Sunday, November 15, 2015

Review- Pearl Izumi Apparel: BioViz Safety, Functional, Comfortable, Stylish and... Phone Pockets

By Sam and Dominique Winebaum

Pearl Izumi is a long time, high quality cycling brand which about 15 years ago launched into running shoes and apparel . In running shoes they pioneered stitch free uppers and they continue to lead in that area with their 3D printed uppers. Over 20 years ago, thinking of cyclist safety, they launched their "Screaming Yellow" cyclist jackets.
This year they extend these safety concepts with Biologic Design, a scientifically based approach which strategically places high fluorescence fabrics (5X more visible than standard colors)  and highly reflective 3M materials to alert drivers that you are there, you are moving, and the shape is human. The elements of BioMotion visibility are: 
  • Tempo for the hips
  • Flicker lower body(legs) and arms. 
  • Pattern  of colors on the garments to provide context and contrast

Based on research conducted many years ago, this approach plays on the subconscious and our instincts to identify and track what we see. The product approach is called  BioViz. Launched Fall 2015 for running and cycling, BioViz now comes to running. The focus is not only on night time running but low light and any time where color and contrast could alert a distracted driver.

Pearl Izumi BioViz Video

We tested Pearl Izumi's BioViz Flash Pants for men and 3/4 Flash Tights for women. 

But... before we get into the details... the Flash apparel and Fly shorts all have superb pockets that will hold an iPhone 6 in decently rugged case, bounce free. We always look for good phone pockets on apparel!

Flash 3/4 Tights

Pearl Izumi 3/4 Flash Tights

Dominique has run in the Flash 3/4 tights ($60) for well over a month including at the very chilly Mount Desert Island Half in October as well as in much warmer conditions.
Pearl Izumi Women's Flash 3/4 Tight
Pearl Izumi Women's Flash 3/4 Tight

Here is what Dominique has to say about them:

"The Pearl Izumi Flash ¾ Tights are technically designed to optimize comfort and warmth, enhance visibility, flatter your silhouette, and are equipped with pockets.  Training for the MDI half-marathon, and on race day, they proved to be the right pair of tights boosting my running experience by keeping me dry and warm despite temperature fluctuations.  In the zippered back pocket, my phone stays safely in place in like manner to the wide waistband; nothing moves but my legs.  Stylish and flattering, they are a great addition to your athletic wardrobe." 

Flash Run Pants
I have been running in the Flash Run Pant ($90), what Pearl Izumi calls "a modern twist on the classic track pant".  I don't like full length tights and if do wear tights tend to go with 3/4 length. I plan to wear the Flash this winter over the 3/4 tights and knee compression socks on the coldest days. The Flash Pant is made of very light weight, stretchy fabric. I have worn it on both warmer days and chilly breezy days and it is decently wind resistant while being super breathable. The two front zipper pockets can hold an iPhone 6 without it bouncing. Not sure how they pull that off but it works. As the pants have no elastic bottom hem my medium, which I assume is supposed to also fit runners taller than me at 5'10", is a bit long and in the way when out of shoes but no issue when running. Shorter runners may want to size down as the elastic waist is very stretchy anyway. In a nice touch the bottom  of ankle zippers are protected by a small flap. And of course they are BioViz! I like the contrast!

Pearl Izumi Men's Flash Run Pant

Pearl Izumi Men's Flash Run Pant

It may be getting a bit cold for shorts but we also tested the Fly Endurance Shorts for men and women this fall. They were my go to race short for 3 halves. Both the men ($60) and women's ($50) models feature very light and stretchy fabric, just long enough for us at 4"men's and 5" women's inseams,  highly wicking mesh across the back, an anti bacterial Minerale liner, 2 drop in hip pockets for up to 2 gels per pocket, a functional mesh zipper pocket across the back which held our iPhone 6's with minimal bounce. 
Here is what Dominique said about her Fly Endurance Shorts:

"The Pearl Izumi Fly Endurance Short has become my favorite pair of running shorts.  The Fly provides comfort, style, and performance.  The pocketing system – one zippered back pocket and two side pockets – allows me to carry my phone and a supply of gel packets for my long runs.  A lifelong runner, I have never been a fan of the baggy look; these running short are tight fitting and flattering, yet extremely comfortable with just the right coverage, whether I wear them on the road or on the trails."

Pearl Izumi apparel was provided at no charge. The opinions herein are entirely our own. RoadTrailRun is an affiliate of the retailers below.

Running Warehouse has a wide selection of Pearl Izumi apparel with free 2 day shipping, and "No Sweat" easy returns. 

Men's Pearl Izumi here
Women's Pearl Izumi here

Use Road Trail Run coupon code: RTR10 at Running Warehouse checkout to get 10% off Pearl Izumi and many other brands.

Items reviewed also available from the Road Trail Run partner sites below:

1 comment:

Jeff Valliere said...

Got to love Pearlizumi. I have been wearing their clothing since 1996 and it just does not wear out (I still have/wear items from back then). I appreciate that they are always innovating and are very responsive to the athlete's needs. Those Fly Endurance shorts are amazing (as are their several other models with the same pocketing system), I now have 8 pairs with the pockets (various model shorts and tights), as I can pack enough for a several hour run and love that it stays in place, with little or no bouncing. That Bioviz is amazing too, now if only they could come up with "LionViz", for those of us who run on dark, isolated mountain trails at night....