Heather Thompson, the creative force behind Yummie Tummie as well as the new RIPT Fusion Men’s Body Sculpting Undershirt has had an impressive career. Starting out in intimiate apparel, she quickly made her mark as the founding Design Director for P Diddy’s Sean John label, a fashion clothing line that had one of the most succesful men’s apparel launches of all time. Her accomplishments are nothing short of astonishing and go on to include serving as VP of Creative Design for J Lo’s Sweetface brand and Co-Creative Director working along side celebs like Beyonce Knowles.
While Heather’s talent and creativity are undeniable, it’s important to note that for one to become as successful as she has, you have to surround yourself with a team that not only shares the same vision, but also shares the same core business and customer service principles. Let me tell you that absolutely everyone that I’ve interacted with on team Yummie Tummie/RIPT Fusion has been totally awesome to deal with and have been incredibly responsive to the requests of this simpleton undershirt blogger. When a company becomes as successful as they have, it would be easy enough to lose site of staying in touch with your community, but this talented group of ladies (Heather, Sherry, Cat, Staff, and their PR firm) are so totally responsive it’s almost unbelievable. One thing is for sure, if you’re in the market for women’s or men’s shapewear tops, you’ll never be sorry you’ve purchased a product created by this team.
If you didn’t already know, Heather & team launched the Yummie Tummie women’s shapewear top in early 2008 and it literally became an overnight success. From her experience in men’s apparel, she knew that men also cared about their appearance. So she took the design principles behind YT, coupled them with classic men’s undershirt design, infused a special blend of technology and comfort specially tailored to the needs of men, and launched the RIPT Fusion Body Sculpting Undershirt in early June. If my website visitor stats are any indication, it appears that the RIPT Fusion undershirt will become an instant favorite with men all over the world.
Before I get to the official review, I thought I’d share a couple videos with you. Special thanks to team YT/RF for making them available so I could embed them here.
This first video is of tv host and fashion expert Carson Kressley trying on the RIPT (ript tee) – thanks to jhuber7672 for posting the video on youtube:
This second video is when RIPT was featured on the tv show The View where they had one of the crew try on RIPT Fusion and showed before and after pictures.
Pretty impressive indeed! Now, on to the review.
Fit – Let’s start off with providing the overall dimensions for this large sized body sculpting undershirt (after washing). Length: 27″ (top of shoulder to bottom), Width: 19″ (underarm to underarm), Middle/Midsection Width: 15″, Bottom Width: 17.5″, Shoulder Strap length: 5″, Sleeve length (top): 8″, Sleeve length (bottom): 3″.
Because their sizing chart is a little tough to decipher, I wasn’t sure whether or not the large was going to be too small. In fact, based on my measurements, the chart inferred I should go with an extra large and I knew that wouldn’t be right. So I emailed them with my measurements and they wound up sending a large. The overall fit is tight, but not skin tight like other slimming undershirts. It’s not hard to get on either — it slips on fairly easily and much more similar to putting on a regular undershirt. As mentioned in my “initial thoughts” post, the top part (above upper abs) and the bottom part (sweep/part you tuck in) are made out of 100% cotton (not stretchy cotton), so the fit in those areas feels about the same as wearing a tight fitting cotton undershirt. The fit in the midsection area where they have the double layer polyester/spandex blend provides a nice amount of compression in the upper ab region (i actually feel like i have a six pack up there when wearing the undershirt) and offers a moderate amount of slimming effects around the love handle and stomach area where it trimmed off about 1/4″ – 1/2″. While that was the case for me, others have reported seeing a couple inches shaved off their midsection.
As a point of reference, the midsection of the undershirt is around 11″ high and when on, covers the area from just under the nipple to about 2″ below my belly button. (man, they should make a manly name for that, don’t you think?)
To be honest, I could probably have sized down even further to a medium to get a little more compression in the lower half of my midsection area, but I think it might have been a little too tight in the upper chest and underarm/armhole area because while the 100% cotton material is of really nice quality, it’s not a stretchy cotton. Although the length is a modest 27″ long laying flat, I didn’t have any problems with the undershirt coming untucked during the day. I believe this is mostly due to the fact that the stretchy, tight fitting midsection is holding the shirt in place all day long. One other really smart design choice is having the bottom 4″ of the undershirt made out cotton instead of spandex. That in itself prevents the “roll-up” effect that you can get with some other compression undershirts.
