A little while back I ran across Execwear, an undershirt company based out of Austin, Texas that has created a line of “Executive” (not really sure what that implies) moisture-wicking undershirts made out of a nylon/lycra blend that are said to be resist to stains and odors.
Note: As of June 2016, Execwear became part of RibbedTee.com
Here’s some information about their undershirts from their website:
- Keep underarms dry, and virtually eliminates the wetness that causes cotton undershirts to yellow
- High tensile strength, light-weight microfiber offers superior durability. This high end fabric withstands the harshest environment providing you with long lasting silk like comfort
- Execwear undershirts should last years, saving money in the long run.
- Execwear short-sleeved undershirts weigh approximately 5 ounces!
- All shirts are proudly made in the USA.
Today’s review is on their black short-sleeve crewneck undershirt.
Meryl is a product from Nylstar, a leading producer of polyamide textile yarns (whatever that is). I found this alternate description of Meryl on a cycling website:
Meryl is a natural feeling fabric which offers performance, protection, moisture management and thermo regulation, all with comfort and a great fit.
Meryl is the first hollow core bacteriostatic microfiber nylon in the world.
It allows the skin to maintain it’s natural bacteria level, guaranteeing hygiene and well-being even in the intense physical activity of cycling.
If you ask me, it’s getting awfully difficult to really understand the true benefits of all these synthetic blends — these manufacturers are getting a little to technical in describing the benefits of their fabric if you ask me.
For the most part, this is a standard “box” cut undershirt, in that, the width in the chest area is the same as the bottom (no tapering). I say for the most part because while this shirt is box-cut, the fabric provides a more forgiving fit than some cotton counterparts – it allows you to move around more freely and the fabric moves with you pretty nicely.
The overall dimensions (pre-wash) for this large undershirt are: 6.25″ shoulder strap length, 1″ wide tight fitting collar, 7.75″ sleeve length, 7″ sleeve opening, shirt bottom falls about 9″ below my waist line, and laying flat the overall length is 29″ and width is 20″ (a little narrower than other box-cut undershirts, like the Coolmax undershirt I reviewed not too long ago).
I’d say the fit feels nice overall, thanks in most part to the forgiving and stretchy material, with one exception — the front of the collar.
This undershirt has a tight-collar, which some folks do look for. Unfortunately, to me, I found the collar pushing on my adam’s apple a little too much (especially when I leaned forward slightly – note: my neckline measures 15″ around).
The one other minor item is that as I sit here typing this review (shoulders and arms slightly forward) I feel a slight snugness in the torso area up by where the arms join the body of the shirt.
My only point in mentioning it, is that I’m about 175lbs with a 40″ chest. I would venture to guess that larger guys would also be buying the large-sized shirt and they may notice that a little bit more than me.
Again, because the fabric is very forgiving, the undershirt still feels comfortable to wear. Other than those minor issues, I’m fairly pleased with the fit.
The Meryl/Lycra blended material feels rather nice on the skin. It’s got a slightly slippery feel to it as well (which is not bad or good).
My outer shirts slid over this undershirt easily and the light 5oz material breathes pretty well so you don’t feel any warmer after putting it on.
I just got back from running some errands where I wore this crewneck under a t-shirt and the only thing that stood out was that as I walked around, the material moved back and forth across my torso — and I noticed it.
I’m sure that same dynamic happens with other undershirts, but I can’t say I notice it at all. It may be more noticeable on this undershirt because of the fabric blend.
As I mentioned above, I wore the undershirt underneath one of my favorite 100% cotton tees when I was out and about taking care of some “honey do’s” Mrs. Tug assigned to me.
The temperature outside was a dry 91 degrees and inside my car it felt about 100+ degrees (I purposely didn’t put on the air or roll down the windows so I would sweat some).
After about 20 minutes of running around, most of the time in the hot car, I was able to break a good enough sweat for the shirt to get moist.
While not a scientific finding, subjectively, the inside of the undershirt felt a little more moist than the outside, which suggests that the moisture didn’t get transferred to the outer side of the shirt as much as you would expect from a moisture-wicking product.
That being said, to be completely fair, we’d have to compare its performance to that of a non-moisture wicking undershirt to be really certain.
Again, subjectively, I don’t notice the moisture as much when I wear a cotton undershirt.
I can’t honestly say this undershirt kept me feeling cooler than the undershirts I normally wear, but I can say that it seemed to dry a lot faster than my cotton undershirts.
Execwear claims that this moisture wicking undershirt resists stains and odors (presumably it performs better than cotton undershirts).
To be honest, it would be hard for me to say one way or the other since I have plenty of cotton undershirts that don’t have any stains on them after months of wearing.
At $29 a pop, plus shipping ($5), one of these undershirt will cost you $34. If you buy two, your price goes down to $31.50.
It’s a little more expensive than other moisture wicking undershirts, but in general, the price is about average for this category of undershirt.
It’s really hard to compare this undershirt with the other moisture-wicking undershirts I’ve reviewed here because the shirts are made from very different materials.
If you’re looking for an undershirt that’s slightly more snug but has a stretchy feel to it, you may like this undershirt over the others in this category.
The one thing I wanted to mention was about the care instructions. They suggest washing this undershirt in cold water, line dry and do not iron it.
It might just be me, but I’d rather not have to actually think about how to care for my undershirts.
I prefer to just throw them in the laundry with all my other clothes and not have to worry about how to care for them. You might as well just tell me that I have to take my undershirts to the dry cleaners. (technically mrs. tug does the laundry — but you know what I mean)
Overall, I’m pretty neutral on this undershirt.
I think having a unique fabric blend that is soft and stretchy is a great concept, but I’m not entirely sold on the execution, price point and care requirements for this particular undershirt.