Rab Updates AW23 GORE-TEX Gloves To PFCec-free ePE Membrane

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Rab Updates AW23 GORE-TEX Gloves To PFCec-free ePE Membrane

British outdoor brand RAB has updated its Autumn/Winter 2023 waterproof GORE-TEX, replacing the former membrane with Gore’s new ePE membrane, which is free of fluorocarbons of environmental concern (PFCec-free). The new membrane is used both in Rab’s existing GORE-TEX glove offering as well as in its new Khroma Tour GTX gloves. 

Khroma Tour GTX are described as ‘the ultimate backcountry adventure gloves, offering warmth and dexterity’, built with recycled PrimaLoft® Gold insulation. Made with GORE-TEX® ACTIVE, they’re windproof and breathable. The soft, grippy Pittards Armor-Tan® leather is exceptionally durable, abrasion-resistant and externally seamed on the palm to give dexterity where needed most.

GORE-TEX’s ePE (expanded Polyethylene) membrane technology is a complementary GORE-TEX material produced without fluorocarbons of environmental concern. These new membranes have a lower carbon impact, through the laminate’s innovative membrane and select textiles (per Higg MSI), than their predecessors.

They offer comparable performance and are still ‘Guaranteed to Keep You Dry’. At the same time, the membrane is lighter and softer, enhancing overall comfort.

Fluorocarbons, often referred to as PFAS, are a category of synthetic chemicals that are used to make man-made products waterproof. The most frequently referred to, are PFCs which have commonly been used in DWR finishes.

When it comes to clothing, adding PFCs to a fabric means water beads on its surface and rolls off, rather than being absorbed. However, although these substances do not occur naturally in nature, they can now be detected everywhere on earth. This has a negative impact on the environment, especially since the substances do not degrade on their own.

Plus, research has shown that the substances accumulate not only in nature but also in the human body. This is why Rab is committed to finding alternative solutions that provide an equal amount of protection and performance.

Apart from incorporating the new GORE-TEX ePE membrane in the AW23 waterproof glove collection, Rab also utilises it in its Namche GTX Jacket. For Autumn/Winter 2024, the membrane also will feature in Rab’s new Khroma Converge Jacket and Pants designed for skiing.

Photography: Liam Doran

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