I’ve praised the properties of Merino wool for sports bras in past reviews and just last month I came across another brand. Now before you men click off to another article, remember Valentine’s Day is February 14th. Your partner might be excited to receive some great performance innerwear. So keep on reading.
BRANWYN sent me three items to test/review. Their Essential Bralette, Essential Bikini, and Essential Thong. All items are made from GLDNspun Merino Blend (81% Merino wool, 12% nylon, 7% spandex), machine washable and dryable, or hand wash and hang dry.
These items are perfect for year-round wear due to the Merino wool properties:
- Odor-resistant, antimicrobial
- Naturally breathable
- Next to body soft feel
- Temperature regulating
I tout wearing a wool bra in the wintertime not only for the warmth but it wicks moisture away from your body. The last thing you want is to be wet on a winter ride. Most sports bras don’t wick very well and you end up with a soaking wet bra up against your skin.
The MTB ladies that introduced me to wool bras also ride in wool underwear during the winter months. They can do this because many MTBers do not wear chamois. I personally always have a chamois, so I’ll trust them on it.
For testing, I wore the bralette on rides and both the bralette and underwear on cold hikes and snowshoeing. Yep, definitely a fan. They made for a very comfortable experience, just put them on and forget about it. The waist, leg, and bra bands don’t dig in, it moves with you, and the fabric is soft. Note that the bralette is for low impact activities, so if the ‘girls’ are on the larger size, you won’t get enough support for something like running.
I feel the prices are very reasonable, there’s a wide range of sizes, and the color choices are fairly basic.
Price: $38.00 (bralette), $32.00 (bikini), $28.00 (thong)
Colors: Black, Light Nude, Warm Nude, Dark Nude
BRANWYN is a company owned and run by women for women. They believe in corporate responsibility by giving back by donating a minimum of 1% of sales to organizations that empower women. These groups include:
- SheJumps – the goal is to increase the participation of women and girls in outdoor activities
- Play Like a Girl – empowers girls to become impactful leaders in the STEM workforce
- Black Women in Sport Foundation – seeks to increase the involvement of black women and girls in all aspects of sports.
- Rose Haven – a day shelter and community center serving women, children, and gender non-conforming folks experiencing the trauma of abuse, loss of home, and other disruptive life challenges.
The company furthers its corporate responsibility by sourcing the Merino wool from ethically raised sheep in Australia, yarn spun by Sudwolle in Germany, and then seamlessly knitted, dyed, and constructed in Istanbul, Turkey. Finally, the garments make their way to BRANWYN headquarters in Portland, Oregon.
I’m so impressed with this company that not only offers a great product but also has a big heart. BRANWYN has high-quality products, uses renewable materials, AND empowers women.
Well men, here’s your hint for a Valentine’s Day gift. Women, if your man doesn’t get the hint, buy some for yourself. Happy Valentine’s Day.
Sheri Rosenbaum regularly contributes articles and reviews products for RBR. She’s an avid recreational roadie who lives in the Chicago area and a major advocate for women's cycling, serving on the board of directors and volunteering with the Dare2tri Paratriathlon Club. Click to read Sheri's full bio or visit her web site sunflowersandpedals.com.