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We've all experienced the torture of buying a sweater we're obsessed with, only to have it be a nightmare to actually wear. As good as it may look on the rack, a bad sweater isn't ever worth it when the only thing we can think about is how itchy we are when we wear it. Even more annoying than that is the idea of all the pieces we have that we'll never wear again — which isn't just sartorially unfortunate, but a total waste of money.
Unfortunately, trying on a sweater for about 45 seconds in a dressing room doesn't offer the full picture of how it'll really feel after a little bit of wear. Something that feels amazing after a fleeting touch on the rack can actually turn into a hot, itchy nightmare you simply can't wear. Needless to say, there are tons of factors (beyond appearance) that go into making a sweater cozy and dreamy — and not scratchy and annoying.
To save you from one more uncomfortable sweater situation this season, we called on the experts — a dermatologist, a textile expert, and our friends at Woolmark and Everlane — to give us the 411 on how to shop for a piece you'll actually wear (and enjoy doing so). Read on for pro tips to keep in mind next time you find yourself looking to add some new pieces to your winter wardrobe.