Stio Azura Insulated Vest Review

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Stio Azura Insulated Vest

Cold mornings and warm days call for layering.  There is no better way to layer up than with the Stio Azura Insulated Vest. Equally adapted for an urban adventure or trip to the mountains the Stio Azura Insulated Vest is made for changing temperature conditions.  I have enjoyed field testing the Stio Azura Insulated Vest in the mountains of Colorado over the past three months.

Keeping it Cozy

The Stio Azura Insulated Vest is a technical piece of outerwear that can be used with a number of activities.  Although the Stio Azura Insulated Vest makes a pretty simple first impression, there are many features that are not so obvious that add to the versatility of the vest.

The Stio Azura Insulated Vest is made entirely from synthetic fabric.  The exterior is 100% polyester.  The polyester has an 80/20 DWR (Durable Water Repellant) Finish.  By outerwear standards, this is considered good for repelling water. The interior of the jacket is made from Primaloft Gold with 60g insulation.  Primaloft Gold is awesome!  It adds very little bulk for the amount of warmth it provides.  Also, it very breathable and keeps the body warm even when wet.

Fold it up and Stash it

There is absolutely no bulk to the vest.  Between the Primaloft Gold and the polyester exterior the Stio Azura Insulated Vest weighs only 9 ounces.  The compact design allows for some serious compression.  Stio designed the interior pocket to be a stuff sack so the vest can take up little space when not being worn.  When compressed the vest is about the size of a grapefruit.  

Stio Azura Insulated Vest Packed Down

All the other Features

The sizing of the vest runs a bit on the large size.  I tend to wear a medium or large in most outerwear and the large size is a tad big.  This is probably a good thing when wearing this vest as outerwear but maybe a bit oversized when using it as an underlayer.  

Stio Azura Insulated Vest Front

Stio Azura Insulated Vest Back

Fit and Features

Although very minimalistic, the Stio Azura Insulated Vest does not lack in comfort.  Microfleece has been added for a soft feel inside the hand pockets and the collar.  

Stio Azura Insulated Vest Zipper Pulls Fleece Lined Collar

There are a total of four pockets on the Stio Azura Insulated Vest.  Each pocket has a dedicated zipper with a custom silicone zipper pull.  

Stio Azura Insulated Vest Zipper Pulls

Adjustments to the hem of the base of the Stio Azura Insulated Vest can be made with a drawstring pull.  

Stio Azura Insulated Vest Adjustable Hem

Field Testing the Stio Azura Insulated Vest

The Stio Azura Insulated Vest is a versatile piece of apparel.  Over the past three months of use, I have found the Stio Azura Insulated Vest becoming one of my go to pieces clothing for both wearing in the city and in the mountains.  

What I like most about the vest is how lightweight it is.  I still do not understand how a vest that is this light can be so warm.  I put the Stio Azura Insulated Vest on over a long sleeve shirt in thirty degree temperature and I am comfortable for hours.  

Make it a an Underlayer or use as Outerwear

In really cold situations I tend to use the Stio Azura Insulated Vest as an underlayer.  During the last snow storm I wore a wool base layer, the Stio Azura Insulated Vest, and a Gore-Tex Shell.  I stayed comfortable long enough to find myself outlasting the other fisherman on the water.

I have lived in Colorado nearly my entire life and I still get caught off guard by the rapid changing weather patterns. One minute sunny and the next minute a blizzard. Last week, I went out on a warm fall day only to have sunny weather turn to a rain/sleet mess.  I was not prepared except for the fact I had the Stio Azura Insulated Vest folded up into my fishing pack.  Combined with lightweight flannel and the Stio Azura Insulated Vest kept me warm.  Although bit damp  in the arms the vest shed water well. The precipitation beaded up on the polyester and roll right off. 

Stio Azura Insulated Vest Water Beading Up

 

Specs of the Stio Azura Insulated Vest taken directly from Stio Website

  • MSRP $155
  • 15D Minirip Polyester w/ DWR, 100% Polyester, 15 denier, 37g/m2 with 80/20 DWR
  • Primaloft® Gold 60g Insulation
  • Double layer insulation at collar
  • Inside collar brushed tricot chin guard
  • Custom silicone zipper pulls
  • Draft flap at center front zipper seals out elements
  • Fully adjustable hem with low-pro cord locks customizes performance
  • Hand warmer pockets
  • Custom Stio® silicone zipper pulls Interior zippered pocket with media cord access
  • Second interior pocket doubles as a stuff sack
  • Embroidered Stio® and Pinecone logos
  • Center back length: 28 ¾”
  • Weight: 9 oz.
  • Regular Fit

Final Thoughts Stio Azura Insulated Vest

Whether used as an underlayer or as outerwear, the Stio Azura Insulated Vest should be your next vest.  The Azura Insulated Vest is incredibly lightweight and keeps you warm.  When compressed, it is about the size of a grapefruit and can fit into any pack. For your next purchase in layering check out the Stio Azura Insulated Vest. For more info visit stio.com

Bennett Colvin: Bennett Colvin lives in Steamboat, Colorado and is an avid fisherman, hiker, skier, and outdoorsman. Bennett instructs fly fishing and runs youth fly fishing programs. He also is a professional fly tier and ties publicly at fly shops and expos.
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