Chandlery August 2007 Issue

The Human Shammy

Wick-er Warmup towel dries fast and resists mold.

The high-tech materials found in underwear and outerwear are making their way into the towel market. The Wick-er Warmup towel, made by Discovery Trekking Outfitters in Vancouver, is a polyester fabric that wicks water away from the body and then dries almost as fast as you can get it on a clothesline.

Wick-er Towel
Practical Sailor’s attempts to get the Wick-er towel to grow mold or develop a foul odor have not succeeded—so far.

The lightweight towel is made with Silver, an anti-microbial technology that kills bacteria, so the towel will not develop a smell, no matter how often you use it or how rarely you wash it. This Silver lining is permanent too; it won’t wash out.

The towel is a good fit for those who are in and out of the water several times a day. It’s the shammy&emdash;without the smell&emdash;for humans. Its size and weight make it ideal for packing and carrying, and its quick-drying, anti-bacterial features make it a great choice for boaters.

The towel works by pulling water away from the body and then distributing it across the surface of the fabric. Cotton towels absorb moisture into the fiber, and so take longer to dry. The Wick-er Warmup pulls moisture around the fibers rather than absorbing it, allowing it to evaporate quickly.


Practical Sailor tests, the Wick-er Warmup towel dried three times faster than a thin cotton towel. Practical Sailorfound that fresh water dries quickly, salt water rinses out easily, and sand shakes off with a couple of flicks.

The towel comes in a dozen colors and is sold in four sizes, ranging from a body-wrapping beach towel to a runner or golfer’s face cloth. Prices range from $29 for a 58 x 34-inch beach towel to $6 for a 10 x 10-inch face cloth.

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