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I Channeled Princess Diana in This Vintage-Inspired Ski Suit from Halfdays

Fashion, function and fun

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Princess Diana Halfdays Murphy Ski Suit Review mobile
Anwar Hussein / Getty Images / Samantha Meraz / McKenzie Cordell
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Value: 19/20
  • Aesthetic: 19/20
  • Functionality: 20/20
  • Warmth: 19/20

TOTAL: 97/100

Confession: When I was younger, I believed that I was destined to become a professional snowboarder. So, you can only imagine my (nervous) excitement when, last month, my X-Games medaling moment finally arrived: I was headed to Park City, Utah for my first time on the slopes. Naturally, I took the fake it ‘till you make it approach, which meant that I had to dress the part of someone who appears to know what she’s doing, so who better to emulate than the late Princess Diana—the originally ski influencer? When I stumbled across Halfday’s vintage-inspired Murphy ski suit ($595), immediately envisioning the poised and fearless Princess Diana in that fiery red ski number during a 1993 ski holiday in Switzerland, I knew it was meant to be.

To get the most bang for my buck for my fleeting royal moment in Utah, I made sure to tap PureWow senior director of special projects and royals Rachel Bowie for more insight on the late princess’s panache. “Diana's ski slope style was sporty and colorful, but also embodied the best parts of ‘80s fashion,” Bowie told me. “Her ski attire was loud, bright and bold—and she often accessorized, too, adding playful details like mirrored sunnies or a braided headband.” Bright? Check. Sunglasses? Check. Headband? Check. At this point, I couldn’t tell what I was most excited for: snowboarding or dressing up. (Who am I kidding? The answer is definitely the latter.)

Here’s how the vintage-inspired ski suit held up after two days of shredding.

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Halfdays

After seeing a gap for fun, stylish and well-fitting performance outerwear designed for women, by women, founders Ariana Ferwerda, Karelle Golda and Olympic skier Kiley McKinnon decided to take matters into their own hands, creating Halfdays in 2019. As a self-diagnosed shopaholic, I gravitated towards the company’s seamless and flattering designs, and I even surprised myself with how much I liked the effervescent color options—a small yet major offering that I don’t often see in the ski and snowboard fashion market, and one which Diana championed.

Best of all? It comes with none of that “locals only”-type board sport pressure. Initially focusing on ski wear, the company has since expanded the collections to offer much more, from winter parkas I wish I owned while living in NYC to hiking gear that makes me want to visit a National Park. Since its inception, the brand has solidified itself as one of the most sought-after, aesthetically pleasing winter labels you actually can’t wait to show off for après-ski drinks. Think: playful and (slightly) more affordable high fashion pieces in a notoriously pricey sector.

Take, for example, their Murphy ski suit, which retails at $595 and comes in four colorways. To put it plainly, a less expensive outfit may cost about $200—though you may have to sacrifice on quality, function, warmth and some extra bells and whistles—whereas higher-end labels like Arc’Teryx or Moncler may cost from $800 to upwards of $2,000. Get this: The ski suit garnered over 1.3 million views in one TikTok video alone, proving that a modern take on the vintage racing-style seen on Diana is still en vogue.

Halfdays

Bold and bright, the Murphy ski suit is a real looker, especially when all that’s surrounding me is a blanket of white. As a neutral lover, I was genuinely surprised by my obsession with the Spritz hue. While it’s more vibrant blood orange-ish than Diana’s berry red, it felt powerful to channel a similar air, not to mention comforting to be visible and (hopefully) avoid collision. After all, “the late Princess of Wales was never one to blend in, of course, but she taught us that that the ski slopes are the perfect canvas for standing out,” notes Bowie.

Color aside, the slim-yet-relaxed silhouette really takes the cake. Before receiving my suit, I read hundreds of rave reviews, but it was one reviewer’s concern about the crotch sitting slightly too low that had me on edge. After two days of constantly falling, sitting and maneuvering my body upright (hey, it’s harder than it seems as a novice), I actually appreciated having some extra space below as I wouldn’t have managed to stand otherwise. Plus, the roominess of the leg and built-in gaiters afforded a flawless fit beneath its material for my snowboarding boot, and there’s plenty of room for extra base layers (but more on that in a second).

