Travel Clothing is a Ridiculous Trap

One of the reasons this site came to be, is because both Steve and I found ourselves traveling a lot for both work and leisure. And when you start traveling a lot, you start to look at how you can pack fewer items — this seems almost universal, as humans are generally uncomfortable out of their normal habitats and thus you really want to know you have the right clothing. Which means you inevitably google something like “best travel clothes for X”. And you get back a big mix of some really weird clothing.

The truth is, most travel clothing is some Frankenstein mix of stereotypical retiree clothing and hiking clothing. This type of clothing is marked by:

  • Zip-off anything
  • A lot of pockets, with some very dedicated pockets
  • Zippers, like a lot of zippers
  • Polyester or nylon

Some, but not all, of the above describes even some of the clothing we talk about here on this site, but if you look closely the clothing we really like is that which most people can’t even tell is anything out of the ordinary. But what’s really odd is that anyone who has spent time traveling knows exactly the clothing I am talking about.

There’s always a bunch of people wearing zip-off pants, button down shirts treated with bug repellant and with mesh venting. Pockets galore and more. People really seem to buy into these travel clothing traps, and I cannot understand why.

These clothes look terrible. And they also generally perform terribly too. In most cases you would be better off with blue jeans and a pair of swim trunks than you would with any zip off pants. There’s a few reasons why:

  1. You have to wash most of those travel pants more than blue jeans.
  2. You can’t swim in zip-off pants.
  3. You’ll never use all the pockets.
  4. Cotton will hold bug spray just as well as that bug treatment on your clothes.
  5. You look like a target because you are specifically wearing travel clothing when you are traveling. So it’s not hard to target you.

But more than anything else, if these clothes are so good and so versatile: then why don’t people wear them everyday? Why only relegate them to travel?

It’s because you don’t want people you know to see you wearing this stuff unless you have a specific reason to wear them. Because they look terrible.

That’s why you read both Steve and I praising Outlier’s Futureworks (our review). These are nylon pants with a gusset crotch, stretch, and are highly breathable while also resisting some light rain. And yet you can’t tell it’s a technical pant. They drape well, make no noise and only have a zipper on the fly. They are stealth and superior to all other business casual/chino like pants I have tried to date.

They also aren’t marketed for travel, and that makes them hard for a lot of people to find.

My goal when I started down the rabbit hole of finding better clothing was to merge the two aspects of my life. What I wear everyday should be what I wear when I travel. It should perform to really high standards, because that’s just convenient for me and comfortable as well.

I don’t wear this clothing because I travel a lot any more. I don’t wear it because I write here at this site. I wear it because it’s more comfortable than any other option, while looking just as good.

So don’t fall into the travel clothing trap, and avoid anything with zip-off extremities.

Travel Clothing is a Ridiculous Trap

What We’re Wearing: August 2019

The summer is coming to a close, and it’s time for the second edition of “What We’re Wearing” here at Everyday Wear. Here’s what we’ve been wearing and enjoying through the summer.

Steve

We had a crazy start to the summer with some really wet stretches, but the second half has been quite hot. I’ve spent a lot of time outside enjoying the weather — here’s what I’ve been wearing.

Business Casual

The Outlier Futureworks (our review) are still my favorite pants for business casual dress. For the hottest (and on the causal side of business casual), the Western Rise The Evolution Pant (our review) still can’t be beaten with their extremely lightweight fabric.

After finishing my review of the Wool & Prince Slim Chino (provided for review by Wool & Prince), they ended up staying in my closet because I find them to be too warm for the summer. I am looking forward to bringing them back out in the Fall, however.

As far as shirting, I’ve been mostly been wearing the polos I discussed in my Polo Guide, and my Bluffworks Meridian 2.0 Dress Shirt (our review).

Shoe wise, my Allen Edmonds Higgins Mill boots are holding up well and still are my go to, always with Darn Tough socks.

Casual

I’ve stepped up my summer casual game some with some great linen blend short sleeve button-ups — Taylor Stitch The Short Sleeve Bandit (our review), Faherty Brand Short-Sleeve Stretch Summer Blend Shirt (look for a review soon). I also found nylon/Tencel/spandex shirt at REI that I’ve been enjoying. To continue on the linen theme, I also picked up the Faherty Brand Malibu Short (our review).

