SKINS – Activewear You Can’t Live Without
By Sam Squiers
It’s been almost a year since I first pulled on a pair of SKINS. At the time I really wasn’t convinced about compression, I knew the science behind it but just didn’t think it would make much of an impact to my training and, more importantly, my recovery.
I wasn’t afraid to admit I was wrong. Very wrong. Astronomically wrong. Now I’m hooked and officially a compression convert!
But I’m not just a compression convert, I’m a SKINS convert.
I’m not just a compression convert, I’m a SKINS convert
Now before we start this review of SKINS DNAmic range, let’s just clear things up, I didn’t get paid for this article and there are no hidden bonuses for writing it, I don’t even have to write it, but I do believe in this product. SKINS have asked me to road test their new range and while they sent me these two pieces, in the past year I’ve been clicking away at their checkout, with two pairs of skins leggings, two pairs of compression socks and a pair of short compression pants. In summary, I put my money where my mouth is.
I’ve also road tested other brands of compression in this time, but didn’t believe they gave the same recovery and comfort effects that SKINS did. Didn’t see the article? I didn’t write it as I didn’t believe in the product.
So why do I like SKINS so much?
The Compression Works:
I’ve just run my second marathon in 10 months and used SKINS leggings in my recovery and SKINS calf sleeves while running.
How did I use them? Everywhere – here’s my last article on how to get the most out of your compression wear. I wore them mostly for recovery, straight after a run I would wear my SKINS around the house, out to meet friends, at work and, more importantly, while I was sleeping. The compression increases blood flow to the muscles which enable them to recover and repair quickly. I suffered less soreness and was able to back up my sessions easily.
The calf sleeves were a new one to me. During my last marathon, I always felt my legs start to fatigue rapidly in the latter stages of the race; they would numb and feel like they were disintegrating. The calf sleeves increased the blood flow to the muscles while I was using them and the difference was huge. They did take some getting used to to begin with, the first few training sessions with them on felt really strange, but the more I wore them running, the more I adjusted. So don’t whack them on for the first time the day of the race.
SKINS have been around since 1996. It was an Aussie skier who wanted to back up his days skiing (and nights partying) and still feel 10 years younger. He consulted with NASA (yes NASA) and other experts about compression and developed SKINS which is now sold in 31 countries and manufacture 100,000 units a month, so… these guys know what they’re doing.
The fabric is light, breathable and allows you to sweat without feeling sticky or smelly. The compression stitching is in the right places. The new range has increased compression around the knees and key muscles, targeting the right areas you need. The waste band is thick and comfortable and doesn’t dig in. The material is also flexible without losing its shape or colour – some compression wear loses its colour when it stretches and becomes slightly opaque and see through. SKINS keeps the texture and colour.
So What’s the DNAmic Range Like?
SKINS has to keep reinventing itself and pushing forward with technology and styles. They’re renowned and identified for their simple black style but have collaborated with Sydney based street artist James Jirat Patradoon to design something a little different.
SKINS DNAmic 3/4 Leggings:
These are perfect as an in-between season option. It still offers all the SKINS compression benefits in a 3/4 and again doesn’t dig in at the waste and has the compression stitching where you want and need them.
The only downside is they don’t have pockets! I like to have my leggings and shorts to have a good sized pocket at the back so I can put my keys in while I run, or even better, fit my phone in.
SKINS DNAmic Tank Top (living lines colour):
Wearing this felt amazing, the fabric is tight (compression) but smooth and comfortable. The straps are thick, supportive and it’s a flattering shape around the chest and hips.
I was worried the tight fabric would highlight the least favourite parts of my stomach area but the design works well to prevent that.
The support it gives to the breasts is fantastic, minimum movement with maximum comfort with strong straps that criss cross over the back.
There is one thing though. This top is comfortable to wear…once it’s on. Being compression and therefore tight, it’s bloody hard to get on and sometimes more of a workout getting off. Once it’s on, it’s amazing but be prepared to do some squirming to yank it off after a run.
DNAmic Superpose Shorts:
These are new to the women’s range and while I didn’t get the chance to road test them, the concept is fantastic. I struggle in summer running in SKINS leggings, living in Queensland it’s just too hot here to do so. These shorts combine the benefits of compression with a stylish running short over the top. This is the next item on my activewear shopping list.
Basically SKINS are something we believe in and endorse if you’re seeking the benefits of compression wear or activewear.