As a product reviewer for Commute By Bike, I am providing my unbiased opinion of any products provided to us by any company. I do not posses any type of relationship with the product’s company or parent companies. Companies that send in their goods to be reviewed do not compensate me in any way.
Vaporwick Jersey Polo in Lux Blue
Product: Vaporwick Short Sleeve Jersey Polo (Size M, Zinc Grey)
Sizes: S, M, L, XL, XXL
Colors: Lush Green, Zinc Grey, White, Landmark Gold, Lux Blue, Nordic Blue, Offroad Orange, Molten Red
My Background: I am 5’9″, 165 lbs. My only bike is a custom Dahon Jack, and I use it for everything, including a 15-mile round-trip commute from Queens to Manhattan.
Testing Grounds: The dirty streets of New York.
The Vaporwick Jersey Polo looks and fits like a regular polo shirt, but boasts wicking properties, moving moisture away from the skin. I had high hopes for this, because my practice has been to ride in wearing one shirt, and put on another at work. The offender is the sweat spot that develops under my shoulder bag. As annoying as it is, I still prefer it to the loss in handling I get with panniers. A shirt that eliminated this problem would be great.
the curse of the messenger bag
On the Bike:
I didn’t find the Vaporwick Jersey Polo very comfortable, in hot weather or cold. The material is 100% polyester and thicker than a standard bike jersey. As for the moisture wicking properties, the jersey did a fine job overall, but under a messenger bag, it did no better than a regular cotton shirt. I expected the jersey to dry significantly faster than a cotton shirt, but it did not. Unfortunately, this means that the jersey isn’t the wonder product that will allow you to step off the bike and into the office sweat-free. Another factor to consider is that bike jerseys are tight, and pull sweat from your skin because the fabric is right next to it; the polo jersey does not hug the skin, but is loose-fitting like a polo shirt should be. This means less sweat is sucked away.
Off the Bike:
As far as looks goes, the polo jersey falls somewhere in between a standard polo shirt and something you would expect to see in a nightclub. It has a very slight sheen to it, and does not fall or drape the way a cotton polo or t-shirt does. This may have had to do with the fact that the jersey was a little too big for me – the size M felt more like a size L.The collar has a nice shape and the sleeves are average length, maybe a little longer than I prefer.
For some reason, the polo jersey seemed to absorb body odor faster than a regular bike jersey and a cotton shirt. I am not generally a smelly guy, so if you are, be wary of this.
I had high expectations for the jersey polo, and it didn’t meet them. I found myself looking forward to taking it off at the end of my ride home, more so than with the shirts I usually wear. I didn’t continue using the product after the testing period, which I think says it all. Given the choice between the polo jersey and any other t-shirt, I would take the t-shirt.