I’ve recently also tried my first piece with hemp fiber, the Nau Kanab Short Sleeve T-Shirt.

Obviously, natural fibers were a theme this summer for me and I quite enjoyed everything I purchased. Of course, linen wrinkles quite a bit but looks great for casual wear. Some of the linen/cotton blends kept wrinkles away better than others, and hemp blends seem to be a little better than linen. Overall, to me, the hemp blends I’ve seen tend to feel a little stiffer/coarser than linen.

I’ve continued to wear my Western Rise pants for casual wear as well, and my Outlier New Way Longs (our review) continue to be my favorite shorts.

I did also finally find a pair of casual sneakers that I like to wear with shorts — a pair of Seavees with a linen upper.

Finally, while not really summer shoes, I found a great deal on a pair of Red Wing Merchant boots in a light brown suede that look great with a pair of causal pants. These are defiantly going to get a lot of wear as the weather cools down.

Exercise

Nothing new exercise clothing wise, but I did discuss my long term opinion on the athletic t-shirts I’ve been wearing for over a year now.

My go to shorts continue to be the Myles Apparel Momentum Short 2.0 (our review). I’ve also recently purchased the Coalatree Trailhead Shorts (look for a review soon).

Shoe wise, I’m still wearing my Trail Gloves (gym) or Altra Lone Peak 4 (rucking/hiking).

Outerwear

Of course not much outerwear is needed for the summer, but I’ve still been wearing my Outdoor Research Helium II (our review) for rain. I also just picked up a Patagonia Houdini Snap-T Pullover Windbreaker in their current sale. I haven’t received it yet, but I’m looking forward to giving it a try.

Travel

I’ve continued to wear and pack the above when traveling. Of course, still carrying my trusty GORUCK GR1 26L backpack. The Trail Gloves pack down nicely if I want to bring a pair of exercise shoes.

Ben

Since moving to Houston I’ve had to change quite a few things wardrobe these past few months: working in an office, and living in a very hot and humid place will do that to you.

Business Casual

My go to outfit for work was pretty easy to sort out, despite all the pants and shirts I have been testing, I have settled on wearing Futureworks for the vast majority of the work week (Dark Navy and Space Grey being my go to colors) and a mix of Ministry of Supply Aero Dress Shirts (our review), as well as Bluffworks Meridian shirts. I still mix in a few other options I have, but these are what I would pare back to if forced to do so.

On the shoe side of things I have settled on rotating between my Thursday Boots (our review), and a pair of Cole Haans. Both work well, and are comfortable all day with the boots running a little warmer come the very end of the day.

Casual

I’ve been ruined on the casual side of clothing. It’s been to hot out to wear my Outlier Slim Dungarees (our review), so I have been forced to spend most of the summer in my Outlier New Way shorts. I only have one pair in charcoal, and surprisingly that’s been more than enough for me. I love these shorts, and they are basically all I wear. Occasionally for a nice dinner I will toss on some Sandstorm Futureworks, or if I want pants my Olivers Passage Pants (our review).

On the shirt side I typically wear the Western Rise AirLight Short Sleeve (our review) if it is clean, or my Wool & Prince 100% Merino Polo (our review). I’ve found myself rarely wearing t-shirts, but I do wear the Outlier Ramienorth Pivot (our review) quite a bit for going out to dinner, though it’s a wear once and wash shirt.

My shoes for casual wear consist of flip flops, or a pair of Nike Flyknit running shoes.

Exercise

This setup hasn’t changed at all despite the weather. I wear my GORUCK Simple Pants, Y Athletics SilverAir Merino (our review), and GORUCK MACV-1 boots. I tried wearing shorts, but there are still enough mosquitoes that get my legs if I do that, and the pants don’t overheat me much so that’s an easy fix there.

Travel

I have not been traveling at all this summer, only one weekend road trip. So my clothing for this is the same as my casual clothing. I did pack in my trusty GR1 as it is clearly the best backpack out there.

