Outlier New Way Shorts (and New Way Longs)

Outlier has been making their core shorts, the New Way Shorts (and New Way Longs) for a while now. They are made out of the same fabric as the Futureworks (our review), my favorite business casual pants. Outlier didn’t simply make short Futureworks, however, the New Ways are a different cut with other various features to allow them to be used as swim trunk as well.

Fabric

Outlier uses their F. Cloth, a 97% nylon, 3% elastane blend canvas. They claim a 35% two-way stretch, but like we’ve found the Strongtwill as well, the stretch isn’t noticeable. Since the fabric is made with air texturized nylon (Cordura grade), it has significantly less sheen than you might expect from a mostly nylon fabric. While it doesn’t look completely “normal”, it certainly doesn’t scream “technical”.

The 200 gsm weight of the fabric makes it heavier than many performance shorts, but doesn’t detract from the performance at all. The F. Cloth fabric breathes well in any heat and dries quickly.

Comfort and Performance

While the heavier fabric with non-obvious stretch may seem like it would make for a less comfortable short, the New Way Longs are my favorite short (the only difference between the New Ways and the Longs are the inseam — 8” vs. 11”). The combination between the slightly looser cut and the fabric helps them to move with your body. While they certainly could go for a hike, I prefer something with a more pronounced four-way stretch (and a shorter length) to make sure they really stay out of the way when I’m out on the trail.

The F. Cloth and DWR treatment help these shorts stay dry, and when they do get wet, they dry quickly.

The inclusion of a paracord drawstring (with excellent knots on the end) eliminates the need for a belt. This has become one of my favorite feature on any short, and are a must-have for me now.

All the pockets have a flow through mesh at the bottom, greatly improving the shorts if you decide to get in the water (no more pockets full of water). The mesh seems just as sturdy as the pocketing material, so no need to worry about a key catching and making a hole. The front pockets are extra deep, so they do a great job keeping whatever you are carrying in place with no threat of sliding out.

The only thing I find missing is at least one back pocket with a closure. Since the shorts target active wear, it would be nice to know that your wallet had a safe home.

Looks

Since these shorts are tailored to fit like a dress pant, and have a proper button waistband and a working zipper fly, they fit any situation where shorts are appropriate. They could go from the beach to dinner. The nice custom made slot button attached with webbing adds a nice finish and Outlier touch.

Overall

The Outlier New Way Shorts and New Way Longs are the best looking and most versatile shorts I’ve seen. With the two inseam options, everyone should be able to find the right fit. They look as close to “normal” as you will find and are cut like a chino short to fit into any situation. If you are looking for one pair of shorts to wear all summer, these are it.


Ben’s Thoughts

I’ve owned two pairs of these now (had to size down after losing weight) and they are amazing. I’ve swam with them in all sort of pools with no ill effects. They don’t dry as fast as proper swim trunks, but they can trim down your packing if swim trunks would be a maybe.

I have the non-long version and I work out in them, hike in them, and they are generally my go to short whenever the weather permits. I agree with everything Steve says here, and for about 8 months they were actually the only shorts I owned. These are great.

Outlier New Way Shorts (and New Way Longs)

Patagonia Stretch Wavefarer Walk Shorts

The Patagonia Stretch Wavefarer Walk Shorts are a casual, “do anything” pair of shorts. These shorts have similar features to the Baggies Longs (our review) but are much less casual. I’ve worn these shorts for everything from around the house, to hiking, and out to a casual lunch.

Fabric

These shorts are made from a 96% nylon (62% recycled)/4% spandex blend with 4-way stretch, a DWR finish, and a 50+ UPF sun protection rating.

The 4-way stretch makes sure the fabric never gets in your way (even with their slightly longer length), and the combination of the DWR and nylon content help keep the shorts from getting wet, and when they do get wet, helps them to dry quickly. There is some “nylon” noise with these shorts, so they won’t completely blend in.

