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Get repairing – with Re-Action

We are throwing WhoSki.com’s support behind the #ReAction10000repairs challenge, which launches today.

Reckon your sewing is up to mending a simple repair, extending the life of a garment, supporting the sustainable economy? Even if you don’t think you can manage it yourself, try finding a local repair shop – maybe your local dry cleaner? – that can help out.

The Re-Action Collective aims to log 10,000 repairs by the end of 2022. The goal is to normalize the practice of bringing clothing and equipment back to use through repair, rather than throwing them away.

Reduce waste, cut emissions

Why? Because as a planet we have finite resources: we simply must make our stuff last longer. It’s a way to reduce waste, cut carbon emissions and limit the effects of climate change.

It’s another step, like selling on your ski clothing once you no longer want / need it, thinking about buying secondhand before you buy new, or renting an item rather than purchasing it. A means of extending the life of an existing item.

log your repairs

What are you waiting for? It’s time to get handy and start fixing the planet one item at a time. Find out how to get involved at ReAction’s 10,000 repairs page here.

And once it’s repaired, perhaps that ski garment might even be good enough to sell on at WhoSki.com when season 2022/23 comes around…

Halsbury backs WhoSki.com to drive the #SkiGreen agenda

The importance of climate change to the younger generation is among the reasons why school ski trip operator Halsbury Ski is now working with WhoSki.com to manage and reduce the carbon footprint of its activities.

When your young clients are among the most enthusiastic supporters of the sustainability movement – and those most vulnerable to the effects of climate change – acting on their concerns makes good business sense. Call it the Greta Thunberg effect.

“Working together is a sustainability gain”

Halsbury’s Managing Director Hugues Raulet says: “Working with WhoSki.com is an instant sustainability gain. Encouraging our clients to purchase and dispose responsibly of the clothing they need for an enjoyable trip to the slopes with Halsbury is an important step on the way to reducing the carbon footprint of our activities.”

WhoSki.com Co-Founder Nicola Davenport explains: “Halsbury approached us with a view to working together. Lockdown delayed active collaboration, but we are so pleased that Halsbury will be recommending WhoSki.com as a source of good-as-new clothing for parents when they sign up their children for a Halsbury ski trip.

“By buying and selling through WhoSki.com, you are helping keep hard-to-recycle wintersports clothing in circulation and out of landfill.”

Halsbury: thinking green

Halsbury has sustainability strongly on its radar. It has installed solar panels and electric vehicle charging points at its offices. Electric bikes are provided for staff who want to use them to get to work.

MD Hugues Raulet is an eco-pioneer whose ventures outside Halsbury have included establishing a B Corp-certified recycling business in Argentina, researching and raising awareness about alternative sustainable fuels. He has ambitions for Halsbury to continually reduce its carbon footprint.

Hugues explains: “Our partnership with WhoSki.com is a proactive way to progress our sustainability journey. This is a positive step towards a greener business. We are doing the things that we can with a vision and an ambition to extend and expand our sustainability agenda.”

Student ski clothing: perfect for re-sale

Halsbury will include information about WhoSki.com to parents and students via the schools packs it provides for clients.

Children’s ski clothing is among the best sellers at the WhoSki.com online marketplace – remember – we donate 25% of our commission on every sale to the teen mental health charity stem4.

WhoSki.com at LISTEX

Look out for WhoSki.com at this week’s Mountain Trade Network conference – calling on other businesses in the wintersports industry to support our sustainability ambitions.

The theme of this year’s LISTEX conference is ‘Facing the Future’: a perfect match for WhoSki.com goals. Our business model is all about helping you reduce the carbon footprint of your ski and snowboard habit, keeping hard-to-recycle textiles in circulation and facilitating the resale of wintersports clothing.

We believe the best way to do this is by making it safe and simple to #PassItOn. That’s why we love working with other brands to spread the circularity message, supporting skiers and snowboarders to use the circular economy when buying and selling wintersports wear.

Reuse – Resale – Rental

We are delighted to see that others in the sustainability sector will also be present at LISTEX this week, taking place at The Snow Centre in Hemel Hempstead. Joining us at the conference will be EcoSki.co.uk , One Tree At A Time , Snowcarbon , ProtectOurWinters UK – all among the organisations and businesses that we talk to often and are delighted to collaborate with in our joint goal to help the ski and snowboard industry become greener.

