The last article went a bit insane.
I got a lot of suggestions to add people to the list, some of them I did, others I did not. I did not because it doesn’t really matter, it’s just a silly article, it’ll be gone and buried within the next 24 hours. All I wanted to prove was that there are better people to sponsor than bikewithgirl and Mumbiker Nikhil, and that is done.
This is a story in the other direction, why brands and PR agencies can’t always trust people like me with their stuff.
A few years ago I was approached by Aditya Phadke to do a review of Warmee self heating pads. We had met once, he used to run Motonomous, and I was writing often, which is rare, so Riderzone was popular. He called me and asked if I was going to ride somewhere cold soon, I said I did have a plan to do Spiti at some point.
A few days later I got a package couriered to me, it was full of these little red rectangular packets that I hadn’t paid for. It was a strange feeling, to get something for free to play with, and write about. Around the same time I’d also received some goodies from UM, and had just started my new job in marketing. I couldn’t complain, at least not for a month or so.
I was happy, but it also felt like a burden. It was a weird sort of performance anxiety. If you are masturbating on live cam, and there are 0 viewers, do you feel good or bad? It was a strange year.
Spiti never happened, I never rode anywhere colder than 30 degree Celsius, and the Warmees were forgotten. 2 years later when I was moving to the UK, I spotted them lying around hidden in one corner of the cupboard. I was going to a cold country, it made sense to carry them along.
So I did, and used them during my camping at the ATFF 2017 in London.
It’s an interesting product for sure, Indian conditions are never consistently cold enough for you to invest in heated gear, but when you do find yourself above the snowline, a bunch of Warmees could be really useful. Their main advantage would be the ease of use, tear open the packet, shake a bit to let the chemicals inside the pack react, and the heat begins after a few minutes.
However, you can’t just rely on them for all your warmth, it’s not going to be enough. I guess that is so by design, they don’t get super hot, it’s just a constant radiation of mild heat. What you need is a cocoon of warm layers around the pad to trap that heat and let it build up.
The good thing about the heat being released gradually is that they last for a while. The ones that I used were still warm by the time I woke up in the morning, which is pretty impressive.
I used a bunch of them, so did wifey, and we didn’t feel any obvious side effects, does look like we are still alive, so I guess it’s safe to use too. At one point during ATFF I had one inside my top, one inside my pants, and one inside the sleeping bag. They can take some beating too without bursting open.
The place where I think they would be the most useful is Ladakh. A lot of people go there, unfortunately, and most of them underestimate the cold. When I’d gone there, I was wearing like 5 layers of clothing, and I was still cold. Things would have been comfy if I had Warmees to tag along, slide one under the warmer, one near the crotch somewhere, and maybe even two inside the shoes.
They aren’t too costly either, 500 bucks for a pack of 5 body warmers. If you buy 2 such packs, that should last you the worst of days on a Ladakh trip. In the end it’s a comfort product, it attempts to make your life a bit less miserable, or alternatively it attempts to make it a bit more comfy. You will still need to invest in all the cold weather gear, this is just a little cherry on top.
Hopefully this also gives you an idea of why I don’t get sponsored stuff, I just reviewed something 3 years after I got it, at least it does prove that Warmees last a while. Part of the reason is that I’m lazy, the other part is that I don’t really have to care. There are no consequences for me, it’s not like someone can cut off my source of income if I don’t get something done. I have the luxury of not needing to give a shit.
I guess I’m not very creative either, Mumbiker Nikhil would’ve done a subscriber meetup at Warmee’s office, bikewithgirl would’ve shoved it down her cleavage and uploaded a selfie. Would that have sold more Warmees? No, but product awareness is also valuable to brands.
My point is that since nobody argues with me, I am arguing with myself. It’s a feeble argument, but this is all I’ve got. As far as Warmees go, I would recommend them to anybody planning to find themselves somewhere really cold, you are worth it, bitch.