What is it?
Game-changing office attire in the fight against sweat marks.
How will it change my life? Picture the scene: the balmy summer sun beating down on a crowded bus, tightly packed bodies constantly manoeuvring in a futile effort to avoid contact with the person next to them. All around is the low hum of conversation, the incessant tapping of touchscreen phones and a hubbub of traffic, but all you can focus on are the growing patches of moisture spreading throughout the cramped space like disease. With your nose only inches from a swaying armpit, there comes a brainwave: escape by getting off a stop or two early. But it's already too late, you can feel the first bead of perspiration snaking its way down your spine and pooling in your lower back.
Loading article content
This scenario is only amplified if, like me, you are a regular cycle commuter. When the mercury soars I can arrive at the office looking like I've cycled a gruelling stage of the Tour de France rather than a two-mile doddle.
Deodorants may mask nasty odours, but invariably do little when it comes to preventing unsightly damp stains. No-one wants to enter a critical business meeting sweating like Santa Claus on Christmas Eve.
Step forward SmartWeave, a company founded 10 years ago with the aim of creating fabrics that prevent sweat marks. When they promised a crisp cotton shirt that would provide the confidence of knowing you look your best even when you don't feel it, I was sceptical.
The SmartWeave shirt works by wicking moisture away from the skin which then evaporates without tarnishing the looks of the material - or your reputation.
Good points? The primary function of the shirt is to conceal perspiration and it does a wonderful job even in the toughest of circumstances: a cycle commute on a hot summer's day. In the spirit of giving it a thorough testing, I pedalled home with the sort of vigour only Lance Armstrong post-transfusion could muster, arriving with every stitch of clothing feeling like it had welded to my skin.
Then came the moment of truth: time for an inspection of the shirt. Despite my back being slick with a deluge of sweat, the shirt looked perfectly dry. The design is stylish and the fabric feels as soft as cotton.
Bad points? None.
Best for … Anyone looking for a stress-free commute in style.
Avoid if … You are the type of person who couldn't care less about your appearance or how you are perceived by colleagues or business clients.
Score: 10/10. A magnificent idea well executed.
l SmartWeave shirt, £65 (smartweavestore.com)