If you’re attending LISTEX on Wednesday (May 4), please pop into the 16.15 PITCH@LISTEX session where WhoSki.com will be presenting. Our Co-Founders Nicola and Sally will be at the event on and off on both days (May 4 and 5) so look out for us – we always love to connect with likeminded businesses.

We hope to see you there – or do get in touch if you can’t make it and want to know more.

Feed the Easter dash with a ski wear spring clean

Bookings for Easter ski trips are booming, with thousands planning a last-minute dash to the slopes to catch their first ski season in two years.

The return to the UK Passenger Locator Form has been scrapped, France has suspended its health pass requirements, meaning unvaccinated children and teens no longer need to test daily, and Austria has relaxed its proof of vax / test / recovery rules. Spain is free to enter, as is Norway where masks are pretty much non-existent, and fully vaccinated travellers will no longer need to provide a pre-entry COVID-19 test result to enter Canada from April 1.

If you want to ski this spring : the choice of destination is wide. At last.

As a result, and after a long period off the piste, we are hearing from many people whose ski clothes (or their kids’ ski clothes) no longer fit. We can confirm: demand for good quality pre-loved secondhand ski clothing is HIGH. Which makes now the perfect time to sell on your quality ski and snowboard clothes via WhoSki.com.

Keep hard-to-recycle ski clothing out of landfill

You may already be aware that wintersports wear is notoriously difficult to recycle because of its mixed materials and specialist coatings. It’s also harder to sell on through charity shops because of the limited market. A terrifying 300,000 tonnes of textiles is dumped in landfill every year. So do your bit for the environment by thinking secondhand when you buy your next ski and snowboard outfit. Check the listings in the WhoSki.com shop before you think about buying new.

We donate to charity on every sale

And if you have ski clothes still in good condition but which you no longer need, it is so simple to upload them for sale at the WhoSki.com marketplace.

Registration is free and takes just a couple of minutes. Uploading clothes for sale is so simple you can do it from your smartphone.

We donate 25% of our commission on every sale to teenage mental health charity stem4. That means you are doing good for the environment AND charity every time you buy and sell at WhoSki.com.

What’s stopping you? Click through to our marketplace to get going. And enjoy that Easter ski break: you deserve it.

Cross-country ski clothing essentials

I am freshly back from my first ever cross-country ski experience, three days on the tracks in Kvitfjell, Norway, brilliantly organised by SkiSafari.com.

It was a short, try-out visit, but required an almost complete overhaul of my piste wardrobe. Ski clothing rental is becoming increasingly popular, thanks to our friends at ecoski.co.uk. However, cross-country, aka Nordic skiing, is still a minority interest for UK skiers. That meant no chance of hiring clothing for this ski mini-break.

Luckily, my husband and I both absolutely loved the sport and can’t wait to return, so our kit will be going back in the cupboard until we can get back to the trails.

Buy pre-loved if you can

I am certain that in future it will be possible to buy pre-loved cross-country ski clothes here at WhoSki.com, but these are early days for our peer-to-peer marketplace, so on this occasion, off to the (online) shops we went.

For downhill skiing, clothing needs to both breathe and keep you warm on ski lifts. The way most of us ski makes for short periods of extreme exertion followed by longer stretches of trying to avoid getting cold hands, feet etc.

In contrast, cross-country skiing is physically much tougher, especially for a beginner with poor technique. Bear in mind that you are likely to work up a sweat pretty quickly, so you would roast in your downhill ski jacket and pants. You do, however, need to stay warm while stopped or in bad weather. Yup: we are talking layers.

Lower body

Go for two layers on your legs: a pair of thermals with over-trousers on top. The thickness of your thermal base layer will depend on the outside temperature: thick for colder winter weather, thinner for spring-like temperatures. In late spring you might even drop the thermal layer, or choose a shorter three-quarter-length / Capri style pair of tights or thermals. These will allow more air to circulate and help prevent you from over-heating.

I wore the same thin base layer leggings which I also wear under my usual downhill ski pants, and they were just fine.

If you’re looking for a higher-intensity cross-country ski workout, ski tights alone – similar to running leggings – will suit. Those aiming for gentler touring on skis will also need a pair of shell-type Nordic ski pants to wear over your base layer.

