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Reviews

Fantastic option for sunny summer days when sunscreen…

Rating: rated 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: received for testing via the Trailspace Review Corps (Sample for testing and review provided by Patagonia)

Summary

Fantastic option for sunny summer days when sunscreen is either not an option or not enough.

Pros

  • Fast drying
  • Breathable
  • Relaxed fit

Cons

  • Light fabric shows stains
  • Snags easily on branches and thorns

I had the opportunity to test the Patagonia Sunshade Technical Hoody during the summer of 2018 in Northern New Hampshire. As someone with a tendency to burn during the summer while also running hot when wearing layers, I was eager to see how this shirt would perform and I was not disappointed by the result. Almost every time I went outside to fly fish, hike, bike, or hang out on the water, I ended up pulling out this hoody. Even when the temperatures hit the upper-90’s with high humidity, I still felt comfortable enough to keep it on.


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Fit, Comfort, and Layering: The Sunshade Technical hoody is advertised by Patagonia as "relaxed fit" which made it comfortable to wear in hot weather. This description was accurate as it was baggy on me.


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The hood is large and fits well over a hat. The arms are on the long side but contain thumb loops to keep the wrist openings in place if needed. For the most part I did not wear any other layers with the Sunshade but occasionally did have a light t-shirt on under it. Even though this shirt was baggy it fit well under a rain shell for those times an afternoon shower rolled in. 


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Material and Durability: The Sunshade hoody is made of quick drying polyester with 50+ UPF sun protection. I can attest to the quick drying traits based on the few times I jumped into the river to enjoy a swim while still wanting sun protection. The hoody was dry within half an hour of coming out of the water. 

The shirt is well made but I have noticed a few areas where some threads have begun to pull. Most of this is due to the fact that I need to bushwhack to some of my favorite fishing spots and the thorns and branches tried to prevent me from doing this. 


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After a full season of a lot of use I have noticed some staining and discoloration. I don’t blame Patagonia for this though, I wore this shirt a lot and put it though some rough areas.


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Adjustability: There is a button and loop at the base of the neck to help close the hood, but I never ended up using it. I liked how open and free flowing the shirt was since I was wearing it in hot temperatures. 

Breathability: This shirt is designed to be worn when you are standing out in the sun and the temperatures are climbing. Because of this it breaths like a champ. The fabric allows air to circulate through it in both directions keeping you nice and cool even with the sleeves down and the hood up. I often wore this shirt fly fishing under direct sunlight in humid New England conditions. I stay comfortable and protected.

Features: The key feature and selling point of this shirt is the 50+ UPF sun protection. I have always been skeptical of UPF clothing because I subscribe to the philosophy that all clothes have this protection since that is why humans wear them. I will say that the material used in this hoody is very thin preventing overheating while also providing sun protection. I think this is a difficult balance to strike and Patagonia has done a great job.

Other minor features included on the Sunshade Hoody are the large hood, a chest pocket perfect for a cell phone or small fly box, and the thumb holes which help keep the cuffs over the back of the hand increasing the sun protection.


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The material is also quick drying which I tested out by many times by either submerging my arm while landing a fish or on a few hot days when I jumped into the river to cool off.

Conclusions: I highly recommend the Sunshade Technical hoody. I wore it almost daily and found it to be the perfect shirt for the summer. It kept me protected from the sun but did not become unbearable to wear. The quick drying material was perfect for fly fishing and boating because I never worried about stay wet too long if it went in the water. Be careful when wearing this and bushwhacking as the material is prone to pulling in these situations.

While I did not do any high altitude mountaineering this year, I know many people wear similar shirts on glaciers and year round snowpack where the sun is hitting you from all angles. This shirt would fit in well in that environment. I look forward to bringing this shirt down to the Caribbean next spring to help protect my sun deprived skin from the sun.

Alicia MacLeay TRAILSPACE STAFF

Great review, Jim! Thanks for testing this shirt out. I've become a fan of UPF clothing over sunscreen when possible. One thing I noticed is that Patagonia has this men's Sunshade Technical Hoody and a women's Sunshade Hoody. I think the only difference is the pocket is absent from the women's (though older versions have a kangaroo one: https://www.trailspace.com/gear/patagonia/sunshade-hoody/


17 days ago
KiwiKlimber

Most times I think chest pockets are useless and uncomfortable, but keeping valuables above the waist is important when wading, so I see the use for this one. Nice review!


17 days ago

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