Guest Review: Adidas Ups the Game in Tank Top Undershirts

February 21, 2013 | By | 4 Replies More

We don’t talk about tank tops all that much here on UndershirtGuy.com, but I believe they play an important role in our undershirt wardrobe.

I spent a good amount of this past summer wearing tank top undershirts — mostly because I was spending more time in hotter areas, and since I don’t sweat too much in the underarm area, I wasn’t too worried about staining the underarm area of my outer shirts. Oh, and now that I know of various ways to remove deodorant stains from my shirts, I’m a bit less worried about staining them.

The great news is that I have some loyal and regular readers who are absolute fans of tanks tops, and they help move the tank top discussion along nicely here. One such reader, “C in Cali” is an UndershirtGuy.com article contributor as well.

Here’s is take on the Adidas Athletic Comfort ClimaLite, 100% cotton ribbed tank top. (these specific items were found at Kohls and Dick’s Sporting Goods)

Guest Review: Adidas Ups the Game in Tank Top Undershirts

By: ‘C in Cali

The Adidas Tank Top

adias-athletic-comfort-climaLite-tank-top-packaging For those of us who take our undershirts and tank tops seriously—and would you be reading this, if you didn’t—undershirt manufacturers and retailers can sometimes prove to be annoying. After we do lots of shopping, we finally come across a favorite undershirt only to find on a stock-up trip that it has been discontinued or supposedly improved.

Consider these orphaned lower priced tank top undershirts:

  • the practical and well made Puritan undershirt once sold by Wal-Mart…gone;
  • the highly popular early Stafford undershirt sold by J.C.Penney…replaced by a newer version;
  • a tank top with closely sewn distinctive neck straps sold as Premium Hanes…replaced by a newer premium version with thinner shoulder straps that could be offered by any manufacturer.

These functional, durable, and inexpensive quality tank tops were orphaned by either the manufacturer or retailer.

One of the sorely missed orphans was an earlier version of a tank top sold by Target under the Merona label. This was arguably a great undershirt at a highly affordable price. The original Merona tank top was similar to far more expensive compression tanks. It was a rare undershirt without a ribbed pattern, had an attractive neck line, and gave off lots of warmth for daytime wear, sleeping or gym time. It never tore or developed pin-size holes. I still have a couple of them, and I’m not giving them up! Fortunately, the discontinued Merona shirt has met its match in a tank top offered by Adidas that may very well up the game in the lower priced category of undershirts.

Adidas is surely a well-known brand. The company is the second largest sportswear manufacturer in the world. Beyond the company’s more familiar basketball shorts, sweat pants, and comfy tops lies a tank top worth considering. You can find the manufacturer’s crinkly packages of two tank tops in white or black under $20.00 at most sporting goods stores and mid-price retailers. Some retailers are offering the shirt as a BOGO—buy one two-pack, get another at half-price.

I’ve been wearing an Adidas tank top fairly regularly of late. Here are the reasons.

Fit

The Adidas tank top undershirt is a perfect fit in multiple sizes for us who are neither “small guys” nor “big guys”—notice how I avoided the word “average.” These tanks in my judgment offer one of the best fits among the competition.

They achieve a comfortable mix of “loose” in terms of breathability and “tight” in terms of wrapping the upper body. This is partially achieved by having a closer ribbed pattern than the competition, high arm holes, and an attractive high neck with a generous use of fabric built into the design. The neckline stitching is strong and keeps the shirt from sagging. The back of the neck is covered fairly high too. In other words, Adidas doesn’t skimp on material. Instead, this shirt manages to give support and coverage.

It’s also a structured shirt that keeps its shape after several washings. A sure test of structure is whether a tank top remains aligned with the body after it is used as sleepwear. In the morning, the tank top is still in perfect form. Nice. The shirt is hemmed and, depending on your body type, may seem long, but this helps to avoid a tendency in many shirts to roll up or shrink.

Thankfully, there are no logos on the shirt. On the other hand, if your taste runs to low neck lines and large arm holes, or if you prefer thin neck straps, this is not the shirt for you.

Feel

Like most undershirts, the Adidas tank is tag free. It is 100% cotton and has a wicking design to eliminate moisture. One of the reasons many of us opt for tank top undershirts in lieu of more traditional crew neck shirts is to avoid the tight feel of being wrapped up. The old Merona athletic undershirts, for all their good attributes, had a tendency to be clingy and sweat-inducing because of their 5% Lycra construction, but the Adidas undershirt just feels natural and doesn’t bring out and trap sweat.

And unlike some many inexpensive undershirts that start out feeling comfortable but develop a rough feel after spending time in the wash tub and dryer, the Adidas shirt maintains its texture. Comfort for the long haul.