What We’re Wearing: August 2019

Coalatree Trailhead Shorts

Coalatree designs eco-friendly clothing that is designed to wear from the mountains to the city. I remember seeing their Trailhead Pants on Kickstarter, but didn’t love the loose ties at the bottom of the legs. When I saw their Trailhead Shorts for a great price on Huckberry, I decided to give them a try.

Material

These shorts are made from a ripstop nylon 4-way stretch blend with a DWR coating (88% bluesign nylon/12% spandex). The outer face of the fabric shows a prominent grid pattern (characteristic of the ripstop nylon) while the inner face has a soft weave and is borderline fuzzy.

This gives the shorts quite a bit of weight and makes the fabric quite thick. While I don’t feel like the weight hurts the warm weather wearability, I think it would put the pants into a cooler weather category for me. As far as the stretch is concerned, these are by far the stretchiest shorts I own.

Fit & Style

At an 8.5” length, I think Coalatree nailed the length, at least for me. I find them short enough that they don’t get in the way during active pursuits, but long enough that they are my style for wearing in other situations. Additionally, the weight of the fabric gives them a better than average drape for performance shorts.

Unfortunately, the grid pattern gives these shorts away as performance apparel, and for me makes them solidly in the casual wear category. They look better than my Patagonia Baggies Longs (our review), but other than those, these are my most casual shorts.

That brings me to what I see as some confusion over what the shorts want to be — they have elastic, an external draw string, belt loops, and a false-fly. The false-fly helps step up the looks a little bit when wearing with an untucked shirt. For me the wide elastic band does a great job keeping the shorts up (and is very comfortable), making the belt loops and external draw string unnecessary. If I were to redesign the shorts, I’d put the draw string inside the waist band and get rid of the belt loops.

Performance

These shorts perform excellently for active and everyday wear. The high level of 4-way stretch combined with the gusseted crotch keeps these moving with your body in any way you manage to stretch them. The DWR does a great job keeping them dry in a drizzle, which is needed since the thicker fabric doesn’t dry instantly.

As far as pockets go on this type of shorts, Coalatree did a nice job. The front pockets are designed appropriately so your phone doesn’t try to fall over on its’ side (a problem I have with the Baggies pockets). The two rear pockets are a nice touch as well, with the right rear pocket having velcro on the closure. There is also a small pocket inside the front of the shorts sized for a key.

These are also packable into the right front pocket. I don’t find this necessary, as they pack better folded or rolled. This doesn’t detract from the shorts, however, as there are no extra closures or anything needed to add this feature.

Lastly, Coalatree claims these shorts are anti-microbial, but doesn’t indicate any special treatment. In my testing, I found them to perform the same as my other nylon shorts odor-wise.

Overall

Overall, these are nice casual shorts. They have taken over my Baggies as my favorite casual shorts, and I like that they go easily from casual to active activities.

If you are looking for an active short that looks decent enough to wear into town, these are worth a look and I’d certainly recommend them over Baggies.

You can pick them up from Huckberry or directly from Coalatree (Men’s, Women’s).

Coalatree Trailhead Shorts

Proper Cloth Performance Shirt

The market for men’s button down shirts seems split on what ‘performance’ means. To some companies it means stuff it in a suitcase and wear it anywhere. To others it means building a shirt that is quietly more comfortable to wear. Proper Cloth seems to be in the latter camp. Their big claim to fame, if you will, is making fully custom sizing for their shirts.

I decided to take one of their more ‘standard’ sized shirts for a spin, and it’s quite interesting.

Material

First, Proper Cloth has many shirt materials ranging from standard to ‘performance’. And then when you get to performance there are many varieties which makes this review tricky. The shirt I ordered is the ‘White Performance Twill’ which is listed as 95% nylon, 5% Spandex. You can find it directly here.

This material is not like any other I have encountered. It has no sheen or noise to it. It is incredibly thin, to the point where it is opaque at times. It is very smooth and crisp looking. It looks like a really nice cotton dress shirt, but feels like not cotton. The stretch is solid, but not earth shattering — it’s enough to be comfortable but not enough to be the type of shirt you feel you could do anything in.

