I promise I will be getting caught up on the rest of my summer soon, but I just wanted to share this with you guys!
It's not often I get the chance to try out new or different equestrian products. Although I compete, I am not one of the lucky ones whose life is completely immersed in the horse world. Add me to the long list of riders that are scraping by, we have the full time job, a home, family, pets, bills, etc, and then we try to budget some riding and competing in there as best we can. I love to do lots of reading and research about the new and upcoming products in the horse world, the therapy products, blankets, new attire for horse and rider, the list goes on and on, but having to do all my horse stuff on a budget, it's mostly just window shopping and wishful thinking! Which I'm sure a lot of riders can definitely relate to!
When my friend Cobie at the amazing Equestrian Factory Outlet (http://www.
here in Red Deer contacted me about trying out a new shirt she had in
stock, I was definitely up for the challenge. It was the Equi In Style
Stand Up Collar shirt, and after checking out their website (http://www.equiinstyle.com) and reading a little bit about their products, I was very excited!
Here are some of the brand's claims:
• Reduces Body Temperature by 5 Degrees
• Highest Level of Skin Protection – equivalent to SPF 50 UV protection
• Light Weight - Breathable
• Moisture Wicking - Quick Drying
• Cooling Mesh Panels
Since I am a delicate Canadian girl, who starts to melt the moment the temperature starts to hit the mid 20's, (75 F for you Americans out there), I am forever stripping off layers and I literally live in short sleeves and shorts in the summer. So these claims excited me. I can honestly say I have never owned a long sleeve show shirt, and was a bit skeptical of that part because I couldn't imagine how a long sleeve shirt could possibly help keep me cooler in the summer.
The shirt pleasantly surprised me as soon as I took it out of the bag. The fabric was light, I mean really light, but remained opaque even as I stretched it between my fingers. Could this possibly be a show shirt I might not have to *always* wear a tank top under?? And I must say the photos on the website absolutely do not do this shirt justice, I was expecting something a little less formal, possibly more polo-y or something that looked more like a regular long sleeve shirt, but this was definitely a show shirt and a very nice one at that!
The first time I wore it was a great test of its cooling claims. It was at our Alhambra Summer event, that runs over 3 days in the middle of August, which is typically our hottest month. The weather was gorgeous, dry, sunny, and over 30 degrees each day. As soon as I put the shirt on I couldn't believe how light and airy the shirt was, and the fabric was stretchy and very comfortable. Even under my show jacket I could still feel an obvious cool "breeze" against my skin where the mesh was all along the arms. I loved how long the sleeves were, and that perfect half inch of cuff stuck out of the bottom of my sleeve once I put my show jacket on! Luckily my divisions went earlier in the day, but I usually am still frantically stripping off my hot and sweaty show clothes the moment I arrive back at the trailer after my rides. I didn't even realize it until partway through the day, that I was still in my show shirt, long sleeves and all, while I was walking my cross country course! I had several people comment over the weekend "Oh my god! How are you wearing long sleeves?!" The shirt honestly kept me far cooler than the short sleeved t-shirts I usually wear. Needless to say, I was absolutely amazed that this little long sleeved thing kept me dry and cool all day in that heat! I've worn the shirt at every other event I had this year. There were a couple days with really cool weather where I had an early morning dressage time, and I wondered if I would be a bit chilly or feel drafty under my show jacket, but I was very comfortable. Wearing it around I've received lots of questions and many compliments on it as well.
In short, I LOVE IT!! And definitely would recommend them to anyone in the market for a great show shirt!
A few other things, I love the slightly textured fabric. It stays clean very easily, dirt tends to brush right off instead of getting ground in. Another plus is that there's no fancy laundry instructions, just throw in the washer and dryer, no fuss or extra effort required! I've washed the shirt several times already, it had held up so great and still looks brand new.
As far as price, Equi In Style shirts are definitely a more affordable option compared to some of the competitors with similar products (Fits, etc).
Huge thanks to Cobie at Equestrian Factory Outlet for introducing me to such a great product. Everyone should check out her facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Equestrian-Factory-Outlet-Red-Deer/633329790014149