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Apparel Review

Shield Your Arms with Simms Sun
Sleeves (continued)

Operation:  I spent a substantial amount of time wearing the Simms Sun Sleeves and have to say I have very little to complain about.  The material is lightweight, thin, and breathable.  Even in harsh heat and humidity the garments remained comfortable to wear.  Predictably, the darker Simms Camo color seemed to feel slightly warmer in direct sun, but not so much to be bothersome.  With that said, if you have to pick just one color the light Stone would be the first choice to wear when exposing yourself to intense sunshine.  The sleeves breathe very well, and any perspiration dries extremely fast.

Each sleeve features a snap on the inner bicep so the pair can be connected to prevent loss

The stretchy, compression fit of the SunSleeves allows them to fit snugly, almost like having a second skin.  There is no bagginess, and range of motion remains fluid and natural.  The elastic bands at the bicep hold position quite well, and I found myself readjusting them only infrequently, even with repeated arm movements.  I was surprised they didn't slip down more, but the thickness of the bands works well to keep them in place.

Connecting them together makes portability even easier

As stated, I have very little to complain about in terms of usability.  About the only gripe is that they will sometimes leave visible marks on the inner side of your arms after you take them off.  This is a bit mysterious to me since they fit so well and have a very soft, smooth finish on the inside.  My only guess is that when you bend your arms it causes the fabric to buckle slightly which can press into your skin, especially when moistened from sweat.  The marks of course go away after a few minutes, but if someone sees you right after you just took your SunSleeves off, they might ask “what happened to your arms?!”

I didn't always experience arm marks, but they did not hurt and disappeared within minutes

Since the sleeves are so thin and lightweight, when not in use they take up very little space folded or rolled up.  They can easily be put into the pockets of your pants when not in use.  They can wrinkle lightly when scrunched up very tightly, but not nearly as easily as something like a cotton shirt.

Durability:  The durability of the SunSleeves was not an issue.  The fabric and stitching is all of high quality and is very tight.  The small spots of dirt and filth on the garments washed out easily.  It seems very difficult to damage them just with normal use unless something like an unfortunate run in with a fish hook or other sharp object occurs.  One area that could possibly suffer some wear are the logos on the wrists.  The chrome lettering is on top of the fabric itself, and with repeated washings could possibly wear away.  This is pure speculation, since after a couple washings no problems ever arose.  One way to try to avoid this possibly happening is to turn the sleeves inside out when putting them into the washing machine.

The Simms logo on the wrist is the only part of each garment where I question the long term durability

Price & Applications:  Priced between $29.95 and $34.95 depending on color, the price is pretty high considering you are basically getting just part of a shirt!  While the price is a bit much, the SunSleeves do have a little niche all their own.  Maybe you want to switch back and forth between long and short sleeves during the day, or perhaps you have a favorite short sleeved shirt you'd like to wear more often outdoors but want the added protection.  Some may simply prefer the different look that they afford, or even the ease of portability over carrying around an extra long sleeve shirt.  They are also nice as added bug protection against certain insects, mosquitoes NOT being one of them (I have first hand experience here)!


Simms Sunsleeve Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Solid overall.  Quality material, tight stitching, good buttons, and attention to detail.  9
Performance Comfortable  to wear even in the hottest conditions, especially in the Stone color.  The sleeves held position on the arms with only an infrequent  readjustment. 9

The price is steep for just sleeves. You can buy an entire UPF rated shirt of pretty good quality for this amount of cash.

Features Smart features like a UPF 50+ rating, extended top wrist cuff, thick elastic band at the bicep, and snaps to secure both sleeves together when not in use. 8
Design (Ergonomics) They never caused any physical discomfort/pain and feel soft on your arms. 9
Application Can be worn on or off the water along with your favorite short sleeve shirt.  8

Total Score

Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:


+ Breathes well - Longevity of Simms logo?
+ Comfortable to wear - Arm marks
+ Lightweight and thin - High price
+ Packs down extremely small  
+ Several colors available  


Unfortunately, the Simms SunSleeves will not help you catch HUGE fish!


Conclusion: Sun protection should be a concern to anybody spending time outdoors.  Harmful rays from the sun can affect you even on overcast days, and over time the cumulative exposure you endure from being outside can have severe consequences.  Skin protection is unfortunately an afterthought for a huge number of anglers, but with products like the Simms Sun Sleeves yet another alternative is now available.  With legendary Simms quality and an ultra high UPF 50+ rating, these sleeves are literally “what the doctor ordered.”


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