For those of us who live where the warm weather remains for at least a couple more months, we have some interesting apparel options to help us stay cool in the outdoors. The feminine looking Kipu Tee from Sherpa Adventure Gear takes advantage of the cooling properties of IceFil fabric to give you that small performance edge when exercising in hot weather.
The Kipu Tee is made from Xylitol infused IceFil fabric. When the Xylitol crystals embedded in the apparel fiber come in contact with any form of water, such as your sweat, they dissolve, changing their form without changing their chemical makeup. This dissolution triggers an endothermic or heat-absorbing reaction, resulting in a cooling sensation against your skin.
Once the endothermic reaction is finished and the Xylitol fully dissolved, the cooling fabric needs to be completely dried, returning the Xylitol to its original crystal state in order to trigger that reaction again. Drying your shirt after you begin to sweat may be difficult in certain warm weather outdoor activities.
As I found with the current season Columbia Omni-Freeze ICE fabric (different from next season's Omni-Freeze ZERO) and 180s QuantumCool arm sleeves made from the same type of fabric, you get the real benefit when hit by a breeze or you briefly step into the shade, much like sucking in air when you are chewing Xylitol gum.
IceFil fabric also features an anti-microbial treatment to try and cut down on the stink, while offering UPF 30+ sun protection for enjoying those last warm rays of summer. I like the feminine cut and V-neck style of the Kipu Tee, as it's a nice change from the usual round, high-neck performance shirts that are so prevalent.
The Kipu Tee comes in 3 different colors (purple, blue, orange) and retails for $55. As the tech tee is from the current Sherpa Adventure Gear Spring/Summer 2012 collection, you may be able to find some great deals on the piece at your local Sherpa dealer.