Fit and Style

Ok, so style with these shirts is basically whatever you want it to be — to your hearts content. There’s a ton of options for the collar, cuffs, front yoke, and on and on. So style is always going to be exactly what you want.

Fit is where Proper Cloth looks to own the market, and I am impressed. I decided to take a lazy approach, and what I mean is that instead of sending in all my measurements I went with a ‘standard size’ which is nothing like most standard sizing. The reason I did this is because this is likely how most of you will buy these shirts, and my measurements were also close to their standard sizing.

I went with — Standard Size: 16.5 Collar, 35.5 Sleeve, Slim Fit. That nets out to:

  • Collar Circumference 16.50
  • Sleeve Length 35.50
  • Chest Width 24.50
  • Midsection Width 22.00
  • Shoulder Width 18.00
  • Shirt Length 32.00
  • Sleeve Width 9.25
  • Cuff Circumference 9.00
  • Bottom Width 23.50
  • Watch Allowance None
  • Shoulder Slope Normal
  • Forearm One Pleat
  • Shoulder/Armpit Full
  • Rear Pleats None
  • Back Darts None
  • Posture Normal (default)
  • Top Button Standard
  • Buttons on Front 8

So yeah, they have some detail on these shirts. When you get the shirt, it has very good info on how to send it back if the fit is not perfect. For me, the fit was surprisingly exactly how I wanted it to fit. It’s by far my best fitting shirt — if I had to change one thing I would add watch allowance to the cuff, but I didn’t realize that was an option until long after I had the shirt. Not a big deal.

Performance

This shirt is an odd duck for performance. It doesn’t do anything for odor resistance (wear once and wash it), but resists stink better than Ministry’s Aero shirts I normally wear. But this shirt is also wrinkle prone — more so than a cotton no-iron style shirt. You need to iron this shirt before wearing it, and then it stays smooth relatively well. Out of the wash, or after folding it, the shirt is a mess for wrinkles,which is odd for a performance shirt. That said, there’s more to this shirt.

For starters it is really comfortable. It dries very fast. The collar is excellent. But more than that the entire shirt moves and breathes very well. In the heat of Houston’s summer, it is easily the most comfortable dress shirt I own for that heat.

Where it falls down a bit is on the opacity, because I have to wear an undershirt to keep from my nipples showing through the shirt. I suspect a non-white color would remove that concern. The reason I chose white was simply because it’s not often a choice with the shirts I review, so I wanted to see if I could find something that would be a good shirt to wear with a suit.

Overall

This is easily the best white dress shirt I have found, and the best overall dress shirt if you want to take your wardrobe to the top end of business casual or wear something with a suit. I wear the shirt often, but I would wear it all the time if I had chosen non-white. The good news for me, I guess, is that I will be buying another one in a different color and style.

The thing about Proper Cloth is that they know the key to looking really good: tailoring. But tailoring has historically been a pain to do, and costly for most people. Here, you just need to buy a cloth measuring tape and you can get a perfectly fit shirt. It’s just icing on the cake that they make really nice performance fabrics too.

Recommended.

Proper Cloth Performance Shirt

Ministry of Supply Velocity Dress Pants

I’ve been wanting to try the Ministry of Supply Kinetic Dress Pants for a while now, but when I went to get a pair to try, I saw these new Velocity Dress Pants, and I decided to give them a go instead. They quickly became a go to part of my work wardrobe, so let me explain why.

Material

These are a very soft, stretchy, and thin pair of pants made up of: 61% polyester, 33% viscose, and 6% spandex. I’d swear there was more spandex in them than that just given how they feel — and I do believe it is 4-way stretch, if it isn’t I would be blown away. Additionally, Ministry notes that it has a curved back yoke to add in comfort.

The material itself is soft, with no sheen, and no noise at all. They are smooth, so if you think about a pair of athletic warm up pants, and take away the sheen and add stretch, that’s basically what these feel like. I’ve found that the drape is acceptable, which is was a pleasant surprise.

