a farmer, you depend on having quality clothing that comes at an affordable price and is long-lasting. Owning the proper work apparel can allow you to maximize efficiency by being comfortable in a wide range of work environments, from blistering heat in the summer to bone-chilling cold in the winter. We’ve put together a list of five tips you can live out religiously to ensure you’re equipped with the best clothing that meets your unique needs.

1. Choose work clothing that is functional and practical.

Getting the job done on the farm calls for having clothing that provides comfort while maximizing mobility. Having a wide assortment of apparel for projects done both inside and outside will allow you to be prepared for all working conditions you may encounter. Whether you are tending to livestock in the barn or scouting in the field, having clothing with a number of pockets is a staple. A job that calls for extensive mobility or traveling long distances on foot calls for having clothing that maximizes mobility. When working outside, owning a solid pair of workboots and thick socks will provide warmth while supporting your ability to trek through the snowiest or muddiest conditions. Weather can often be unpredictable - layering your clothing is a great way to be prepared for any environment. Owning a pair of coveralls, a reliable sweatshirt and thermal pants in a range of sizes can allow you to layer clothing in a variety of ways. 

2. Choose for quality and compare it to your available budget!

Consistent with your desire to maximize productivity and efficiency, you want to stay on budget when building a dependable collection of clothing and outerwear. Purchasing high-quality work clothing on a budget is highly attainable. In most cases, price is nevertheless a strong indicator of quality and an investment of a few additional dollars can often go a long way. High quality products ranging from Dunlop Prurofort Boots and Thermo jackets to 100% Cotton Dungarees and hooded full-zip sweatshirts are durable with a long shelf life. High quality outerwear and farm clothing can be worn day in and day out. Making a marginally higher investment in your clothing will bring you more bang for your buck and is worth the added price. Remember that clothing is the number one asset you need to protect your physical body, and you are the farmer that makes all of the important decisions while conducting hard work.

3. How can protective clothing help farmers to make their work more efficient?

Having the right clothing and protection will fuel your need to be productive and efficient when undergoing any on-farm project. Many examples can be seen in the relationship between seasonal clothing and weather: wearing a raincoat in the rain or snow boots in the snow will ensure you can still work outside in the toughest elements. Wearing proper gloves can protect your skin from extreme temperatures and outside elements while still allowing you to move your fingers. When working in dusty or wet environments, having a dependable moisture-resistant jacket, work pants, disposable overalls and protective eyewear can prevent you from slowing down in a trying environment. When welding or working in loud environments, ear and head protection are critical for ensuring safety and protecting your senses. Jobs that call for kneeling or sitting and standing alternatively call for having knee pads on hand. Every job calls for unique protection and clothing. Before diving into your next project, be sure you have what you need to be safe, comfortable and productive.

4. Dress accordingly for the season.

Whenever it is winter, spring, summer or autumn there will always be a perfect set of clothes. Be sure to know what you will need each season to be comfortable in the conditions you will be faced with. When it comes to maximizing comfort in any weather environment, remember that cotton is your go-to material. Temperatures fluctuate, but cotton will offer you consistent comfort in any environment Leather is also a great way to insulate your body from both the cold and heat, especially when working with an open flame or warm equipment

Winter - Fleece jackets are essential to have on hand for layering and moving between projects inside and outside. Thermotrousers can be worn underneath coveralls to insulate you from harsh winter temperature as well as Thermoshirts. Having a dependable pair of boots is important for protecting you from both moisture and temperature. When wearing thick socks, be sure your boots are large enough to accommodate for the increased foot size that comes with this. Wearing boots that are too tight can restrict air and even blood flow, making your feet colder instead of warmer.

Spring and Fall- Layering in the spring and fall is a great way to accommodate for the seemingly bipolar weather conditions that come with the two seasons. Be sure to have a dependable cotton sweatshirt on hand. Like any other piece of farm clothing you may look for, quarter, half and full-zip sweatshirts are available for men and women and can allow for greater airflow and optimal comfort. In the fall and early spring especially, having layered clothing in accommodating sizes will allow you to protect yourself from chilly mornings and evenings.

Summer - Sleeveless shirts are a great way to maximize cooling while protecting your torso from being burned. Gloves, sun hats and boots are also essential from protecting you from the hot soon. When the thunderstorm rolls in and the rain starts to fall, be sure to have a dependable raincoat on hand to protect you from precipitation. Jeans or trousers with pockets are perfect for protecting your whole body from the harsh sun while still providing comfort.

5. Take care of your equipment!

You never know what you might get yourself into tomorrow when working on the farm. A dependable washer and dryer will be your best friend when it comes to maintaining the quality of your clothing. Be sure to follow guidance for washing your clothing properly. Ideally, seek out clothing and outerwear that is easy-to-care for and allows for washing in a heavy-duty cycle. The better you are able to care for your clothing, the longer it will last...which means money well-spent.

A final thought…

In addition to functionality and overall comfort, safety is paramount on any farm operation. Loose appendages or segments of fabric on clothing can pose a risk to becoming tangled or caught in equipment. Vests, jackets and coveralls can protect your upper body from harsh weather as well as potential impact. While always considering what is best to wear in a given season or for the project at hand, never lose site of the importance of protecting your personal safety.

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