CHILL ANGEL SERENI-TEE
TEST SERIES BY NANCY GRIFFITH
November 17, 2018
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Northern California, USA
5' 6" (1.68 m)
126 lb (57.20 kg)
My outdoor experience began in high school with a canoeing/camping group which made a 10-day voyage through the Quebec wilds. I've been backpacking since my college days in Pennsylvania. I have hiked all of the Appalachian Trail in Georgia, Tennessee and North Carolina. My typical trip now is in the Sierra Nevada in California and is from a few days to a few weeks long. Over the past few years I have lowered my pack weight to a lightweight base weight of 15 lb (6.8 kg) while still using a tent, stove and quilt.
PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS
Manufacturer: Chill Angel
Year of Manufacture: 2018
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.chillangel.com
MSRP: $89 US
Listed Weight: Not Listed
Measured Weight: 4.9 oz (139 g)
Size Tested: M
Other Sizes Available: XS, S, L, XL
Color Tested: Spring Green
Other Colors Available: Black, Silver, Blue Jay
Made in USA
The Chill Angel Sereni-Tee is a short-sleeved pajama tee shirt with a loose fit. The fabric is 100% merino wool and is a 200 gm jersey knit. The fabric is soft and breathable to dissipate heat and absorb moisture in order to keep me dry and eliminate any chill from sweat. At the neck on the back is a Chill Angel logo in gold.
The short sleeve is the length of a cap sleeve but is seamless with no seam at all around the armhole. The hem is curved for a little extra coverage both front and back. At the hem there is a gold tag with the Chill Angel logo.
All of the seams are flatlock for extra comfort on the skin and are in a gold color similar to the logos.
INITIAL IMPRESSIONS & TRYING IT OUT
My initial impression was that the top seemed very much like it appeared on the website. I was between sizes per the sizing chart, so I contacted Chill Angel for advice. I figured that since it was a loose-fitting pajama top that I should go with the smaller size. I called the Customer Service number listed and left a message. I received a call back the next day and was given the advice to go with the larger size (a Medium). Upon receipt, it fits perfectly. It isn't a tight or form-fit, but it isn't overly loose as I'd fear that a pajama top might be. The shirt doesn't really look like pajamas either, which is good since I intend to wear it for hiking as well as sleeping. I don't expect that anyone will notice, but I'll see if any of my female hiking friends make a comment.
The Spring Green color is nice and bright with yellow thread as an accent. I'm happy to see the 100% merino wool since wool is great for odor resistance. I like the round neck especially if I wear it in the sun since that will give a little extra protection.
The shirt smelled fresh and clean like I've found wool to almost always smell even after wearing. I wasn't hesitant to don it prior to washing, so I tried the shirt on and liked the feel and comfort. It feels and fits like a slightly loose-fitting t-shirt. It seems similar in softness to other wool shirts which all seem to be pretty soft. I can't detect any extra brushed effect with this shirt.
I'm planning a long section hike of the Pacific Crest Trail in the next few months, so I'm anxious to put this shirt to the test both on the trail and in the tent. I will be washing in stream water on the trail and drying in the sun. When we are at re-supply points, I will at times have access to laundry facilities but may be washing all of our clothes in one load. Although these laundering conditions aren't ideal, I'll see how it works out. I'm wondering if the haphazard laundering leads to any issues with the shirt.
READING THE INSTRUCTIONS
The washing instructions say to machine wash cold in a gentle cycle and to dry flat. No bleaching or dry cleaning should be done.
The Chill Angel Sereni-Tee is a short-sleeved wool pajama top that can double as a daytime t-shirt.
Will it launder well on the trail?
FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS
During the Field Test Period, I wore the Chill Angel Sereni-Tee for one forty-day backpacking trip and for two dayhikes.
Pacific Crest Trail from Etna Summit, California to Cascade Locks, Oregon: 40 nights; 550 mi (886 km); 170 to 7,676 ft (52 to 2,340 m) elevation with most between 5,000 and 6,000 ft (1,524 to 1,829 m); 39 to 95 F (4 to 35 C)
Cronan West Ravine, Sierra Nevada, California: 4.0 mi (6.4 km); 743 to 1,262 ft (226 to 385 m) elevation; 82 to 91 F (28 to 33 C); sunny conditions
Monroe Ridge, Sierra Nevada, California: 5.2 mi (8.4 km); 743 to 1,262 ft (226 to 385 m); 91 to 96 F (33 to 36 C); sunny conditions
PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD
Right after receiving the shirt, I wore it around the house, for a softball game and for two hot day hikes. I hiked both day hikes back-to-back on the same day which was a very hot day for hiking. I was sweating heavily on the second hike and during my softball game. The moisture changed the color of the shirt making it very obvious that I was sweating. This isn't a huge deal for me, but I do prefer shirts that keep the same color wet or dry so that my perspiration can be more hidden.
These activities were a lot of wear before the first washing and, not surprisingly, the tee smelled very ready! I washed it in cold on gentle and dried for a few minutes in the dryer before laying it flat to dry.
