Back in 2013 we were charged with testing some EDZ products as we made an ascent of Mera Peak (6476m) in Nepal. The long sleeve merino base layer I wore on that expedition blew me away, so I was pretty happy to test another similar but slightly different top for EDZ through 2015 / 16.
The top in question this time is a Long Sleeve Zip Neck. Over the last 9 months or so I have used it for a variety of activities in a very wide variety of conditions. This would include fell running on warm days through to winter mountaineering in the depths of Scottish winter.
Just like the previous top this one has performed well on all levels. Merino is an excellent fibre to use in garments for a whole host of reasons, and many manufacturers have cottoned on to this (no pun intended) and are churning out multiple 'merino items'. Once you delve a little deeper into the info label on some of these products you will discover there is actually only a small percentage of merino in the garment, but it will still be called a 'Merino Tee'. This is not the case with this (and many of the EDZ products) as they are 100% high quality Merino Wool. So what does this mean? You get a super comfortable garment which naturally doesn't hold odor (perfect for multi-day trips!). On top of this, Merino is fab at regulating body temperature - and that is why I have been able to use this 200 weight top through all the seasons.
Enough about Merino - back to why this EDZ top is a good buy. The fit is excellent all round. A base layer should be well fitted to aid it's performance, and this one certainly is. I am an average size male, and for me it fits perfectly, particularly in the body. A point I mentioned in my first EDZ review that I will once again apply to this top was how impressed I am with the cuffs. I rarely wear my sleeves down, so a lot of the time the cuffs are being pulled and stretched up over my forearms. Despite this, the shape has not been distorted leaving me with a baggy mess at the end of the sleeves.
To the zip neck. When I first started wearing this top I thought the collar was a little too long. When I ran I could feel it bouncing against my neck. I soon realised if I undid the zip a little more this disappeared, leaving me happier! This longer collar was however a huge benefit whilst using it this winter. The collar adds a high level of protection as it covers the entire neck, therefore keeping those crispy drafts off the skin.
Like before, I've had no issues with build quality - not even a loose thread! As for washing, super simple - 30 degrees! It hasn't shrunk either (not noticeably anyway) which is always a concern when buying Merino.
To conclude, if you're looking at upgrading to some Merino products, or your old ones have bitten the dust, I'd highly recommend taking a look at EDZ's range. I've certainly been impressed with the two tops so far, and will continue to trust it to perform when I really need it to!
This review was written by: Matt Le Voi
Matt has been working in the Outdoor Industry for over 7 years and has worked on and off in outdoor
retail for about the same length of time. This combination of both being on the 'sharp end' using and abusing kit and also working in-store means Matt has a great knowledge on what should be expected of kit and how it compares to other options on the market. Matt, as the Managing Director of Lakeland Mountain Guides, is proudly an affiliate with Cotswold Outdoor, The Keswick Boot Co, EDZ Performance Layering, a Ruffwear Brand Ambassador and supported by Aquapac.