Monday, February 1, 2016

Gear Review: WoolX Brooke ¼ Zip Midweight Layer

The rolling hills on the side of Mt Tamalpais overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Northern California. 

I reach into my backpack and pull out the WoolX Brooke ¼ Zip Merino Wool midweight layer I’ve come to rely on as an essential part of my outdoor, adventure gear.

For the past three months I've been testing out this top, and like any good piece of outdoor gear, it's been dealing with my sweat, dirt, the thrash of peeling it on-and-off throughout the day, crushing it into a ball at the bottom of my pack, throwing it into the laundry, pulling it on for skiing, and rolling it into my bag for a back-up, warm layer. It has gotten the full, use-it-or-lose-it treatment.

And it’s a keeper.

1 minute Video Review of WoolX Brooke 1/4 Zip
Location: California redwood grove

It’s warm. It wicks sweat. It doesn’t itch. Merino Wool is my fiber of choice for layering in all of my outdoor adventures. This isn’t your grandma’s old, scratchy, wool sweater, friends. The Merino Wool is soft and, with the WoolX brand in particular because there are a few Merino Wool brands now on the market, I am not feeling any abrasion from the fiber on my skin. 

WoolX uses a “superfine” Merino Wool which must give it that even softer feel. I have described it as similar to the soft feel of cashmere. And, I notice their marketing does too. P.S. If you get itchy they’ll take it back.

It’s low-maintenance. Throw it into the laundry. Very few pills.

It controls sweaty smell. The beauty of this layering piece is that I’ve used it on both multi-day trips and full, sweaty days and I can still be socially acceptable to have a beer with the crew afterwards without a shower or wash. The Mernio doesn't trap odor the way a poly does. Vital.

It fits well and holds it’s shape. After tons of washes and mangling of pulling on and off countless times, the piece still holds its shape. The fit in general is spot-on for me as a 5’7” curvy gal. It’s slim enough in the torso so it doesn’t look baggy. Arm cuffs cover to my fingers. Good torso length. Gorgeous, deep purple color.

It costs more. The challenge with any piece of quality gear like this one is going to be the price. We pay more for this kind of top than say, a poly based-fabric. However, the natural fiber, durability and overall top quality of this piece of this WoolX gear makes it worth the investment in my book. Keep an eye out for discounts that WoolX throws out here and there.

Company: WoolX 
Price: $99

See you out on the trails!  

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