Milwaukee has come out with a new USB-rechargeable Workskin heated base layer. Would you wear this?
Milwaukee’s M12 heated gear – jackets, hoodies, gloves – have become quite popular.
Speaking from personal experience with review samples, Milwaukee heated workwear is very well-made, very comfortable, and very durable. And, unlike some other brands that copied their lead, Milwaukee has continued to develop updates and expansions to the product line over time.
But a USB-rechargeable heated base layer shirt? That seems like it could work, but I’m wondering who might be interested in it.
To start, here’s what Milwaukee Tool says about the new heated shirt:
Built to be worn alone or easily layered underneath common jobsite apparel.
That makes sense, and is how other brands’ base layers can usually be worn.
The new base layer combines the comfort of workwear with Milwaukee’s industry-leading heated gear technology to provide users with an all-in-one heated solution.
All-in-one? Under what conditions?
The base layer features carbon fiber heating elements for even distribution in the chest and upper back panels.
It also features a one-touch LED controller with two heat settings. Milwaukee also says that a quick-heat feature can bring up the heat 3X faster.
The shirt is made from double-lined polyester in the body, and the arms are fleece-lined with raglan sleeves and seamless shoulders.
It’s intended as a midweight base layer that also offers improved range of motion and comfort.
The shirt is powered by a RedLithium USB Li-ion battery. It comes kitted with (2) 3.0Ah batteries, a charger and control adapter, and a wall charger.
Runtime is up to (3) hours with a 3.0Ah battery.
The shirt is washer and dryer safe.
Price: $149 for the kit
Sizes: S, M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL
You know, it’s making more sense to me.
If I’m walking or working outside in winter, bulk doesn’t matter very much. Getting in and out of a car or truck, or moving around indoors, that’s when less is more.
This shirt gives you added heat without the bulk of a jacket, and I think the bigger appeal might be its ability to be worn under your choice of outer layer.
What if you want a hood? Don’t want a hood? Rain or snow-resistant shell?
Up to 3 hours of runtime on a single battery doesn’t seem like a lot, but it seems like enough for what the heated Workskin might be worn for. If you need longer runtime, upgrade to a heated jacket or vest instead.
I’m wondering if or where pros might wear this, but I also don’t think that Milwaukee would have launched it if there wasn’t a market. Remember, they’ve been developing heated and unheated workwear for quite some time now, conducting a ton of field research in the process.
A heated base layer shirt seems surprising, but at the same time it can work. This isn’t an “I’d never wear that” type of product.
I remember wearing one of the earlier Milwaukee heated jackets for 2 or more seasons, often without a battery. I’d add an M12 battery for outdoors work sessions, or put on a different jacket during heavier snowfall.
But then I started wearing a lighter jacket, as I found it to be easier to wear wherever I was taking my then-infant kids in and out of the car, and the tendency took hold. That lightweight jacket preference has persisted. I still wear Milwaukee jackets when extra warmth and durability are needed, but choose other solutions for daily wear now, when lightweight comfort and greater convenience is more important.
The new heated Workskin makes sense to me, although I’m not certain what types of pros might go for it.
I know that some people will immediately form a “that’s useless” opinion. Personally, my first thought was “well, that’s unconventional.” I still think it’s unconventional, but it could work.
Would I have green-lit the development and launch of a product like this? This is the type of question I ask when I have wishy-washy feelings about new tools. Yep.
If a Milwaukee Product Manager is reading this, *thumbs up.* It’s a risk, but seems to be a solid addition to Milwaukee’s heated gear lineup, and it might be just the thing some users have been waiting for. Also, I’m sorry for calling it a “shirt,” rather than typing out Workskin heated midweight base layer a couple of times. But, it’s a shirt. One-piece clothing worn over the torso and arms for warmth and designed to be worn by itself or under additional layers? It’s a heated shirt.
Oh, and Milwaukee Product Manager and all involved – thank you for continuing to be fairly discrete about product logos.