Fit & Style

I purchased the regular cut in these, and found them to be very slim — about as slim as I would want. The stretch means that you don’t want to order or wear a pair which is too large in any way. I wish these did odd sizing, but as it is the pair I got are comfortable all day long.

Overall, I think the pants look sharp. They don’t quite stealth pass for say wool trousers, but they won’t give the vast majority of people a second thought. The heathered pattern looks nice as well.

Silly double pocket.
Silly double pocket.

The only issue with the style is that the left front pocket has two pockets, neither of which close. The rear of the two pockets is shallow and small, great for keys or a pocket knife. The front pocket is the standard front pocket. This causes an issue with the pockets looking a little weird on the left side, and is super annoying when you try to grab something out of the front pocket. I always stick my hand in the wrong pocket.

Performance

These pants are marketed to really perform well in two aspects: stretch and breathability. They knock both out of the ball park. They are the most comfortable pants I own, and that’s across any category. When I wrote my Outlier OG Climbers review I really wished I could wear those into an office, well the Velocity Pants are just as comfortable and work in an office.

Living in Houston breathable pants are a huge concern of mine, and these pants are plenty cool. Add to that the movement of them, and they are comfortable to wear all day long.

Lastly, I got stuck in an absolute monsoon of a downpour one day, wearing these pants, and I had to walk to the bus. When I got the the bus, they were soaked, but the time I got to my car, 45 minutes later, they were mostly dry. And by the time I got home, they looked like this:

Durability Concerns

If I have one concern with these pants it is the durability — I don’t think they are very durable. I haven’t had them long enough to know for sure, but I don’t think they will last me much more than a year. There’s two issues springing up:

  1. Snags. In more than a few spots I can see some snags on the material. Hopefully that’s a limited thing, but given how new these are, that’s not acceptable.
  2. Fuzziness. Across my lap, where my seatbelt rides, the pants are starting to look a little fuzzy. Now, I don’t notice this when looking at the pants at any other angle than simply looking down at them from the vantage point of me wearing the pants. Again, this really isn’t acceptable given the high price tag.

I wish these pants were more durable, but I fear that to do so they would be far less comfortable.

Snags like this all over.
Snags like this all over.

Fuzzy from seatbelts.
Fuzzy from seatbelts.

Overall

If you can’t tell, I love wearing these pants. They are very comfortable no matter what I am doing. The downside is the high price tag and the lack of durability I am seeing with this pair. But there’s one more downside: they never look as crisp and sharp as my Outlier Futureworks.

For now, I’ll keep wearing them because I have them already, but I wouldn’t spend my money on them again until they fix the durability. The Futureworks are almost as comfortable, far more durable, and less expensive at $148 vs $185.

Ministry of Supply Velocity Dress Pants

Faherty Brand Malibu Short

In searching for some summer pieces which differ from what we normally cover, I came across Faherty Brand. They use a lot more traditional fibers than we usually see, but their Malibu Short, is something different and interesting to try for the summer.

Material

These shorts are made from a 55% linen/45% cotton blend that is specially washed for softness and over-dyed.

When they claim a “soft, lived-in feel”, they are not kidding. These were extremely soft right out of the package. Not only are they soft, but they have a great linen texture and airiness.

I ended up going with the Light Blue for something different, and the over-dye gives the shorts a really nice, casual, summer look.

Fit & Style

The fit was great for me. With a 9” inseam, they are neither too short or long and fall just above the knee.

Without stretch, I was a bit concerned how comfortably the shorts would move, but the cut takes care of it. They fit loose enough to move with you and stay airy, but still look presentable for dinner.

Performance

Being used to my Outlier New Way Longs (our review), I wasn’t sure how I was going to like these shorts performance wise. After my first day of wearing them in the heat, I was sold. The seem to have enough linen content to keep the weave of the fabric nice, light and airy. I wore them for an outside dinner on one of the hottest nights of the summer and I remained very comfortable.

In comparison to my New Ways (100% synthetic), these were more breathable, but the cotton content made them feel a little moist. For me, the tradeoff here is worth it for the hottest weather in a situation where I am not active and sweating a lot.

