Soft-Shell Systems

Soft-Shell Systems Breathability without Barriers

Extra performance requires special care!

The “Soft-Shell” concept offers a level of comfort that can not be achieved with waterproof breathables. Soft-Shell Systems promise the highest level of air/moisture exchange unimpeded by coatings, laminations, seals or barriers. Soft-Shell systems pass more air and vapor in one minute than a waterproof breathable can pass in 24 hours. Soft-Shell systems are suitable for keeping dry during strenuous activity by using body heat to keep water in the Vapor State till carried away by huge ventilation.

Soft-Shell Systems work as long as water vapor does not begin to condense before it is removed. This requires that the fabrics be maintained totally free of detergent residue. Oil and dirt seed condensation and coalesce moisture, creating wetness. Wetness anywhere in the system lowers the temperature as it tries to evaporate and thus causes more condensation. Soon the vicious cycle has increased the water content to the point where airflow stops and you are rapidly soaked. Needless to say, if it is raining the fabric must shed water and remain dry. If it becomes wet, it is a complete barrier and stops the entire Soft-Shell System.

Only Sport-Wash residue-free laundry detergent can keep Soft-Shell Systems operating at peak efficiency.

Washing with Sport-Wash restores all the features that are destroyed by the residue of all other detergents. Air pollution, dirt, oils, rinse water hardness, and especially the residues of other cleaning products all seed condensation, change moisture management, and negate water repellents. Sport-Wash removes contamination and leaves no residue, thus restoring the function of Soft-Shell Systems.

The DWR (Durable Water Repellents) found on some new fabrics are quite robust. If they fail in just one or two washings, chances are they can be completely restored by re-washing in Sport-Wash and ironing to reorient the molecules. In cases where the DWR still fails to bead water, it can be replaced permanently and economically with a single application of Permanent Water-Guard. (Choose item # 1356 for cotton and natural fibers, or item # 1357 for Nylon, Polyester and other synthetics.)

Go ahead and create your own Soft-Shell System from new or old-favorite no barrier fabrics. Remember water is the enemy. Use Sport-Wash to keep your DWR at peak performance and all your layers so clean and residue free that they will not encourage condensation. Enjoy super ventilation for exertion without wetness.

When temperature and humidity drop enough for partial barriers like waterproof breathables to be effective, they too can be maintained at peak efficiency with Sport-Wash.

Finally, under the extreme conditions that warrant closed cell foams and vapor barriers to retain extra heat and moisture against the skin, Sport-Wash is still the first choice. It eliminates odors and irritation caused by detergent residue against warm moist skin.

Choosing appropriate clothing systems has never been more confusing but it’s easy to maximize the performance of every system from Soft-Shell to full vapor barrier; simply use Sport-Wash residue free detergent.