Function

Since this undershirt comes from Adidas, you might expect it to be mainly a gym or sport-friendly garment. It is ideal for these pursuits, but, it is a highly versatile tank top that equally complements business or casual wear. The standard white is an appropriate business undershirt, and even after multiple washings, it doesn’t fade or yellow—even in the high underarm areas. If you don’t like “show through” with your business shirts, you may want to try it in black. It’s nice to discover a tank top that goes well in a business setting as well as the gym or even lounging around the house.

Even though tank top undershirts are enormously popular, some men still prefer other styles. Adidas makes traditional crew neck and V-neck shirts to suit those tastes, though I haven’t tested them. Their tank tops are just too comfortable for me to switch.

For the price and availability, this may be a best in show contender.

Let’s just hope the Adidas undershirt does not become another orphan, but I’ve stocked up just in case.

###

Where to Buy?

I did some poking around, and found the Adidas Athletic Comfort ClimaLite Tank top 2-pack available on a couple of websites including:

If this is the correct product, and since it’s no longer available on the Adidas.com website, I’m guessing this particular item may have already been discontinued.

I’m going to check with C in Cali to see if this is the correct item, or if he picked up a similar Adidas product.

Tags: , , ,

Category: Guest Articles, Undershirt Reviews

About the Author ()

Comments (4)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Steve

    says:

    I just purchased a 3 pack of these, based on the review of ‘C in Cali’. I paid just under $20 at an adidas outlet store in Kansas City, KS.

    I have not field tested them yet, but my initial reaction is that they are good, but not great. They do fit nicely, but I find them to be a bit long. I am 6’1″ tall and they go down just past my butt.

    This wouldn’t be a huge issue, but the bottom is tightly stitched and doesn’t stretch as much as the shirt itself. Also, I find the material on the thin side, but this may be to the Climalite material and may actually be great at keeping me cool in the summer.

    They do fit very nicely, they are form fitting and should prevent bunching. They are however not tight, they just fit nicely and lay smooth.

    Overall, I would give these 4 out of 5 stars. I am pleased with them for the price I paid. However, I may be replacing these one at a time with a more premium shirt as money allows. I hear good things about Tommy John.

  2. Randy

    says:

    Well-written review. Nice to know I’m not the only (or among the few) who also prefer tanks to crews or V’s. I have seen Adidas for a while at off-retail stores like Marshall’s etc. but have been reluctant to try them mostly because (in my experience) any sporting goods manufacturer does a great job making sporting goods and usually a so-so job when they enter the fashion arena. Good to hear you like these so much.

    One design feature, however, you didn’t mention in your comprehensive review: is there a side seam or are these (hopefully) ringspun design? I prefer the latter over the former. Everyone can sew two pieces of cloth together to make a shirt, but very few manufacturers make a solid tube-like shirt like they all did decades ago. Thanks.

    • heya randy, i’m going to let ‘c in cali’ know about your question and see if he can confirm.

      i did take a look at the images on the zappos product page, where they offer a zoom view capability and it looks like this particular tank top is indeed seamless/tube style, with no side seams.

      here’s a link to the zoomed image:
      http://a1.zassets.com/images/z/1/6/8/5/9/1/1685911-3-4x.jpg

      i’m glad you brought up the topic of seamless/tube vs. side-seams. i definitely like the idea of an undershirt being seamless over side-seams, but in wearing a bunch of side-seamed undershirts, i can’t tell you the last time i actually noticed any issue with feeling the side-seams on my body. there are also some shirts made with flat-lock stitching which generally has a flatter profile than traditional seam sewing techniques.

      all things created equally, if i were presented with two identical undershirts, and one had side-seams and the other did not, i would pick the one without. but i have to say, that i never really think about side-seams in the undershirt-selection or evaluation process — and i’m hugely picky about my undershirts.

      based on some conversations i’ve had in the past, there’s not much production difference in using a tube body or a seamed body — it’s actually less sewing work, right?? but, i get the feeling it gives the companies a lot more flexibility in what they do with their fabric inventory. it would also be interesting to know if the cost to produce a seam-less shirt is more expensive than a side-seamed one, from a net cost per shirt point of view.

      i dunno…what are your thoughts?

    • Byard

      says:

      I’ve worn V neck short-sleeve T shirt for 30 years and Adidas provided the best fit of all, by far. However, it appears they have discontinued the V neck. Do you know where I could find any?

Leave a Reply

SUBSCRIBE TO CONTINUE READING THIS ARTICLE!
I promise you'll enjoy reading the rest of this article. If you're not 100% satisfied, just unsubscribe at anytime. Sound good??
SUBSCRIBE TO CONTINUE READING THIS ARTICLE!
I promise you'll enjoy reading the rest of this article. If you're not 100% satisfied, just unsubscribe at anytime. Sound good??