Fit and Performance

While they are advertised as 20” (outseam), the inseam is about 9.5”. Being chino-styled, these shorts come in the usual even numbered inch waist sizes. For me, they fit true to size. The internal drawstring is a very nice feature and something that I look for on any short I buy now. It allows you to wear the shorts without a belt, even without an exact fit (or if your pockets are loaded down).

The fit of the shorts is standard, not too baggy or slim. They fit in most anywhere shorts are acceptable. Although I wouldn’t wear them for all occasions (that’s where the OUTLIER New Way Longs come in for me), at about half the price, they are a step up from many other performance shorts. The chino styling helps step up the looks a bit, but the slightly wrinkly and noisy fabric (and the embroidered “Patagonia” on the leg) detract some. Even just the removal of the embroidery would improve the look.

There are two front slash pockets and two back pockets with mesh linings (for easy drainage). The right back pocket has a button closure (with lay-flat webbing, the same as is used on the top button) and an elastic key loop. The key loop is on the center side of the pocket, so it is not comfortable to use for a set of keys. It seems to be designed to loop around a single house style key.

While I think the Patagonia Baggies are more suited as a short/swim trunk hybrid, these will do in a pinch if you weren’t expecting to get in the water (without looking too casual).

Overall

The Patagonia Stretch Wavefarer Walk Shorts are a great value if you are looking for a casual, chino-styled short. While they aren’t quite a do-everything short like the OUTLIER New Ways, they are a solid choice.

Patagonia Stretch Wavefarer Walk Shorts

Outlier Futureworks

It’s not a secret that we are big fans of Outlier here at Everyday Wear. The Futureworks are our go-to business casual pants and are a great place to start with Outlier.

Fabric

The Futureworks are made with Outlier’s F. Cloth, a 200 gsm 97% nylon, 3% elastane canvas with 35% two-way stretch and a DWR coating. The nylon is a Cordura grade nylon 6,6 that is air texturized, this means it is softer, stronger, and most importantly, more matte than what you’d expect from the usual nylon.

Comfort and Performance

While the stretch isn’t as noticeable as you’d expect from the claim of 35% two-way stretch (this means the stretch is only in one direction across the fabric, rather than both as in four-way stretch), I’ve found the Futureworks to be very comfortable due to the addition of a knee-length gusset. These move better than a standard pair of cotton chinos, but I wouldn’t want to wear them where I needed extreme motion constantly (that’s what the Slim Dungarees are for).

The fabric is lightweight enough to remain comfortable in hot and humid weather, but can still be OK in the winter when outside for a quick walk or back and forth to your car (or comfortable in any cold with a baselayer). The DWR does an excellent job of shedding a light rain (or a spilled drink). Also, since the fabric contains no polyester, there are no static issues in the winter.

The fabric dries extremely fast — when they come out of the washer they are almost dry and will be completely dry in a few hours. However, they can look quite wrinkly when they dry. Since you can’t iron synthetics, the wrinkles will work their way out from your body heat when you put the pants on. Or, while I haven’t machine dried mine (which is allowed per the care instructions), I imagine a few minutes on low would also take care of the wrinkles.

Looks and Fit

These are the most normal looking performance (non-cotton) chinos I have found. While no synthetic pant will ever look like its cotton counterpart, the Futureworks get pretty close. The only giveaways from afar are the slight sheen and slightly stiff drape. I think Outlier has done a great job cutting down on the sheen, but there is always is room for improvement. When you take closer look, the texture is also different from cotton.

The Futureworks have a great “straight” fit. They are looser than the Slim Dungarees, especially in the thigh. This gives the sizing an ability to work for more people. I think the fit works perfectly for a business casual look, however, there are a few adjustments I’d make.

Outlier only offers one inseam (33.5”) which is just long enough for me. So if you are tall, you may be out of luck. For me, the only fit issue I have is a slight gap at the back of the waistband. This could probably be solved with a higher rise.

Overall

If you are looking for a performance pant to replace your chinos, look no further than the Outlier Futureworks. I think they provide a great value at $140. As a core Outlier item, they are usually well stocked in many color options (I own the Phantom Grey and Dark Navy) and the return policy makes it easy to give them a try if you are on the fence.


