Paramo’s new Velez jacket
This is for Paramo’s NEW Velez jacket 2016-It replaces a previous generation!!
I was trawling through my emails on my iPhone, when I saw a marketing email from Paramo. They have released a new waterproof jacket. Their all new Velez. I have always been curious of Paramo, especially their Nikwax Analogy fabric. The fabric that keeps you dry, and will pump out moisture if its wet inside. Up until now I have always used Goretex and Event type fabrics. A breathable shell. But I wanted to see if this fabric was as good as claimed. A new Velez was acquired, I write new, as it replaces the old velez-not to be confused.
So the jacket arrived, and first impressions were good. It felt nice, well build, dependable, and not too delicate. It had a bit of a weight to it, and in my hands it felt more like an insulated jacket.The lighter material on the jacket feels very much like Mountain Equipment’s Helium material.
In my attached video I used it on my mountain bike, just nipping about here and there. The vents are good, but you do work up a sweat. The only annoyance is you can’t wrap the hood up, so when whizzing down hills it billows. None the less, it is a good fit, and comfortable to cycle in.
I wore it in town shopping, I wore it whilst driving, I wore it whilst wearing a backpack. I also wore it during an incredible thunderstorm that flooded much of Cornwall September 2016. The rain was the heaviest I had/have ever seen in the UK. I stupidly walked up on to some hills nearby to give it a real test. Man it was wet, and the lightning was getting closer, too close at one point when I was very aware of holding a metal phone in front of me(filming)… SCARY!!! The horrific weather caused flash floods, and was the ultimate test for the jacket. I whizzed out before I properly fastened the collar and the sleeves, so there was some water ingress there. The heaviest water was on the shoulders, but upon removing the jacket my shoulders were dry!! I was impressed. One thing I did notice was the jacket took a while to dry off. I suppose as I am used to shells, there is not much for them to soak and thus keep wet, so Paramo’s pump lining I assume if I had carried on walking around in it generating warmth it would of dried itself out. That is the whole point of the Nikwax analogy fabric. The idea that shells like goretex, an event will only disperse of water VAPOUR. Once the sweat is liquid you just get drenched. The Nikwax analogy fabric will disperse of water vapour, but it will also disperse of liquid itself. I read one review where a hiker fell in a lake and carried on walking, and he it was drying his inner layers out whilst walking. It is a big claim, and I love the idea. A little more testing and I will know more!!
The main zip at first was a little stiff, and I thought this is an issue, however after wearing it for a few days it became much more fluid, and glided up and down effortlessly. I like the zip grips and details too. The pockets have two zips to each side, the first opens to venting, the second opens the actual pocket. Great bit of engineering to get some venting going on. The pit zips are actually located under your triceps. So zipping and unzipping is easier as its a flat zip, as opposed to one that goes through 90degrees-Clever one again Paramo.
One obvious but important point to raise is that Paramo’s sister company is Nikwax. And if you are reading this article you know that Nikwax is THE name for waterproofing fabrics. You name it, they have a proofer for you. This bodes well towards the jacket, not only waterproofness, but its longevity, and ability to be maintained years in the future.
Paramo is a very ethical company too, and have a very green ethos. I know all companies do nowadays, but Paramo really seem to have this as a priority. Paramo’s clothing is made by the charitable Miquelina Foundation that is helping vulnerable women in Columbia.They openly advertise and publicise how they are helping on their site-Its a big deal to them, and I like that they are putting their money where their mouth is!
So my conclusion of the jacket….
I am really impressed, I really like the cut, the build quality, and the simple no fuss approach. You rip it, you sew it. The cuffs are a revelation, comfortable and soft. I have some jackets where the velcro is as spiky as a hedgehog about to go into a UFC match! This Paramo is soft, and it works. Cycle with it, climb with it, chuck it in your pack and live with it. This is a jacket that is immune to abuse. It takes everything and anything that is thrown at it. It is waterproof, wind resistant, and offers a smidgen of insulation.
Well done Paramo. Quite literally a jacket for all!!