By David Ponce
A while back, we came across the X-Undergear. It is now being sold in the US as X-UnderWear. It was very high-tech underwear for people who do sports. People who sweat. People who like to do their exercises vigorously, and at the right body temperature. Specifically, the stuff claimed to keep you cool when you were getting hot, and warm when you were getting a little chilly. The website was and still is chock full of more technological terms than you can shake a green laser beam at.
And you know, at first, the stuff they claimed to do seemed a little crazy. You know, just another one of those products with tons of buzzwords meant to razzle-dazzle the ignorant masses. But of course, wanting to get to the bottom of things, I arranged for some review units.
I have been testing this stuff for the past two weeks. Come inside for a full review. Out here, you’ll get this: I’m a hell of a convert!
Warning, lotsa pics.
The first thing I need to mention is the packaging. I felt like I was receiving motherboards and sound cards. Everything came double wrapped in cardboard boxes with more information printed on them than there was on my DVD player’s user manual. Everything was in German, which made it that much more intriguing. Above all else, everything felt polished. Like attention had been given to every little detail. Whatever these things cost, they are made to make you feel as though you’ve spent your money in the right place from the get go.
I received some X-Socks, a T-Shirt and some boxer briefs. Before wearing them, I played around with them, feeling them and getting a good look at them. The socks, for one, might need a little color re-calibration. Sure, they’re not meant to be seen by anyone, but well, should you be spotted wearing them, people might wonder. So, I made sure to wear long pants.
All the pieces felt extremely well built. No flimsy stitching or shoddy seams. No threads hanging down from anywhere. Matter of fact, there are so many different areas on each piece, it feels as though they have not been knitted, but rather printed. I know this might not make sense, but there you have it. I did not know it was possible to get so many different areas with different textures on one piece of cloth.
So first, the socks. You know, I may spend a lot of time in front of a computer screen, but that’s not all I do. I also jog, from time to time. The X-Socks are meant to do a bunch of things: keep your feet comfortable, dry and odor free. What struck me as most interesting is that there is a sock for the right foot and one for the left. This shows me that they’re really paying attention to what part of the sock goes on what part of the foot. More importantly though, I found out that the sole contains silver threads! This is meant to combat microbial formation, and thus foot odor. Believe me guys, silver and bacteria don’t go well together. And, you can actually see the silver threads if you look really close!
Putting the socks on, they felt very padded. Some parts were very stretchy. With the shoe on, I definitely felt like my feet were “in good hands”. So I went running. When I came back and took my shoes off, my feet were remarkably dry. Not completely so, of course, because no matter how much technology, you can’t get over the fact that you shoe is going to trap some moisture. But I could feel my instep getting some air, and that was great.
So, I jogged, and jogged, and… didn’t wash them. I wanted to put those silver threads to the test. Well, what do you know, it works! Not miracles, of course. But, let me say that my socks usually get crusty within three days. These took seven. And even then, the smell was more than bearable. So, for the socks, the verdict is: the work as advertised.
About the boxer briefs and the T-Shirt. These two feature some zones with this technology called “3D Bionic Sphere System”. It is
a labyrinth of tunnels and channels that traverses the back area where many sweat glands are located. This construction greatly increases the area available for evaporation. Depot niches are created for the regulation of moisture. They are activated by body heat and, like biological catalysts, give off moisture to the surrounding air. In this way, moisture is not trapped near the skin.
I like to think of these as little windows through which my sweat escapes. They are located, as you’d expect, right above the areas where I sweat the most.
So I put them on, went to the gym and went jogging. Let me first say that I’m a loose T-Shirt kind of jogger. It was weird having something cling to my skin, so I decided to put a regular shirt over it. Seeing as it’s underwear anyway, that should have been fine. It was.
I know this probably sounds trite, like one of those cheezy infomercials, but the stuff really works. Instead of being soaked, the way I always am after a good jog, I was merely damp. It was comfortable to wear and it actually did what it was supposed to do. The “ventilation areas” didn’t even feel wet.
But, did it also keep you warm? Well, I live in Montreal, Canada, and this time of year, it’s pretty darn chilly out. So I went out and stood on my balcony for a bit. Well, while it definitely kept me warmer than if I’d just been naked, I can’t say I feel this stuff should be worn instead of your parka. I think the specialty is sweat dissipation, and this it does wonderfully.
So, there you have it, people. These may truly be the most technologically advanced undergarments around. They have been engineered to give you an outstanding sporting experience, and I’m happy to say that any self respecting athlete should get their hands on some. They’re won the 2005 Reddot Design Awards, and I, for one, have to say they deserve it. If only their X-Socks could get a little make-over, I’d say this product is perfect.
So, again, the website is here.
For more information on all the technology, download this PDF file.