Ben’s Thoughts

The Futureworks are the first pair of Outlier pants I owned, and since I’ve been losing weight I have had the chance to own three different pairs. They are fantastic, and the Sandstorm color is the best khaki pant option you can get. I love these for flying, as they stay clean and look sharp even after six hours on a plane. These are perhaps the most underrated item Outlier makes and likely the first you should pick up. I’ve owned both the Dark Navy and Sandstorm, and both are excellent.

I’ve never had anyone comment that my pants look odd with these, or ask about them. They are stealth. They make no more noise than a standard cotton pant and perform leaps and bounds better.

Outlier Futureworks

The Search for Polos

With all the performance clothing we’ve reviewed here, one would think that there would be at least a few good polos (or short sleeve button-ups) available. With today being the first day of summer, we’ve been searching for the best performance polos that can be taken from casual to business casual and have not had as much luck as we expected.

I’ve already reviewed the Ministry of Supply Apollo 3 Polo, but we have still been on the hunt for the perfect summer collared shirt. I’ve recently ordered (and returned) the Arcteryx A2B Short Sleeve Polo, Triple Aught Design Caliber Polo, and RYU Tech Polo.

The Arcteryx A2B Polo is made from a very thin Polylain fabric (50/50 merino/polyester). This would be a great fabric for the hottest days of summer, but Arcteryx ruined the shirt with a weird, semi-shiny and nylon-y, button placket and collar. While the shape and structure of the collar were decent, the material made it stand out from the rest of the shirt. Combined with the lines of sewing to imitate buttons and the same fabric of the placket, this shirt doesn’t blend into your everyday wardrobe. If you decide the style is what you are looking for, the sizing is very large, and you probably want to size down from the chart.

The Triple Aught Design Caliber Polo is made from Polartec Power Dry (100% polyester) with a Polygiene odor control treatment. The fit and collar on this polo were great, the fabric and the webbing attached slot buttons just made it very casual. If that’s what you are looking for, this might be the performance polo for you.

The RYU Tech Polo is made from a four-way stretch fabric called TecLayr (96% polyester, 4% spandex) with a Polygiene odor control treatment. While this material and the fit seemed great, again the collar and button placket were the issue. In this shirt, they are made from a very thin, weirdly stiff (almost like plastic), nylon-y material that gave that technical sheen. The collar also didn’t lay right — it was stiff and floppy at the same time, if that makes any sense.

Hopefully this helps if you are searching for a summer collared shirt. If you have any suggestions or ideas, feel free to reach out. In the meantime, Ben has been trying out the Wool & Prince 100% Merino Polo and will share his thoughts in a full review soon.

The Search for Polos

Steve’s One Bag Journey

My journey becoming a one bagger started in 2015 with an eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender Convertible, moved onto an Osprey Farpoint 40 in 2016, and has brought me to my Mystery Ranch Urban Assault and GORUCK GR1 26L.

Motivation

I was traveling with the typical backpack or messenger bag and a roller suitcase. As I started to travel more for work, I realized this setup was making my life more difficult while traveling. It seemed like 2015 was the year when one bag travel was becoming popular, so I was able to get some advice and give it a try.

The Journey

I started traveling with a set of cotton clothing for each day, a pair of sneakers, and too many electronics. All together, this made for a stuffed and heavy backpack or a full sized roller bag. Whether I packed all this into my eBags backpack or a roller bag, it ended up getting gate checked (or checked to my final destination) on any small plane and many full flights. It only took a few trips before I got very tired of all this and got motivated to slim down on my packing.

To start packing lighter, I started to move to synthetic underwear and polos. While this didn’t allow me to pack less clothes, it helped my clothes pack smaller and better fit into my bag. After packing like this for a while, I decided it was time for a better bag.

The Osprey backpack, while not much smaller, was easier to fit under the seat while flying. Once I experienced flying without fighting for overhead bin space, I was sold.

