BUFF®. The original. The one and only. The multi-functional tubular. There are imitations. There are our favourite branded neck tubes but there really is no other alternative to a BUFF®!
I was selected to be part of a promotional campaign for BUFF® and was gifted the CoolNet UV+®, a trucker hat and run cap. Whilst social posts of the products were required a blog post was optional, but I’m doing it anyway. It’s a great product. When I look back at the last four weeks of my life and the runs I’ve done, the hats and neck tube will appear frequently in the pictures. I’ve lived in them.
The trucker hat is stylish, fits well (as with most trucker hats it probably fits a bigger head better – I’ve it fastened as tight as it will go and there’s some movement). It is also comfortable to wear. Tick. I’ve received a lot of comments on this hat and I do particularly like the orange and stone colour scheme as well as the simplistic mountain graphic.
The BUFF® runcap is something I’ve wanted to try for a while the last two years and I’ve come close to buying the UTMB branded version but haven’t. I’ve been intrigued by the toggle fastening system. I must say, it works a treat. The elastic and stopper is so easy to adjust on the go and secures well without loosening. The hat itself is super lightweight with an absorbent headband and keeps the head nice and cool as it’s breathable. It comes with a flexible brim which I’ve mostly run with it ‘up’ and it doesn’t flap or move about, even in the windy mountains! I do like to wear a cap backwards, but it doesn’t quite look right with the elastic flapping on your forehead. A small negative!
And so, to the main item. The CoolNet UV+®. It’s just a bit of material right?! Wrong! It’s so much more…
- Firstly it’s recycled. 95% recycled polyester microfibre! With each tubular being made from two plastic bottles. A great piece of technical engineering and something we all hope becomes more mainstream in the sports sector.
- Surprisingly it is soft. Very soft. I just kept rubbing my face against it and didn’t want to use it in case it lost its softness (after rigorous running , sweating and repeated washing it hasn’t yet!). I didn’t expect recycled plastic to feel this good!
- It’s a decent size, I always find BUFF® tubes are slightly larger than the wannabe competitors.
- The colour scheme on mine is torquise-y (with some form of graphic) but comes in many variants. I’m not quite sure what the pattern I have is but I like it. A change from my usual black kit and headwear!
- It’s warm. A neck tube on a cold day, yes please. Lightweight but keeps your ears, face and head warm. During the early hours of the Matterhorn sky race, as the morning was breaking, I was running carefree with the BUFF® up over my mouth and neck and had no issues breathing or feeling Cold!
- Almost hypocritically it’s cooling too. I don’t quite understand it, but it’s so breathable. As the day warmed, I found I didn’t need to remove it and I wasn’t overheating or sweating despite the sun beaming sown (it’s also UV protectant with a UPF 50+ rating!).
During UTMB TDS, as visibility dropped I replaced my run cap with the BUFF® tubular in a sort of skull cap set up and didn’t overheat either. It also provided a nice bit of padding for my head torch through the night and avoided any rubbing against my skin.
It’s multi functional with so many different configurations and ways to use it. During the TDS I changed setups a lot. From neck-wear, to head wear and then throughout the day as an arm band which I used to wipe sweat from my face and occasionally dip in river streams and use to wash and cool my face and neck.
It was only after about 90km (and 20 hours of continuous running) at the TDS that I had to abandon it and replace it with another from my drop bag. Why? The ultra runners stink had taken over and no amount of stream dunking could remove the smell any longer! (A good wash later did though!).
So, if you haven’t guessed already, I’m a fan. I often look at the BUFF® products and think they are pricey. But that’s purely because the market is flooded with cheaper, poorer, imitations. The quality you get is unparalleled. That was one of the main reasons I applied for the campaign, I knew what I was getting (plus I have a cap fetish!). I can’t say I’m a convert as I still use (over the many others I have) my original BUFF® which I bought when I first started cycle commuting. It’s nearly a decade old, is still soft and has just one hole in it. That says it all about the quality of BUFF® products!!