New Men's Shola 230 Zip
November 2018: "yak wool is warmer and more breathable than Merino, and is also lighter and softer—and so far I think they're right”
"Exceptional. Cut to an athletic fit, this 100 percent yak wool layer is warm, quick drying, and comfortable.”
“These garments are incredibly warm and will serve as an excellent base layer in even the most extreme environments.”
AWARDED 5 STARS. “The author, who is very sensitive to lamb’s wool, was pleasantly surprised when the zip was put on. Immediately it became evident that not only is yak wool not itchy, it has a luxurious feel.”
“It feels very soft and comfortable next to the skin, wicks moisture fast and dries fairly quickly...The top doesn’t smell after continuous wear – I slept in it on the overnight trips, so it was worn for 30-plus hours non-stop..."
GROUGH AWARDED 'BEST IN TEST'. "Warm enough to be worn on its own on a cool day and makes a good layering base when up in the mountains in poor conditions.”
"Achieves everything promised by the manufacturer and then some....if you're a fan of merino, or sad enough to be still clad in polyester, you might be happy to join the vanguard of odourless winter toastiness with a covering of yak wool; it just gets better and better."
This is the best base layer I have every owned. . . I can wear it at 0 C to 10 C temps and feel very comfortable
I have now owned this Shola 230 Zip for 53 weeks. I have worn it for many 100s of hours during extended cycle rides, generally between -8'C and +15'c. In the colder temperatures usually with a gilet on top and arm warmers and in the extreme cold with a windproof jacket as well - in the warmer temperatures it copes beautifully just by itself, and then any warmer than that I tend to wear a short sleeve merino sportswool made by somebody else. I have washed it once - not because it smelt or particularly needed washing, but because I wanted to take the 5% shrinkage out of it. Its just ridiculous how well this top has performed. If I had could make one tiny change, it would be to increase the zip length by a couple of inches to assist core temperature regulation but that's being picky as you should be able to adjust your top layers more readily. I believe this is one of the best purchases I have ever made. It travels everywhere with me. I cannot recommend it highly enough. You get what you pay for..
Without doubt the best active top I have ever used, and I have used a lot. Had my set; zip, crew, leggings, hat etc etc for nearly two years. They have been virtually the only base layers on month long trips to Antarctica, Svalbard, Greenland, Japan and have performed brilliantly. This with continual blasts in Wales and Scotland. They particularly excel when the weather is at its most inclement and I do not mean just ice cold. They have a wide ambient temperature comfort range. Curiously the Zip is also to be seen no where near the mountains as a general smart top. Great products. You really get what you pay for..
I have been using the Shola crew, zip and leggings since November 2019, and just got another set, this time in blue. Its my absolute favourite base layer for autumn/winter/spring. As others have stated, the fabric feels lovely - its a good weight without being bulky, and super soft to the touch. It keeps me warmer than my similar weight merino gear, and stays odour-free for longer. Its also really nicely made/finished (unlike Icebreaker).The fit of the zip is nearly perfect - fitted without being too tight, long body length so no worries about the top coming untucked and letting in cold air. The arms are just long enough for me - I would prefer a little longer - but this is an issue I find with lots of tops. There are lots of nice touches, such as the zip having yak wool on the inside so it does not touch the skin. The fabric is so soft that having the neck zipped up is so comfortable I can forget it's there. .
This base layer is my go to companion when Im in the hills. It has a wide comfort range. Basically warm when its cold and cool when it warms up. The material is very soft too. It wont irritate your skin..