Not all fleece is created equal

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msnbc_logoYesterday, MSNBC.com posted an interesting story entitled “7 Tips to Stay Warm and Save Dough” by their gadget guy, Paul Hochman.

In the story, Hochman says:

Fleece is a commodity. Fleece is fleece!
Nobody makes fleece that’s better than anybody else’s. In fact, Polartec in Lawrence, Mass., makes most of it for most brands. On their Web site, they list 45 different companies who use their fleece. If you have old fleece, it’s as good as new fleece. And fleece is great because it “wicks” moisture away from your skin, quickly. A very light, thin layer of fleece is great next to your skin.

Hochman is correct about the terrific wicking properties of fleece, but we know that not all fleece is created equal. Polartec invented modern synthetic fleece 20 years ago and today hundreds of clothing manufacturers use Polartec fabric in thousands of different garments. Yet, there are also many cheap fleece knock-off fabrics out there. A $20 fleece vest or sweater from Old Navy or the Gap will pill easily and the fabric will degrade dramatically, reducing the insulation benefits. Polartec fleece is designed with the latest technology to be durable, warm, lightweight, breathable and long-lasting.

Polartec also produces much more than just fleece. Over ten years ago, Polartec teamed up with Arc’teryx to help usher in the ‘softshell revolution.’ Today Polartec makes fabrics that range from breathable baselayers to cableknit sweaters. Polartec also offers natural and synthetic fiber combinations – really cool polyester and wool blends, for example.

Mr. Hochman’s story about staying warm in winter has lots of great tips, but it’s critical to check the label on the garments to ensure you’re getting the quality and performance of Polartec!

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