What Run Oregon is Wearing: Tops from Kora

We first reviewed some gear from Kora way back when our website became its independent entity in 2015. Now, 6 years later, we are checking out some of their latest apparel items.

For your own information, Kora is a premier apparel provider working with yak wool – an amazingly great fabric used to “create ultra-soft and breathable wool activewear for your year-round adventures”. Their brand new Neema Collection are items consisting of  “yak and merino, with recycled Coolmax®” to create year-round items base layers.

At the time of this writing, it’s officially 106 degrees outside – not exactly long-sleeve weather. However, we recently received some sample items from Kora and I have been wearing their Neema Long Sleeved Crew. However, we have taken a few trips to the Oregon Coast recently, as well as some mountain camping, so this top has come in a lot more handy than I would have thought in the middle of summer.

If you follow our Run Oregon Road Trip features, you will realize we often travel and run in different places across the state, region, and country. So, when I pack for non-running-specific trips like camping or work, I always come prepared with gear and shoes for when the time is right. The time has definitely been right and the Neema Long Sleeve has proven comfortable and valuable on the trips mentioned above. It is super lightweight and I utilized it both as a base layer on a chilly, early morning run in the mountains (as well as when trekking to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night), and also as a standalone option for a windy run on the beach.

It fits close to the body by design, and I feel it’s pretty true to size at least for me. Please note that Kora has a Body Measurement Chart to determine your size before ordering. I received a size one size up than I usually wear and felt if I was going to use it solely as a base layer, I would get my normal sizing. However, if utilizing mostly as an overshirt or as a sweater, then sizing up is the way to go. Either way, there is enough stretch with the rib knit construction so I didn’t feel constricted even with a shirt underneath.

Merino wool, as we know, has great premium workout qualities like body temperature regulation and odor resistance, and the addition of yak to the equation brings this to the forefront even more. By mixing in recycled Coolmax polyester to create this Hima-Layer™ Neema fabric makes for a super quality item that keeps the body dry.

All of that said, this isn’t a light price tag, with the top coming in at $100. That being said, knowing how well the handful of yak items I have had for years in my closet, as well as the fit and construction from this top, have me feeling this may be worth the investment.

Heini: I received the Neema Short Sleeved Crew and have to agree. This is a quality piece of activewear, from first impressions to how well it washes.

I am almost always between sizes (could someone please make a small-and-a-half?), and used Kora’s measurement chart to figure out the fit. As it’s primarily a base layer, they recommend a fit that’s close to the body to make the most of the cooling, breathable yak wool material. A small fit me great as a base layer, but in hindsight, I may have been a little more comfortable in a medium. The sizing chart is incredibly helpful, but if in doubt, size up.

When I received it, I was impressed by the little touches of luxury. The stitching, the stylish tag on the sleeve, the feel of the material. This top may be on the pricey side ($90 for the short sleeve), but it looks and feels it too.

I also wore the Neema Short Sleeve in some pretty warm and humid weather. It traveled with me to San Diego, and got plenty of wear on some of those 100+ degree days back home in Oregon.

So, how cool are we talking? Pretty dang cool. It was my t-shirt of choice under a hoodie on those cooler, SoCal mornings; I wore it through a long day of trekking around San Diego Zoo; it has been my go-to for hiking, and perfect for that in-between weather. I have a feeling it would be an amazing option for a trail run – no chafing from a hydration pack and comfort for days. Through a lot of wear on vacation with no washing machine handy, it never felt “worn”, or sweaty, or smelly – just breathable, cool, and very comfortable.

This top does need washing of course. Eventually. And as it’s a wool blend, you probably shouldn’t chuck it in with all your sweaty running gear. The label calls for a cold, gentle wash. I washed it on the delicates setting in cool water, let it line dry, and it was honestly as good as new. Maaayyybe even a tiny bit softer. Look after this garment, and it will look after you.


Products & Price:

  • Neema Long Sleeved Crew ($95)
    • 20% yak wool | 40% merino | 40% recycled Coolmax polyester
    • Colors = Sky Blue (reviewed) & Light Grey

Thank you to Kora for providing us with samples. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.

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