Where does the balaclava come from?

Where does the balaclava come from?

BalaclavaDespite the current legislation, balaclavas are still a particularly popular item of clothing in the winter, during winter sports and as an attribute for a large number of sports. They can be worn in several ways, depending on the part of the face that you want to have protected.

What you may not know is that balaclavas have an interesting history. They were only invented in the nineteenth century and were used for the first time during the Crimean War!


With a balaclava you can cover your entire face (with the exception of the eyes), but you can also wear a balaclava as a hat, scarf or protect only a part of your face. Although balaclavas were originally made of wool, a modern balaclava can be made of all kinds of materials. These types of masks are also called ski masks or snowboard masks.

Origin of the balaclava

Balaclavas came into use for the first time during the Crimean War (1853-1856). This war was waged between the Russians on the one hand and the British, Sardinians and the Ottoman Empire on the other. The battle of Balaclava took place in 1854, where the English term for balaclava comes from: balaclava (still in use today).

The British in particular were happy with this new type of face covering, because in Ukraine (where the war was being waged) it could be freezing in winter!

Importance of the balaclava

Even after the Krimoolog, ski masks remained immensely popular and today they are still used for numerous activities, such as during winter sports and in the army. The balaclava is also a popular attribute for motorcyclists.

Balaclava skullFor example, they often wear one under their motorcycle helmets to combat the cold, to keep flies out of their faces or to keep the inside of their helmet clean. Race car drivers are even required to wear a fireproof balaclava in case they have an accident.

Function of the balaclava

You can use a balaclava for several different purposes. This way you can use them purely for the warmth they give your face, such as during snowboarding or during a long trek through the mountains.

This way you can use them purely for the warmth they give your face, such as during snowboarding or during a long trek through the mountains.

Originally, the balaclava was intended as a versatile piece of clothing that you could use in multiple ways. Despite all modern adaptations, modern balaclavas still function as a very diverse and practical item of clothing.

Etymology of the balaclava

The Krimoorlog, as mentioned above, mainly took place on the Crimean peninsula, now part of Ukraine. Balaclava (also sometimes spelled as Balaclava) was the place where in time all the balaclavas were designed, manufactured and distributed among British troops. In many languages ​​the balaclava is still called balaclava, but we continue to call it nice balaclava!

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