Hurley adds a layer (but BeachGrit makes you tan!)
When you see serious bicyclists riding down the street what is the first thought that pops into your head? “I want to kill you by pinching you ‘tween my car and the beer delivery truck parked curbside…” is mine. And “Why are you wearing all that skin tight colorful bullshit?” And “Thanks for saving the environment!”
Back to the skin tight colorful bullshit though. Spandex, introduced in 1962, really revolutionized the athletic clothing game. Bicyclists love it because of the aerodynamics and maybe the muscle compression that skin tight provided and it was theirs to do with what they would. Until almost yesterday!
Hurley, the world’s favorite hi-tec surf boardshort manufacturer, seems to be pushing spandex as part of their brand new Phantom Hyperweave. “What is the Phantom Hyperweave,” you ask? According to Sports Illustrated:
The newly released Hurley Phantom Hyperweave created a new way to construct the waistband. Instead of a rigid layer of microfiber layered over material to provide structure and then more layers of fabric creating what Ryan (Hurley…Bob’s son and design man) calls a bulky and water absorbing piece with no ability to move with the body on the lone part of the short that touches the skin at all times, Ryan went with the first single-layer textile. The four-way stretch layer moves with the body for comfort in the water, eliminates bulk for comfort when laying on the board and adds in free-floating magwire—a water-centric take on Nike’s Flywire technology—cabling to keep the movable fabric locked to the waist.
But the spandex is what intrigues me because it brings something fresh to the surf fashions. They are called the Hurley Phantom Compression and are worn underneath the Hurley Phantom Hyperweave and maybe help the thighs rejuvenate. There they are, poking out, running down the leg to just above the knee. It is like basketball! Do you remember when Kobe Bryant et. al. donned black compression things underneath their baggy shorts? I found that look very chic.
And the tech boardshort really has completely taken over the game hasn’t it though. I was in Huntington Surf & Sport not too long ago and the store manager told me that Hurley Phantoms fly off the shelf like you wouldn’t believe, crushing all boardshort competition, leaving broken hearts and bankruptcy in their wake, forcing brands like Rip Curl to turn to North Korean slave labor. Rory’s piece yesterday was my favorite surf writing in a long time. His honest rage against a genuinely horrible thing that really did just get swept underneath the carpet was so refreshing.
But Hurley’s tech boardshort + compression. Of course it is not made in North Korea and of course it is wonderful and innovative and etc. etc. etc. Do you want a pair? Do you think they will make you surf better? They probably will for almost sure. But you know what will make you feel better? A pair of BeachGrit trunks! They are made by loving hands in Bali and your leg will tan all the way up to your hip so when you are nude in front of a woman she will ask, “How did you get so brown?” instead of “Do you play lots of basketball?”