As many avid hikers already know, wool is an excellent natural material that is now found in all sorts of performance workout apparel, socks, and accessories. Why is wool so popular? Wool is naturally breathable, moisture wicking, temperature regulating, and controls odor. When made well and from fine materials, it is also super soft and comfortable.
Recently I’ve tested and reviewed a variety of unique wool products: yak wool from Kora, boiled wool from Dachstein, Ullfrotte wool from Woolpower, and New Zealand merino wool from Icebreaker.
How about Australian merino wool? WoolX is an upstate New York based company that has a variety of performance clothing made from Australian merino wool. What is unique about their wool products compared to all of the other brands I have tested so far? They have an extremely lightweight women’s line that is designed for summer wear. What better place to test it out than on my local trails in Southern California!
WoolX Apparel Review
How did WoolX apparel fare in the Hiking Lady tests? I have been wearing the Ella Racer Back tank top as well as the Base Camp Hoodie.
- Soft? Yes. Both tops were soft, and did not itch. I’d say this is the case for a lot of performance wool these days, including WoolX.
- Lightweight enough for summer? I was pleasantly surprised!
- Ella Racer Back Tank: I wore both the Ella Racer Back tank during a hot hike (80 degrees Fahrenheit) and jogging. I typically wouldn’t wear wool during the Southern California year round “summer”, except as an evening baselayer or if I’m up in the mountains where daytime temperatures can get in the 50-60 degree range. The Ella Racer Back is definitely worthy of my summer hiking/workout wardrobe. It wicked well so I stayed dry, it did not seem to retain odor from the hiking and jogging outings, and it seemed durable (it did not snag on any bushes or show signs of wear after one washing.)
- The Base Camp Hoodie is definitely made of thin summerweight wool, so it was comfortable on a hot day, however, a little too warm for 80 degree mid day wear. Perhaps it was the black color that also helped absorb the heat. When I was not hiking in direct sun and as it got later in the day it was a perfect weight…light enough to be comfortable. I’ll be wearing the Base Camp Hoodie as more of a year-round layer, a nice alternative to the standard thicker wool base layers that most companies offer.
The verdict: There is such thing as summertime wool! WoolX makes it, and if you’re bold enough to try it on a hot summer’s day I’d recommend that you try the Ella Racer back tee. The Base Camp Hoodie is ideal for spring and fall, and in my view would get the most summertime use on early morning or evening hikes in temperate climates. For those of you readers in cooler climates, you’ll be able to get even more summertime wear from the Base Camp Hoodie.
I look forward to keeping WoolX on my radar screen and seeing what new products they will continue to introduce for the hiking community 🙂
Specs of the WoolX Ella Racer Back Tank and Base Camp Hoodie
- Fabric: Ella Tank: Australian merino wool, 150g/m; 95% Viscose/5% Spandex. Base Camp Hoodie: Australian merino wool, 160g/m.
- Machine washable? Yes. I don’t even consider buying products that aren’t!
- Sizes available: XS-2XL
- Price: Tank: $39; Hoodie: $79
- Where to buy: WoolX.com
Hi! I LOVE walking, currently a beginning hiker. Here in mid North Carolina, our summers are very hot with high humidity. I don’t wear pants again until it turns cool in Oct. I’m trying to research clothing to wear. Right now, my hikes will not be much more than 2 hrs long.
Hey, no two summertimes are necessarily created equal. I can imagine a wool tank and hoodie being successfully worn in Northern areas. And in temperate climates, in the mornings and eves. Cool looking items!
Appreciate this review. I hadn’t heard of this brand. I’m somewhat partial to my home-state Ibex brand, but there’s always room for improvement! All styles fit differently, so it’s great to have more choices.
Thanks for the comment Bobbi!
Thank you very much for the reviews; we certainly enjoy them.
Both items look comfortable and look terrific!
Your reviews make us want to go out and purchase the items you show and review for us.