Pro run-tester Kieran Alger rates the UYN Running Exceleration Aernet Shirt as the best running top he’s tested.

Italian performance apparel experts UYN use state-of-the-art robots to weave their hi-tech running tops thread by thread. That lets them be more precise in how they build up the sections of each top to provide warmth, breathability and sweat-wicking. The result is easily the best running top I tested – although it doesn’t come cheap.

Men’s Fitness verdict

The best running top I tested ticks all the boxes: it’s supremely lightweight and comfortable, and does a brilliant job of keeping you cool even in the heat of summer.
  • Wonderfully soft
  • Ultra-lightweight
  • Outstanding sweat and heat management
  • Expensive

How we test running tops

Kieran Alger is a running fanatic and professional run-tester. He tested this running top, as well as those featured in our buyer’s guide, over a wide range of distances, terrains and even countries. One test took him to an Italian ultramarathon; while others were conducted on the towpaths of West London, where he lives.

man wearing UYN running exceleration fernet shirt

Forgettable for all the right reasons 

The UYN Running Exceleration Aernet Shirt is designed to keep you running cool on hotter days. I used this top to run 100 miles in three days around Lake Garda in 25-30 degree heat and it was excellent. 

It has a somewhat snug, close-to-skin fit but the fabric is light, flexible and stretchy and wonderfully soft. It almost disappears, moving with you naturally without feeling tight or restrictive. It’s a great combination of hugging and cosy, but also very airy.  

The mix of high-tech fabrics and strategically placed flexible and breathable zones, with variable thickness, helps to dissipate heat. The front is thinner and silkier, while there’s thicker spun fabric across the back between the shoulder blades. 

An ultrarunner’s ally

Even in bizarrely testing temperatures for October in Europe, I found it helped me keep cool and crucially avoided getting sweat sodden. If you do get wet, it dries fast and it doesn’t stink (too bad) going into a second day’s running. That’s dead handy for multi-day adventures or just doing less washing.

I’ve also tested it on very cold winter runs under a running jacket, and it works equally as well as a tee-cum-baselayer option, adding good warmth and sweat-wicking. 

There’s marginally more padding in the shoulder than you get on regular thin running tees and that takes the edge off running pack shoulder straps, too. 

I’m not sure how rip-proof it’ll be. I wouldn’t like to catch the fabric on anything sharp and I have seen some light bobbling after my tests. Not enough to put me off, but that may be a consideration. After all, this is a big investment for a running tee. 

Finally, there’s a reflective UYN logo on the back for better visibility. It comes in five sizes from small to XL and can be washed cold, but won’t take kindly to trips into the tumble dryer.