Article Review by Heat Breeze
"Insulated bodysuits are the number one way to stay warm when hunting in extremely cold weather. They’re soft, silent, and incredibly effective. While heated gear has its place, it pales in comparison when it comes to keeping your entire body warm. In order to find the best of the best, we reviewed and compared the top three full-body hunting suits on the market. We considered price, warmth, and effectiveness.
During our review process, we found the IWOM XT to be the best insulated bodysuit for hunting. It’s not the warmest or the quietest, but it’s very close. The deciding factor for us was the sheer amount of features this suit has that the others don’t.
- Outer Shell. The IWOM XT cold weather body suit comes in four camouflage patterns: Mossy Oak Treestand, Realtree AP HD, Predator Fall Gray, and Kloak ArctiKon. The waterproof and windproof polyester microfiber shell shields against rain, snow, and wind. It has fully taped seams and waterproof zippers that keep you dry, even in a downpour.
- Warmth. The comfortable fleece lining and 150g Premium 3M Thinsulate insulation helps trap body heat to keep you feeling warm. It also has wide tapered sleeves that allow heat to reach your arms easily. Paired with coverall bibs, a base layer, and a sweatshirt, you’ll have no problem staying warm in single digit temperatures.
- Quietness. The soft polyester material is very quiet, even in cold weather. It gets even quieter after a few washes. It also has a full sleeve design so you don’t have to unzip your suit in order to get into shooting position, eliminating noise caused by a zipper.
- Boot Area. The bottom panel on the boot area is made of two very durable layers of Cordura with a layer of insulation in between. The entire interior boot area is rubberized and allows for easy cleanup if worn with wet or muddy boots.
There are five ways the IWOM XT can be worn: fanny pack mode, walk mode, full body mode, parka mode, and freedom mode.
- Fanny Pack Mode. This is when the bag is self contained and ready to transport. The built-in strap can either be carried by hand, attached to a backpack, or fashioned around the waist.
- Walk Mode. Wearing the suit with the bottom part unzipped is called walk mode and it allows you to walk around freely in your boots. We suggest putting the garment on while you’re still on the ground and then climbing up to your stand.
- Parka Mode. From the walk mode position, you can roll the bottom half up around your waist and tighten the belt strap to enter parka mode, as it resembles a parka jacket.
- Full Body Mode. Once in the stand, pull your safety harness through the slot in the back of the IWOM XT and attach it to the tree. Zip your feet in and put your hands in the fleece-lined hand warmer pockets. This is called full body mode and it’s how you’re going to be spending the majority of your time.
- Freedom Mode. This is when the bottom half is rolled up and the top half is rolled down. Use the waist strap and the straps under the armpits to keep the garment tied around your waist. This allows for full range of motion of the arms and legs without having to pack up the IWOM XT.
- Sleeves. Unlike other insulated body heater suits, the IWOM XT has fully functional arm sleeves with hand gaiters. With arm sleeves, you’ll never have to come halfway out of the garment when you’re ready to shoot. Just take your hands out of the integrated hand warmer pockets and you’re good to go. Archers can eliminate the need for an arm guard by twisting the sleeve so that the fabric lays nice and tight against the forearm, creating a firm padding.
- Head Net & Face Mask. The suit is also constructed with a built-in head net and face mask combo. The one-piece head net and face mask can be worn separately, together at the same time, or not at all. Wearing the head net without the face mask is great for when you want to feel your face when you shoot your bow. When neither one is worn, it sits under the chin and acts as a neck gaiter, keeping cold air out and warm air in. There are micro-fleece cutouts in the ear area that allow you to hear your surroundings clearly while still keeping your ears warm. The back of the head net has a drawstring so you can get a tighter fit if you’re not wearing a hat.
- Rain Hood. Another great feature is the integrated rain hood. It’s constructed with a stiff bill in order to keep the rain out when you’re not wearing a hat. The side of the hood has cutaways that allow for a wide peripheral view. This eliminates to need to constantly move your head back and forth like you would with a traditional hood.
- Pockets. IWOM really went above and beyond with their pocket design. In the front of the hunting suit is a very large kangaroo pouch that can hold a lot of gear. Right above that are hand warmer pockets with a removable fleece lining. There are also two deep chest pockets and two pass-through pockets on the side so that you can reach your pants without having to take the suit off. There’s also a relief zipper so that you can relieve yourself while you’re up in the stand.
- Washing Instructions. The IWOM XT is also machine washable. The first thing you should do is take out the removable hand warmer sleeve. Next, turn the bodysuit inside out and wash both of them with unscented detergent. Then, hang dry for two days. If you have to use a dryer, tumble dry on low only. Anything warmer will void your warranty. The entire garment uses taped seams, and when exposed to heat, the tape melts and destroys the waterproofing."