Rating: 4 / 5
The big-box store, Target, offers the C9 brand made by Champion at compelling prices, and I picked up several t-shirts from this line more than a year ago for outdoor and international travel use. The t-shirt sometimes appears on the shelves as “Duo Dry Lite,” and the material with Ts of this label do feel softer and lighter than the standard “Duo Dry.” But they weigh the same (4.5ozs on my scale) and are made of the same material (100% polyester), and are treated identically for this review.
After a year of use for aerobic/sports activity and for hiking on long-term (months long) international travel, I have been amazed at how well these t-shirts have held up. They are still in virtually “like new” condition, despite being used regularly and washed by machine and hand countless times.
As for wicking properties, the C9 Duo Dry t-shirts fall down somewhat. I have found they retain sweat/water much longer than my Terramar Body Sensors and REI Polartech Powerdry t-shirts, and I have chilled more quickly and more frequently than one would hope when wearing a synthetic. Still, they do the job when paired with a good synthetic mid-layer (e.g. the Patagonia R1, or any syth fleece for the matter).
These Ts retain the same odor resistance as similar synthetics, which is to say ‘none.’ But their durability allows you to aggressively wash them back to a fresh state, which for me has translated into longer life and use. All told, there is a lot of value here for a ~$15 t-shirt.