Introducing VerticalX™ SuperStrand; The Best Down Alternative for Four-Season Warmth

Feel the difference with our lightest, softest, and most compressible synthetic insulation.

You’ve already learned how to stay warm while moving fast in the cold with VerticalX™ ECO, the 85% recycled synthetic insulation that’s lofty, breathable, and has an impressive amount of moisture management.

We’re building on the VerticalX™ name with a new insulation technology that’s the lightest way to layer effectively and stay warm in all four seasons, providing the very best warmth-to-weight ratio.

Meet VerticalX™ SuperStrand

VerticalX SuperStrand is the lightest, softest, most compressible insulation available, blending the very best qualities of down and synthetic into a single superpowered technology.

Reliable throughout all four seasons, this is the lightest way to stay warm when you’re counting ounces on a multi-day trip, or if you simply want a dependable backup layer always stowed in your pack.

If down isn’t always as dependable as you’d like, and the synthetic insulations you’ve tried leave you wanting more warmth and less weight, you’ll find your perfect balance with the SuperStrand LT Collection of outerwear.

The weight, fit, and size of the SuperStrand LT styles make them ideal layering pieces. Whether you’re zipping them on over a base layer as the temperature drops, or wearing them underneath a ski shell as you head out for a full day on the slopes, the SuperStrand will be your new go-to layers.

Shop the SuperStrand LT Hoodie and Jacket to see what we mean.

How Does it Work? (Hint: It’s All in the Name)

VerticalX™ SuperStrand insulation was named after its own construction. It’s created with super-insulating polyester strands that mimic the shape of thousands of down clusters. These unique lofted strands have the best properties of down and synthetic, delivering optimized insulation, packability, and loft of both.

How Does it Work? (Hint: It’s All in the Name)

VerticalX™ SuperStrand insulation was named after its own construction. It’s created with super-insulating polyester strands that mimic the shape of thousands of down clusters. These unique lofted strands have the best properties of down and synthetic, delivering optimized insulation, packability, and loft of both.

SuperStrand solves the critical failure of sheet and blown insulations that get sticky, clunky, and end up with insulation falling towards the bottom of the garment. The solution here is in the way that we apply the insulation to the strand itself. SuperStrand reduces this clumping by using its strands like a lattice on which to lay the clusters of insulation.

Picture a grid that stores clusters of warmth along each length, or in this case, each strand. Any other grid might be strongest at each intersecting corner, but in this example, the clusters exist along the strands themselves – not just set on top of the weave. And remember; this weave isn’t airtight, otherwise it wouldn’t be breathable. But it stores those clusters close enough that together, they insulate the wearer, and they stay put because of the way they’re affixed to each strand.

The result is a lofted garment that locks its insulation in place. No more clumping or shifting of insulation beneath the garment’s fabric; everything is strung in place with SuperStrand.

How Does it Keep Me Warm?

It’s all about balance. Each superpowered polyester strand of SuperStrand uses air to keep its high loft and hold in its warmth. You can’t stuff a garment with too much insulation or it will weigh it down, and it won’t trap air the way it’s meant to.

The advantage of SuperStrand’s construction is that we can lock the mediums together by crisscrossing each strand in the lattice metaphor we used earlier. These mediums – the clusters of insulation – are anchored in so that they won’t shift as you move throughout your day.

Our result is a technology that gives you the best properties of down and synthetic insulation. SuperStrand provides an extremely high loft for its weight, and an insulating performance that keeps you warm even when wet. Add to that: this big, reliable warmth barely weighs a thing.

How Warm Will It Keep Me?

First, let’s catch up on a quick refresher of how loft and warmth can be measured in clo vs. RET. More than warmth alone, what we care about here is efficiency. We’ll be talking about efficiency in the lens of balancing light weight and warmth.

The clo value per millimeter of SuperStrand is high, allowing for a great deal of warmth for a minimal amount of weight. The RET value per millimeter of SuperStrand is low, reducing resistance for water (sweat) to escape the garment.

In contrast to comparable insulations, SuperStrand is:

  • Roughly half the thickness.
  • Significantly higher warmth per millimeter (that’s the efficiency of weight-to-warmth we were talking about earlier.)
  • Slightly lower RET per millimeter.

All of these elements – light weight, warmth, breathability – combine to create a garment that’s ideal for layering under a ski shell, over a climbing shirt, or thrown in the back of every pack for reliable, active warmth.

How Does it Compare to Other Insulations?

Similar to down insulation, if you overstuff one of these garments, it’s guaranteed to lose its efficiency.

The down clusters we’ve used in SuperStrand most closely mimic the size and shape of 700 to 800 fill of down insulation. They strike the balance of being small enough to trap air for warmth, and large enough to hold the space and structure of your garment.

Even lighter than VerticalX™ ECO and VerticalX™ Air, VerticalX™ SuperStrand builds on our reputation of creating the best synthetic insulations available and makes them even better.

SuperStrand LT Collection

The SuperStrand LT Hoodie and Jacket are the best down alternative to four-season warmth. These are our lightest and warmest synthetic puffies, balancing what you need with what you don’t for the most streamlined warmth-to-weight ratio.

In addition to being our pinnacle launch of VerticalX™ SuperStrand technology, you’ll love the SuperStrand LT styles for their:

  • Fabric: Windproof nylon fabric creates the best warmth-to-weight layering package.
  • Quilting Pattern: A unique discontinuous quilting reduces stitching, creating an uninterrupted flow of insulation and warmth. This makes compressibility easier without compromising long-term use.
  • Best for: Spring, summer, fall, and winter adventures where light weight and big warmth are critical to staying safe and comfortable.
  • Wear it as a: Hoodie or Jacket