Review: Lomo – Gilet – Water & Wind Resistant Fleece Jacket
I am not sure if I am strange or whether other people are like me? I find that I use my lower arms as my temperature control mechanism. What I mean is that when I am hot, I tend to roll my sleeves back and lower them when I get cold. I have never been one for wearing a full fleece jacket unless it is really cold like minus degrees C! However, I have been known to have my sleeves up in the snow!
As a result, I tend to drift towards wearing sleeveless jackets or Gilet’s as the temperature drops. However, I find that they are as draughty as an open window because they are rarely windproof which defeats their purpose unless worn as a ‘mid-layer’ under a windproof jacket.
Then I was offered the opportunity to try out a windproof and water resistant gilet from Lomo. Could this be the answer to my predicament? Would it really stand up to the windproof claims?
In the words of Lomo
These gilets are not made from the normal fleece that you might be used to. Regular fleece is next to useless when protecting you from the wind, even a gentle breeze will pass straight thought it. Regular fleece works well when used as a mid layer under an outer shell which can act as a barrier to wind and rain although it will also let rain pass through with ease making you wet quite quickly.
Our water resistant fleece is made from a much denser material that is much more resistant to wind penetration. It is also relatively water resistant and can stand up to light showers without letting the rain come through. It’s not totally waterproof though and it will eventually saturate, but in comparison to regular fleece it will give significantly more protection.Lomo
The Gilet is very well manufactured with double stitched seams and quality finishing. It has two very good sized zippered pockets with sufficient material overlap to cover the zip and prevent any moisture ingress. Unlike some I have tried, this Gilet is a good length allowing for sufficient overlap of my trousers. The bottom seam has a draw cord allowing the base to be draw in to prevent rising draughts.
I have worn the Gilet on three occasions now, all have been in air temperatures of 0C and a wind chill from -3C to -5C. On the first occasion it was a cold windy but sunny day, whilst the last was in the aftermath of Storm Arwen and was wet, windy and cold.
On my first walk the wind chill turning my ears blue, but my body was maintained at a very comfortable temperature. With the close fitting neck, I was able to zip the Gilet right up under my chin to hold all the heat in. I was using the Gilet as the top of three layers. The first two were a thermal long sleeved vest next to me skin with a short sleeved technical top over this.
Unlike any previous Gilet that I have used, there was absolutely no wind penetration through the material. This Gilet is truly windproof and made for a very pleasant walk.
The last final test was the immediate aftermath of Storm Arwen. I went for a 5 mile walk in a semi exposed area with very high winds and light but driving rain and sleet. Throughout the whole walk I remained warm and dry. There was no cooling effect despite the 45 mph gusts.
Lomo state that this Gilet is not totally waterproof. However, had the amount of rain increased or persisted, then the waterproof hooded jacket would be going on over the top. As a result, in the environment for which the Gilet was intended, it worked as advertised. I stayed warm and dry.
I mentioned at the outset that I had used it on three occasions. Well, the third occasion was somewhat different to the other two. Apart from being an avid walker, I am also a keen gardener and this time of year need some extra warm and protection without the cumbersome interference of a full jacket.
The Lomo Gilet was perfect for the role, and I think I will continue to use it for this as well as for walking. Remember, this Gilet is not just for walking !
Would I recommend this Gilet? Without any doubt YES. It does exactly what it says in the ‘tin’. Add to this the advantage of Lomo cutting out the middlemen, this product, and everything else they sell are great value. The Gilet is currently selling at £24, excellent value when you consider what you are getting compared to the competition.
Disclaimer: I was supplied with a Gilet – Water & Wind Resistant Fleece Jacket by Lomo UK for the purposes of this review. All opinions are my own.