As BAM celebrates its 10th anniversary, it’s great to see how far this eco-friendly company has come since its inception in 2006. Initially, operating out of his garage, founder David Gordon started the BAM adventure producing bamboo socks, shortly followed by underwear.
Now, the firm offers customers a full range of clothing, from dresses to leggings and baselayers to scarves. The benefits of using bamboo in garments are many, but one of the best things about using the material is that it is kind on the environment.
Bamboo is the fastest growing plant in the world and it yields the same volume as cotton from only 10% of the land area. There is no need for the use of pesticides or fertilisers and the fabric is 100% biodegradable.
So, how does it perform when used for a baselayer? Well, we’ve had one of BAM’s Zip Neck Baselayers in for the past few weeks to find out.
As soon as you get your hands on this product, you notice just how soft it is. This is partly down to the garment’s make up, 68% of which comes from bamboo. It genuinely feels like a treat to wear this against the skin and has to be up there with some of the most comfortable baselayers we have worn.
The impressive level of comfort with this garment is in part down to the fit. The material consists of 4% elastane and as such, it is very flexible. This means that it manages to sit close to the skin for much of the time without feeling too restrictive.
Beyond that, the length of both the garment and the sleeves also get a thumbs up. As someone on the tall side of six foot, it’s nice to have a baselayer where my wrists aren’t being constantly exposed, and the thumb loops are a welcome addition in this respect. Similarly, the length of the product beyond the waist means you are unlikely to suffer from any drafts no matter what the activity.
In testing, the garment offered a good amount of warmth and handled windy, exposed environments with aplomb. In fact, you could even utilise it as a lightweight midlayer at times and it wouldn’t be out of place.
We used BAM’s Zip Neck Baselayer for both cycling and hiking, and while it performed valiantly on the moisture-wicking front, we have to admit that there are more effective products on the market.
In terms of odour resistance, we had no qualms whatsoever. Generally, bacteria do not cope too well in bamboo, so even after multiple outings you don’t have to worry about emitting a foul smell.
At £45, the BAM Zip Neck Baselayer sits in the middle of the market in terms of pricing and we think this offers good value for money when you consider the fabric involved and the benefits it offers.
In a line: An extremely comfortable baselayer that is kind on the environment.