When I used to think of Merino Wool, I generally thought of cold weather gear. I mean, when it’s chilly and snowing outside, doesn’t your mind jump to images of sipping wine in front of the fireplace while wrapped in a wool sweater or blanket? Obviously, this is an outdated way of thinking for many runners, but I’d be willing to guess that more people than not attribute wool to winter running clothing and gear. I have been slowly learning and understanding the versatility of merino wool over the years of different running options, and with the fabric being quick drying, posseting great temperature control, offering greater protection from UV exposure, and having natural antimicrobial properties (i.e. less stinky), obviously all of these properties are great to have in warmer weather. Ibex recently sent us their new Tencel SS Tee to try out. Read on for details.
Why name a merino wool performance apparel company after a goat? To us, it makes complete sense. While sheep are known to traverse mountains, the Ibex Goat is more agile. Active? If you call a goat that can climb sheer rock faces active, then yes. Whatever the weather or occasion, Ibex has you covered. Just as the Ibex goat migrates according to seasons, Ibex activewear was born for the modern migration from highrise to mountaintop – and everywhere in between. The range is equally suited to mountaineering, corporate orienteering, or your favorite restaurant. Part activewear, part urban performance wear, each garment features fine tailoring paired with the benefits of nature’s original performance fiber – merino wool. Co-founded by an avid mountain climber, yet equipped for urban adventure, Ibex withstands the demands of today.
- Tencel SS Tee ($85)
- Women’s Merino Tencel Pocket Short Sleeve Tee: ($85)
- 45% Merino Wool, 45% Tencel, 10% Nylon
Matt: While this is a casual shirt, and not a running shirt per se, the light weight to this shirt is quite amazing. Obviously having the two natural performance fibers in blend make it a nice combo of function, fit, and quality. It’s easy to see why the the Tencel Tee is one of Ibex’s bestselling shirts.
While it has roots in the casual lifestyle sphere, there’s really not a reason to believe this couldn’t be used on a run. It is light and loose-fitting, and through the handful of times I have worn and washed this – including a few times during both strength training and running workouts, I have not noticed any stink come up yet. I have worn to work in the yard on one day, followed by a light workout on the next day. In that circumstance, I didn’t even have a second thought (or need a second whiff) about tossing it on again.
It also has a cool back neck tape that aims to fix a problem that exists with near all tee-shirts – keeping the neck hole from stretching out over time. I can’t tell you the number of cheap tees I have had over the years that essentially become unwearable in months due to this. I can’t wait to see how this works in practice, but even knowing Ibex is aware of this issue and has a solution embedded for it is enough for me to feel better about it.
The price for the Tencel Tee is definitely going to be higher than what you probably spend on a shirt, but I feel that this is well constructed enough to be longer lasting and not get that embedded running locked-in-smell that typically result in us tossing those clothes (and needing to continue buying more gear). It comes in three colors: Fig Leaf (olive green), Black, and Walnut (reviewed).
Meg: Pulling this shirt out of the packaging is like taking hold of the perfect blanket for a chilly day. The shirt is shorter than I usually wear so I combined it with a tank-top to provide a little extra warmth during these chilly October runs. The Merino and TENCEL fabric combination stayed pretty dry during several longer runs and kept my torso just warm enough all the way home. The pocket on the front is a bit of a mystery to me, like the length, as I don’t have anything I would likely store there and the seams were pulling apart a bit after three washes. This will be a great shirt for yoga or more relaxing exercises, and the fabric is still something I’d love to wrap up in every evening this fall.
Thank you to Ibex for providing us with test items. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.