Helly Hansen Freeze Prowool 1/2 Zip Turtle Review

February 25, 2009

I was skeptical at first, but as Helly Hansen backs their product with a 30 day money back guarantee, I wanted to see what they were so confident about. After putting the Freeze Prowool ½ Zip Turtle to the test, it is in my top three baselayers for fit and performance. If you are on the cusp of the size, or are pretty busty, size up in this top. The Helly Hansen sizing recommendations are quite small. According to the Helly Hansen size recommendations I am the mid range for a small. Not the case. In reality I am the large end for a medium. For comparisions sake, I wear an Arcteryx medium base layer and a Patagonia small. I look for my base layer to fit across the shoulders and chest, avoiding constriction and assuring full range of motion in the arms to determine size. The medium is great. The seams are simple and non adjutating. The wool in the Freeze Prowool ½ Zip Turtle is soft to the touch and looks like a tightly woven wool grid pattern. The cuts is very form fitting designed to be next to skin. This is not a midlayer, it would be uncomfortable to have anything bigger than a tank top under it. It has a similar cut and feel to a soft surfing rashguard. The ½ zip is a great feature, as I utilize it for ventilation on cold winter trail runs. The fabric will not shrink if you wash it in cold water, but do not machine dry it. I own this top in the black and it is very chic, once the ½ is closed it is invisible. There are rubber traction like lines on the forearms. I am not clear as to what you would need to stick to, wearing a baselayer. It kinda makes me feel like the Shedder from the Ninja Turtles. …hardcore? The HH Warm technology is warmer quicker than any of the other baselayers. It also is great about wicking moisture away from the skin. I was concerned it may be too warm for high aerobic activity, but the thermoregulation is quick to respond. Helly Hansen Freeze Prowool 1/2 Zip Turtle Rundown: HH Warm techology for thermoregulation and moisture control Snug fit for next to skin layer Invisible 1/2 zip for ventilation "Shedder" rubber traction on the forearms Low profile fabric, but very warm Made of New Zealand Merino wool I spend a lot of time in my base layers, whether it be climbing, hiking, trail running, biking, or mountaineering, I definitely put the base layer to the test and wear them out. As the technology has developed my base layer drawer has grown to have more and more wool pieces. I love my Arcteryx Rho, my Patagonia Capiline and Patagonia Wools. The Helly Hansen Freeze Prowool ½ Zip can hang with the best of them. It does not shirk in the company or competition with Arcteryx or the Patagonia base layer Pioneer. Buy Now at Altrec!

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