Wow, what a great article! I agree with Ken's comment on color. I wonder if the bias toward dark colors by Smartwool is a reflection of the stereotype that wool is only good in the cold. Despite the fact that they state otherwise on their site. They apparently are not immune to the stereotype. Ibex does a little better job of this, but their base layers are also predominately dark. Retailers are particularly bad at this, to my benefit. Wool always goes on sale before spring. My new favorite garment for hiking, the Shadow's Hoody, comes in a lighter color. I've used it comfortably up to 78° F with the zipper and hood down, and the sleeves up. This article reinforces my experience that wool is great in warm weather. Stretching out the benefits of evaporative cooling can be a good thing.
I suspect the lanolin content of wool has dropped as wool is processed more. Washing wool in the washing machine with detergent doesn't help either. Part of what makes wool work for sheep is lanolin. I wonder what effect adding lanolin back into the wool would have? Would it make it more resistant to moisture, or would that just mess with it's ability to wick? Would it be beneficial to add lanolin in the winter and wash it out in the summer?
One further comment on stink. Not only do synthetics get smelly faster but at some point it is almost impossible to get rid of the smell. After years of wearing Smartwool socks every day, they have not had this problem. My Ibex wool polo shirts, that I wear every day in the summer, don't seem to get pit stains or smell either.
Do you guys have any comments on the durability of wool vs synthetic? Did both sides of the clown shirts wear the same? My wool briefs will definitely outlast my cotton briefs.