The Gordon Lyons pullover by North Face might not be what you would otherwise expect. It’s described as a “loose” fit, but that hardly seems accurate to me. I’m not particularly overweight, as I’m in rather good shape, but this particular pullover has a snug fit around the body. The sleeves on the other hand are relatively loose – a nice fit, if you ask me.

It’s not particularly elastic so don’t expect it to stretch much while you’re wearing it. In fact, it’s much the opposite – rather tightly wound material that when you pull it off, you’d better hope that it fits loose or you may hear some strange noises reminiscent of fabric stretching or ripping. I’ve never ripped mine, but I tend to be somewhat careful when taking it off. Frankly, I feel as if I should have ordered one size larger than I normally get when I buy from North Face.

But with the tight fit comes benefit. It sees to really do a good job of retaining heat, which is nice for those cold days. It’s also fairly nice to move around in because of the snug fit, which is why I’ll occasionally wear it while running or walking in the cold. As where I live, the mountains of New England, tends to get quite cold in the winters with snow covered mountains, frozen lakes, and all that, it’s definitely a good layer to pick up for those outdoor adventures. In fact, it’s so warm when combined with North Face’s McHaven Parka that I actually find myself wanting to remove layers while I’m trudging through the snow with my pup.

As it’s not really waterproof, you won’t want to get it all that wet, which is why I tend to use it as a layer when it’s raining or snowing. But on those cool autumn days and nights, it’s nice to wear by itself. Well, not entirely by itself because I prefer to wear a shirt of sorts underneath, but you know what I mean. Touching on this aspect for a moment, I just want to note that it’s not the softest North Face product I’ve ever purchased. I wouldn’t go so far as to call the material rough, but it’s not particularly soft in my opinion. It might be a bit more rugged than what you’d otherwise expect.

If you’re wondering what it’s made out of, it’s made from 100% polyester. Which is where the breathability isn’t all that high and it’s not all that elastic. But if you can get by these points, I think there’s a pretty good chance that you’ll like it.

As far as the style goes, to me, it looks cool, but it’s really its winter performance that draws me in as it makes for a solid layer. While I’m not particularly fond of the 1/4th zipper setup, as I typically tend to prefer the full-length zipper, it works. What I mean by this is that if you’re looking to slide your head out of it without feeling like you’re dragging your head through a turtleneck tunnel, it’s great. It’ll also help keep your hair in place, assuming you care about such things.

As for when and where you might wear it – the answer is simple: just about anywhere under any circumstance. I find myself wearing it while lounging around the house in super cozy North Face sweatpants and when I go out, be it to dinner, shopping, snowboarding, or hiking. While I don’t usually wear sweatpants when I get out, I tend to pair it with some slacks or jeans, whatever’s clever.

While I only own the grey colored version, the color of which is formally referred to by its manufacturer as “High Rise Grey,” there are quite a few color options to choose from. In fact, there are actually two more shades of grey, “Asphalt Grey” and “TNF Medium Grey.” Here’s a quick list of all of the color options available at the time I wrote this review:

  • Asphalt Grey Heather
  • Brick House Red Heather
  • Climbing Ivy Green
  • Coffee Bean Brown
  • Cosmic Blue
  • Dune Beige
  • Grip Green
  • High Rise Grey
  • Scallion Green
  • Sequoia Red / Asphalt Grey
  • Shady Blue
  • TNF Black
  • TNF Medium Grey
  • Urban Navy

You can see all of the color and sizing options currently available here.

So in the end, there’s but one simple question that you readers are looking to have answered: is it worth buying? My answer is yes. I like it. It’s not my favorite but I’m absolutely glad that it’s in my closet because it makes for a nice outer layer when it’s cold a solid inner-layer when it’s absolutely frigid outside. If you want to pick one up for yourself, you can buy it online from this store.