When it comes to wrinkles, despite the high linen content, they only wrinkled slightly more than a standard cotton chino short. The wrinkles that were there were natural wrinkles from sitting in the shorts, rather than the inevitable linen wrinkle.

Overall

Overall, these shorts are good looking casual shorts that can easily transition to dinner. They are very breathable and airy due to the linen content, but the cotton blend keeps them from wrinkling just from looking at them.

If I could only have one short, I would still pick the New Ways, but these are an excellent contender if you are looking for something a little less expensive, made from natural fibers, and/or something you don’t need as much durability from. However, these will certainly remain in my summer wardrobe.

You can pick them up from Faherty Brand or Huckberry.

Faherty Brand Malibu Short

Livsn Flex Canvas Pants v2

Livsn Designs gave me a chance to take a look at the first version of their Flex Canvas Pants as a preview for the v2 they are launching on Kickstarter. These pants are marketed as slim outdoor pants with a style to make them wearable everyday.

My favorite part about these pants is the Eco-Flex fabric (58% organic cotton, 40% recycled polyester, 2% spandex, C6 DWR). It has a great natural canvas weave that is fairly open, allowing it to breath better than I’d expect for the weight (248 gsm). Combined with the mesh pockets/lining fabric, wearing these pants in hot weather was fairly comfortable. The spandex content gives the fabric more stretch than you’d expect (in a horizontal direction only) and when combined with the darting and gusset makes these pants move with your body very well.

Style wise, these are great for outdoor pants. I wouldn’t wear them in a business casual setting, but I think they could pass for any other need. With the durable fabric, I think these will be great weekend work pants that will hold up to some abuse while still looking good for the rest of the day. I also love the color, it’s almost a dark khaki/brown. I usually don’t love pants in that color family, but I think this color is really sharp and looks equally good with a black or white tee (three other colors are also available).

The biggest adjustments to v1 pants I received vs. the v2 are fit adjustments (1/2″ lower front rise, 1/2″ higher rear rise, 1/4″ ease added to upper thighs and hips, and adjustment of the waist so they fit true to size). These fit adjustments are welcome, as I found a size 34 to fit me well except for the thighs being too tight, while the 36 was a little big in the waist and seat (fine with a belt though).

The Kickstarter is open until August 9. Look for a full review once they are launched.

If you missed the Kickstarter, you can still pre-order on the Livsn website.

Livsn Flex Canvas Pants v2

Taylor Stitch The Short Sleeve Bandit in Heather Grey

Taylor Stitch has been around for a while now, mainly focusing on traditional fabrics like cotton. A few years ago, they came onto our radar with their performance line, CIVIC. Since then, they’ve snuck some higher performing fibers into their Taylor Stitch line as well.

Since I finished up my polo roundup, I’ve been looking for some summer short sleeve button-ups to fill out my warm weather wardrobe. So, when I saw The Short Sleeve Bandit in Heather Grey during their Summer Sale, I couldn’t turn it down.

Material

This shirt is made from a 4-oz. 86% organic cotton, 14% linen blend. The material is thin enough that I felt I needed an undershirt under the light color. Something to keep in mind, but certainly not a deal breaker for a summer shirt.

The linen also brings an eye catching texture and color variation to the fabric without being rough.

When I ordered the shirt, I wasn’t sure if the low linen content was enough to impart some linen performance, but I was proven wrong. After wearing it in some of the hottest days of the summer, I can say that the fabric performs better than 100% cotton for breathability and moisture management.

The fabric also tends not to wrinkle like pure linen. You get some of the benefits of linen while avoiding its biggest pitfall — wrinkles as soon as you put it on.

Fit & Style

The fit was spot on for me. Designed to be worn untucked, I found the length to work equally well with shorts or pants. Taylor Stitch notes a tailored fit and high armholes. Sometimes high armholes can make shirts fit weird for me, but they struck a nice balance of making the shirt look sleek while not taking away from the comfort.

As for the band collar. I was not sold immediately, in fact it took a few tries before I decided to keep the shirt. Once I wore it, it really grew on me. It is a great look for a casual summer shirt (and even makes ironing a little less of a pain, as does the lack of back pleats). In fact, I even got some complements.

