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Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece review: comfort and breathability in a stylish package

Get warmth without weight with the Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece, a breathable and velvety-soft mid layer

Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece
(Image: © Páramo)

Our Verdict

Lightweight, easy to wear and super-versatile, the Páramo Alize is breathable enough to keep up when you pick up the pace, and packable enough to come along on the lightest of adventures. Ideal for women who swap between different sports all winter long.

For

  • Breathable
  • Great warmth-to-weight ratio
  • Water-resistant
  • Recyclable through Páramo

Against

  • Fits on small side
  • No recycled material used

Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece: first impressions

If you were unwrapping the Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece, having been given it as a gift, you could be forgiven for being confused. Is it a fleece? Is it a mid layer? 

This soft and almost velvety fleece jacket combines the warmth of fleece with a thin and lightweight profile, fitting under more form-fitting jackets or even another fleece with ease. 

It’s certainly designed to be versatile, too. Features including five pockets and a hood designed to fit under a helmet make this a very versatile pick for climbers and cyclists.

Páramo say the Alize offers, “warmth, water-repellency, wind-resistance, breathability and comfort in one soft, stretchy hoodie’“. Question is, are they right? And if they are is that enough for the Alize to make it into our best women’s fleece jackets buying guide?

Specifications

• RRP: $141 (US) / £106 (UK)
• Gender specificity: Women’s
• Sizes: XS / S / M / L / XL
• Weight: 325g / 11.5oz
• Colors: Indigo Blue / Green
• Compatibility: Brilliant as part of a layering system for fast-paced sports

Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece: on the trails

Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece

On test, the Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece proved to be remarkably breathable (Image credit: Sian Lewis)

In general, we would have to agree with Páramo’s claims. The Alize is a high-performing, adventure-ready mid layer, and is also one of the most breathable fleeces we have ever tested, so it’s ideal for fast-paced sports where you might work up a sweat. 

Despite its light weight, this jacket offers instant, welcome warmth and traps in heat while still letting your body breathe.

After a few months of testing, where we think the Alize really excels is when you are trying to pack light – it takes up barely any weight or room in a hiking backpack and works with a cold weather layering system for nigh-on any sport or adventure, so it’s ideal if you’re heading off on a bikepacking trip or heading abroad on a multi-activity trip. 

That soft outer material is water repellent, and will withstand light rain. While we like the slim cut of the Alize, we would suggest ordering a size up, as the fit is on the small side. 

Páramo Women’s Alize Fleece

Páramo optimizes the Alize’s performance in unpredictable weather by using Nikwax Analogy waterproof fabric. (Image credit: Sian Lewis)

An award-winning travel and outdoors journalist, presenter and blogger, Sian regularly writes for The Independent, Evening Standard, BBC Countryfile, Coast, Outdoor Enthusiast and Sunday Times Travel. Life as a hiking, camping, wild-swimming adventure-writer has taken her around the world, exploring Bolivian jungles, kayaking in Greenland, diving with turtles in Australia, climbing mountains in Africa and, in Thailand, learning the hard way that peeing on a jellyfish sting doesn’t help. Her blog, thegirloutdoors.co.uk, champions accessible adventures.