Review: Review: Vangard Windflex ls base layer
Interesting material, takes a while to break in – but worth the wait!
Straight off the bat, I really wasn’t impressed with this when I first opened the packet. I always wear a base-layer (don’t want to get chapped nipples after all!) and I especially like wind-proof ones as I find they give an extra degree of variation to what and how I can ride, so I was pleased to get this – until I opened the packet.
Vangard are calling it Windflex, and apparently it comes with a 4-way stretch, however this wasn’t evident straight away. It just feels, well I guess tacky is the best way to describe it. It didn’t feel soft to the touch, and felt just odd when first worn, and actually for the first dozen rides it wasn’t particularly comfortable in a soft-to-the-skin kind of way.
As far as performance is concerned it’s very good, wind is kept off the chest so you can ventilate on cold mornings without getting too cold straightaway. It keeps in the heat beautifully, I was able to wear this with just a winter jersey and still feel good down to single digits (C), and on those days when I wore too much it got rid of the moisture nicely – perhaps a word of caution here – too many layers with this and you will struggle to lose any heat from the front panel and may find sweat building up, it’s good but not great at getting rid of those vapours under heavy load.
So being a stickler, and being determined to give it the benefit of the doubt I continued wearing it, and obviously washing it between most rides, and then something happened. After a few weeks it seemed to get softer, more pliable next to the skin. And now its totally lost its original stiffness and its as soft as most base-layers, and softer than most wind-proof ones.
It’s still performing well, keeping the wind away and wicking sweat off nicely (albeit with the aforementioned caveat), but now it’s doing so and feeling soft to the skin!
At a penny under £50 it’s pretty pricey for what it does, but it does do it well, and the extra protection from the elements will ensure you go out and stay out that bit longer!