check out these 16 shells and mid-layers we reviewed this week.
Welcome to another installment of Editor’s Review from FREESKIER. Each week our editorial staff provides in-depth, honest reviews about the gear they’re testing on a weekly basis. Our goal? To point you towards the best brands and products on Earth so you can trust your equipment whole-heartedly and have as much fun in the mountains as possible. Read up on the lululemon gear, below, then visit us again tomorrow for more awesome gear coverage.
It’s May. The perfect time to start strengthening your muscles for next ski season. Because boot-packing up to that dream objective or simply skiing bell-to-bell on that once-in-a-season pow day requires a little extra juice in your legs and body—and the juicing starts now.
No matter whether your off-season activities involve skiing (‘cause the spring corn is prime and a number of resorts will operate through the Fourth of July, or later), hiking, biking or running, you’ll want proper active-wear to enjoy your activities to the max. Today, I provide you with reviews of four incredibly lightweight, comfortable and moisture-wicking training garments that have exceeded my expectations: the Pace Breaker shorts, T.H.E. Short (liner-less), the Rise ‘N Sweat pants and the Surge Jogger pants, all by lululemon.
This ultra-lightweight, gusseted short is designed for rockin’ mobility. Ease of movement is attributed to a few key ingredients: the incorporation of the gusset; lulu’s “Swift Ultra” fabric, complete with four-way-stretch; and also a generous cut that provides ample room through the butt and quads. Sport this short and you’ll be able to run, lunge, squat, stretch and jump with ease.
The Pace Breaker boasts excellent breathability, as well. The aforementioned Swift Ultra fabric is incredibly lightweight, soft to the touch and moisture-wicking. On warm days while hiking and rollerblading, I enjoyed the range of movement and I remained dry and thereby happy.
The look, fit and styling of these shorts is also 100-percent on-point. The nine-inch inseam allows for showing off some thigh, but not too much thigh. The fit is not quite tight, nor loose—it’s a happy medium. The addition of a false fly adds some style points and a super-stretchy waistband is, in one word, delightful. The liner is non-invasive; I don’t even notice it. (You’ll appreciate that liner if you ever opt to go Commando out there. There’s also a liner-free version.) You’ll enjoy deep, spacious pockets on the left and right and there’a a vertically-oriented, zippered media pocket on the left side, as well. I’m a 33-waist these days and I’ve been sporting this short in a size M. I could certainly size up, but I prefer to keep things a bit tighter. I opted for the Military Green/Black colorway, but there’s more to choose from, as well.
I’ve also been digging T.H.E. Short. This piece has much in common with the Pace Breaker including sweat-wicking and quick-drying Swift Ultra fabric; four-way stretch; a generous cut providing breathing room around the butt and thighs; a gusset for even more mobility and a crazy-lightweight, bulk-free character. Yet it has a flare all its own. Most noticeably, the seven-inch inseam means T.H.E. Short is exactly that: short. If you’re keen to flash your thunder thighs, look no further.
T.H.E. Short features pockets on the left and right, plus a horizontally-oriented, zippered pocket on the right side between the butt and the hip. You’ll also love the false fly and the incredibly-stretchy waistband (though, not quite as stretchy as that of the Pace Breaker). I opted for the Carbon Mist Alpine White/Graphite Grey colorway, but there’s a solid blue and black to consider, among other options. I’m also rocking this piece in a size M.
For those cooler days this spring/summer, nighttime activities or if you’re cold-blooded, or simply prefer pants to shorts, the Rise ‘N Sweat pant is a sure bet. Similar story to the shorts, here: This pant is highly moisture-wicking, enabling you to focus on the task at hand rather than your sweaty thighs. The utilization of Swift Ultra Light fabric (note the “Light”), however, ups the breathability factor. Swift Ultra Light is designed to provide maximum airflow. The folks at lulu go so far as to say that the pants are so airy that “it’s like being in the buff.” I can confirm that statement is not all that far off.
For all sorts of training activities, from running to biking to yoga, this pant will be your best friend. The comfort factor is huge; after having worn these extensively for the past few weeks, I began to think, “So, this is why many ladies out there seem to never, ever remove their lulu leggings.” The pant is designed with a knit panel at the knee for increased mobility and boasts supreme stretchiness. The fit is streamlined through the butt and quads and narrow from the knee to cuff, for a decidedly sporty, jogger-esque look. The inseam registers 32 inches and the elastic waistband is mighty comfortable. You’ll find pockets on the left and right, with zipper-less internal pockets on each side, as well. There is a zippered pocket on the right side, between the butt and the thigh, for a phone, wallet, etc. The false fly provides a nice look, as well. I’ve been sporting a size M.
If you’re looking for another training pant to consider, I recommend the Surge Jogger. I dig this pant for all of its obvious attributes—lightweight, sweat-wicking, four-way stretch material—but the key selling point here is a zip on the cuffs for easy on and off. That, plus an unbelievably comfortable and stretchy waistband (the stretchiest of the four items on this page).
There’s ample room to breath around the butt and thighs and the fit narrows between the knee and ankle for the classic jogger look. Designed primarily for running, this pant features a zippered pocket in the rear, on the waistband, so your phone (because who runs without one these days?) won’t bounce around while you’re on the move. You’ll find zippered pockets on the left and right, as well. The inseam of this pant is 29 inches and the Surge Jogger features a false fly. In the same way that I appreciate the styling and comfort of the Rise ‘N Sweat, whenever I slip into the Surge it’s tough to take ’em off. Another staffer here at the office has been sporting another version of this pant and said today that he’s worn them “pretty much everyday for six months straight.”
So, hit the trail, pavement, gym floor, yoga mat, whatever, and get your body prepped for next season’s epic pow days. And do so in supreme style and comfort. Because life’s too short to settle for anything less.