Is Gore-Tex Worth the Cost?


First off, in case you don't know, Gore-Tex is a waterproof breathable membrane that gets applied to fabrics. Basically, there are tiny holes in the membrane. The holes are on the order of 20,000 times smaller than a water droplet (so water can't get in), but are 1,000 times larger than evaporated sweat (so you stay comfortable).

Having used a few products with Gore-Tex in them I can say yes, it's definitely worth the cost. Everything with Gore-Tex is terribly expensive, though, so "pulling the trigger" to make such a purchase is tough.

In a recent issue of National Geographic Adventure magazine there was an advertisement by Gore-Tex for skiing gloves. Included was a small envelope that includes both a plastic mitten and a Gore-Tex mitten. The instructions were simple: put them on and see which is more comfortable. For somebody who's never tried Gore-Tex, they'll be convinced in seconds! It's a great piece of advertising.

Unfortunately, I think their target audience is a little off. Most people who read Adventure are likely outdoorspeople, already familiar with Gore-Tex, and who likely already own some equipment with Gore-Tex in it.

Anyway, if you're not sure about whether Gore-Tex is worth the cost, see if you can find a copy of Adventure with this ad in it. You'll be convinced!

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