CEP Arm Coolers are non-compressive arm sleeves designed to protect the athlete from the harmful effects of the sun during endurance training and racing.
- UPF 50+ Sun Protection
- Hyper Dry Wicking Fabric
- Cool-cell moisture activated skin cooling technology
- Comfortable elastic bicep cuff
- Material – 90% polyester, 10% lycra
- Available only in white
- Measured size medium
- Weight – 16 g (0.6 oz) each
- Length – 42 mm (16.5 in)
- Retail – $30
I was fortunate enough to get in contact with CEP and they offered me the opportunity to review a couple items for the site. One of the items I was excited to test out was the Arm Coolers. Here in Bend we have pretty warm summers and lots of sunshine. I was interested in seeing how well these worked at protecting my skin and keeping me cool. I have tested a Pearl Izumi In-R-Cool Short which had cooling properties built in but it was hard to truly feel the effects. I was hoping these would do better.
CEP has made these Arm Coolers for humid climates where the athlete will sweat a lot but due to the humidity they will not be able to cool down. Humidity and heat prevent sweat from evaporating off the skin and cooling the athlete, this build up of sweat also amplifies the rays as they hit the skin. These arm coolers assist in evaporating off the sweat while reacting with it to cool off the athlete. The CEP Arm Coolers are ideally made for places like the Kona Ironman World Championships.
The CEP Arm Coolers pleasantly surprised me in the technology they could put into a little arm cooler. It is made out of a polyester/lycra mix of fabric giving it a light weight and stretch. The fabric is really thin, enough so that I can see my scars and freckles through the fabric, especially when wet. They are made out of a micro-denier yard that is densely knit. The densely knit fabric acts like an umbrella blocking the UV rays. In the fabric there is also Titanium Dioxide which absorbs UV rays before it can get to the skin. These carry a UPF rating of 50+ which is the highest rating clothing can get. CEP uses their Cool-Cell Technology which reacts to moisture to reduce skin temperature by up to 6 degrees. There is Xylitol in the fabric which reacts with the sweat and water to cool the skin. The fabric also wicks moisture away from the skin allowing for it to evaporate and increases the cooling effect. There is only one flat locked seam that runs under the arm. At the top of the sleeve there is an elastic bicep cuff to hold the coolers up. CEP has finished off the Arm Coolers with their logo located on the bottom outside of the wrist area.
The CEP Arm Coolers fit snug but are not tight. They do not have the compression qualities that many other CEP products have and this is by design. They are skin tight from top to bottom. I have used them both for running and cycling and the upper elastic band does keep these in place well. I never felt like they were sliding down. The length is good for me as they go from the bottom of my deltoid muscle to my wrist. With a short sleeved shirt it appears that I have a baselayer underneath. The only negative I have with these is the elastic band has a little bulk to it that I can feel when I swing my arms while running. This causes some annoyance with my rib cage unless I carry my arms a little wider than normal. Other than that the fit on these has been solid. I was told to fit them as I would a short size so I opted for the medium and it feels right for me. They do take a minute to get on especially when you use them for the first couple times. After a bit they are not too bad.
The CEP Arm Coolers really work but there is one caveat. They must get wet. I used these for both running and cycling and they performed okay for the most part until they get wet with sweat or water and then the cooling effect really takes place. Since I live in Bend it is not the ideal place for these to be used. On my runs I normally generate some sweat to get these working but on my rides I did not. That is when I take matters into my own hands and squirted them down with some water from my bottle to get the full effect. The material spreads out the moisture along the fabric to increase the evaporation process and at the same time the Cool-cell technology cools the skin as well. Between the two you can really feel the cooling effect. Without the water or sweat, they are like having a thin baselayer on. My wife tested them as well and said she could not tell anything so I told her to squirt them down a bit and she agreed that they are great when wet, okay without.
I really want to put these to test in a hot race or triathlon to see how they work then. I have always had issues in the heat and wonder if these would help me stay cooler. At the same time there is definitely opportunity to use this fabric in other apparel pieces as well. Especially if it is body mapped into certain locations on a garment. For only $30 I felt like they are reasonably priced with the technology involved. I think you will agree when you spray them down on a hot day. As for the rubbing on the ribcage, maybe I need smaller biceps =) or they can make thinner elastic. As always, Your Mileage May Vary.
Pros [field name=iFrame]
- Great cooling effect when wet
- Stay in place
- Protects from the sun
- Elastic top can rub
- Takes a couple times to get used to putting them on