While it’s a given that clothing reviews are going to be outdated before too long (meaning many of the specific items I’ll review here won’t be available anymore by the time you read the review), there are some clothing companies that continue to make high-quality, stylish, well-fitting clothing year after year.
I’ve found it works to pay attention to these brands or companies and keep an eye on what they’ve got available. When I find an item I especially like, I’ll get more than one if possible.
My favorite outdoor/performance clothing comes from just a handful of companies:
- L.L. Bean
- Lands’ End
- Duluth Trading Company
I’ve found almost all the items I’ve bought from them to fit well, be long-wearing, easy to care for, high-quality and easier on the budget than some of the “premier” brands (Dare I name them? I’m talking specifically about The North Face and Patagonia.)
The first three aren’t found in other retail stores (other than some of Lands’ End inventory at Sears stores), but often have exceptional sales or deals for their members/email list. They also each (the first three) offer an unconditional guarantee, which is something I’ve come to value.
(The last two, the guarantee depends on the retailer where the items are purchased.)
Admittedly, clothing reviews are going to be really subjective. We’re all shaped different, like different styles, live in varying climates, will use our clothing for different activities. But I’ll give it a try!
Whether it’s to stay warm or stay cool, today’s synthetic fabrics have come a long way. While I still buy some cotton and wool-blend items, I’m steering more and more towards “high-tech” materials. Especially in what I wear for specific activities.
The nice thing is, the clothing is also getting more and more stylish so we can wear them for regular life too. Not just out on the trail, in the boat or on the bike.
Let’s take a look at a few items…