A tank top in a sophisticated material with a built-in bra is great for low to medium impact activities like hiking, climbing and mountaineering. It can be used on its own when hiking in warm weather or under insulating layers in colder conditions. You can read more about the qualities of tank tops versus cropped sports bras in our article How to choose a sports bra for hiking. I was keen to test the Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank top due to its excellent material and attractive design and here is what I learned.
The product is suitable for:
- Everyday use (if you are into athleisure)
The Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank is made of a blend of polyester and Spandex, but the ratio between the two materials varies somewhat for the various parts of the tank top. Most notably, you can feel the difference between the tomato red fabric of the built-in bra, which has the classic smooth “work-out polyester” feel, and the actual tank which has a softer more cotton-like feel to it. As mentioned below, I am very satisfied with the technical properties of the top as it is both moisture-wicking and quick-drying.
When speaking of material, I have to mention that the color of this orange (officially Fizzy Peach) Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank is a lot brighter in real life than on the photographs online. In real life, the color is intensively orange (bordering blaze/fluorescent orange) while the online photographs show a more subtle peachy orange shade. If you have any experience/pictures of how the other colors of this top look like in real life, please share them with us!
Comfort, fit and functionality
The most important aspect of any sports top with built-in bra is of course how good support it offers. Here it should be mentioned that the Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank was designed with studio training and other low/medium impact activities in mind – which makes it perfect for hiking, climbing and mountaineering but not for (trail) running, which is a high-impact activity par excellence. Most tops with a built-in bra have shelf bras/bra liners which compress your breasts against your chest wall to reduce bounce – and they can simply not offer the support which high-impact activities require unless you have a small bosom. Women with very large breasts will often find that shelf bras/bra liners can merely offer them adequate support for low impact activities.
My chest is a European size 70D/E (UK/US size 32 D/DD) which might sound like a lot for the uninitiated, but “volume-wise” is it approximately the same as a B85 (UK/US 38B) and thus pretty medium-sized. With a circumference of 35 inches at the fullest, I was right between Asics’ sizes S and M (check the sizing table for the Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank in our review of the best tank tops with built-in bra), but I decided to buy the top in size S to gain the best support. I was worried that it might be hard to get in and out of (also my waist – 28 inches – was exactly in between the two sizes), but my worries were obsolete as the top fits me great and is relatively easy to get in and out of – even when moist with sweat. I estimate the support level to be somewhere between low and medium; definitely more than low, but not quite medium support. As the Small size fits me so comfortably, I could probably also squeeze myself into a size XS and get a bit more support (as tighter usually equals more support), but the question is whether I would start “spilling over” at the sides in a XS…
As a slightly tall woman (5 feet, 8 inches) I am happy to say that the top has a good length for me; laid out flat, it is 23¾ inches long from top to bottom and a little more than 14 inches from the bottom rim and up to the arm pit hole.
The most unique part of the Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank is of course the cut-outs on the back which create petal-like pattern. It is, however, not just a pretty feature but also very functional as they offer good ventilation for the area between the shoulder blades. As the back of the Asics top covers more of the shoulder blades than more conventional sport tanks (often with some sort of racerback shape), it is also more comfortable to carry a backpack – although this of course depends on the width of the backpack’s straps and backpanel.
Washing and drying
The Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank is machine-washable at 40°C. As the fabric is very thin and doesn’t absorb much water, it dries very fast.
I tested the Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank on the Jof di Miezegnot and Cima del Cacciatore trails in the alps of northeastern Italy and I was very satisfied with its performance. The built-in bra supported me beautifully even when I put up the pace and thus increased the strain on my chest. Due to the warm weather and the steep ascend I was of course sweating quite a lot, but I continuously felt dry wearing the top due to its excellent moisture-wicking properties. Whenever we made a longer stop (10 minutes+) the top would also dry almost completely – except for immediately under the chest, around solar plexus where the majority of the sweat running down the cleavage would end up. I was surprised that the tank did not smell bad after drying overnight from the Jof di Miezegnot trip (I did bring another tank top to wear the next day) – I was actually able to wear it again on the Cima del Cacciatore trail without a problem. Even after the second trip it did not smell particular bad (in that way that some polyester workout wear tend to) – in spite of having been drenched in sweat multiple times during the two hikes.
The only bad thing about the Asics Fit-Sana Contour tank is that it does not offer much coverage for those of us with a tendency to “doorbells syndrome”, e.g. quickly getting stiff nipples due to temperature changes or sensations. It would be great if Asics had sewn in some fabric petals or similar to mitigate this issue without necessarily including a full cup, which can also feel annoying. Other than that, it is a great-looking top with excellent performance for low and medium impact activities.
I field tested this product. The rating shows its overall performance.About Rating
- Unique yet functional cut-outs
- Great moisture-management
- A bit less than medium support (depending on chest size)
- Broad straps
- No coverage inserts for stiff nipples
Where to buy?