Salomon Sense Flow Vest review: super-lightweight running jacket that’s armless fun

The Salomon Sense Flow Vest is an ultra lightweight, slightly insulated running gilet designed to supply windproofing and thermal protection to your torso

Running man wearing Salomon Sense Flow Vest
(Image: © Pat Kinsella)

Advnture Verdict

Super lightweight and incredibly packable, the Sense Flow Vest from Salomon is the perfect piece of clothing to pop on (or carry with you) when running or hiking on exposed trails during early fall and late spring, when the weather is unpredictable, and you need an extra layer of security to keep your core comfortably warm. Windproof, yet highly breathable, this gilet-style top allows your arms to move freely while supplying some thermal protection to your all-important torso. It’s far from cheap, but should see plenty of action during shoulder-season escapades on the wild and wooly side.


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    Ridiculously light

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    Easily packable

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    Windproof but well ventilated

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    High neck

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    Some reflective details


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    Slim fit won’t work for everyone

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    Small amount of storage

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    No recycled content

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    Limited colors

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    Only very lightly insulated

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Salomon Sense Flow Vest: first impressions

Often, especially in the shoulder seasons, you don’t need an extra layer that fully covers your entire top half when you’re out trail running or doing a brisk hike, you simply need something that will help keep your torso toasty and fend off the negative effects of windchill, so that your core temperature doesn’t drop. 


• List price: $150 (US) / £135 (UK)
• Insulation: Synthetic
• Gender availability: Men's / Women's
• Sizes: S / M / L / XL / XL
• Weight: 3.7oz / 105g
• Colors: Men’s: Carbon; Women’s: Carbon / White & Peach

This is where a good gilet is the perfect piece of apparel, and the new Sense Flow Vest from Salomon is an extremely lightweight version of exactly this kind of windproof garment. 

Designed primarily for runners, and small enough to be easily stuffed into any hydration pack, daypack or fanny pack, it can also be used by hikers and fastpackers as a super minimalist extra layer. 

It’s essentially the vest version of the more comprehensive Sense Flow wind jacket, but the gilet style enables you to keep your arms free whilst running and hiking, and permits a whole lot more airflow to areas such as your armpits.

Salomon Sense Flow Vest: on the trails

Running man wearing Salomon Sense Flow Vest

If you need it, the extends up into a high neck for extra protection (Image credit: Pat Kinsella)

I began testing the Salomon Sense Flow Vest several weeks ago, running and hiking on a variety of coastal and countryside trails and hillsides – many of them extremely exposed – just as fall began to bite, with high winds barreling in, often spiked with an icy chill. 

And this is exactly the kind of conditions the Sense Flow Vest has been designed to perform in. Incredibly lightweight, this minimally insulated sleeveless gilet top from Salomon is excellent for keeping windchill off your body during outings in blustery but changeable weather, when you might be running in to a Baltic-feeling breeze one minute, only to turn a corner and find yourself sweating along a sun-splattered section of sheltered trail.

Salomon Sense Flow Vest pinprick vents

The pinprick vents on the back panel make the Sense Flow Vest extremely breathable (Image credit: Pat Kinsella)

The smart design features pinprick vents on the back panel of the vest that make the Sense Flow Vest extremely breathable, while still shielding the wearer from the wind at the front, where the zip extends up into a high neck for extra protection. In really warm conditions, you can open the zip partially or fully, but stop it flapping around by using a purpose-made popper that keeps the two sides together.

There are reflective flourishes across the shoulders of the vest for safety while running along lanes and roads shared with motorized traffic, and a zipped pocket on the chest can be used for carrying small items such as a gel, key or credit card.

Salomon Sense Flow Vest – front

The Salomon Sense Flow Vest – front… (Image credit: Pat Kinsella)

Salomon Sense Flow Vest - back

…and back (Image credit: Pat Kinsella)
Pat Kinsella

Author of Caving, Canyoning, Coasteering…, a recently released book about all kinds of outdoor adventures around Britain, Pat has spent 20 years pursuing stories involving boots, bikes, boats, beers and bruises. En route he’s canoed Canada’s Yukon River, climbed Mont Blanc and Kilimanjaro, skied and mountain biked through the Norwegian Alps, run an ultra across the roof of Mauritius, and set short-lived records for trail-running Australia’s highest peaks and New Zealand’s Great Walks. He’s authored walking guides to Devon and Dorset, and once wrote a whole book about Toilets for Lonely Planet. Follow Pat’s escapades on Strava here and Instagram here.