SCOTTeVEST Review (or, Warren's Thoughts on Vest Attractiveness)

Before I start this, I feel it is necessary to tell you that I am vest wearer:
They are sort of like a manly purse (in that they carry all the stuff you need for day to day functioning, but don’t, you know, look like a purse). Almost equally as good is the messenger bag, but in this case (travelling) I wanted something that was more difficult to remove from my body. If you are the sort of person who doesn’t like getting asked if they are a photographer/fisherperson/odd by almost everyone you meet, maybe the messenger bag is a better idea. Or you could keep asking your partner to keep things in her purse… cause I am pretty sure she doesn’t mind that at all *sarcasm*.

My vest is the RFID Travel Vest for Men. It was an inspired gift from my mother-in-law and I very much love it.
                
Although it is specifically designed for travel (thus the name), I use it as my day to day wearer (I am a vest man, after all) throughout Southeast Asia (although currently limited to Indonesia), and much of my review is going to cover its function in that capacity.


The good:


  • It looks pretty sharp on me.
  • The two front pockets, the ones you’d normally put your hands in, are so clever it blows my mind. The left hand pocket includes a hidden pocket (in which I keep my phone) and the ability to zipper halfway to further prevent access to the deeper recesses. The right one has an attached key ring (which I immediately loaded up) on a rubber spring and a stretchy loop probably designed for a water bottle. I tried to keep one in there for awhile, but now just keep my supercool camo wallet in it instead. And (and this is the best part!) they both have a magnet at the entrance that sticks together whenever your hand isn’t in there, preventing both theft and accidental droppage!
  • I like to have a pen and paper on me at all times, so the pen holder pocket (it actually has two) comes in handy. My front right breast pocket holds a little notebook for easy access.
  • Originally I didn’t want the two-way zipper, but now that I have it I really dig it. When I overload the lower part of this jacket and sit down, unzipping it up just a little lets the whole jacket sit more naturally and comfortably.
  • I use the wallet pocket a lot (for my other wallet, not my camo one). It seems natural (I am a right hander) to get it out and doesn’t require me unzipping too much to get at it.
  • Although I don’t keep my sunglasses in the pocket specifically made for sunglasses (more on that in “The not-so-good”) I do end up using the connected glasses cleaner a lot. And the map on the cleaner (it shows where all the pockets are and what they do) makes me smile a bit every time :)
  • You can really load yourself up with crap if you are so inclined.


The middling:
  • For travelling, the big pocket on the left hand side makes perfect sense. For day to day use, anything so large as to require to the use this big pocket immediately causes you to be off balance and slightly uncomfortable.
  • There is a business card holder in it… for people with business cards I guess?
  • Being able to have headphones and other cords connecting pocket to pocket is pretty cool. But after some use, I don’t think I’ll be using it too much.
  • What am I supposed to put in the big, back pocket? Someone online mentioned putting a computer in that, and so I tried it and… nope. Still unclear why it is there.
  • RFID? Cool, I guess. I suspect the fear someone people have, the evil foreigner with a magic machine stealing your credit card through your clothes at every turn is pretty crap. But whatever; now with antioxidants! (By this remark I am suggesting that the RFID pocket is a marketing ploy, designed to give the illusion of security. Cause, if you really think about it, a knife is way cheaper than a magic machine and if someone shows me a knife, which is more likely, I am going to go ahead and give them whatever the hell they want, regardless of RFID pockets. But then again, the RFID pocket is silver! And I like silver!)
  • The more crap you put into the jacket, the more it rests, uncomfortably, on the back of your neck. My simple solution is carry less crap, but it’s worth saying.
  • Maybe a little too hot for really hot days. But this is a jacket, after all, so this is to be expected. I keep telling my partner that I am just going to wear it without a shirt underneath, but she hasn’t been convinced that is a good idea… yet.

The not-so-good:
  • Biggest problem with this jacket: the two “cell phone” pockets. Their placement is pretty awkwardly high, making a phone difficult to use when they are in there (unless I fully unzip and shift the jacket a little) and the material that allows you to use the phone while in the pocket is pretty sticky, causing the process of actually getting a phone in the pocket to be too difficult if you are like me and use your phone frequently. Finally, and most damning, the plastic on the front of the pocket makes that one space the only part of the jacket that isn’t breathable. Thus, I end up with two visibly sweaty boobs after a long, hot day of use. I may cut them out soon.
  • There is a pocket that is for sunglasses. I wear glasses and have prescription sunglasses I would love to carry with me. Unfortunately, the sunglasses pocket (and all the other pockets) are big enough that the case ends up laying horizontally. This is both uncomfortable and is very visible, letting anyone looking know that there is more to this vest than meets the eye. A shallow but tall pocket, forcing the case to stay vertical, would be better./li>
  • Zipping it up can be a bit of trick sometimes. Once zipped, it works like a charm, but I think the two-way zipper is causing it to initially stick somehow.

Conclusion:

I really like this vest. There are few things I would (and eventually might) change about it, but the good most absolutely outweighs the bad here. The two hand pockets are amazingly useful and worth the price of the jacket alone. It is comfortable (provided it doesn’t have too much in it), sexy as hell (don’t ask my partner to confirm this, just take my word), and appears to have been made with care and forethought. All in all, a worthy acquisition.

Postscript:

The plastic spring part that connected your key ring to the inside of your front right pocket broke later the same day I wrote this review. It is a bit disappointing, since it was the two front pockets I gushed about so fervently, but at least I didn't lose anything. So maybe, if you get this jacket, don't trust that spring bit too much.

Comments

  1. I was holding my breath in baited excitement wondering when you would write about your vest! Thank goodness it didn't take long!... Whew, good to breathe again. :D

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