words/images Judith Ecochard
It may be summer months in the northern hemisphere...but even the occasional rainy, cool days...and chiller night temps make base layers, year round necessities.
Highly performing, and techy (moisture wicking, body heat retention, easy care), natural and synthetic fibers--- both figured prominently -equally so...in the company lines previewed at two major trade shows back in January.
Eco factors and the multi-purpose versatility of base layers as regular everyday wear (like lingerie worn as outerwear as personified by Marlene Dietrich/Madonna and now scores of everyone)-also factored into some rather stylishly designed brands for women.
ColdPruf® Base layers are courtesy of a division of Indira Mills, a 96 years young, family owned, North Carolina company---"manufactured" in the USA- sewn and packaged in Mexico, fyi.
|Men's Pro-Tek Crew and Pant-single layer mini waffle...100% recycled performance poly $25/each|
|6 oz single layer mini waffle, front and back rise, gussets, extended nail, ribbed cuffs, flat seams|
ColdPruf's brand new PRO-TEK base layer line is made from PET (recycled plastic bottles) ---and is close fitting-with great hand feel---PLUS all the aforementioned technical attributes one expects from base layers...at great prices too. ($25)
The Pro-Tec collection is enhanced with MicroBan®-an odor eater/anti-microbial application to keep the fabric cleaner, longer...and packaged in Biome Bioplastic resins that are compost friendly/recyclable. A big deal.
Available in men's and women's specific crew neck tops and pants. Not pictured but there is the ECO-Terra top and bottom for guys- a bit heavier (8 oz-$30 per )---made of a 70/30 percent blend of recycled performance polyester and Merino wool.
NEW TO US...and very impressive-engineered to fit, provide various levels of heating via supportive wovens that exemplify body mapping par excellence--- TERRAMAR® Sports Performance Layering Systems are rockstars...
...using several technologies-like its own Body-Sensors ec2® Qwik-Dri™ that permanently modifies a fabric's fiber for better moisture management, X-Odor™-an advanced moisture and odor control technology that combines carbon (that retains and emits body heat when needed) with embedded "fungi" inhibiting, nano-silver-that's permanent too-not a chemical or topical treatment that will wash out.
PLUS: drirelease® with FreshGuard®-a patented blend of fibers that are synergistically meshed for superior moisture management and odor control.
|kids too-pictured the micro fleece with ec2®, Qwik-Dri™ Thermoregulatiom-anti-pill, super warmth without the bulk, UPF Rated 50=,|
|smartsilk™-made of drirelease® silk a performance synthetic with the look and feel of the natural fiber in a men's crew-and seamless too-chafe free...$60|
|smartsilk™ men's tights $60|
This is a rather extensive line-up of base layers---we barely saw the collection- that also includes cross-training separates and travel essentials.
|women's zip mock $69.95-with nice arm/shoulder graphic-in anthracite grey|
USA POLARMAX showed some totally appropriate, wear as outerwear- heavy weight (not bulky though), super warm Comp 4 Tech Fleece tops-with 10% Lycra for shape retention, and their proprietary Acclimate® Dry Moisture Wicking, Scent Prevent® (anti-microbial), athletic fit and flat seam construction for comfort.
|women's zip mock in white with plum raphia's|
Polarmax is also going to the max with its AYG line- performance ready separates made from either the bumped up cotton-comfort plus quick drying/moisture wicking- via XTRDRY/TransDRY™, the 4-WAY STRETCH, or their own TECH SILK ----that feels , well silky.
|XDRY Cotton V-Neck-quick drying, breathable, chef free seam construction, 96% cotton, 4% spandex-available in a bunch f pretty colors and of course, black and white too!|
For gals-thongs, bikinis, boy briefs- cuts we'd actually would wear
Founded in 1998 by Pamela Moyce, in a smack down response to bulky thermal, badly fitting, 'pinked' men's base layers...Snow Angel's separates sport feminine curves and a luxurious hand feel, without an ounce of sacrificing the techy performance aspects that gals need...like four way stretch, sun protection, high thermal heat retention without the weight, permanent wicking properties, easy care, fast dry and durable flat lock construction...
OR---"...for real women...the fit is great."
|quick drying, moisture wicking, cashmere soft micro fleece-wear solo or as a first layer-zip neck, crew neck LSs, capris, flared leg pants, leggings, ---with 13% Lycra for great fit|
|princess seams emphasize gal's curves.|
|Veluxe-lightweight, multi-sport perfect, locking zip T with raglan sleeves, deep cuffs, thumbholes, pretty silkscreened sleeve and front|
|CHAMI-ultra warmth in a proprietary antimicrobial poly/spandex blend, wind and weather restart for the coldest conditions or for gals lacking body heat, and of course, machine washable ---that won't impact the great body conforming fit|
|like the exposed rainbow zipper detail|
|Rainbow Zip-T-part of the ultra warm Chami Collection-black contrast on collar, wrists and fly, plus thumbholes|
|lots of colors available-including the above...|
|Cristal Collection-fashion function---scoop neck, zip neck LS, matching leggings, silky feel with body comforting 4 way stretch. Multi-sport perfect, exceptional moisture management-Winter Garden print|
|thumbholes...solid banding on wrists (and collar)|