The Vault Regulars

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Helly Hanson Dry baselayer Charger L/S1/2 zip

Our recent trip to Scotland and the Lake District was an ideal time to get to know the top well.
Helly Hanson Baselayer Dry Charger top with beautiful Loch Trool in the background
supplied by OutdoorsLook.

Weight as unpackaged 161 grams.

 Helly Hanson are well known in the outdoor world for making excellent gear and this one proved to be just as good.
 As with the companies Lifa products this top is close fitting but not restrictive. The material having good stretchability.
 I quite like the dual contrasting colours of the black and white option i chose and although this is a part of a layering system it doesn’t look out of place worn as a single layer.

 The material is 100% polypropylene and was made in Portugal. Available in Black, Black/White, Navy, Red and White colours.

All the stitching is flat lock and so there was no rubbing caused by wearing a rucksack.
 I wore this continuous for 3 days and nights and included in those days was a walk up Merrick in Dumfries. 
 The day was particularly warm and so lots of perspiration was generated. I am pleased to say that wicking worked very well indeed and although you always get that cold sensation as soon as you take the rucksack off, it very quickly dried up and i didn’t get any discomfort.

  The collar is perfect, high enough and close fitting without being tight. 
The zip, is a good quality YKK and locking. 
 The tops name, 1/2 zip Charger is not quite right as the zip opens the top approximately 1/3rd of the length and gives good ventilation when required.

 The cuffs don’t have thumb loops and again although close fitting there is enough stretch to pull the sleeves up past the elbows if required.
 Usually with polypropylene it can smell badly with use, especially over a few days. I was therefore pleased and surprised to say that it didn’t smell too badly at all after around 72 hours of wear. This i guess is due to the loose weave rather than tight weave allowing more perspiration to escape.

 With the tops longer tail i found the length was excellent and didn’t cause any riding up when wearing a rucksack and at 161 grams you hardly know you have it on.

 It has been a pleasure to wear and review this product and it will definitely be part of my backpacking kit in future.

 Current price at OutdoorsLook is £30.94

This top was sent to me FOC from Outdoors Look to review. I have no connection with OL and have no restrictions regarding my views or comments of the product.


  1. Lynne has always liked HH but (says) she can't find something as comfortable as her old HH base layer (what is with us and old stuff?).This review will be of interest to her, provided they do a women's range.

  2. Sorry Alan - meant to say that this is yet another excellent review. Thanks.

  3. Well Lifa material has not changed since God was a lad. It’s still great to wear. It’s designs that change. You can definitely get HH lifa for ladies so Lynne will be pleased.

    Thanks for your comments.

    1. I'd say the current materials are not as soft as Lynne's original HH base layer Alan.

    2. I have checked my own 20+yr old HH Lifa top and i notice a very slight difference. I would think all those years of washing has made some difference to the material against one that has only been washed once. But that's a guess.

    3. Hi Alan

      I've just been reminded that it's a winter weight base layer, which might account for the difference.

  4. Yes, absolutely. Mine are both dry tops. I do like the warm top. Great stuff.


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