Welcome to EN’s Product Review series! Who doesn’t love shopping, especially when the object of your search is new gear for yourself or your horse? As an enthusiast of all products equine, I LOVE trying out new gear. Please join me as I narrate my personal journey of trying out all of the products featured. While I will make no recommendations, I hope you have fun reading about my many adventures of trying new products, and that hearing about my personal experiences helps you on your own quest for new gear. Go Shopping.
You know that it’s getting pretty chilly outside when you walk out the door to head down to the barn and you see your breath floating in the air. It hovers for several seconds, and then dissipates as it floats skyward. Beautiful? Absolutely.
But seeing my breath in the air also means that the more temperate days are falling behind (pun intended), and the chillier weather of the winter season is setting in. Since cold temperatures don’t keep me away from riding or my barn work, I simply have to adapt.
Adapting to the chilly temperatures requires three things: layers, layers and layers. Ok, so it’s really only one thing, but I figured I’d just repeat it three times in order to emphasize how important it is to dress for the weather by selecting appropriate layers.
Generally speaking, I like to attire myself in three layers of what I’d classify as ‘active’ or ‘performance’ types pieces. This means that they should have the following traits: Be lightweight, have wicking properties, be able to dry quickly and hold warmth to the body.
Back to the three layers; there should be a good base layer, a mid layer, and also an outer layer. Depending on the temperatures, the time of day I’m out riding or working, as well as other factors (like wind chill…brrrr), I may shed the outer layer to avoid overheating.
I’ve talked a lot about base layers early in the season, but the colder it gets outside, the more I start to focus on my mid and outer layers. The often forgotten about middle layer is important. While the temptation is great to pull on a cotton pullover or hoodie, I say nay.
One of my go to mid layers this season has been the Warmwear Quarter Zip Hoodie from Noble Outfitters. The Warmwear Hoodie has been a nice addition to my cold weather riding wardrobe because it is comfortable, functional, and it easily crosses over for wear away from the barn.
Since cotton is basically the enemy of all things performance wear, I was very happy to see that the Warmwear Hoodie is made out of 100% polyester, with a fleece brushed inside, which makes the exterior of the hoodie feel smooth to the touch, while the inside feels soft and cozy.
The neckline of the Warmwear Hoodie is styled to give it a fabulous layered look. A quilted nylon taffeta collar that zips up peeks out, which gives me the best of both worlds when I experience the comfort of a hoodie with the polished look of a quarter zip.
I found that I like the relaxed fit of the Warmwear Hoodie, because it feels comfortable without being too loose or baggy. Plus, the seams that run down the front, along with the quilted taffeta collar help to give it a structured look. Comfortable? Check. Polished? Double check.
I like that the bottom hem of the Warmwear Hoodie hits about mid thigh length on me, which considering my 5’9″ frame, is very welcome. I also appreciate the dropped back hem, which is one of my favorite features that Noble Outfitters incorporates into their designs.
I’ve worn the Warmwear Hoodie layered as both my outermost layer, and as a mid layer. And in both cases, it functions well! Whether I’m out for a ride, getting my barn chores done, spectating at a local horse trial or going out to lunch, the Warmwear Hoodie is versatile.
The Warmwear Hoodie wears nicely, shedding hay and dirt readily. I’ve also gotten slobbered on (which is inevitable around horses), and have found that the slobber washes off well, and the Hoodie looks none the worse for the wear.
The Warmwear Hoodie also features two side slit pockets, which are comfortable to place hands in (especially when spectating at a horse trial on a brisk day). Yet they are just as convenient to place my phone and chapstick in when I set off for a ride.
I also do find that the unique neckline of the Warmwear Hoodie to be extremely functional. On days that are more chilly or breezy, I can zip up the quilted collar in order to block out the wind. Or, I can easily zip it down for a different look that provides me with additional ventilation.
The Warmwear Quarter Zip Hoodie is available from Noble Outfitters in two colors, including Heather Gray (pictured) or Black. Both colors retail for $79.99, and you can find them here.
Go Comfortable and Functional Layers. Go Noble Outfitters. Go Eventing.