Winter’s Here, So Is Cashmere
Now that temperatures are dropping very low here in Stockholm, I thought it would be a great idea to make a new list. A list of the 5 Best Cashmere Sweaters For Men For 2021.
High Quality Cashmere is much more expensive than your regular wool however I included options for all budget ranges. We are lucky because in 2021 we can get our hands on decent quality for an affordable price.
If you are a fan of wool sweaters then might be the perfect time to step up and get one now. The difference is night and day I promise!
Shall we get going?
What Is Cashmere?
Cashmere Wool (or simply Cashmere) is a type of soft, extra fine wool fiber that comes from the Kashmir Goat. These fibers have extraordinary qualities that include strength, warmth, reduced itchiness and a luxurious soft feeling.
The word Cashmere comes from anglicizing the word Kashmir which is a region in the Himalayas. You might hear about the tensions in that region between India and Pakistan actually.
The Kashmir Goats
While the goats that produce Cashmere originate (or so it seems) from the Kashmir Region, you can find them in other parts of the world as well. Specifically, Mongolia has pretty good reputation but you also find them in China, Australia, Iran and even in the UK.
The goats manage to survive in extreme alternating temperatures and harsh terrains. When winter comes these goats develop a soft undercoat which they then shed during the summer. With the exception of the Iranian Goats the breeders collect the Cashmere fibers through combing or shedding. That makes it a natural process and preserves the fibers.
After collecting them they will spin it into yarns and then turn it into sweaters, accessories and knitwear. Cashmere is also quite rare since it takes up to 4 years for 1 goat to produce enough cashmere for 1 sweater! From another perspective, it would take 4-6 goats to make it.
It goes to show why this material is so expensive.
Trivia: The Kashmiri Changthangi goat produces the finest Cashmere in the world.
Cashmere Vs Merino Wool
While both fibers are fantastic they do have some different qualities.
- Fiber Diameter: Think of it as width. The finer the fiber, the more luxurious and soft Cashmere is. Microns between 14-19 classify as fine Cashmere while Merino is under 24
- Strength: Merino and Wool are generally more durable fabrics
- Warmth: Cashmere is up to 8 times warmer than wool but at the same time also lighter
- Itchiness: Cashmere has a smoother fiber (picture below) which in turn makes it less prone to itching
One can also add breathability to the list since it’s great for both winter and warmer days with regulating temperatures.
The Best Cashmere Sweaters List
Of course, making a “Best” list is always subjective and you (or others) will have different opinions. However after extensive research and ownership of exclusively cashmere knitwear I feel confident with my recommendations.
When it comes to the style and color you can of course choose something else. This is mainly about the brands and the types of sweaters I think should be in your wardrobe regardless of budget.
Please also note that all these are subject to availability so some of them might not be available when you click on the link!
Let’s begin with the first of the 5 Best Cashmere Sweaters for Men!
1. Uniqlo | Entry Level $99.90
Hovering between $89.99 and $149.99 you can get a lot of great budget deals at Uniqlo. A Japanese company famous for their affordable clothing and minimalism, Uniqlo also has some good cashmere sweaters to dip your feet in.
I tried them in the Stockholm store and they seem pretty good for the price. Last time I checked around 70% of their products come from China. If you can ignore the alleged accusations for maltreatment of employees and the occasional controversy it’s a great budget option.
In particular I believe that you should have at least 1-2 Crew/O-Neck sweaters in your wardrobe in different colors. Navy is always a safe choice but brown and dark green are very underrated.
Found them on sale? You can probably score an even better deal!
2. Gobi Cashmere | $109 – $379
Mongolian Cashmere has a great reputation and it makes sense if you consider the extreme weather in the country. Until recently I wanted to try something from them but I didn’t pull the trigger until the latest Black Friday.
They generally have rather affordable clothes with sweaters beginning as low as $109 up to $379 for the most expensive ones. while you can buy cashmere overcoats for $629.
I think this is the perfect price range to get yourselves a nice cashmere hoodie. Believe it or not I used to wear hoodies all the time but not anymore. It is time to invest in one isn’t it?
My personal pick is going to be this hoodie in a sort of “wine chocolate” mix. All for a very affordable price of $229.
Tip: Look forward to my Review of Gobi Cashmere in the next few weeks!
3. Soft Goat | “Swedish” Cashmere For $315
I stopped buying Merino Wool Sweaters as soon as I discovered Cashmere. Right now most of my collection is from Swedish Soft Goat.
A small company with collections for Men, Women and Kids with some pretty fair prices. In fact, you can read my Review here:
Starting as low as $245 there are some great options. The Cashmere quality is fine with 2/4-ply weaving and a soft nap however they tend to pile and need brushing often.
I also found them to be rather smell resistant which is great. Soft Goat makes their clothes in China which is a pattern you will often see in the lower end.
One of the most flexible colors that is perfect for winter is brown. An earthy tone chunkier knit is perfect and in this case a lovely turtleneck.
It matches with literally anything! Did I mention that the name of the color is “Nutella”? Where did I put that jar…
A bit of a lesser known brand outside of Scandinavia but pretty good to have on your radar!
4. Altea Milano | Italian Cashmere For $470
My first ever Cashmere Sweater was from Mr. Porter and Altea Milano. I remember it was around November on my birthday and I decided to give myself a good present!
The Cashmere is excellent even now and extremely soft. They also make it in Italy and is definitely superior quality than the previous brands.
One of the things that amazed me is how much less it pills compared to them too. The only downside is that it seems to pick up smells a little easier.
I generally don’t endorse purchases on Mr. Porter often but I think Altea is a good brand that should be on your list. Selections are seasonal but the one that picked my interest this time was this Grey Melange Polo Sweater.
Clearly a step up in price too but totally worth the quality in my opinion. If you enjoy polos this is the perfect upgrade as it is smooth, soft and makes you feel good.
It’s also a great color and a good variation of grey. When I worked in Suitsupply other than Navy, Mid/Dark Grey was the color of choice for most men.
5. Loro Piana | End Game At $1350
With the exception of shoes and suits, I rarely endorse something that would cost so much and be part of a casual wardrobe.
However some people have the budget or simply want the best. And very few brands make finer cashmere and wool than Loro Piana. Their baby cashmere in particular is divine.
So I saved the most expensive and luxurious one for last in this list. I could not justify endorsing $5000 knitwear from Brunello Cucinelli though.
A classic, navy baby cashmere for a finish then. I handled it in Italy and also saw their wool fabrics for suiting in Hackett. It is phenomenal.
The only downside is that you need to be really careful. Sometimes more expensive cashmere is also more delicate.
Cashmere Can Be Affordable In 2021
This concludes my simple quick list of the 5 Best Cashmere Sweaters for Men in 2021. You really don’t have to break the bank to get a cashmere sweater and you should have one!
The feeling is really magnificent and with prices like these from Uniqlo and Gobi Cashmere among others it’s a no brainer. I might have to make a list however eventually of the best cashmere brands in the world.
Would you be interested in a guide like that? Let me know in the comments down below! I will see you next week with another article. If you enjoy the content, check out more article and Subscribe!
Thank you for reading,