By Jenn K.
These base layers were provided by the manufacturer for the purpose of this review.
The Women’s Eco Pro-Tek Crew and Drawer (pant) arrived in a size medium. I have no idea why the manufacturer calls the bottom a drawer on the packaging label. The medium size fits true and the sizing chart guided me to select the correct one. The length and the waist height of the drawer (pant) are perfect. I like the gusseted crotch area to allow for more freedom of movement and comfort. However, I found the rise to be slightly long. I tend to have this issue with base layer bottoms. The crew top fits great; not overly sung and confining in the arm pit area and the sleeve length is perfect. The fabric has a slight give to it, but I would not consider it to be stretchy. The only area of fabric that is not form fitted to my body is the rise.
Both garments are a single-layer mini-waffle fabric design and are made from 100% recycled polyester that has Microban protection. This antimicrobial protection helps prevent the growth of odor-causing bacteria. This technology is incorporated into the fabric during manufacturing. These garments are designed to be worn in cold to very cold temperatures and during medium to high level activities.
The material feels soft against my skin and the polyester has no prickly feel. The fabric of the crew and the drawer is black and the flat lock stitching is a bright neon shade of green. The contrast with the green and the black is a nice contrast. The cuffs on the crew and the drawer are hemmed fabric and there is no extra give or elastic properties on the cuff material. However, the waist band of the drawer is elastic with the Coldpruf name and logo in grey stitching.
The care instructions are as follows: machine wash warm with like colors, non-chlorine bleach, do not use fabric softener (this will impede the antimicrobial properties), tumble dry low, low iron if needed.
Over the past month I have worn the Coldpruf Eco-Pro Tek Base Layers during morning/night hikes and while mountain biking in Southern California. When people think of Southern California they frequently think of sunshine, but not frost and snow. Currently there is snow in the local mountains near my home. Since I moved closer to the mountain range I noticed that it is cooler in the mornings and in the evenings then when I lived closer to the beach. Also since moving I have been able to enjoy more activities in my local wilderness areas and it has been chilly.
On the full moon night hikes in the open space land in Southern California it was chilly (in the mid-30’s). And on my mountain bike rides it has been in the upper 30’s. I have worn the top more than the bottom base layer; it is just more practical for me. I wore the bottom under my mountain biking shorts on a cold night ride and I also wore the bottom under my baggy hiking pants on two of the full moon hikes. I enjoy wearing the top under my biking jersey as a base layer during my night rides. I have also worn the top as a layer under a short sleeve shirt to run errands in the morning or before my bike rides.
These base layers have been keeping me warm. At times on the bike I feel too warm, even with the temperatures in the 30’s. But, that is because I am sweating so much from riding uphill. Otherwise when I am not overheating the base layers provide adequate warmth with temperatures in the 30’s to upper 40’s. Around 50 degrees I became overly warm with the top layered beneath a light jacket.
Both layers have been washing well with no damage to the material or the stitching. Also there is no noticeable stretching to either garment. Both the top and bottom pieces still fit well. However, both the top and the bottom are lint and fuzz collectors. It seems like every piece of fuzz sticks to the fabric. I have washed both layers in regular detergent and have dried them by hanging them or in the dryer. The base layers dry with no problem overnight.
I think the antimicrobial fabric property is working well. Generally when polyester gets in contact with sweat or moisture there can be an odd scent. So far I have not noticed an odd scent or any profound stink with either base layer. Also the material is not itchy for polyester; it is actually soft against my skin.
So far I am happy with the Coldpruf Eco-Tek Pro Base Layers; they fit well, are not stinky, and keep me warm. Check back next month to see how I am enjoying these base layers.
Final Update 4/7/13
It is now warming up in Southern California so my time wearing the Coldpruf Eco-Pro Tek Base Layers this month has been limited. I wore the top on two evening hikes and both the top and the bottom one time while mountain biking in the evenings. On all outings this month the temperatures were in the low 50’s F. During the evening hike I layered the top under a jacket and under my jersey while mountain biking. The bottom was layered under my baggy cycling shorts while mountain biking.
I get overheated easily while mountain biking or hiking up an incline. I found that the Coldpruf Base Layers had some moisture wicking properties as my back was not sopping wet from sweat. The top was damp but not uncomfortably wet.
So far the base layer fabric has held up well. There is no stretching or pilling of the fabric. Also both garments washed up well in a top loading washer and air dried or dried in a dryer on medium heat. The base layers dry overnight when air dried. No fabric softener has been used in any of the washings, just a mild detergent.
I like how these base layers fit. Yes, they fit tight, but that is to be expected and necessary for proper base layer fit. The rise on the bottom is perfect and usually this is where I have issues with fit. The arms could be a tad longer because they are just barely long enough and I do not have very long arms, I would say they are of average length. The cut of the neck top is a crew cut that has a large cut. I smaller cut to the neck opening would be a better design for more coverage. The neck opening just seems large for a base layer.
The material is still comfortable against my skin. There is no scratching or roughness from the fibers. The base layers have a normal odor after I am sweating. There is no foul odor to speak of. The base layers have kept me warm through this winter season when the temperatures were in the upper 30’s to the low 50’s F. I know this is not extremely cold, but it is cold for us Southern California folks. And believe it or not the base layer top saw some snow on a mountain bike ride, then it was time to turn around.
So that sums up my time reviewing the Coldpruf Eco-Pro Tek Base Layers. I will enjoy them again when the weather gets cooler.
For more information please visit www.coldpruf.com.