Fashion

11 Cozy Cashmere Sweaters to Splurge On This Winter

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When we think of luxury clothing, the first item to come to mind is a cashmere sweater. These soft, cozy finds   epitomize the phrase, with roots that date back to ancient times, when the fabric was only available to society’s most noble and elite. These days, it’s not hard to get your hands on one of these opulent splurges, be it for yourself or as a gift for a cherished loved oneif you know where to look. Read on to find out more about this premium fiber and where to find the best cashmere sweaters around. 

What is cashmere? 

Cashmere, which originally hailed from Kashmir (a region in Asia that now spans India, China, and Pakistan), is a luxury fiber that’s sourced from the undercoat of cashmere or pashmina goats. 

Why is cashmere so expensive? 

Cashmere is not a fiber that’s readily found in abundance. In fact, it’s only harvested once a year, and each goat produces just six to eight ounces initially, with yields lessening each year thereafter. “A single cashmere goat does not produce a whole lot,” New York-based cashmere goat farmer Pam Haendle told the Huffington Post in 2017. “You only harvest the fibers once a year, and most of us do so by combing the undercoat, which sheds yearly.” 

She added: “Once it’s processed you’re not likely to get more than four ounces back.” 

To make a sweater, knitters need cashmere from roughly two to three animals, with even more needed to produce a larger item, such as a jacket. As anyone who has ever studied economics knows, scarcity drives market value, leading to a high price tag for this premium yarn. 

How to Wash Cashmere

Since a cashmere sweater is an investment piece in your wardrobe, it’s an item you’ll want to take particularly proper care of. Your best bet for prolonging its shelf life is to follow the instructions on your individual piece. While some cashmere pieces can be washed in your machine on a delicate or wool cycle, experts say it’s not a bad idea to consider placing it inside a mesh washing bag ($8.99, Amazon) to protect it from being snagged or tangled up with other clothing. 

If you’d prefer to play it safe, you can also dry clean it or hand wash it with a detergent that’s formulated to be gentle on its delicate fibers, like this The Laundress wool & cashmere shampoo ($19, The Laundress). 

As for drying, it’s best to leave cashmere items out of the machine, laying them flat to air dry. 

The Best Cashmere Sweaters 

From cozy textured turtlenecks that will make you feel warmer just by looking at them ($199.49, Nordstrom) to travel-ready wraps you can wear in a multitude of ways ($118.40, Bloomingdale’s), we’ve tracked down a slew of gorgeous cashmere pieces you’ll be itching to add to your closet — or give to your nearest and dearest this holiday season! Keep scrolling for Woman’s World’s picks for the best cashmere sweaters of 2019! 

We write about products we think our readers will like. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the supplier. See more of our best product recommendations.

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