Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Kombi Bamboo Charcoal Weave Hat

All kinds of exotic materials are showing up in fabric now, but this is the first thing I've tested that's made from a "bamboo charcoal weave"---the La Bamba hat from Kombi.

The tag says it's made from 100% bamboo, a fast-growing renewable resource. That's cheating a bit though since the tag inside that hat itself says the shell is made from "100% polyester." So I guess if this flew off your head and into the woods while you were skiing, by the summer the outside would degrade but the inside would remain.

I'm not sure the polyester is necessary from a comfort standpoint as the bamboo weave is surprisingly soft, but this is probably to allow the "moisture-wicking, odor-fighting, and quick-drying" claims.

But how well does it work? Well it looks good and feels good, keeping my ears nice and toasty during the frosty and windy mornings that are already upon us. The only logo is an understated shield on the side with "1961" (Kombi's founding year) on it.

Kombi has also worked this bamboo charcoal weave into pants and base layers. More on the latter after I hike through the Andes with a zip turtleneck in December and give it a workout.

The La Bamba hat retails for $16. I just got gobbledygook code when I searched the dealer locator on the Kombi product site for my state, but you may have better luck. The best bet will be a ski shop, where they probably stock a whole line of Kombi hats and gloves.

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