The North Face Aphrodite 2.0 is a lightweight pair of hiking pants, perfect for days when you want coverage but don't want to be roasting. If you hate the feel of most "normal" hiking pants and can't stand the swish-swish of harder nylon fabric, then the Aphrodite will feel like a revelation These are not heavy-duty pants though. The material is breathable and stretchy, but the soft feel is also its downfall, as it is highly prone to snagging so don't expect them to last very long, especially if you'll be using them for hiking or rock climbing. We don't recommend them for a backpacking trip but these pants are a great choice for traveling and shorter day hikes in mild terrain. We like the look and feel comfortable wearing them around town. The stretchy material and soft waist would feel cozy on a long flight.
The North Face Aphrodite 2.0 Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Lightweight, breathable, comfortable, flat waistband with a drawstring
Cons: Not water resistant, snags easily
Manufacturer: The North Face
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Aphrodite 2.0 is made with a 95% Nylon / 5% Elastane blend and TNF's "FlashDry" technology, which is supposed to wick moisture and increase drying time. These pants are available in XS to XXL sizes and Short (30") and Regular (32") inseams. However, we measured the regular pair that we tested and it was more like a 31-inch inseam.
Comfort & Mobility
The Aphrodite earns a high rating for comfort and mobility. It's made of a soft material with ample stretch and a supple feel. We climbed and scrambled in both pairs and never felt like the pants were getting in our way. The waist on the Aphrodite is a wide panel with some elastic in it as well as a drawstring, which is nice for when you have a backpack on and don't want any belt loops digging into you.
The Aphrodite 2.0s aren't the most versatile pair in the test group. They can't convert to shorts or capris, and the lack of water resistance makes them a poor choice for water sports or rainy days.
The material on this model is lightweight, and they are one of the lightest options in our review. The Aphrodite has some of the best breathability as a result. We scored the Aphrodite slightly lower because we often found ourselves getting sweaty in the midsection. The waistband on the Aphrodite is a little on the thick side when compared to the others, and it keeps us hotter there.
TNF states that this material is "extremely durable," but we'd have to disagree based on our experience with these pants. Online user reviews for this pair are full of mentions of snagging and pilling, and it didn't take too long for us to get some snags as well while out hiking. Because the material is so soft, a sharp twig or rock can catch on it and pull at the threads a little. One or two here or there is no big deal, but once you have a bunch all in a row, the pants look a little shabby. We tested this pair in a pretty rugged desert environment, so if your favorite hiking locale is a little mellower, this may not be as much of an issue for you.
This pair doesn't offer too much in the way of weather resistance. There is no DWR coating on the fabric, and moisture soaks right through. There's no SPF rating either, and the material is so thin that it doesn't do much to block the wind either. The pants did dry fairly quickly (40 minutes in full sun), though the waist was still a little damp as it's a thicker layer. All in all, this is not the pair for any inclement weather.
The Aphrodite 2.0 pants don't have too much going on in the way of features. There are two hand pockets and one small zippered pocket inside the right pocket for those items you don't want to lose. There's the drawstring at the waist, and there is a cinch cord on either ankle. This feature doesn't help us secure the leg any higher though, and we prefer to roll the cuff when we want a shorter length.
These pants cost a bit less than most of the other pairs in this review, but not that much of a steal considering the durability issues you might encounter.
The North Face Aphrodite 2.0 is a great pair for certain applications, but we can't call them great hiking pants. It's comfortable and stretchy, and one of the first things we'd reach for on a rest day or to wear while traveling, but it isn't built to take on a big hike. That's okay, because there are plenty of other water-resistant and durable options in this review to choose from, and you still need clothes to wear when you're not hiking.
— Cam McKenzie Ring