Sqoosh Sportsbands: Product Review
Sqoosh is a fitness apparel company that specializes in a new kind of…well, some would call them sportsbands, others would call them sweatbands, Sqoosh refers to their products as “More than a sportsband!” But the concept is simple, these are bands that you put on your wrists to help control your sweat during athletic activities. They can also be worn by wrapping them around your hands instead of your wrists, which allows you to better use them to “mop” the sweat off of your face or brow. They also have a small pouch that can be used either to keep your fingertips warm or to carry keys with you on your run.
The Casual Runner Team is always on the lookout for new and functional running gear and products that can help us during our Casual Running adventures. If the products look cool while working well for us, then all the better.
Ok, yes, we are suckers for products that look cool, and why shouldn’t we be? Casual Running is fun, and having products that look cool and are fun to wear only enhances our enjoyment.
Sqoosh boasts that its bands are both fashionable and do an exceptional job of dealing with excess sweat during exercise. As I tend to sweat…a lot!…during my runs, this appeals to me and I wanted to give this product a try. I also enlisted the help of my girlfriend, because, as the bands are billed as unisex products, I wanted to have a woman’s perspective as well.
The product’s design appears to have two distinct “halves” to it. The top part is a “soft imported Italian fabric outer band” (I thought it was a lycra material) that offers both a great deal of comfort to the fit and the “fashion” aspect of it, as this is where Sqoosh offers a variety of color choices. This is also the area where reflective components are incorporated into the design and Sqoosh will allow you to customize your bands if that is the route you wish to go – seriously, the Casual Runner logo really would look awesome on these!
I definitely like the look of the bands and the fun color choices available, just don’t be looking for dull colors, as vibrant colors are the trademark of Sqoosh’s color palate.
By contrast, at first blush the second “half” of the band is noticeably bulkier (spoiler alert: please don’t take this as a negative as the overall design of the band really does work well). This is a black terrycloth material which increases the functionality of the band. It serves to absorb most of the sweat and can be used to wipe sweat from your face, brow, neck, or wherever it happens to be gathering during your runs.
As I said, to test these bands, I employed the assistance of my girlfriend and we went on several long runs (ranging from 6 miles to 10 miles) in warm temperatures ranging from the high 70s to the low 90s. Essentially, we tested them out on runs where we knew that we were going to sweat…a lot!
First things first. Despite us having different sized wrists and hands, for both of us, the bands were a perfect fit right out of the package. We both agreed that they were very comfortable. And, although the terrycloth portion looked like it may be bulky, it was quite comfortable as well and not at all noticeable during our runs except when we wanted to use it to wipe away excess sweat.
Second, we really liked the look of the bands. These are definitely a step up from traditional sweat bands. But I am getting ahead of myself here.
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (but not really).
Ok, I am not gong to lie: when I first received these, I was a little skeptical about the product’s functionality. My initial reaction was that they would function no different than the other traditional sportsbands I’ve worn before. I, however, was mistaken. In fact, I ended up being pleasantly surprised by just how well they did work.
As I said, on the several test runs we sweated a lot. As in, a lot a lot. Despite the heat, the bands remained comfortable and did not add any noticeable warmth to my wrists or hands. Better yet, my hands remained relatively dry, which made using the touchscreen on my iPhone much easier than it usually is on runs (you all know what it is like trying to work a touchscreen on a smartphone with sweaty fingers).
The terrycloth portion was awesome for wiping excess sweat from my face. TMI Alert. During the runs, the bands did not appear to be that soaked, however, when we were done, I rang them out, and was amazed by the amount of water that I rang out of them. I considered adding a quick demonstration video of this, but that idea got vetoed as “too gross.”
The design incorporates reflective materials, which I love, as I believe that there is no such thing as a Casual Runner making him or herself too visible on a training run, especially when running near car traffic. So that definitely raises this product up another notch in my view.
The bands come with simple care instructions: they are machine washable. This sounds like a simple point, but, let’s be honest, I’m a guy. I have zero interest in elaborate care and washing procedures. I like it when I can keep my laundry routine simple.
We also tried these bands out while cycling, and found them to be effective at keeping our hands dry on our handlebars. To be honest, I did not realize how nice this would be until I actually tried it.
Really, the only “negative” thing I can really say about this product is a very minor point. Sqoosh bands are designed with a “fingertip pouch,” which is exactly what it sounds like: you insert your fingertips in these small pouches during colder weather to help keep them warm. This functionality is pretty evident and makes sense, however, with all do respect to Sqoosh, you can tell that they are a FLORIDA company (Editor’s note: friendly jab intended!). Their claim that this pouch means “no more runners gloves” is a bit overly-optimistic as, while the pouch can be beneficial in cooler temps, I am doubtful that it will hold up to the cold training runs during the Northern winters. But it is ok, we will let this very minor marketing transgression slide, as I am a fan of the product and its functionality.
One other suggestion Sqoosh makes: you can dip the bands in ice cold water and press them to your forehead. I do not seem to get affected by the heat as much as some of my fellow Casual Runners. Thus, while I tested this and it does work, it really is not necessary for me. However, this is definitely a trick that I can see coming in very handy for other Casual Runners as they slog through the training miles during hot summer training months. Additionally, I can envision grabbing an extra cup of water at a hydration station during a half marathon, marathon, or triathlon and using it to soak the band and placing it to your forehead for some much-needed mid-race relief.
So there you have it. Sqoosh sportsbands made a good impression and could be worthwhile for both male and female Casual Runners who are looking for ways to deal with excess sweat during their Casual Running and other fitness adventures.
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Neither Mike nor Casual Runner received any compensation for this review. The products reviewed herein were provided by the manufacturer for purposes of this review and the opinions are solely those of the author.