Keeping it cool. Real cool. {180s Quantum Cool Arm Sleeve Review}

I love compression gear. Calf sleeves, tights, socks…you name it and I’ll wear it while I’m running. I truly believe that compression helps thwart muscle fatigue and boost recovery time. I had been wanting to try out a pair of compression arm sleeves for quite some time and as luck would have it an old friend of mine who runs an absolutely fantastic travel & adventure website called Xploritall (stop by and say hi!) contacted me about a great company that he works with called 180’s.

180s fw20012 logo

180s is based in Baltimore and what a fun coincidence! So am I! This company has a great cold weather and warm weather active wear line for both men and women that includes arm sleeves, calf sleeves, hats, gloves, ear warmers (one variety of which contains Bluetooth technology! how cool is that!?), training jackets, and more. What with the weather hopefully deciding to get warmer at some point, the QuantumCool Compression Fit Arm Sleeves caught my eye. It gets disgustingly hot and humid around here in the summertime and these sleeves claim to promote “active cooling technology”, plus that compression factor that I had so been wanting to test out.


My friend asked me what color I wanted to try and of course I told him the more visible the better. We all know how important it is to stay seen, especially for those early morning/late evening runs. A very pink pair of arm sleeves arrived and I was pleased with how bright they were and doubly impressed that they had also incorporated a reflective element. No one is going to miss me in these. (Or so I hope.)


The first thing I noticed when I put them on was that they are completely seamless on the inside, which is perfect because extra things touching my skin while I’m out on a very long run is liable to drive me completely mad. That said, there was also a tag in one of the sleeves that I quickly removed for that very reason. (TAGLESS IS BEST!!)

They are a nylon/spandex blend (73%/27%) that feels almost like a second skin and allows free range of motion. Although the material does not feel like it would be particularly moisture-wicking, it absorbs as you sweat creating an overall cooling effect. QuantumCool also implements a pulse point cooling element that is located on various pulse points, supposedly increasing the cooling rate of the body.

Unfortunately as far as compression is concerned I didn’t really feel it all that much and the pair I have is an extra small. However to be fair, I also have string bean – albeit TONED string bean – arms that nary a iPod arm band of any size will comfortably fit around so I kind of anticipated this problem. Other people would probably have a lot better luck in the compression department.

And as added bonus, they look awesome with my tattoo.

My first run in them was my 18 miler. I had on a tech shirt, the sleeves, then a running jacket on top of that because it was about 40 degrees when I left the house. I had heard some people mention that arm sleeves made them feel clammy so I was a little concerned that I was going to get uncomfortable or too hot having them on. I’m guessing those people weren’t wearing QuantumCool.

They work! It almost felt like I had a fan blowing cool air up inside the sleeves of my jacket. It was especially noticeable in the crease of my elbows where I usually get really sweaty from having my arms bent. I might have been sweating there, but I didn’t notice it. Probably because the material was doing the work that it advertised and using my perspiration to cool my arms down. I was probably the most comfortable temperature wise than I have been on any run in a long time.

I’ve worn them since with similar results, but the real test will be taking them out today for an otherwise sleeveless run outside in mid-70 degree temps. The material provides great protection from the sun as well – UPF 50+ – and I have a feeling that I’m in for some seriously weird farmer tans this summer.

I may have to pick up a second pair! They have 6 colors to choose from and I think I might need that bright yellow.

Have you ever run with compression arm sleeves? What did you think?

I hope everyone is having a marvelous Thursday morning! There’s so much sunshine outside that I hardly know what to do with myself besides the obvious…go run later. In my new shoes. Yes. New shoes again. I’m having a harder time finding a pair of shoes that I love than I did finding a suitable daycare for my child.




Shoe Hoarder Salt

I was provided with a pair of QuantumCool Arm Sleeves to review. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and they are very honest. I received no additional compensation. Results may vary, but these certainly work for me! (Even if I wish they were a little tighter!)

36 thoughts on “Keeping it cool. Real cool. {180s Quantum Cool Arm Sleeve Review}

  1. SuzLyfe says:

    Um. the tag line of my blog should be enough to explain how I feel about compression wear. and the fact that i have 10 pairs each of procompression and cwx….

  2. Andrea says:

    I’m very intrigued by the fact that arm sleeves are supposed to actually cool you. You’ll definitely have to report back on how they work for you on a warm day!

    • runsaltrun says:

      I had no idea either until I found out about these! I thought they were just for the compression factor, like calf sleeves and socks. They make a QuantumCool calf sleeve too and I’m kind of curious as to how that would work out.

  3. Kristin says:

    Nice tattoo Salt! I love it!! It’s fabulous!! Such cute arm sleeves!! My husband wears them all the time, but I’ve never tried!! I think I will, though!! Thanks for the great review!!

