A lightweight, versatility and packable solution for toweling off and warming up after an icy dip
Packable with storage bag
Roomy and slightly stretchy for changing
Treated with Polygiene permanent odor control
Giant hand pocket and hood
Could be a little more absorbent
Only one size available (but fits most)
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Lifeventure Lightweight Changing Robe: first impressions
Lifeventure’s changing robes just keep getting lighter and more packable. Now at just 555 grams (1.2 lbs), the lightweight changing robe comes with a compressive mesh bag that makes it viable for backpacking adventures where you’re planning on taking a dip. Made using the same absorbent material as many of the best camping towels, you can jump out of a frigid lake or river, throw this on and be warm and dry in seconds. The quick drying material means you can use it again the next day and won’t be lugging around a heavy, wet towel with you.
• RRP: £42.99
• Weight: 555 g/1.2 lbs
• Materials: SoftFibre
• Sizes available: One size
• Packed size: 18cm x 30cm x 8cm
• Colors: Grey, Teal, Purple, Navy
• Best use: Wild swimming, water sports
This changing robe only comes in one size, but we’ve tested it out on bodies ranging from 5’4” to 6” tall and found it provided ample coverage and room. That means that if you’re feeling modest, you can throw it on to change underneath, and with a giant hand pocket and hood, it’s very cozy for standing on the beach for a few minutes enjoying that post-swim tingle, or toweling off wet hair.
Lifeventure Lightweight Changing Robe: in the field
For a couple of years now, I’ve been making do with a lightweight camping towel to hurriedly dry off after wild swimming and not bothering too much about modesty, all while secretly coveting those fancy changing robe/camping towels that everyone else in Scotland seems to have these days. Recently, I got my hands on a Lifeventure Lightweight Changing Robe and I’ve been testing it in Scottish lochs this spring to see if they’re all they’re cracked up to be.
Here’s how it performed:
This changing robe comes in only one size, but it’s big enough to accommodate most bodies. I’m 5’4” and it comes down to mid calf and was really roomy, while it was great for my 6’ tall boyfriend, too. We both had enough room to change underneath it pretty comfortably. It’s also big enough to spread out on the ground and have a couple of people stand on it while getting dressed.
The SoftFibre material is just what you’d imagine from the name – super soft against the skin and the baggy design, pockets and hood mean I can really wrap myself up nicely in it when there’s a cool breeze blowing and I’m damp. It’s super cozy.
Absorbency and drying capability
When it comes to absorbency, myself and my boyfriend disagree somewhat. I felt that I was dry pretty quickly, whereas he thought it could be a little more absorbent. LifeVenture says it absorbs its own weight in water, though I’ve found that camping towels in general repel a little water rather than soaking it up like a sponge and I think that’s a good thing – otherwise you’d be left with a very heavy, wet towel. If you’ve tried a microfiber towel, I’d say this is a little more absorbent than one of those.
It’s also pretty quick drying, although there is a caveat there. It’s a big garment, so if you pack it away wet, like I did, it will still be damp the next day. But hang it over a tree when you get to camp and it does dry really quickly.
Weight and packability
At just over a pound in weight, this changing robe packs down to the size of a small butternut squash which is pretty good for how much real estate you get when it’s unfolded. I actually brought it with me on a recent backpacking trip, where I’d usually be economizing for every square inch. I’m not saying I’d bring it with me on a thru-hike or even a multi-night backpacking trip, but it is light and packable enough to go with you in your daypack.
Julia Clarke is a staff writer for Advnture.com and the author of the book Restorative Yoga for Beginners. She loves to explore mountains on foot, bike, skis and belay and then recover on the the yoga mat. Julia graduated with a degree in journalism in 2004 and spent eight years working as a radio presenter in Kansas City, Vermont, Boston and New York City before discovering the joys of the Rocky Mountains. She then detoured west to Colorado and enjoyed 11 years teaching yoga in Vail before returning to her hometown of Glasgow, Scotland in 2020 to focus on family and writing.
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