REVIEW: WoolPro Merino Wool Helios Hoodie

Pros of the Helios HoodieP1080993

The WoolPro Merino Wool Helios Hoodie is a comfortable, lightweight, and warm garment to have on hand.  It compresses so you can throw it in your bag, and doesn’t show signs of wrinkling when you need it.  The elastic hem keeps the hoodie in place at your hips even during extensive strenuous movement.  The fabric itself stretches and moves with you during workouts.  Add to that, the hood fits just as well when wearing a helmet as it does without one – all without drawstrings.  The elastic hem, stretchy fabric, and snug-fitting, versatile hood make this hoodie a particularly good option for biking.

This hoodie is also good at wicking sweat.  I’ve mostly enjoyed wearing this post-boxing when I’m a sweaty mess.  The hoodie breathes well, yet still gives me the protection I need against the colder weather outside.

Aside from athletics, this hoodie is just plain warm.  Cold, blustery days are no problem.  The Helios locks in your body heat and gets you to a comfortable temperature quickly.

Note: If you are hyper-sensitive to wool like I am (I will break out from accidentally rubbing against a wool sweater), wash this garment before wearing the first time.  Once washed, the merino wool shouldn’t be a problem for your skin.

 

Smell Test

One of the things we were intrigued by with this hoodie was the claim that it would never smell, no matter how sweaty you got. We had to try it out.hoody2

Step 1: I wore the hoodie for a run on one of those days that starts chilly, but holds promise of sweaty, humid, misery as soon as the sun comes up. I ran about three miles on a hilly loop, and was a gross mess by the time I was done.

Step 2: So far so good with the stench, but I wanted to recreate true backwoods hiking conditions. I took my sweaty hoodie and shoved it in the bottom of my pack. Then I forgot about it for approximately two days.

Step 3:  I remembered my experiment, and took the hoodie out of purgatory. Still no smell! I washed it as I normally would, and it looked great. There was no reflection of all the ways I had mistreated it.

Camping

The forecast for my son’s spring camp out went from bad to worse. It started out cold, then got colder, then changed to cold with rain and possible thunderstorms. I knew it wouldn’t be pleasant, but I thought I would be okay if I packed my WoolPro hoodie. The hoodie doesn’t feel warm when you first put it on, but it does a great job trapping body heat once you start moving around. I wore it under my rain jacket, and was comfortable the whole time. I even kept it on at night, hood and all. After tossing and turning for awhile because I was cold, I figured out that the elastic in the hood would keep it in place if I wanted to wear it while sleeping. I think I slept better that night while the cold rain poured down on my tent than on any other camp out. I credit the WoolPro hoodie for that!

Other Considerations

To make the hoodie even better, we suggest two things:hoody1

1) Add thumb holes.  The arms are so long, they reach the knuckles.  We found ourselves wanting to create thumb holes ourselves.

2) Make the hoodie about 3 inches shorter.  From shoulder to hem, the small hoodie measures 26.5″, three inches longer than similarly sized hoodies I own.  If you are 5’9″ or taller, the arm length and hem line should fit you well.  In fact, this is your hoodie!  If you’re shorter than that (like we are), the hem will still want to sit at your hips, but because it’s so much longer than your torso, the fabric bunches creating the appearance of extra weight around the mid-section.  If you’re taller, however, the cut of the seams are such that this hoodie should be extremely flattering for you.

Summary

✅ Comfortable, lightweight
✅ Good for stowing in carry-on luggage or your handbag and layering as needed
✅ Good at wicking, particularly post-workout
✅ Nice stretch to the fabric
✅ Zippered pockets are a plus
✅ Warms quickly and holds body heat well
✅ Ideal for athletic activities where you need flexibility and the bottom hem to stay in place (like biking)
✖ Cut for someone 5’9″ or taller (too long for the rest of us)

Side Notes

  • If allergic to wool, wash before wearing
  • Thumb holes would help with the long arms

 

Disclosure: WoolPro provided us with the Helios hoodies to test for this review.  All opinions are our own.

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