Everyday wear Tee Shirts are mostly made from cotton, which is usually fine for – everyday wear!
Is this a familiar scenario?
Outdoor activity requires some effort – walking, climbing, cycling. This obviously makes you sweat, and sweat makes your tee shirt wet!
Now the problem with cotton is that it absorbs moisture, but it is not so good at releasing it.
So here we go! – you are walking up a mountain, it’s hard work and you start to sweat.The tee shirt you are wearing is cotton and it is getting pretty wet. You feel soggy and sticky but that’s ok because you’re working hard.
As you near the top the pace slows down, for a while you feel good, the wet tee shirt is helping you to cool down. As you carry on though you’re starting to feel chilly, the wet of your tee shirt is drawing heat from your body, and it is not drying very quickly.
By the time you are getting near the top you are feeling positively cold, and you need to put a fleece on, it warms you up but you’re still damp.
Do you recognise the scenario?
How often have you been on a day walk through the fields on a hot sunny day. Your cotton tee shirt ends up wet, uncomfortable, and feels a bit heavy clinging to your body?
Why do we sweat?
Sweat is the body’s method of cooling us down to help us maintain a healthy body temperature ( it is around 37°C on average ) and not overheat. At this temperature our bodies can work at their best. If your body does overheat that can be very serious, at least making us feel very ill, at worst result in death.
Choosing clothing that is appropriate and that helps our bodies to stay as close as possible to this healthy temperature, is certainly beneficial and an advantage to any outdoor enthusiast.
What are Technical Tee Shirts?
These are designed to evaporate moisture away from our bodies as efficiently as possible. Then when we are not exercising so harshly, to dry as quickly as possible so that we do not get chilled.
What makes them technical?
These tee shirts are not made of cotton but polyester. The fabric is enhanced by using a technology that helps it to ‘wick’. (e.g. the Berghaus tee shirt in this blog uses Argentium). Wicking is a fabrics ability to absorb or draw off liquid by capillary action, and evaporate that liquid.
Technical Tee Shirts are lighter than cotton ones. (Lightness can be really helpful in such sports as running).
Two of the tee shirts in this blog have a mesh fabric under the arms, to help you stay cool and evaporate moisture.
The tee shirts have built in UPF protection (ultraviolet protection factor), to help protect you from the sun. If on the description it says 50+, it means that only 1/50th of the UV radiation falling on the garment penetrates through the fabric.
Some of the tee shirts have reflective features to aid your visibility at night.
Many have Polygiene technology. Polygiene is silver chloride that is incorporated into the synthetic fibres to help prevent body odours. Body smells are caused by bacteria from sweat, basically the silver chloride kills the bacteria.
Technical Tee shirts are lighter than cotton. Remove moisture from the body more efficiently and dry faster. Some are designed to protect from UV radiation, and some to protect you from smelling!
They are good as a base layer
Not only are technical tee shirts excellent for high energy activities and hot days. They are also good as base layers under other garments because of their enhanced wicking ability.
Check out the video
You can buy from e-outdoor