The next phase of my journey consisted of beginning to explore better technical clothing that I could wear for multiple days. That search brought me to Wool & Prince Button-Downs (our review) and OUTLIER Futureworks pants. These two items are still part of my wardrobe and come along on almost every trip. The Wool & Prince shirts are almost magical in how many times they can be worn without needing a wash. The next key acquisition was Darn Tough socks and a merino undershirt, further reducing my clothing load.

At this point I had shirt and pants, socks, and an undershirt that gave multiple wears. I tried to find underwear that could last for multiple days, so I just wash my underwear in the sink. Finally, I decided to leave the pair of sneakers at home and just do bodyweight exercise in my hotel or walking for exercise. If I had one tip for one bagging, it would be to leave the extra shoes at home — you’ll be amazed at how much space you save.

It was at about this time that Ben and I decided to start Everyday Wear. Through trying out pieces and reviewing them for the site, I’ve found some other great pieces for my travel wardrobe, including the Bluffworks Gramercy Pants (our review) and the Wool & Prince Blazer (our review).

Conclusion

It is a journey to become a one bagger, and even a longer one to get to the point where you can pack in a fairly small backpack. If you are new to one bagging and are intimidated by packing lists you see, you can rest assured that it wasn’t a quick journey for that person to gain the wardrobe and confidence to pack lightly. We are also here to help with our reviews, guides, and packing lists.

Steve’s One Bag Journey

Steve’s Packing List: Beginning of June 2018

Trip Details: Three night, four day trip by air and car for business meetings.

Packing List

GORUCK GR1 26L:

I wore:

Notes and Considerations

I packed the perfect amount of clothes for this trip. While I could have worn one Wool & Prince shirt the whole time, I wanted to have two to be able to alternate. I did notice a hole in the armpit of my UnderFit shirt (and I have only washed cold and hung to dry), so a bit disappointed at that. The Wool & Prince Blazer was folded and put in my backpack for travel and came out crease and wrinkle free.

Steve’s Packing List: Beginning of June 2018

Ministry of Supply Apollo 3 Polo

Ministry of Supply is one of the older techwear brands and they’ve been developing their own custom fabrics and other apparel technologies for a while now. I’ve had their Apollo 3 Polo for a year and while I still wear it, it doesn’t check all the boxes.

Fabric

The Apollo 3 Polo is made with Ministry’s custom polyester with phase change material (PCM, used by NASA to help regulate astronauts’ body temperatures). The composition is 57% polyester, 43% PCM-infused polyester. Ministry also claims a “hyperbreathable” and stretch knit.

The fabric has a nice look and feel and has held up well in the wash (machine washed cold and air dried). It is also fairly thick, especially in the yoke, placket, and collar. This makes it tough to hand wash the shirt and have it dry overnight.

Fit and Sizing

The fit of this polo is described as modern (between their slim and standard cuts). I found it to be quite slim, but due to the thickness of the fabric it doesn’t cling to the body. The sizing chart is accurate, so make sure you check that out before choosing a size.

The structured collar always stays upright and sharp, but it doesn’t always look quite right (as in it can make the shirt look less normal and more technical).

Comfort and Performance

The polo is very comfortable. With a close fit, this is not necessarily a given as there is just the right amount of stretch to keep the fabric from binding as you move.

As far as the breathability, I’ve found the shirt to manage moisture better than some other polyester polos I have. It seems to wick sweat away without feeling (or looking) wet.

While Ministry touts the PCM as something special, I have not been able to feel any difference in the temperature regulation of this polo. Maybe it helps keep the thick fabric from being too hot, but that’s about it.

The wrinkle resistance of this shirt is great, it’s always ready to go right out of my bag.

The main area this polo is lacking performance wise for me is in odor resistance. Being polyester with no odor treatment, I can only get one to two wears before the shirt starts to have an odor.

Overall

While this polo isn’t excellent, it is a solid polyester shirt. The unique collar will either make you love or hate the shirt, and the lack of odor resistance is the biggest drawback. I continue to wear this polo, but I am still on the hunt for my perfect polo. Ideally, I am looking for something with a lighter fabric that resists odor (so merino or a synthetic with a good treatment). Look for more polo reviews throughout the summer.

Ministry of Supply Apollo 3 Polo