If the shape is the cake, then then the belt is the icing, because its adjustable band snatched me in at my waist and created a flattering figure. Additionally, the belt’s buttons never popped open once, though I do wish there were additional buttons to cinch it tighter for a more dramatic definition. For reference, I wore a size small and have a 25/26-inch waist.

As the snowboarders say, the Murphy ski suit is dripping in steez (i.e., style).

Halfdays

One of the main concerns I had before my first lesson was about staying warm on the mountain. Made from recycled fabrics and insulated with a sustainable PrimaLoft black insulation, the piece can comfortably withstand temperatures between zero degrees and 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Its 40 gram insulation falls on the thinner and lighter side of the performance scale, so it is going to be more susceptible to the cold. The good news? That meant it was unbelievably lightweight, which was a huge relief for packing and traveling, and I liked that I didn’t feel (or look) like the Michelin Man in the slightest. Plus, it was easy to roll the top of it down to tie the arms around my waist for some après ski fun.

Actually, I was almost too toasty in my suit. To paint a picture, it snowed quite heavily on my first day of snowboarding, so as I dressed for the day’s events, slipping on my Halfdays Fay lightweight merino top ($95) and matching Hallie lightweight merino legging ($95) base layers in navy, it dawned on me that I might not be all that prepared the moment I heard that the others in my party doubled up. (If you aren’t familiar with how thermals feel, it’s ultimately like wearing a wispy thin sheet of fabric.)

I might as well stamp I’M-NOT-AN-EXPERIENCED-SNOWBOARD-DRESSER on my forehead because I made the executive decision to throw on a long-sleeve shirt ($25) from UNIQLO’s HEATTECH line just to be safe. Big mistake. The forecast predicted fresh snow (aka, pow-pow in snowboarding lingo), so naturally, I anticipated some teeth-chattering temperatures. Not only was the Murphy suit’s material highly waterproof—staying completely dry and impenetrable after plenty of falls and lots of sitting in the snow—it was also incredibly insulating and warm. In fact, I actually had puddles of sweat pooled in my base layers afterwards.

If you ask me to choose, I’ll almost always select fashion over function, so I appreciate that Halfdays doesn’t skimp on the latter in their designs. In fact, the details are arguably one of the brand’s biggest selling points. We’re talking six pockets (including a pass pocket to hold your lift ticket and such), a removable hood, zippered gusset hems, a hidden goggle wipe and some vents at the thighs, armpits and neck. The coolest add-on was the phone leash attachment hidden in the exterior chest pocket, as this kept my klutz-y self from accidentally dropping my phone down the slope or, god forbid, on the lift. Every second, I was practically unearthing something new on my body and I loved it.

The Bottom Line

Halfdays

There’s not enough good to be said about this vintage-inspired stylish ski suit. I’d say the $600 price tag is well worth it, especially when you factor in how much it costs for separates. Bottom line: You’re paying for quality, style and function. I don’t care if it’s your first time on the slopes like me or your 50th run, if you step out in the Murphy ensemble—or anything Halfdays, for that matter—you’ll look like you own the mountain. (Prepare to get showered in compliments.)

While it’s not an exact replica of Princess Diana’s iconic ski suit, the Halfdays Murphy suit came uncannily close and managed to achieve exactly what I set out to do: have a Diana-esque shining moment on the slopes.

Snowy white carpet at the ready, I’m itching in anticipation to wear it for my next snowboarding trip because it’s so. dang. comfortable. Speaking of snowboarding…I may not have left with an X-Games medal in tow, but I sure as hell looked the part. Thanks, Diana, for the fashion lesson.

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Associate Fashion Commerce Editor

Stephanie Meraz is PureWow’s Associate Fashion Commerce Editor. Stephanie is a natural savant in the fashion, beauty, and dating & relationships beats. She has over 22+ years...

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