Performance

This shirt exceeded my expectations in how it performed in hot weather. I expected it to perform mostly like a cotton shirt, but the linen was able to significantly pick up the performance.

Sitting outside to eat on one of the hottest nights of the year, I remained comfortable. While I was sweating, the shirt did an admirable job. Where the shirt was soaking up sweat, it felt a little moist but was drying quickly enough that it never became wet. I think the linen helped some here managing the moisture and with its cooling effect. Even better, when I went inside, the shirt dried very quickly.

Overall

This shirt exceeded my expectations as a casual short sleeved button-down. The linen blend fabric looks great and performs surprisingly well and is certainly a fabric I’d hope Taylor Stitch keeps using. While the band collar might not be for everyone, it really grew on me and is going to be something I will keep my eye out for in the future.

Taylor Stitch The Short Sleeve Bandit in Heather Grey

Triple Aught Design Latitude

I’ve been looking for a shirt that is a bit of a weekend warrior type of shirt. Something I could toss on for days when I am not certain what I might be doing. From playing with the kids, to lounging on the couch, to taking an impromptu hike, working in the yard — whatever. I was looking for that type of shirt, and so I focused in on the Triple Aught Design Latitude shirt for its warm weather properties, high UPF rating, and long sleeves (so I don’t get sunburn, I never remember sunscreen).

Material

This material is the same as the outer facing on the Triple Aught Design Catalyst Field Shirt I reviewed here, it is a 120 g/m² 100% Nylon Ripstop with a UPF 50 rating. The material is very thin and holds almost no structure. It has a grid pattern throughout the fabric as well.

The material is made to be light, breathable, and quick drying. You might assume durable, but there’s one main issue with this fabric that I have seen in both the Catalyst and this Latitude shirt: pilling. Even after just one wear and wash, there is light pilling throughout. It’s just a thing with this material. It cleans up easily, but if stuff like that bothers you, stay far away. What this does mean though, is that the fabric itself is quite pleasant to feel — that’s your trade off.

Fit & Style

This is basically a hiking shirt look. Though Triple Aught Design took care to make it look like a really great hiking shirt, the collar is slouchy and well, so is the entire shirt. The vertical breast pockets further exacerbate the hiking aesthetic.

However, you don’t go into buying a shirt like this called a ‘modern expedition shirt’ thinking that you will be able to sneak in out of board rooms unnoticed. You buy a shirt like this to have a button down to wear when you want to get stuff done. That’s the style here, take it or leave it.

Performance

My first go with this shirt was a tough one. I needed to go an unpack the items in my garage after moving. A garage in Houston is a special kind of place. The kind of place where it feels like all the humidity and all the heat all at once. If I had to guess the heat index in the garage that day was around 102°F — probably should have waited, but it needed to be done. I chose the Latitude for this task because I wanted to protect my arms from the boxes, and I wanted to try and stay cool.

Much to my surprise the shirt is very breathable, more so than even the Western Rise AirLight I recently wrote about. It never restricted me, and the material held up to a great many box edges sliding against the arms. And those mesh vents in the arm pits, thank you for those.

Finally, I tested the straps to roll up the sleeves and found them to be a nice touch when I was done with the boxes part.

Here’s the crux of the performance: by the time I was done in the garage I was soaked with sweat. The entire shirt was, but it wasn’t heavy and it wasn’t at all uncomfortable (well any more so than being soaked in sweat already is). And when I came back into the house, the shirt started drying out very quickly.

There’s no avoiding getting hot in a situation like that, but the Latitude shirt did exactly what I hoped it would: keep my skin protected from the boxes and my core temp as cool as it could be. After washing it I quickly noticed how fast it dried hanging in the laundry room. As a quick drying hiking and outdoors shirt — this shirt performs as good (if not better) than anything else I have tried. And it looks better while doing it.

Overall

Even though this is a button down shirt with a collar, it’s as casual to wear as a t-shirt. I’d wear it more if it wasn’t so casual, but as it is I generally wear it only when I want my arms protected. It is great to throw on, no regrets on the purchase.

For me though, the style keeps it from being an everyday wear item.

Triple Aught Design Latitude