Editors' Choice Award 2017: Voormi River Run Hoodie

This superlight merino/synthetic top works in all temps.
River Run Hoodie
Price $129.00

Specs

 

Weight 6 oz

Someday we’ll have one perfect next-to-skin fabric that trumps all the rest. Until then, we have this dual-surface baselayer. The merino/synthetic material makes this shirt one of the most versatile we’ve ever used.

We love blended fabrics like this because you get the natural qualities of wool (odor control, warmth, moisture management) with the benefits of a synthetic component (faster dry times). Voormi’s lightest layer, made with 60 percent merino and 40 percent polyester, shares those properties, but it stands out from other blends for two reasons. First, the dual-surface construction puts polyester next to skin, where it wicks sweat to the outer merino layer so it can evaporate quickly. Second, the top uses the lightest performance merino fabric on the market at just 100g/m, according to Voormi. This allows it to breathe in the warmest conditions, making it amazingly comfortable (and dry) in summer heat compared to other wool shirts we’ve tried. “I wore this hoodie all day hiking around Zion National Park in August, and even kept it on climbing up 1,488-foot Angels Landing in the relentless heat,” says Yorko. “I never wanted to switch to a T-shirt and was glad to have the hood and long sleeves shielding me from the scorching sun.”

Fabric this light won’t last forever—one of our samples developed a small hole after two months of constant use—but we saw minimal pilling in high abrasion zones. It’s not as warm as a heavier midlayer, of course, but we happily used it as a baselayer, a second layer, a sun shirt, and a travel hoodie, which helps justify the price.