I bought mine from Daehlie, a well-known Norwegian brand, and was very pleased with their performance; wind-resistant micro-fibre material at the front and stretch material at back with tailored legs, elasticated ankles and a small zip pocket. Warm and cool and comfortable.

Upper body

Think three layers, with a thin base layer next to your skin that will wick away sweat, a fleece on top of that and a lightweight over-jacket designed specifically for cross-country skiing. Odds are the fleece will come off as soon as you start working harder on an uphill stretch, so it’s as well to wear a small backpack for your trip out on the trails.

Your over-jacket needs to be windproof, and you might appreciate having a micro-down jacket that weighs light and packs small in your backpack too. You can slip this on for extra warmth on a cold day if you find yourself taking a chairlift or stopping for a prolonged rest.

I found a half-zipped base layer was perfect under my jacket: the zip allowed for extra air circulation when working hard on climbs. It’s the same top I use when downhill skiing, so that was one less item to buy.

Day one began with me wearing a mid-layer fleece – which came off very quickly – and I only wore it again to keep the wind off when we took a chair-lift to the start of a more distant trail. My Halti soft shell jacket also performed beautifully and looked good.

Accessories

Many cross-country skiers wear a headband/ buff to keep their ears warm yet allow heat to escape – a thick hat will be too hot for most of us. However, a thin beanie or cap with ear-flaps that fold up will also suffice.

Your downhill ski gloves are likely to be far too thick / insulated for cross-country skiing, so you might want to invest in specific cross-country touring gloves. Thicker running gloves would also do the job on warmer days. Mittens are recommended for those who suffer from cold hands. I do, but suffered no chills in my new cross-country gloves on this trip (bright spring sunshine, temperatures hovering around zero).

Regarding socks, alpine ski socks are fine although of course you don’t really need the padding or length. My husband was happy in good quality woollen socks. Cross-country ski boots are light yet warm and windproof – and so easy to walk in compared with their alpine equivalents. Heavenly.

As for all skiing, good quality sunglasses are essential (not goggles – too hot for cross-country) as snow glare can cause optical damage.

Make sure you carry a water bottle – cross-country skiing is energetic work. And the little Nordic ski straps provided by our hire shop were genius for holding together the skis when carrying them (which is a joy – they are so light).

Get in Touch

If you’re thinking about trying out cross-country skiing, do drop us a message on social media : @WeWhoSki on Twitter and Instagram. I’d be happy to share tips from our experience.
Nicola

What to pack for your family ski holidays

Most of us heading for the slopes this winter / spring will be seasoned skiers / snowboarders, but if you’re a ski holidays first timer, what ski wear essentials should be in your suitcase?

No one wants to (a) over-pack OR (b) be under-prepared. If you’re not a ski parent, however, it can be hard to know what’s a must-have, and what you can cross off the shopping list. Here’s the children’s ski wear I recommend, after two decades of skiing with children (from age 0 upwards):

SKI WEAR MUST-HAVES:

  • warm, waterproof ski jackets and trousers or ski suit. You cannot ‘make do’ with non-specialist equipment here: waterproofing, flexible movement, pockets and padding will make for an all-round better ski experience.
  • mid-layer. This can be a simple fleece, but make sure it has a zip so the wearer can open and close according to weather and exertion.
  • ski goggles. More protective than sunglasses, less easy to lose, warmer for the face on a cold day or when it is snowing.
  • ski gloves. Absolutely essential as it’s miserable to have cold hands, oft expressed by highly vocal wailing. You might also want to throw in a pair of thin glove liners. Mittens are warmer and perfect for little ones. Kids’ gloves tend to get drenched on a daily basis and they are slow to dry, so taking a spare pair is recommended.
  • ski socks. Longer than normal socks with heat-retaining qualities and the right padding in the right places, two pairs of ski socks for a week’s trip will be enough, provided they go on the radiator to dry between wears.
  • snowboots. No child or adult should ever go to the mountains without a chunky pair of cosy, waterproof snowboots. They mean kids can play in the snow without getting frostbite of the toes, and adults can walk to the bar/supermarket/ski school pick-up point without slipping over. Wear them on the journey to cut down on luggage weight
  • slippers/Crocs. Aka footwear you can wear between bootroom and chalet/hotel room. The first sign you will see at the entrance to your accommodation will be: no outdoor footwear. Without slippers (ideally, something robust with a sturdy sole) your socks will quickly be soggy. Yuck.
  • Lip balm and high SPF sunscreen. Take a few small tubes of suncream with you and slip into pockets so you can top up throughout the day. Ditto for lip balms, which are easily lost.

