The world lost an incredible mother, wife, daughter, friend, attorney, underprivileged advocate, and community member suddenly and unexpectedly on October 16, 2013. In honor of my late wife, Holli Wallace, I am training for the Hallucination 100 mile trail run and raising money for the Children's Grief Center of the Great Lakes Bay Region.

My training progress

Thursday, July 5, 2007

BluBandoo Review

I should note that I do not have any financial interest in BluBandoo, but they were kind enough to donate a hat and a scarf in support of my training. I have spent over 50 miles in them so I thought I'd give my two cents on their products.

The two products I've been using are a white 6 Panel CapBandoo and a white Neck Bandoo. The BluBandoo products work by incorporating crystals that soak up water and then cool the wearer as the water evaporates. It takes several hours for the water to evaporate and, in fact, my Neck Bandoo appeared to hold water for a few days. The CapBandoo has the crystals located around the sweatband of the hat while Neck Bandoo is essentially just a tube filled with the crystals worn around the neck.

Do they work? After 5-10 mile runs in relatively humid 75-85 degree weather, I can say they worked better than I expected. I've been running in a white synthetic Asics hat for years and have been happy with its ventilation and sunburn prevention. I've doused it in water at times, but the water quickly evaporates. The CapBandoo acted similarly to my Asics hat when wet, but the effect lasted for much longer. The Neck Bandoo also provided additional cooling and, while somewhat heavy when full of water, was comfortable and not at all irritating even when running for over an hour. Now, don't expect magic from the crystals. A slight breeze is necessary for them to work well and regular "recharging" with a water bottle really helps also. However, I found them much more effective AND comfortable than soaking a regular hat or shirt. At less than $20 for the two products, I would recommend them for someone who sometimes struggles with the heat.

There are a few things I didn't like about them. First, you need to be careful about spreading the crystals equally around the products to prevent them from being lumpy. This isn't a big deal after the first time that you do it. Second, they retain water so they can be heavy. This didn't bother me, but I imagine could bother some. Finally, I feel a little silly running in the Neck Bandoo. Then again, if you've seen me with my various electronic equipment, Elliott, and the dog cruising through town, I'm not sure if I look that much MORE silly.


silvenwolf said...

If you ask me, silliness and the like is all relative.

This is coming from a girl who's gotten herself into some pretty strange situations and come out looking funny.

dht said...

I'm a big believer in cooling the back of the neck. I've run with a cool compress when temperatures are above 100 degrees or in extreme conditions like the desert. And I'm always pouring water down the back of my neck in hot races.

Interestingly, however, I just read Alberto Salazar citing an Army Heat Research Institute study that claims splashing cold water on the skin is actually counterproductive. Apparently, the scientists believe that the shock of cool water causes pores to close briefly and thereby delays cooling.

I'll probably stick with the splashing, though.

Brian Thomas said...

Yeah, I'll probably stick to splashing too. Even perceived cooling matters, eh?