I had the opportunity to test out some new gear. Oiselle, a company founded by Sally Bergesen, was so gracious to let me try out a shirt and a pair of shorts. ,
Per Oiselle's website , Oiselle (pronounced Wa-zell) A French word for Bird, it alludes to the feeling of weightlessness that most runners know and love. the sense of flight where your legs go fast and your heart goes free.
Trying out new gear can be fun and scary. You already know what your 'favorite' shirts, shorts, etc.. feel like; so you have high expectations for your new clothing. I wanted to make sure that I gave this gear a good review, so I came up with a few 'standard questions' that I was going to ask myself about it ( I plan on using this type of format for future reviews. I am open to suggestions if you think there is something I'm missing, or you would like more details on) My goal in finding good equipment is value. I don't search out the cheapest price, nor do I buy into name brand logos. I expect a high level of performance at a fair price. This may come from your trusted name brands, or someplace unexpected.
- Fit according to size
- Chafing/ Rubbing issues
- Clothes riding up or falling down
- Ability to get off of body after a strenuous workout
- Price comparable
- Accessory Capable
- Compared to 'favorite item of mine'
I had the opportunity to try their 'Isabel Shimmel Shirt', in Oiselle orange and the 'Lori Shorts' in black. I decided what better way to test this gear out, than give it an entire week worth of running and wearing. Don't worry I washed it after each run. The clothing endured 29 miles of running and 4 washings within 5 days.
- Fit according to size- I ordered a size Medium, according to their size chart, for both, the top and the bottom. They both fit perfectly.
- Material- The Isabel Shimmel shirt is made of 89% Polyester and 11% Spandex (which makes this shirt very light). As their name implies, I felt free as a 'bird' wearing it. The Lori Shorts are 100% polyester.
- Chafing/ Rubbing Issues- The shirt causes absolutely no issues of any sort. The shorts, surprisingly after the 4th run of the week ( which was a 12 mile run) yielded me a small chafe mark ( about the size of a dime). Located just above my tailbone where the waistband is. I never felt them chaffing at all until I stepped into the shower. Considering I wore them for a week straight, I would say overall, no issues. I think if they were in a normal rotation there would be no chafing.
- Clothing riding up or falling down- Shirt again, no problem (Can you tell yet that I love this shirt). The shorts were riding up a little but nothing to bad. This was most noticeable on my long runs (8 and 12), the material of these shorts seems to almost repel water ( I could see the water beading up on the outside of my shorts). That is everywhere, except for the inner thigh part of the shorts. Not sure if the water was just gravitating towards that part of the shorts but all the moisture seemed to be sitting there. When I would slow down or stop for some water, the shorts would ride up. But again nothing that I couldn't run through.
- Ability to get off of body after a strenuous workout - Both of these I could get off easily, which I was very excited about. I have found out with other garments, especially the razor back type shirts that once they get wet they are very hard to slide off. But not this shirt, even after being soaking wet.
- Price comparable: Isabel Shimmel Shirt retails for $46 and the Lori Shorts retail for $36. These prices are compared to Road Runner Sports (RRS), which is where most of my gear is from. My current RRS shirt ( that is close to the Oiselle one) retails for $34.99. I would gladly pay the extra $11 for this very lightweight shirt. My RRS shorts retail for $29.99
- Accessory Capable- The shirt has no pockets for accessories, but does have a built in bra. The shorts have what they call a 'key pocket', that is tucked in between the shorts and the liner (which I really liked). I didn't use this pocket for a key, I used it as a holder for my MP3 player. Which was great!! Most of my current shorts have their 'key pockets', on the inside of the liner, near your body. Between the liner and the shorts is more comfortable.
- Compared to 'favorite item of mine' - Well, Oiselle you will be happy to know that your Isabel Shimmel Shirt is my new favorite razor back shirt. I currently own another shirt (from RRS) but yours is so light and comfortable. I truthfully feel free as a 'bird' LOVE IT. The Lori Shorts- I would place as number 2, in my stack of running shorts ( I currently own 5 pairs). Things that put them at 2; riding up (a little), no extra gear pocket and holding moisture. Even though they are made of the exact same material as all of my other shorts, they seemed a little heavier. That being said they are still my second choice. You couldn't go wrong with these shorts. They will see many more miles. '
Overall, I would give Oiselle 2 thumbs up. Their clothing is very comfortable. I was very impressed with the razorback shirt. Pricing for their products is on par with other competitors. Quality is exceptional. Thank you so much for giving me this opportunity to review your gear. Head on over to Oiselle and get some new gear.
*Disclaimer, I was not paid to do this review, this is just my opinion *