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Buyer’s Guide to Cooling Vests

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Prior to purchasing any type of cooling vest, it is important to fully understand the different types of cooling vests available on the market and how each one works. The following buyers guide should serve as a concise reference to cooling vests, their average costs, how they work, and which one is preferable under different circumstances.

Evaporative Cooling Vests

(Prices range from around $35 - $200)

Evaporative Cooling Vest

Evaporative cooling vests are an excellent choice if you are trying to keep cool on a budget. This type of vest does not require ice packs or any other external cooling equipment, which is why it is our least expensive type of cooling vest. Specially treated cooling crystals interact with the water inside of the vest. As the water is released from the cooling vest through the process of evaporation, the body’s temperature is drastically reduced, allowing the wearer to remain comfortably cool for hours. On average, the cooling effects of this type of vest last between 2 - 4 hours, though some have been known to last up to 8 or more hours.

To activate Evaporative style cooling vests, simply submerge them in clean, cool water and dab dry. To reactivate, simply repeat the above steps.

Ice Chill Cooling Vests

(Prices range from around $100 - $300)

Ice Chill Cooling Vest

Ice Chill cooling vests make use of cooling energy packs that are activated inside of a freezer and then placed in pockets inside of the cooling vest. Typically light weight, these cooling vests may be worn both inside and outside of your clothing, helping you to keep cool for hours at a time. Unfortunately, because the cooling packs are frozen, when worn underneath the clothing, they may be extremely cold to the touch. For this reason, we recommend wearing Ice Chill cooling vests outside of the clothing.

Phase Change Cooling Vests

(Prices range from around $100 - $400)

Phase Change Cooling Vest

Unlike the Ice Chill cooling vests, which can chill to below freezing, a phase change cooling vest makes use of cooling packs that maintain much higher temperatures. These phase-change packs often contain liquids (typically nontoxic oils and fats) that solidify (like wax) typically between 55 to 65 degrees and usually last between 4 – 6 hours.

Cool Flow Cooling Vests

(Prices range from several hundred to several thousand dollars)

Cool Flow Cooling Vest
Cool Flow Cooling Vest System

A Cool Flow cooling vest makes use of a water flow system that pumps water through the cooling vest to help you keep cool. An apparatus resembling a cooler has two thin hoses going to and from the cooling vest and after chilling water, pumps it through the vest.

Cool Flow cooling vests are ideal for hot working conditions where you are stationary for long periods of time. Surgeons have used our Cool Flow cooling vests to make working under the pressures of an often crowded operating room more bearable.