Cooling vests aren’t supposed to be attractive. They are supposed to be bulky behemoths best suited for operating drilling rigs or laying hot asphalt—repurposed in pink to appeal to someone with multiple sclerosis. Coolture has turned that attitude on its head, in large part because their team is anchored by Van DiBernardo, a former designer from the renowned fashion powerhouse Donna Karan New York (DKNY)… and a fellow MSer. The vest is cooled by six CoolPaks (the same technology used by StaCool), and two sets come with each order so that users can swap out panels for all-day cooling. These packs start as sheets of plastic that plump when activated by water and agitation. When they are used for the first few times, they feel a bit slimy (not damaging to clothing). And to plump them fully, hand-agitation might not be sufficient, although tossing them in with a hot laundry load usually does the trick (just don’t dry them!). The packs cool for three hours, but due to condensation the vest may dampen clothing.
The Coolture vest includes a patent-pending “weightless belt” to better distribute weight and ensure a snug but comfortable fit. With full four cooling slots in the back for max cooling, users could remove one or even two to lighten the vest without signficant penalty in the chill department. While the vest is designed to the 9s (and even includes a NASA-tested lining that absorbs heat), ActiveMSers deducted a point in its comfort and fit rating because when seated the vest can ride up (see photo), necessitating a quick tug or lowering of the zipper. Due to the adjustable vest design in the midsection and the more conforming cool packs, this vest is appropriate and comfortable for plus sizes. For added style, Coolture offers the unusual feature of being able to add your own custom graphics for as little as $30, a steal for a custom vest with personal attitude.
Cold Sensitivity: 3
Weight: 5 lbs 1 oz
Vintage Wash Crew Under-Vest Tee
Most cooling vest manufacturers recommend a light shirt be worn under the vest to both prevent chaffing and to maintain vest cleanliness. Alas, many T-shirts are made of thick cotton and weigh 6 ounces or more. ActiveMSers has teamed with MStshirts.com to procure the ideal under-vest T-shirt. Weighing 3.7 ounces (fabric weight), this under-vest tee is among the lightest of any shirt available on the market and is perfectly suited to be worn under phase change cooling vests or on its own. Made of 100% ring spun combed breathable cotton, the tee comes in the unisex sizes of XS, S, M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL,and has a well-loved look thanks to its garment wash treatment. Available in white, black, blue and red. Price: $12.
Members of ActiveMSers can save up to 20% on select cooling vests with reserved coupon codes. To get your discount, join today by signing upfor our newsletter. NOTE: ActiveMSers has negotiated these discounts and has no other affiliation with these companies and receives no compensation or commission of any kind. Vests were donated for testing purposes.