Rating: 9.4 / 10
Value for Money 2.3/2.5
I have been using Icebreaker garments for just over seven years now and if I had to pick a favourite brand this would be it (if you don’t believe me look through the website and almost without fail I’m wearing an Icebreaker top). My layering system currently uses three icebreaker tops, the Aero down to about 4° celsius or if it drops below that the Icebreaker Factor half zip as my base layer in all but the coldest conditions, and the Oasis Long Sleeve Crewe Top as a mid layer when the cold really sets in.
In regard to the Aero Long Sleeve Crew Top I’ll start with the negatives first. There are really only two:
Then there’s the advantages. These garments last and last and I am still using my seven year old tops. While I have a couple with holes in them, due to rough treatment on my part, they are still in relatively good condition so despite the initial purchase price they are exceptionally good value for money. The use of wool (90%) means they don’t stink like other types of clothing after heavy wear. On our Larapinta Trail trip I wore the Aero Top for ten days without a wash and while I stank, the top didn’t. Icebreaker class this top as featherweight and as such it is ideal for use even in temperatures approaching 40° Celsius. I don’t wear short sleeves while hiking anymore to minimise fluid loss and sunburn. I find that in hot conditions the only sweating that occurs is where the pack comes into contact with my body and that’s going to occur with any brand of clothing when is hot.
This top works equally well as a base layer and having worked outside for most of my life, in some extreme conditions, this top is all I will wear down to temperatures as low as 4° celsius so long as its not windy and I am moving. Once temperatures drop below this I start adding layers. The average hiker may need to assess their own temperature threshold to determine your minimum temperature for the Aero top.
The quality of this garment is excellent. From the material used, to the flat lock stitching which minimises chaffing, to the length which I often find a drawback in some brands.
Whenever people ask for recommendations for hiking tops, I have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending Icebreaker.
Mens Aero Long Sleeve Crew top in Pelorus (Blue)
Mens Aero Long Sleeve Crew top in Rocket (Red)
In this image its 35 degrees Celsius and I have just walked 54 km. The long sleeves prevented me from getting sun burnt and the lightweight fabric meant I didn’t overheat
Icebreaker produces a huge range of tops in both short and long sleeves, as well as thin to thick materials. Depending on your tolerance for cold and your layering system there is a garment to suit you
This review was done with product purchased from a retail store by the reviewer