SeasonFive, a recently launched watersports clothing company with a purpose of making innovative clothing to keep you on the water longer, attempts to do just that with the Phantom Long Sleeve shirt. The Phantom uses SeasonFive’s proprietary Atmos 1.0 fabric, which combines a water repellent outer fabric, a waterproof/breathable membrane and a soft inner fabric into one top. I tested the top for the last six months and used it on a 45-day kayaking expedition. This is my SeasonFive Phantom Review.
SeasonFive Phantom Features
In addition to the waterproof/breathable Atmos fabric, the Phantom features a zippered expansion on the shirt’s back, flat lock stitching to make the seams feel comfortable and a set on cuff. SeasonFive designed the piece with a snug fit to keep out water and support your muscles. It features a 4-way stretch, which allows the piece to move with you. It combines gray-colored side panels with a black main body and a welded logo for a clean look.
During the time that I tested it, I used it primarily in three ways. I used it under my drysuit as a layer, under my wetsuit and a short sleeve drytop and over my wetsuit as a barrier layer. It had advantages in all three uses. Before I address all three uses, I want to say something about the fit. The snug fit felt very supportive, and during my expedition, especially towards the end, when my muscles felt tired in the morning, the fit felt great and soothing to put on.
As a layer under my drysuit, it provided additional wind protection, which basically stopped any wind that happened to get through the Gore-Tex of my suit. When I wore the suit without the top, I could feel the difference in wind penetration. The outer fabric move smoothly inside my drysuit which made the drysuit feel like it fit better (it already feels like it fits perfectly, so this was a pleasant surprise). I found that the shirt worked best under a drysuit with a synthetic long underwear top worn under it. This seemed to help wick the moisture away from my body and through the Phantom quicker than without it, which kept me feeling drier during the day. I layered extra insulation over the Phantom as needed.
Under the wetsuit and drytop, it functioned in much the same way as under a wetsuit. It provided extra warmth and wind protection. Because I was using a short-sleeve drytop, the arms of the Phantom were exposed from my elbows to my wrists. On my expedition, where I didn’t wash my clothing that often, the cuffs of the Phantom stretched slightly, which allowed some of the 45 degree Fahrenheit water into the sleeve. The water sloshed around a little until it drained back out of the cuff. Also without the drytop on if I did rolls, the top would flush water into my wetsuit, which on colder water felt like a shock.
Wearing the Phantom over my wetsuit, worked great. When water flushed into the top, it didn’t flush my wetsuit, and the extra wind resistance of the top, kept me warm. The fabric dried quickly after a roll or during brace practice. I think this is the ideal use for the top, but when you wear it this way, you don’t get the soothing supportive fit. In warmer water, wearing the Phantom without a wetsuit works well, too.
Overall Conclusion About the SeasonFive Phantom Top
I like it. It’s one of the best rash guards that I’ve had the pleasure of using. I definately like having it along on a long-distance expedition, because it feels versatile and warm under a drysuit on a cold day. During practice on warmer water, wearing it over my wetsuit felt perfect. It kept the wind off, which allowed me to wear less layers of neoprene. I think this top is ideal for someone who uses a wetsuit often or for someone who paddles in warmer water and just wants a top to break the wind. The fit feels flattering, and the clean look feels stylish, which doesn’t hurt the ego. If you’re looking for a rash guard, this one is worth your money.
Phantom Long Sleeve | $99
I want to thank SeasonFive for providing the top to test and letting me keep it longer than usual to use on my expedition. It was a pleasure to test this product.