Brooks LSD Pullover - Women's Review
Cons: Less breathable, less comfortable
Our Analysis and Test Results
The LSD Pullover is a comfortable, windproof layer with excellent portability. Its lightweight, reflective design make it an excellent choice for urban runners looking for a simple layer.
No matter how cold or wet, running makes you sweat, so breathability is an incredibly important trait in any running layer. To help us evaluate each product's breathability, we evaluated its placement of panels and vents and its material type and cross-referenced that with our testing results from dozens of hours out on the trails.
The LSD is made out of 100% polyester and, therefore, is not the single most breathable jacket in this review, but it does have a few things going for it. While there are no vents at the armpits, there are large rear vents that help promote airflow. That being said, the vents are made of thick mesh, and we didn't find them to perform as well in the field as other more technical layers. The loose fit of the jacket also helps promote airflow when you're on the move. There are other jackets in this review with much higher amounts of breathability, but it often comes at a price: decreased weather protection.
Because breathability is such an important factor in running jacket success, wearing your totally waterproof rain jacket is probably not the best idea. But, we still need some protection from the elements, or else what is the point of wearing a jacket at all? The three factors we looked at for this section are wind, water, and cold.
The LSD Pullover has great wind protection thanks to its polyester construction. We found this to be highly effective at blocking a biting gust of wind. The rain protection is less impressive, though. While the jacket sheds a small amount of moisture, anything that resembles a real rain will quickly saturate this shell. Additionally, the LSD is not insulated, making it a better choice for cool spring and fall days than true winter conditions. It does have a hood, however, which makes it a better choice for bad weather than those garments without any head protection.
Comfort and Mobility
When it comes to running apparel, comfort isn't just a luxury — it's a necessity! Poorly fitting clothing can lead to chafing and distraction, making it impossible to finish your goal happy, whether it's a jog around the block or an ultra-endurance event. For this metric, our testing team evaluated each product's stretch, feel, fit, sleeves, and hood, and then spent hours in each to see how they feel over the long haul.
Our team found the LSD to have slightly above-average comfort, even if it wasn't the top scorer. We like that the material is silky smooth and not abrasive, but it does have a bit of that "trash bag" feel, and it's definitely a bit loud when moving. The fit is looser than we tend to like, but as this adds to the jacket's breathability, we tried to see past it.
The sleeves are interesting, to say the least. While the upper arm resembles a normal sleeve with a looser fit, the bottom half of the sleeve is ruched, making a snug, ruffled fit. While this maybe isn't the most stylish, we like how easy it makes it to push the sleeves up when a little air is needed. They also catch the wind less, and once we started moving, we barely noticed the sleeve fit at all despite their unique look. Additionally, this jacket has a hood, which we love, plus the ability to roll the hood away and snap it in place. If you're not a hood person, or if the weather just doesn't call for it, being able to tuck it away so it doesn't get in the way is a desirable trait.
When it comes to moving fast, weight is everything. Being able to pack up a jacket and throw it in a hydration pack is critical for distance runners. So, we put each jacket on a scale, recorded its weight, and then tested its ability to pack up easily.
This jacket is one of the lightest in this review. At 4.1 ounces for a size small, you'll barely notice it's there! But the best part comes when you pack it up. The LSD Pullover has a hidden stuff pocket in the back, and it easily folds into itself. There are two small straps that make the pouch a backpack, and you're on your way! If you tend to run with a pack, this might not be that useful to you, but as people who hate tying their jackets around their waists, we think this is genius.
As far as the running jacket review goes, this is one of our favorite parts because it lets us geek out on all the little details. We wanted to know what, exactly, made this jacket so great for running? We looked for reflectivity, pockets, unique hoods, thumb loops and drawstrings, tech compatibility, and more!
The LSD might not be chock-full of cool features, but it does have a few things that make it a must-have for certain runners. One of these things is its reflectivity. For running at night in populated areas, having reflective markings on your running apparel is super important so that drivers can see you. The LSD is reflective all over, as it's not just the stripes that are reflective but the entire material! Shine a light on this jacket, and you will light up the street.
The LSD has just one small zipped pocket, which basically lets you take a key with you. We prefer a way to carry our phone and some money, but this is better than nothing. Both the waist and hood have drawstrings, which we found to be great for a multitude of reasons, including weather protection and comfort. Finally, this jacket is UPF 50! Sun protection is so important, but sunscreen can be sticky and can sweat off easily. Having a jacket with sun protection is great, but because the breathability on this layer is only so-so, you'll want to be sure that, sun or no, the temperature isn't going to spike too terribly high. The LSD is best suited to cooler days or more mellow days.
This is one of our favorite things about the LSD Pullover. This jacket has one of the lowest prices in this review — it's half as expensive as several of its competitors. Yes, there are jackets in this review that with more breathability, but if you're looking for a simple, no-frills wind layer that can easily accommodate your running life, this is an excellent, affordable option.
The Brooks LSD Pullover is a unique piece with an above-average score and a price that's hard to beat. It's breathable enough, comfortable enough, and full of great features like exceptional reflectivity. While there are more performance-driven pieces in this review, if you're looking for a bargain, this great jacket is the one.
— Lauren DeLaunay
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