Like this site? Help us to make it better.

Polaris BL Lite Tee



Straightforward base layer at a reasonable price

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

What the scores mean

Good scores are more common than bad, because fortunately good products are more common than bad.

  • Exceptional
  • Excellent
  • Very Good
  • Good
  • Quite good
  • Average
  • Not so good
  • Poor
  • Bad
  • Appalling

The BL Lite Tee from Polaris is a basic base layer/ technical T-shirt but if you want something simple at a good price, it's a solid buy.

One of the best things about the BL Tee is the slim fit - 'contoured', Polaris say. It's not quite figure-hugging on me, but I'm a bit of a beanpole. Whatever your build, it's going to fit fairly closely and there's enough stretch in the fabric, especially crossways, that it won't cut off your circulation if it's snug.

The rear is cut a little longer than the front so your lower back always stays covered when you're bent forwards on the bike, and raglan shoulders give you good movement up top.

Polaris call the fabric AirBase. It's polyester in a honeycomb weave. Know what I mean by that? A teabag weave, if you like. The outer surface is full of small dimples, basically. It's not quite mesh, but it's getting on that way. You'll have seen similar in loads of other base layers and jerseys.

The fabric wicks sweat well; not spectacularly, but well. It can feel a bit cold on your skin when wet but it dries out fast so you're never uncomfortable for long. I can't say it smells particularly good after a big ride. This is one of those tops you'll want to get into the washing machine pretty soon after you get home.

As well as wearing this as a base layer, you could use this without a jersey over the top on hot days - although you'll have to forego pockets. I've used it like this for running too. The airy weave means it's really good at keeping you cool so if you indulge in such deviant activity yourself, you can get extra use out of the BL Tee.


Straightforward base layer at a reasonable price

If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website test report

Make and model: Polaris BL Lite tee

Size tested: Red, Medium

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

Polaris say: "A short sleeved base layer designed in AirBASE™ fabric; perfect for cool conditions

Constructed from 100% brushed Polyester (soft handle)

High wicking and quick drying

Contrast side panels to give a contoured fit"

It's a close-fitting polyester base layer: nothing too fancy but it puts in a solid performance.

Rate the product for quality of construction:

It's fine - good build quality

Rate the product for performance:

It's not spectacular, but it's a good, solid performance

Rate the product for durability:

There's really not a lot to go wrong here.

Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:

I found the inner face colder than some other base layers when wet

Rate the product for value:

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Solid performance for the money.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Good, close cut

Did you enjoy using the product? It's fine

Would you consider buying the product? I'd pay a bit more for a higher level of performance

Would you recommend the product to a friend? As above

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 40  Height: 190cm  Weight: 74kg

I usually ride:   My best bike is:

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, sportives, general fitness riding,

Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.

Latest Comments