Got Buff?

20 02 2009
Getting Buff doesn't mean a gym membership anymore!

Getting Buff doesn't mean a gym membership anymore!

When a product claims to do 10 different things well and suggest it will become an indispensable component of your outdoors lifestyle I cringe.  I’ve been disappointed so many times, yet as gear reviewer and optimist I continue to try things out to see if I might just be wrong.  Yeah that makes me a pessimistic optimist or some such non-sense!


When I heard about Buffs and read their marketing spew I was intrigued while at the same time I couldn’t believe that this product was as useful as they made it out to be.  Would I really wear it as a hat?


Fast forward 3-4 years and I own 3 Buffs…most of my friends have a Buff.  I take a Buff on just about ever single outdoors trip I go on – even in the summer. I’ve used it for just about every single application that appears on the packaging – all except a hair band for my pony tail and that’s mostly because I don’t have a pony tail! Heck I’ve used it for lots of other purposes the manufacturer doesn’t even mention like an eye shade when I’m trying to nap during the day on a bike tour.

What’s a Buff?  It’s just a tube of stretchy microfibre that you can wear a variety of ways. I’ve used it for all of the following:

  • around my neck/face to keep it warm
  • as a hat
  • as a head band
  • around my neck only to keep me warm when it’s not cold enough to cover my face
  • as an eye shade
  • as a balaclava when I need to cover my neck, face and head
  • as a handkerchief to blow my nose
  • I use to clean my sunglasses
  • wrap around my sunglasses when I need to store them in my pack
  • around my mouth and nose as a dust mask
  • tied around a cut until I could take care of it properly at camp
  • coffee filter in camp
  • to wipe down my bike saddle after it rained
Get buff with your friends.

Get buff with your friends.

I’ll be taking two with me to the desert mountain biking…love ’em!

Where to buy ’em:

Buffs are ideal for campground peeping toms!

Buffs are ideal for campground peeping toms!



11 responses

20 02 2009

Damn you and your product recommendations…

I mean… umm.. hey, thanks. Might have to pick up one of those.

*makes plans to stop by REI this weekend*

20 02 2009

hahaha….well on the bright side they only cost ~$20!

20 02 2009

I use a similar product, the Maxit Headgator, although it only claims six different ways to wear it. I have four of them. I use it most often as my extreme cold face mask and neck gator. I hadn’t heard of the buff, but it looks very similar and is offered in way more colors.

20 02 2009

Totally agree. I know Buff from when I was a little kid, and I am still using them. I’ve never seens similar products as good as the Buff original. It’s just as important as having socks on my feet!

Only ortlieb (classic rollers), apple and RAB (quantium endurance sleeping bags) have more or less the same status to me.

23 02 2009

These don’t look warm enough for cold weather. I’ll stick with my alpaca wool balaclava. I know its good to -45 (-50 F) if you feel the need to add in windchill thats about -100 🙂

23 02 2009

I’ve used a Buff down to -47 deg C happily for aerobic activity.

23 02 2009
Otto Van De Steene

for the very cold I use my buff in combination with other head-isolation though. A good sweater with a cap is perfect. Especially when you have a body-warmer with one too. (I think Icebreaker and nike have them)

The Buff is just perfect to protect your face In these cases. When you want to do, It is possible to breath trough the textile. But I have cutted an old buff a bit to have a better air circulation.

When you cut one, make sure you sew a bit around the hole so it can stand some wear and tear.

23 02 2009

My wife loves hers and got one for her mom. Here’s another version, merino for US$25:

23 02 2009

The buff and your review reminds brings back memories of The Lorax by Dr. Seuss,

“This thing is a Thneed.
A Thneed’s a Fine-Something-That-All-People-Need!
It’s a shirt. It’s a sock. It’s a glove, It’s a hat.
But it has other uses. Yes, far beyond that.
You can use it for carpets. For pillows! For sheets!
Or curtains! Or covers for bicycle seats!”

The full text is here:

26 04 2010

As a couple of people have noted, the Buff is really just another “knockoff” of the MAXIT Headgator. The Headgator hit the market in 1985. But the real difference between the two is the fabric. Nothing comes close to MAXIT’s exclusive fabric. It has kept people warm in Antarctica and on Mt. Everest. It also has kept US troops comfortable in the desert heat of Middle East. If you want the best, get the original…the Headgator!

27 04 2010

I forgot to mention that you can get the Headgator online at, or There are lots of other sites too, just do an internet search for “headgator”.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: