180s Ear Warmers

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We aren't normally the ear warmer types, normally more partial to donning hats and caps. But the 180s Sport Fleece Ear Warmers grabbed our fancy, partly because they don't have that dorky plastic headphone-like thing over your head and don't have fluff-ball ear coverings that are best suited for 6-year-olds.

OK, so we're a little vain too: The fact that you could keep your ears warm without needing to acquire the post-cap "hat hair syndrome" is also kinda nice.

Here's the deal: The 180s Ear Warmers look like a regular ear muff EXCEPT the band connecting the two earpieces is a subtle piece that wraps below your hair at about your hairline. The narrower connecting band between the two earpieces is also self-fabric-covered so it's comfortable on your skin, and it expands and contracts to fit your head. Plus, it all wraps up and squashes nearly flat so it fits nicely into a coat pocket or purse. The Sport Fleece version is also made of Polartec Wind Pro.

What does all this mean? First, the fleece makes a nice, soft, cuddly earpiece that resists wind and therefore cold. Second, the connecting band between the two earpieces means you can't misplace one earpiece (the case sometimes with separate pieces). Also, the band that holds it to your head at your hairline means no hat hair AND also means you can wear them with caps or even helmets for biking, inline skating or snowboarding. And, they'll still fit well if you wear glasses or even earrings.

We liked all of the above, testing them in temperatures below freezing and feeling the warmth they provided.

One advantage, however, also becomes a disadvantage: The band at your hairline means those with long hair can wear these ear warmers rather subtly. However, having long hair makes them harder to position under your hair without painstakingly lifting it up and out of the way.

Also, the band that sort of contracts and expands for better fit never seems to lie quite snugly so you sometimes feel the need to reach back and try to tighten it so you don't lose it. Since it never was really falling off, we suppose a wearer would get past that need to re-adjust. Despite a few drawbacks, the advantages and comfort were enough that we'd likely pack them along more frequently on outings.

3.5 hands clapping

Suggested retail: $24.99
1-877-725-4386
www.oneeighties.com

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