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The warmest pants I've ever owned: These ultra-insulated sweats got me through a winter in Iceland

Survive (and thrive!) in winter 2024 with these extra-warm joggers.

Yellow sherpa sweatpants, gray sherpa sweatpants, red sherpa sweatpants
These sherpa-lined joggers are SERIOUSLY warm pants (Amazon)

Brrrr! The 2024 winter storms and freezing temperatures around the country this week have left me thinking about little else except how to stay warm, comfortable and cozy for the next few months. Enter my greatest winter-weather clothing secret: Sherpa-lined sweatpants, which have gotten me through more than one East Coast polar vortex, a snow squall and, once, a dark, freezing month in Iceland.

Quick overview

Here's what you need to know about these pants: They're warm, they're cute, they're soft. They come in 21 different colorways and in sizes X-Small to XX large. Plus, they have more than 17,000 5-star reviews. They're the best.

$36 at Amazon

My trip to Iceland in 2021 is how I first discovered these wonder sweats: I was heading out on a five-week-long writer's retreat in a remote part of the country in winter. I grew up on the East Coast, but I'd been living in Los Angeles for a decade and had lost context for what cold weather really meant. I knew I'd be writing in drafty rooms and also planned on going on long, frigid walks. So, before my trip, I over-stocked up on fleece neck warmers and wool socks and a portable tea kettle and the most ludicrously warm winter boots you've ever seen. But the clothing item that turned out to be the most useful was the sherpa-lined sweatpants, which were — and remain to this day — truly the coziest garment I've ever owned.

"Like wearing a heated blanket!" said one happy reviewer. "My No. 1 cold weather pants!!" raved another.  

$36 at Amazon

My first pair of sherpa-lined sweats were fire-engine red, slim cut, snug and ribbed at the ankles, strangely flattering while still being super insulated. Slipping into them felt like having furry sleeping bags on my legs in the best possible way.

My first pair of sherpa-lined sweatpants. They're a slimmer fit than the version above. Perfect for lounging, hiking and, on the coldest nights, sleeping.

$30 at Amazon

Since Iceland, I've worn sherpa-lined sweats anytime I've encountered serious cold — to walk my mom's dog in January in Jersey, to check out my sister's new neighborhood in Baltimore during the polar vortex of Christmas '22, on a surprisingly freezing camping trip with my kid's school in California in March, etc. I'm on my third pair. I'll never look back.

Wearing sherpa-lined sweats in Baltimore
Wearing the sherpa-lined sweats in Baltimore during the Christmas 2022 polar vortex. It was 10 degrees outside. I have on two coats. (Author's photo)

Honestly, I'm headed back east again next month and I'm tempted to buy more sherpa-lined clothes. Like this entire sherpa-lined sweatsuit, because, I mean, why not? Is there a better outfit to wear with a cup of tea and a book on a chilly February morning? Or while sitting on my parents' couch watching Yellowstone with my dad?

Sherpa-lined sweatpants for men AND sherpa-lined sweats for kids

Trust me, once you jump on the sherpa-lined bandwagon, you're going to want to share your good-warming fortune with everyone you love. And — fear not — you won't need to leave anyone out: There are styles for men and kids too!

"Phenomenal sweatpants!" says one happy man after purchasing these durable bottoms, which come in 24 different colors and patterns and in sizes up to XX-Large. This same gentleman followed with: "Delightfully warm...Best money I’ve spent on winter clothes in my whole life. Would buy again in a heartbeat." 

$37 at Amazon