SKI WEAR NICE-TO-HAVES:

  • handwarmers. Keeping one of these in your pocket for those super-cold ski days can make a big difference, although there will be years when you don’t need them at all. Good news though: they don’t go off, so save them for next season if unused.
  • sunglasses. I would never go skiing without a pair in my pocket, but my kids have been known to stick with goggles whatever the weather. One less thing to lose, too.
  • thermal underwear. I always made sure my young kids wore thermals – and sometimes that was all they needed under their ski suits – but for teens, not essential.
  • helmet. Essential to wear, but easy to rent. You only really need to own one if you’re a habitual skier. For children, make sure there’s a clip at the back to prevent goggles from pinging off. As with cycling and motorcycling, never buy a secondhand helmet: you don’t know what it’s been through, plus build technology has improved year on year so modern styles are safer than ever.
  • ski boots. As above: wait to buy them until your child’s feet have stopped growing/you move to the Alps/you’ve got the ski bug.
  • multi-packs of a favourite sweet snack. Slipping a packet of Haribos or a chocolate bar into a child’s ski jacket pocket provides a welcome energy boost for little ones between runs.

Got children’s ski wear that no longer fits? Pass it on via our preloved ski clothing marketplace. Looking for ski clothes for your family? Browse our peer-to-peer marketplace for high quality secondhand ski gear.

Hurry to WhoSki.com for half-term ski trip essentials

  • Half-term ski trip booked: CHECK
  • Boxes of wintersports clothing retrieved from the loft: CHECK

Like so many others, it’s two years since I last enjoyed a ski holiday (thanks for nothing, pandemic), and – predictably – half the family’s winter wardrobe doesn’t fit.

Sounds familiar? With just a fortnight until thousands of us hit the slopes, there is no chance that any ski or snowboard clothing donated to the charity shop will be sorted and on sale in time to help out another family this season.

But there is still time to shake down your good-as-new clothes, upload them to WhoSki.com (using our new, super-simple marketplace tech) and see them go to a good home.

FIXED-PRICE INSTANT SALES MEAN THERE’S STILL TIME TO SELL – and buy

So if you’re also having a ski kit clear-out, why not sell on your unwanted good-as-new clothing before you head off? And browse our re-launched WhoSki.com marketplace (new items being added all the time) to fill the gaps in your family’s ski and snowboard wardrobe.

Sales via our website are fixed-price so you don’t have to wait for an auction to come to an end, with transactions handled safely by trusted provider Stripe. Find out more about how to buy and sell via WhoSki.com here.

It’s free to register at WhoSki.com, and we donate 25% of our commission to teen mental health charity stem4 on every sale.

Clear out your wardrobe, prevent still useable ski clothing from going to landfill AND do some good: what are you waiting for?

Remember, too, to save putting away the stuff you won’t use again by posting it for sale on WhoSki.com when you return. It’s so simple to use our new upload system, you could do it from your phone while hanging around at the airport or in the car on the way home. Simply register, upload pics and details and click POST LISTING. It is literally that easy.

You’ll be helping people who ski later in the season (at Easter, for example) as well as the environment. Did you know that around 75% of clothing donated to charity shops fails to find a home?

Boost your family’s mental health with #PMHD

You may spend a lot of time worrying about the mental health of your offspring, but how often do you think about your own?

Our charity partner stem4 has nominated today Thursday (January 27) as Parent Mental Health Day (#PMHD) to highlight that by looking after our own mental health, we can in turn improve outcomes for our children. It makes perfect sense.

The theme of the event is ‘balance’:  #TiptheBalance to Positive: Looking after Parent and Carer Mental Health, and comes with a free Zoom seminar at 7pm this evening (27/01/2022). Register here: https://bit.ly/stem4webinarsPMHD

We donate 25% of our commission on every sale through WhoSki.com to stem4, which is Wimbledon-based (as are we) and focuses on practical ways to improve teenage mental health through developing apps and support programmes.