With a forty-day backpacking trip planned, I was concerned that the tee was causing my neck and chest to be itchy. After the initial washing though it seemed better, so I packed the tee as my only short-sleeved shirt for the long trip. Thankfully, I had no issues at all with any itching after the first washing.
On the backpacking trip, I wore the Chill Angel Tee every night for sleeping. It was nice to have a layer between me and my pad since I use a quilt and thus sleep directly on my pad. The weather for the first few weeks was very warm so the tee allowed me to be covered even though I was constantly squirming out from under my quilt. I liked the feel of the tee while sleeping and found it to be very comfortable. It did seem to help with temperature regulation.
During the day I'd often start out wearing the tee until the sun would be high enough that I needed a long-sleeved sun shirt. At this point I would occasionally just add the sun shirt over top but usually I would swap out the tee for the sun shirt. Despite the Chill Angel being dubbed as a pajama top, I never felt odd wearing it as a tee and never got any comments about my wearing pajamas.
When I wasn't wearing the tee, it remained in my outer mesh pocket on my backpack for easy access. I was often surprised that the shirt would seem to smell bad when I put it in the mesh pocket but by the time I would don it again for bed, it didn't have any foul odor. I would tell my husband that the shirt had 'gone good' again. One day I washed the shirt and had it in my mesh pocket for drying while hiking but forgot that I also had some very foul-smelling socks in the same pocket. When I removed the shirt, it had absorbed the nasty sock smells. But just by airing out the shirt, it had gone good by the end of the day and smelled fresh and clean.
I washed the shirt five times in laundry facilities that were available near our resupply points at intervals of approximately one week. These laundromats didn't have the best equipment nor was I able to follow the washing instructions. Washing laundry meant tossing every piece of clothing that we had into one load and washing in cold water if that was available with whatever detergent we could buy. Then we would machine dry on low or medium since there wasn't time or availability of a good surface for drying flat. I would remove the shirt from the dryer as soon as it was mostly dry. The shirt still looked great and didn't pick up any odd stains from our other filthy clothing during the wash cycle like some of our other clothing did.
Since I wore the tee every day and had wash facilities every week, that meant that I would wear the shirt for several days (and nights) before a washing. Between machine-washings, I would wash the tee on the trail using Campsuds and dry it in the sun whenever there was available water and time for washing mid-day. I would estimate that I hand-washed the shirt seven times during the hike.
The durability of the tee has been excellent. I wasn't able to follow the washing instructions very well but it didn't seem to affect the shirt. There doesn't appear to be any staining, pilling, holes or even pulled threads despite many days of harsh usage and wearing the tee under a backpack for approximately 250 mi (400 km).
Overall, I love the Chill Angel tee and am impressed with how well it has performed thus far. From a functional perspective, I can't think of any negative comments or concerns. I would prefer that the fabric not show my perspiration so obviously.
LONG TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS
During the Long Term Test Period I wore the Chill Angel Sereni-Tee for one three-day backpacking trip, for three dayhikes, multiple times working in the yard, playing softball, to the gym and just around.
Green Lake, West Lake, East Lake, Hoover Wilderness, California: 3 days, 18 mi (29 km); 8,030 to 9,635 ft (2,448 to 2,937 m) elevation; 25 to 52 F (-4 to 11 C); clear skies with some moderate wind
Three hikes on Gerle Loop in the Auburn Recreation Area, California: 2.5 mi to 3.5 mi (4 to 5.6 km); 500 to 1,500 ft (150 to 450 m) elevation; 65 to 85 F (18 to 29 C) ; mostly dirt trail with some rocks
PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD
The shirt continues to perform well and look great. Honestly, after wearing the shirt for forty days straight during the Field Test Period, I expected to be sick of it. But I love the shirt and still am happy to see it in my drawer and pull it out often for wear. It has been much cooler during this test period so I got more of a cool-weather test wearing it as a base layer to keep me warm rather than to keep me cool. It is very comfortable under multiple layers and breathes well while keeping my core warm. I also noticed and appreciated the longer length during this period because it kept the shirt from riding up even when sleeping, which helped to keep me warm.
I was able to follow the washing instructions during this test period and probably washed the shirt seven or eight more times. I machine-washed in cold water, then would toss it in the dryer on extra low for just a few minutes with other clothing, then remove it for drying flat.
I'm amazed at how good the tee still looks after so much wear. The color is bright and crisp. The seams are all intact and there is no sign of pilling, stains, holes or snags. Even the shoulder areas that would be under a backpack strap show no signs of wear.
I have never had such a good experience with a wool shirt. I've owned many and have been disappointed in them due to the high price and then having them not last very long. Other shirts have gotten holes and stains that just made them unwearable after much less wear than what I've already put on this Chill Angel. I'm not sure what is different about the Chill Angel, but it certainly performs differently.
The Chill Angel Sereni-Tee is a short-sleeved wool pajama top that can double as a daytime tee shirt. It also worked well as a base layer in colder weather under multiple layers.
This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1.
Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.
Durable...still looks great
Sweat is obvious on this color
This concludes my Long-Term Test Report and this test series. Thanks to BackpackGearTest.org and Chill Angel for the opportunity to test out this comfy yet functional tee.
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Read more gear reviews by Nancy Griffith