A little while back the nice folks at Woolx (http://www.woolx.com/) sent me an Explorer Mid Weight 3/4 Zip Base Layer shirt (http://www.woolx.com/woolx_mens_x507_xplorer_midweight_quarter_zip.html) to test and review. I've been holding off on the review in hopes that we'd get some really cold weather that I could try it out in, but it's now December 22, and I'm still running in shorts here in Ontario, so I figure I'll write my review anyway.
Woolx is a pretty new company, and from what I can tell, the people who work there are really into the outdoors. I've been following them on Twitter and Facebook to see what they're all about, and they really seem to be outdoor enthusiasts who are making the type of gear that they want and use themselves. One of the key things about their products is that they guarantee no itch:
"Wear and wash your WoolX garments. If you decide at anytime that they aren't the softest and most itch-free Merino Wool clothing you've ever worn,you can return them for a full refund. We'll even pay the shipping back!"
My first impression when this arrived was that it really is soft. Other wool gear I have is kind of smooth (which is nice too) but this has a soft and cuddly sort of feel to it. Here's what I like about it:
- It has a really good bulk to insulation ratio- you feel warm without feeling like you're wrapped up like a mummy. It's thinner than Polartec, so you don't feel as bulky
- It doesn't get as clammy and damp feeling as fleece does. When you work up a good sweat in a fleece, it tends to hold the sweat in, and you feel pretty wet. This seems to wick the sweat away quite well.
- It's very light- compared to a Polartec 1/4 Zip that had been my go to lightweight insulation, this is about 20% lighter
- It doesn't get stinky. Synthetic layers stink. I have lots of shirts that I wash after wearing it a time or two, and as soon as I pull them over my head I can smell that lingering smell of swear. Merino wool does not get that.