In the span of two weeks, we have fully progressed from summer 90 degree temps to chilly mornings and crisp afternoons. Sweater weather is finally here, and I am ready to fully embrace it. I purchased one of the famous $75 cashmere crews from Naadam last year, and was fairly pleased with it. So when they updated it to include men & women specific fit (it was previously unisex), I was excited to try their new fit and add another to the mix.
Naadam is a direct-to-consumer brand focused on sustainably & ethically sourced quality wool products, namely sweaters. While their website has all the right buzzwords and keywords that are almost ubiquitous these days, they do have a clear framework for their mission. You can read more here on their approach to ensuring a living wage across their supply chain, minimizing impact on the environment and local communities, and more.
You may be wondering how they’re able to provide a cashmere sweater for only $75, given all of the above. My guess (purely personal opinion) is that the sweaters are ‘loss leaders’ that don’t have a large margin / profit, but are a gateway to some of their more expensive, higher quality items. I also got a heavenly soft tunic (discontinued, similar here) that feels a little more lightweight but is just as warm.
Quality & Weight
Overall, I am impressed with the quality and weight of this cashmere sweater for the price. You can see it compared to other sweaters in the header image on this post. It’s substantially thicker than the Everlane crew, but thin enough to drape and provide a lot of ease. If I had to sum it up with one word, it’s plush. While it’s not the softest cashmere ever, it’s plenty soft and I have had no issues with itching / irritation.
This is the biggest difference in the new style – the women’s specific fit is slightly more fitted, definitely more cropped, and has shorter sleeves. To me, these changes are all great. As you can see in the photos below, the unisex version was a relaxed fit even in the sleeves (and I have long arms).
I previously ordered a XS when it was unisex, so I wasn’t sure what size to order this time. I purchased both an XS and a S, and prefer the XS for its more fitted look. That being said, it is still a relaxed fit compared to something like the Everlane crew or J. Crew Tippi.
I realize this may not fall within the scope of cashmere sweater properties, but wanted to point it out for anyone who does something similar. Throughout the day, I like to scrunch my sleeves up to my mid-forearm. While the cuffs and sleeves do stay in place, I find that they are stretched out when I pull them back down.
This isn’t a deal breaker for me, as I’ve only had two sweaters survive the stretch test, and they are different in style — the J. Crew Tippi (older version, so higher quality) and Everlane’s cashmere crew. As a result, I may wash these a bit more frequently than I would like, which will impact their longevity.
As any e-commerce-only retailer should, Naadam offers free shipping within the domestic US. While exchanges are free up to two exchanges, returns are not free – they are subject to a fee of $12.75. This is a bit of a bummer if you’re like me, and uncertain about sizing but also a bit impatient. However, I’ve just rolled this into the total cost of the sweater – instead of $75, I think of it as an $88 sweater. And given the quality, I’m 100% okay with that ‘price’.
I’m a fan. I’ll continue to update this post with wear and tear, though my first piece has held up great so far. If you’re in the market for a simple, staple cashmere sweater, Naadam is a great place to start. I can also picture myself gifting one or two of these for the holidays, though I’ll most likely stick with recipients whose sizing I feel confident about!
One last pro-tip: To extend the life of my sweaters between washes, I layer these Uniqlo Heat Tech shirts underneath. Not only do they provide additional warmth, but they prevent deodorant and other smells from getting onto the sweater, so I can go at least 3 – 4 wears between washing.
Partnership Disclosure: This blog post was not sponsored by any of the brands listed above. As always, all opinions are my own. This post may contain affiliate links, in which I earn a commission on purchases.