In the depths of a Canadian winter, there are a few essential items that are recommended, warm shoes, a warm jacket, gloves, and a toque. Yet seemingly the staple of any winter wardrobe collection is the hooded sweatshirt affectionately known as the “hoodie”.
A comfortable and versatile insulating mid-layer caught in a cross-section of fashion and function, a good hoodie is a must. The team at Mobile Warming has very effectively combined material, fit, technology, and attention to detail to heat up your hoodie game with the Phase Mobile Warming Hoodie, part of their heated apparel collection that also includes the Thawdaddy.
From cruising around town to making the most of your winter wonderland, Mobile Warming gives you the look and comfort you would expect from a classic hoodie with the creature comfort of electronic heat to make it all that more enjoyable.
Classic Hoodie Style, Built to Last
On the list of criteria that make up a great classic hoodie, the Mobile Warming Phase Hoodie checks them all of them.
Quality thick and warm cotton fleece
A large hood capable of being raised over a hat, toque, or helmet
Roomie and comfortable kangaroo pocket
Thick, comfortable cuffs on the bottom and sleeves
Made for movement and activity in mind
The Phase hoodie uses thick and comfortable fleece finished with quality construction and stitching to create a product that is built to last and put up with any abuse you plan to put it through.
Combining the classic hoodie sweatshirt with an electronic heating system does make the construction of the Mobile a little unique, the inside of the hoodie is fully lined with a polyester mesh designed to create a comfortable moisture-wicking barrier between you and the hoodie. It is between the fleece shell and the polyester liner that the heating system has been built into the hoodie.
With the combination of the polyester liner and fleece hoodie, the feeling when you first put on the hoodie is as though they have combined a long sleeve exercise shirt or jersey with a hoodie for a unified system of heat and comfort.
It is comfortable and cozy whether you are simply slipping it over a t-shirt to wear for the day, or are combining it with a warm base layer in preparation for some winter fun outdoors.
The added layer of the liner makes this a great mid-layer for more physical activities regardless of the heating system and also increases the insulating factors you may be looking for in cold weather.
Sized for Movement
The Phase is a classic fitting hoodie, leaving room for layering underneath without adding too much bulk for any jackets you may plan to wear over the hoodie itself.
The sizing of the hoodie itself may be one element you want to pay attention to depending on how you envision using the hoodie. I am 5’8, 165lbs and the hoodie I wore and tested is sized large where I would usually wear a medium in most garments. I recommend viewing the Mobile Warming sizing chart here (or shown below) to see which sizing is best for you.
The sleeve length and hoodie length were a great fit for me with a good amount of room to move. The hoodie caught my attention for use while snowboarding. Having a mid-layer hoodie that I can freely move in and comfortably wear layers underneath when needed is important, however, if you typically wear a size large in hoodies, you may want to consider going a size up in the Phase Hoodie.
Temperature Control on the Go
The Mobile Warming heating system is powered by a 7.4 volt removable and rechargeable battery pack with two unobtrusive heating pads: one across the chest, and the other across the back.
The front chest heating pad extends from the top of the hoodie kangaroo pocket to just below the collar of the sweater.
On the backside of the sweater, you experience heating covering the mid back up to the shoulders.
Without knowing that the Mobile Warming hoodie was electronically heated, I suspect many people would fail to notice the heating pads, as they are subtle and flexible and do not impact the comfort or mobility of the hoodie itself.
The team at Mobile Warming paid close attention to the placement of the battery pack and the power switch to control the heating system.
Nestled within the kangaroo pocket is a velcro sealing pouch to house the battery and connect it to the heating system.
It is not bulky or in the way, nor does it restrict the usability of the kangaroo pocket to hold your keys, cellphone, or to warm your hands.
Next to the kangaroo pocket is a single button operating switch that allows you to power the heating system on and off as well as selecting your preferred heating temperature with one of the four temperature control settings.
The hoodie and battery come in separate packaging. After charging the battery with the included charging cable, it is as easy as plugging in the battery, stowing it in the velcro pouch, and hitting the power button. Within a few short moments, you’re in heated hoodie heaven.
Putting the Mobile Warming Hoodie to the Test
As an avid snowboarder, there is a fine balance between being overdressed and overheating while headed down the ski run, and dressing warm enough in order to survive exposure to the depths of winter while riding the chair-lift back up the mountain.
The Phase proved to be a fantastic asset in the war of warmth on the ski hill.
My first testing environment for the Mobile Warming hoodie was on a mountain in the heart of the Canadian Rockies for a day of snowboarding. It was – 15 degrees Celsius and overcast. My clothing consisted of a merino wool base layer, which I wear every time I head out snowboarding, the Phase hoodie, and my Gore-Tex shell ski-jacket.
I’ll admit, for the early part of the day, the combination of a base layer, hoodie, and jacket without the support of electric heat was ample insulation. The hoodie was plenty warm and extremely comfortable.
After enjoying a brew and some lunch, the temperature began to fall reaching -18 degrees, down 3 degrees from the morning. Heading back out to the hill a bit sweaty from the morning, I was easily the happiest person in my group of friends.
A quick switch-on of the Mobile hoodie and I was enjoying heated comfort all of the ways up the chairlift and down the ski hill. Even though the temperature had dropped, I only had the hoodie on the second level heat setting.
Having a thick warm fleece hoodie that is then lined with a polyester lining and amped up with electric heaters does have its drawbacks. It’s warm, sometimes too warm. The Phase Hoodie does not have any ventilation be it zippered vents, or lighter airer material under the arms allowing for regulating your temperature. This reality did have me relying on the venting available in my ski-jacket to find the right balance between the joys of electric heat and overheating. It is clear, this hoodie is prepared for some really cold weather.
A few weeks with the Mobile hoodie had me enjoying the beauty of on-demand heat around town as much as I did on the ski hill. Powering up the hoodie to walk the dog has made the winter strolls far more comfortable while attending the minor hockey games of my niece and nephew have been experienced in a whole lot more comfort while sitting in a cold hockey arena. For activities that do not have your heart rate elevated while faced with cooler weather, the absence of underarm ventilation is less relevant or required.
Football fans facing cooler weather or hunters hunkered down in their blind or up in the tree would find the Phase Hoodie a great way to stay warm when movement is less of an option.
Final Word on the Mobile Hoodie
It isn’t difficult to build your own personal list of where you could use an electronically heated hoodie; simply think of all the different situations in which you would wear a hoodie.
In the world of heated hoodies competition does exist. Some of the major tool manufacturers like Dewalt or Milwaukee have created heated hoodies powered off of the manufactures existing batteries and power centers requiring larger batteries to be carried to power the hoodie itself, with the cost of both the battery and hoodie reaching north of $300 CAD combined. That is about $100 CAD more than the Phase Hoodie. Given the quality of the material and make of the Phase Hoodie I find it hard to believe there is a $100 difference in value compared to the major competitors.
If you’re looking for some electronically assisted heat during your favorite activity, be it skiing, hiking, motorcycling in the fringe seasons, or simply everyday activities around town, the Phase hoodie is a great, well made, and comfortable classic hoodie. It should be on your list, and in your closet.