Product Review – High UV Protection Buff

I was recently sent a Buff from the lovely people at Kitshack. This was sent to me free of charge, in return for an honest review. Now I’m nothing if not honest, so here goes. I have actually had this Buff for a few weeks now, because I wanted to make sure I gave it a really thorough test.

This is how it arrived. I'm not that handsome. Or rugged.
This is how it arrived. I’m not that handsome. Or rugged.
It came with lots of stickers, tattoos and a screen cleaner. I don't know why
It came with lots of stickers, tattoos and a screen cleaner. I don’t know why

I do already have a Buff, so I’m no stranger to these interesting garments. I bought it when we went skiing in Canada, and it was a cosy godsend. It was easy to wear under my helmet, up covering most of my face, or simply as a neck warmer. I was intrigued to see how a summer version would work.

The buff I was sent was a High UV protection buff, which is basically a tube of lightweight, stretchy, seamfree “Coolmax® Extreme” fabric which Kitshack says is has “superior wicking performance and at least 95% UV protection”. They come in a huge variety of colours and patterns, and also come in adults’ and kids’ sizes.

Once you’ve picked your Buff, you have to decide how to wear it. Headband, wristband, beanie, dangling down the back, twisted up on top – there are pictures, instructions and even a video to show you how to wear it.

With our recent spell of warm weather I didn’t want to cover any more of my head than necessary as I tend to best up very quickly when running. However I need something to keep under control the bits of hair that are too short to be held in by my pony tail. So a Buff Headband it was.

I have always had problems wearing hairbands, because I have a very low hairline at the back so most hair bands pull my hair up and out. It turns out that the Buff did exactly the same, so I could only wear it with my hair pulled up into a high ponytail.

I tried various ways of folding my Buff. One was too tight, squeezed my head and eventually popped off. One was very wide, which helped keep my glasses on and ear buds in but was also very warm. Beanie style made me look like a crazy loon! Folded into 6 seemed to work the best, until it also popped of the bank of my head during parkrun.

So what did I think of my Buff? Well, sad to say, as a summer running accessory I don’t think it’s for me. As I thought, my head doesn’t seem to be the right shape for a Buff. I found it constricting and hot to wear now that the weather has warmed up. However, I see lots of runners wearing Buffs in the summer so it’s obviously not a universal problem. I think for me it will be invaluable in the cooler months when I can wear it as a headband or beanie until I have warmed up.

Too wide headband
Too wide headband
Helps keep your glasses on your nose
Helps keep your glasses on your nose
Best fold yet. Keeps your ear buds in.
Best fold yet. Keeps your ear buds in.
Beanie fold
Beanie fold. I look like a dork

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