Wicking T-Shirt Review – Craghoppers T Shirts for Adventure Travel

When selecting adventure travel clothing, you want to make sure you have the right stuff. This wicking T-shirt review compares 3 Craghoppers T shirts ideal for adventure travel.

Dave Briggs modelling the Craghoppers t-Shirt

What is a Wicking T-Shirt?

Before kicking off the review, what exactly is a wicking T-shirt? Well, they come with many names.

Sometimes, they are referred to as activity T-Shirts, sometimes as high performance T-shirts. Their basic function is the same though.

They wick away moisture from the body through a capillary action, which has the effect of keeping a person dry whilst sweating.

As a result, wicking T-shirts can also help keep you cool in hot climates, and warm in cold climates. They also smell less!

Adventure Shirts

Wicking T-Shirts are ideal for sporting activities and adventure travel. You can use them for any activity where you work up a sweat – hiking, climbing, running, cycling, that sort of thing.

I choose to use wicking T-Shirts on my bicycle touring trips. I don't think dedicated cycling tops are needed on a bike tour, and I find that a wicking T-Shirt looks and feels as good off the bike as well as on.

How Do Wicking T-Shirts Work?

Most wickingT-Shirts are made from synthetic materials such as polyester, and they may also have ventilation panels, or meshed sections.

These fabrics may also be treated in a way which gives them a more efficient capillary action. The wicking action works best when the t-shirt is worn closest to the skin. This is one of the reasons that activity t-shirts are designed to be tight fitting.

Dave's Opinion

I find that wicking T-shirts are an essential part of my travel gear. They pack up small, it doesn't matter if they crease, and they are for the most part effective.

They also dry quickly, are incredibly hard-wearing, and last for years.

I have several Craghoppers T Shirts I still use after 4 or 5 years of heavy use. The most ‘famous' of these, is the green ‘tea-towel' shirt I have worn for many cycling adventures around the world. Check out the video below!

Craghoppers T-Shirts for Adventure Travel

Let's get on and compare these Craghoppers T-shirts then shall we! I was kindly given them by Craghoppers to check out, but this is not a paid review. All opinions are BS free and my own – as I'm sure you expect of me! Oh and a word of warning – you have me as a model for them. Be prepared!

Obviously, I'm a bloke, so this Craghoppers wicking T-Shirt review is for male designs and sizes. All the T-Shirts I tried are rated ‘Large', and I've put a size guide below.



Size Guide XS S M L XL XXL
Chest inch 36 38 40 42 44 46
Chest cms 91 97 102 107 112 117
US Sizing 36 38 40 42 44 46
EU Sizing 46 48 50 52 54 56
FR Sizing 48 50 52 54-56 58 60

Craghoppers Fusion Short-Sleeved T-Shirt

This T-shirt looks more like a sporting top you might see rugby players wearing. I would say that this is one of the most basic in the range, but also one of the more versatile.

It's not going to look out of place at the gym, hiking, or bike touring. It does the job well, and kept me cool on a warm spring day as the Mrs took these photos.

Craghoppers Fusion Short-Sleeved wicking T-Shirt

Features: Moisture control wicking T-shirt that effectively moves moisture away from the skin. 92% Polyester/8% Elastine

Pros: Quick drying, ideal as a base or a top, Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme recommended.

Cons: The dark colour would perhaps soak up too much sun. The tight fit seemed to reveal my nipples a bit!

Dave's opinion: I will definitely be taking this wicking t-shirt with me on my next bicycle tour. It's lightweight, packs down really small, and dries in next to no time. When I reviewed this, I noticed that it was going to £22.50 on the website.

Obviously, that price is changeable, but it gives you a guideline. Find out more about it here – Craghoppers Fusion T-Shirt.

Craghoppers NL Active Short-Sleeved T-Shirt

This shirt from Craghoppers combines the properties of a wicking T-shirt with insect repellent treatment. It is part of their NosiLife range, which has been designed to be worn where malaria carrying mosquitoes may be an issue.

The insect repellent is permanently woven into the fabric, but it still provides plenty of stretch and comfort.

Craghoppers NL Active Short-Sleeved Wicking T-Shirt

Features: Lightweight adventure travel T-shirt with moisture control. Insect repellent properties.

Pros: Really lightweight and quick drying. Hang and dry with no creases. Insect repellent. Well made.

Cons: None to speak of really, although I wonder how effective the insect repellent is. Most of the times I get bitten, it's on my ankles, neck or head!

Dave's opinion: This wicking T-shirt feels comfortable to wear, and looks pretty good. I will take it with me on the bike tour this year. It doesn't look as heavy duty as my green tea towel shirt, but at the same time, looks like it will last a long time.

Craghoppers NL Felix Short-Sleeved Zip T-Shirt

This T-shirt is also part of the NosiLife range. This means that in addition to it being a wicking T-Shirt, it also has insect repellent properties. It differs from the Craghoppers T-Shirt above by having a small zip which comes 1/3rd of the way down the front.

Craghoppers NL Felix Short-Sleeved Zip T-Shirt

Features: The insect repellent is permanently woven into the fabric. Short sleeved. Zip down the front. 61% polyester/36% cotton/ 3% Elastine

Pros: The insect repellent properties are good for warmer climates where malaria carrying insects may be a problem. Quick drying.

Cons: The T-shirt doesn't seem to fit as well as the rest, and the zip is a little pointless.

Dave's opinion: This is my least favourite of the T-Shirts I was given to try out. The first problem, is that I am not sure what the zip is supposed to achieve. Is it for cooling? Well, I thought that was the point of a moisture wicking T-Shirt! My main problem with the shirt, or at least the one I tried, is that the zip seems to pull the overall shape out. The back of the T-Shirt hangs at least an inch lower than the front. In the end it is a little shapeless. I won't be taking this on the bike tour with me.

Craghoppers t shirt – Dave's Conclusion

I've been wearing Craghoppers gear for a long time, and years before they gave me these T-shirts to try out. I rate their adventure travel clothing really highly, and most specifically their T-shirts, shirts, and fleeces.

Of the three I tried, I preferred the Craghoppers Fusion Short-Sleeved wicking T-Shirt I felt it fitted nicely, and the design and quality was high.

If this is as long lasting as the other T-Shirts I've bought from Craghoppers in the past, you will probably be seeing it in many future bicycle touring videos!

Talking of which, I have exciting news about my 2017 bike touring trip to announce in the next week or so. Make sure you sign up to my newsletter to hear all about it!

One more thing before you go….

I've got some great news about a Craghoppers giveaway I am running. Check out the video below!

Everything you need to know about wicking T-Shirts, and why they are ideal for adventure travel.

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