This year’s #PMHD is a nudge for parents and carers to take a moment to reflect on the balance (or lack of it) we have in our lives, and take simple, positive steps that can bring changes.

You might find it hard to believe at times, but as a young person’s ‘responsible adult’ you are among their chief influencers – building on this position of influence can be a positive way to improve mental health for every member of your family.

Perhaps your next family ski trip might be a good time to put some stem4 positive mental health tips into practice? Combined Minds is among the highly rated apps the charity has developed to support its aim of fostering the development of good mental health in teenagers through enhancing early understanding and awareness.

Schuss into spring 2022 with new-look WhoSki.com

Welcome to new-look WhoSki.com. We’ve had a marketplace makeover, making it quicker and easier to buy and sell pre-loved wintersports wear on our UK-based website, with transactions powered by Stripe for financial confidence and security.

What’s new?

  • upload technology SO SIMPLE that you can list your no-longer-needed clothing by mobile as you travel to and from the piste
  • reliable click-to-buy transactions powered by trusted provider Stripe
  • focused ski and snowboard community: no trawling through page after page of irrelevant content
  • #SkiGreen Directory to help you make eco-choices when you visit the slopes

PLUS we continue to donate a quarter of our commission to teen mental health charity stem4 on every sale.

Think green as you head for the mountains

Sustainability is the No1 reason why we set up WhoSki.com. Extending the lifetime of textiles is the most environmentally friendly way to keep clothing in circulation and out of landfill. It’s a step that we can all take, by passing on our good quality, secondhand clothes to other enthusiasts.

Experts calculate that extending the active life of clothing by just three months per item, leads to a 5-10% reduction in the carbon, water and waste footprints of your family’s no-longer-needed ski and snowboard outfits.

Find out more about sustainability in winter sports and the fast business on our Eco page here.

Meanwhile, around three-quarters of clothing donated to charity shops fails to find a home – especially specialist items like ski wear – and a mere 15% of our textile waste is recycled.

The good news is, every one of us can make a difference. So why not put sustainability on your to-do list this back-to-ski season? Selling through WhoSki.com instantly reduces the carbon footprint of your wintersports habit, helps you earn a bit of money and keeps down the cost of kitting out yourself and your family.

Sell simply and safely in our dedicated community

So whether you’ve fallen out of love with your wintersports wardrobe since you were last on the slopes, or had a clear-out and realised those ski and snowboard clothes no longer fit, the WhoSki.com shop is the place to sell them, simply and safely.

We look forward to welcoming you to our refreshed online marketplace – join us too on social media, @WeWhoSki on Twitter and Instagram.

Boom time for UK’s indoor snow centres?

Anyone else resigned to another DNS ski season? Like us, you probably have wintersports pals who have abandoned trying to pre-plan a ski trip. Maybe you’ve held back from the Eurotunnel crossing in favour of the increasingly common ‘wait and see’ approach – particularly if you’ve got school-age kids.

The complications of daily testing in resort, the risks of possibly racking up a Covid19 positive before starting the journey home and the dread of forcing children to miss yet more schooling through self-isolation on their return, make a pre-booked ski trip simply not feasible for many families.

Disappointing for us – but good news for the UK’s indoor real snow slopes that look set to mop up the thousands who are not going to make it to the mountains this winter.

The fact is that not being able to get to the Alps or Dolomites doesn’t mean you and the kids have to miss out on your piste time. This could be a bumper season for indoor snow centres as, to be frank, there really isn’t much in the way of outdoor skiing infra unless you’ve got Glencoe on your doorstep.

If you want your fix of the white stuff, you’re probably going to have to ski and snowboard indoors this winter.

Snow centres have come a long way since the Tamworth Snowdome opened back in 1994. Now there’s a growing network of indoor ski and snowboard centres across the UK. Check out the Ski Club of Great Britain info page here for the full range of real snow and dry ski slopes across GB.  

A word of advice: get your sessions booked NOW – we predict high demand this winter, with so many families disappointed by not being able to get their mountain fix. Why not take the opportunity to learn the basics on a snowboard, grab a few lessons to spruce up your technique or even take your Level 1 instructor exams (could be the perfect Christmas present for an older teen…)?

And fingers’ crossed that the health climate improves enough between now and Easter to allow that long-awaited trip to our favourite pistes before the season is through.