Disclaimer: I received a sample of the BUFF® UV Arm Sleeves to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!”
Being a Southern runner, I don’t have too much winter running gear. I can count the number of times per year we actually touch freezing on one hand. So, my winter running gear consists of a few long sleeve shirts and a couple pair of tights. I’m running in shorts and tank tops almost 12 months a year. A quirky thing about me is I really dislike running in any shirt with sleeves. I just hate all the excess material flopping around my arms. It’s distracting an annoying for me. I love my sleeveless shirts…tanks and singlets. I will wear a long sleeve shirt grudgingly if it’s super cold, but I honestly prefer a tank and arm sleeves for colder running.
BUFF® just recently released their UV Arm Sleeves made out the same highly breathable, moisture-wicking material, that everyone loves in their headwear. I was super excited to try these out, but was hesitant because it was already May and getting very warm here in Louisiana.
One of the first things I noticed when they arrived as how lightweight they were. They are thin so they don’t feel like you’re adding a super thick layer on your arms. This was encouraging for our warmer temps. I really liked the reflective print on both arms. It was strategically placed at the top and bottom of the sleeves and lit up well when you shined a light on it.
Putting these things on was a bit like putting on a wetsuit. Lots of grunting and pulling and puffing, but once you get them one they feel great. They fit tightly with a slight bit of compression that really felt good while I ran. I was surprised how much I liked the compression factor on the arm sleeves. I especially loved the elastic upper and the silicon grip at the top. The sleeves didn’t budge once you got them one. They’re also made with flat-lock seams that are almost flush with the rest of the material. This was huge for me. I have some other arm sleeves where the seams and silicon grip are raised and I’ve gotten some nasty chafe marks from the sleeve seams.
The moisture-wicking material actually seemed to helped cool me down as I was running in the humidity. They were a bit warm at first, but once I started sweating and they pulled the moisture off my arms, they were refreshing.
I also ran in them in the rain to help protect from the high winds and rain and they performed great. One of my favorites was soaking them in cool water right before a hot, hot run. While they were a shock to the system to get on (so, so cold) they felt great in the noon heat here.
The UPF 40+ protection is also a huge bonus for outside running as yet another protection from the elements. I can see this being especially beneficial during long runs. Slathering up with sunscreen can be a sticky, mess. And even waterproof sunscreen can take a beating in our high humidity and ultra-sweaty runs. These arm sleeves would be great for keeping those nasty sun rays away.
Will I wear these a lot during my summer runs? Nah. Not really. I might put them on for long runs to help with UV protection but I’ll likely honestly wear these in the cooler months. But I really, really liked the BUFF® UV Arm Sleeves … a lot. I plan to continue to wear them and use the heck out of them as the temperatures drop.