  4. ambertherunner says:

    I’m interested in trying compression sleeves for my arms, so I’m a little disappointed you didn’t notice it in this pair. You might have a good point about having tiny arms though, so it’s possible I’d notice a difference.
    I never knew what to think of cooling technology in gear. I think it’s awesome that the sleeves work so well, but I’m interested to see if it helps as much as spring heats up. I’m not sure if I’d use sleeve like this in the summer though since you pointed out the unavoidable farmer’s tan 😉

    • runsaltrun says:

      I’m interested to see what happens too. I’m actually sitting at my desk right now wearing them because I’m about to go outside. I’ll let you know how it goes! 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      That’s pretty much how I felt about it.
      I just wore them outside for a run and it’s the warmest day we’ve had around here in awhile. They preformed pretty well! It’s also really humid and it didn’t help with that so much, but they certainly didn’t hurt.

  5. prettylittlerunner says:

    I haven’t tried sleeves, please I’m just getting into socks… one thing at a HOWEVER, they look amazing and with my mini overheating prob they may be just what I need….

  6. Lisa @ Running Out Of Wine says:

    Ive worn arm sleeves during races when its cooler to start since they are easy to take off. I have never heard of anything like this that can actually cool you off! Your post gave me flashbacks of Baltimore summer running…I guess the real test will be, do they cool you off when its 100 degrees and 99% humidity?

    • runsaltrun says:

      They definitely did their job today, but it is a bit humid out and I don’t think there’s much they will do to help that. Gahhh Baltimore summers are so gross!!

  7. txa1265 says:

    I’ve never tried sleeves of any type, but since I love the rest of my compression gear I might just love them as well! They look cool (pun intended).

    As for your shoe problem … it is a problem! 😀 Of course since I love the Kinvaras, it is all good!

    • runsaltrun says:

      I totally have a problem! But I think the Kinvaras might be my favorite pair yet. I love the Connects especially for short distance quick runs, but the arch support in those and the Flows is a little weird and I was having some pain in the outside of my foot after running in the Flows. That support doesn’t exist in the Kinvaras and I just took them out for a run and was really comfortable the whole time. Hopefully this will be it for me! (Also they are super light! I was not expecting them to be so light!)

      • txa1265 says:

        I don’t know if we ever stop looking … but I seem to work best with Nike or Saucony (and New Balance Minimus, but they don’t last very long!). The Virratas I’ve been running in are awesome, but zero-drop isn’t for everyone!

        When I was trying on new shoes a few weeks ago, weight was definitely an issue – with Nike Free, NB and Kinvaras dominating my last 2 years, everything else felt like bricks!

      • runsaltrun says:

        Once I realized that I wasn’t an overpronator it was like a whole new world of shoes opened up! I am so excited to be able to test out more minimal shoes! I don’t know if I’m ever going to be able to go O drop, but I am really loving the 4mm. While waiting for the Sauconys to arrive, I rotated the Mizunos back in for a run or two while taking a little break from the Brooks and I felt like I had serious lead feet. They seemed so light before! It’s amazing how different they all are!

  8. piratebobcat says:

    You’ll have to let me know how they treat you in the summer heat. I have a pair of arm sleeves someone gave me, but I’ve never worn them. I’ll have to go look at them and see what they’re for. Anything to help with running in the Texas heat!!!

  9. Change of Pace says:

    Sounds like a really cool product! I’ve never tried arm compression, but I swear the socks do help. I’ve seen a lot of people in the run portion of Ironman wear cooling sleeves.
    I never wear socks to workout, but I wore my brightest pair on my highway shoulder bike yesterday for visibility!

  10. irenejean says:

    The cooling effect sounds neat, I might have to give them a try this summer especially if they also make calf sleeves. And yes, the tan lines will definitely be interesting!

  11. themilereport says:

    I’ve never run with compression arm sleeves, but sounds like they’re a good way to go! I have compression calf sleeves, but I’ve only worn them after runs for recovery

  12. Charlotte says:

    I love those compression sleeves. I will visit that website. I do wear compression sleeves while I lift weights and use kettlebells. I love them.

  13. littlegreenrunningshoes says:

    I’ve never worn compression sleeves, and sadly have to confess I didn’t really know what their purpose was. I am really curious to try them now though! I wonder how they will fit on my scrawy arms…Thanks for sharing!

  14. northernambitions says:

    I’ve never heard of cooling compression sleeves but they do look neat and so cool with the tattoo! I’m all about the bright colours. Um and string bean arms made me chuckle! Love the descriptor 🙂

  15. milesandblessings says:

    Hey! I just found your blog from amber’s twitter :). I am new to Maryland. We moved to Westminster about 5 months ago. Your shoe search cracks me up because I am in the same spot. I am neutral and can run in lots of different shoes….but I am looking for that one perfect fit…and driving my husband crazy :)…I wore mizuno Riders for long time…but I am looking for something lighter and I hate the update! So now I am trying to love kinvaras!!! I do really like the saucony guide…but I want to love the lighter race shoe too :). Can’t wait to read more of your posts!

  16. Pandora Viltis says:

    I have trouble with iPod armbands too and gave wondered whether compression sleeves woukd stay up on me. I may have to try these even if they might not be very compression-y.

  17. fitnessmeetsfrosting says:

    Haha I wish I had your arms! I have unfortunate T-rex arms (big head, short arms). I try so hard to tone them (they are strong, just flabby) and have not yet been successful. 2014 will be the year 😉 PS I’m trying Pure Flows right now and so far so good. We’ll see though!

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