In terms of fineness, any wool fiber that has a diameter of 20µ (microns) or less will feel very soft to the touch.
Below 17.5µ the wool starts to feel buttery soft against the skin.
Here’s a guide to fineness grading:
- Fine grade (18.6 – 20μ)
- Ultrafine grade (15.5μ and below)
- Superfine grade (15.6 – 18.5μ)
These are the finest wool T-shirts I’ve found:
Men’s Short Sleeve T-Shirts — Ultrafine Merino
- 100% Merino 15.5 Micro Shirt by Loow — two-ply compact spun Italian utlrafine merino — 160 g/m2 — $112
- 100% Merino 12 Micro T-Shirt by Loro Piana – $2150 (!)
Men’s Short Sleeve T-Shirts — Superfine Merino
- 100% Merino 16.5 Micron T-Shirt by Meriwool – 190 g/m2 – $55 – best price for ultrafine merino
- 87% Merino 16.5 Micron T-Shirt by Proof – superfine merino from Global Merino, New Zealand – $88
- 87% Merino 16.5 Micron Short Sleeve Shirt by Arcteryx (Veilance) – 100% superfine merino – $150
- 100% Merino 16.5 Micron T-Shirt by Outlier – top capped MacKenzie 16.5 micron merino – 145 g/m2 — $120
- 87% Merino 17.5 Micron T-Shirt by Ridge – superfine merino – 145 g/m2 – $54
- 100% Merino 17.5 Micron T-Shirt by Minus33 — superfine merino — lightweight jersey knit – 170 g/m2 — $64
- 100% Cashmere T-Shirt by Maison Cashmere – Loro Piana wool – $127
Men’s Long Sleeve T-Shirts – Superfine and Ultrafine Merino
- 100% Ultrafine Merino Crew Sweater by Jema — ultrafine 13.5 micron Saxon merino (a wool known as Jemala) — $382
- 100% Merino Long Sleeve Shirt by Minus33 — 17.5 micron merino — 170 g/m2 — $69
- 75% Merino Dreamweight Shirt by Outlier — 75% 16.5 micron merino, 25% nylon — 110 g/m2 — $120
- 89% Merino Long Sleeve Shirt by Proof — 17.5 micron merino — superfine wool from Global Merino, New Zealand — $98
- Veilance Frame Shirt Long Sleeve Shirt by Arcteryx — 87% superfine merino, 13% nylon — 16.5 micron — $200
More About Modern Merino Wool
Merino wool has come a long way since the scratchy, thick sweaters of our childhood.
Ultrafine merino wool also feels amazing against your skin – no more scratchiness. The fine fibers make for an incredibly soft fabric that drapes beautifully over your body, never clinging or catching on to anything.
These ultrafine merino wool shirts are perfect for active people who want to stay comfortable on the trail or at work.
Merino wool is a versatile material. It’s warm in cold weather and cool when it’s hot outside. This ability to regulate body temperature makes merino ideal for outdoor activities like hiking, camping, and skiing.
One of the biggest advantages of ultrafine merino wool shirts is their moisture-wicking properties. Merino fibers can absorb up to 30% of their weight in water while still feeling dry. This means that sweat from your body won’t hang around on your skin but will instead be absorbed by the shirt where it evaporates quickly.
Another benefit of ultrafine merino wool shirts is their odor-resistance capabilities. Merino fibers have natural antimicrobial properties which prevent bacteria from growing on them. This means that you can wear a shirt several times before needing to wash it without worrying about smelling bad.