Although not technically in the “fit” category, one really nice characteristic of this slimming undershirt that I’d like to point out is that it actually looks like a standard undershirt from the chest up and not like a Under Armour compression undershirt. For those guys about to get lucky and a little self-conscious of what your date might think about you wearing a slimming undershirt (even though she’s wearing a Yummie Tummie), I think you’d be a lot less worried taking off your shirt wearing a RIPT Fusion underneath than you would be if you were wearing some of the other compression undershirts. No need to run in the bathroom and hide, show your RIPT with pride!
Overall, I give this undershirt high marks in the fit category. I think the fit could go from good to awesome if they infused a wee bit of lycra/spandex into the cotton itself. Possibly 5% or less. That would provide for a slightly more forgiving fit in the upper area and allow people to size down even further so they can get additional slimming benefits.
I also think they should rework their sizing chart a little to make it a little easier to understand and to align their sizes more closely with what guys should buy for themselves.
Feel – As mentioned above, there are two fabrics used in this undershirt. The top and bottom parts are made out of very high quality 100% cotton material. It’s extremely soft right out of the box and after several washings it is equally as soft. The double layer 79% polyester/21% spandex body panel midsection front is smooth and feels really nice on the skin. It’s actually pretty interesting as I just noticed that polyester/spandex area in the front of the undershirt is made from a double layer and the back is a single layer. I’m guessing it’s designed that way to provide more slimming effects in the front and the sides where us guys need it the most. Although the cotton is a bit thicker (being of higher quality), the undershirt is surprisingly breathable and allows the wearer to stay cool and comfortable all day long. While not really a “feel” element, I wanted to comment on the manufacturing and stitching quality in this made in Taiwan garment because it’s really impressive. As you can imagine, I’ve worn tons of undershirts and on several occasions I’ve found that the stitching and/or poor manufacturing can take away from the fit of an undershirt – be it stitching that irritates your skin or bad/poorly done seam joins that dig into you. Not so in the RIPT Fusion. They’ve really done a wonderful job manufacturing this high quality men’s slimming undershirt.
My only gripe about the feel has nothing to do with the fabric itself, but was caused by an annoying little garment label that was originally stitched on the inner left side of the undershirt. After a couple hours of wearing the undershirt, I tore it off and all was good from that point forward.
Function – Here’s how RIPT Fusion markets the product:
RIPT FUSION is a body-sculpting undershirt designed to support your core, shave inches off your midsection and enhance your posture. Immediately, you will look and feel better in your clothes with a heightened sense of core consciousness.
- Designed to physiologically shape your body while visibly improving your physique
- Body-sculpting undershirt designed to support your core
- Slick fabric won’t cling to clothes
- Moisture-wicking, keeps you feeling cool and dry
- Elongated design, won’t roll up
If you’ve read my other men’s shapewear undershirt reviews before, you’ll know I find it a little funny how these undershirt companies market their slimming undershirts. To make the pitch appealing to guys, it has to be focused on using terms that guys will relate to like “high tech”, “torso improving”, “six pack”, “body sculpting”, “physique”, etc. Contrast that to the same products for women where they use terms like “tummy”, “smoothing”, “slims”, “layering”, etc.
Nonetheless, if you boil it down to the essentials of what a men’s slimming undershirt is supposed to do, you’ll find they need to:
- mask the appearance of love handles, stomach, and help flatten the chest area
- provide some core support
- help your clothes fit a little better
- make you feel a little more confident
I think the RIPT Fusion performed really well in areas 1, 3, and 4 above. I like how the undershirt flattened/tightened my chest and upper ab area and help my shirt and pants fit a hair bit better. Also, who wouldn’t feel better when their clothes fit a bit looser? I don’t know about you, but on any given day if I can feel a couple pounds lighter, I’m gonna be one happy undershirt blogger walking around with my head a little bit higher with a bit more pep in my step. I would have like to see a little more compression in the love handle area, but that is likely solved by sizing down to a medium. I can’t honestly say that I felt any “core support”, but to be candid, I really don’t care about that as my main motivation to wearing a men’s slimming undershirt really revolve around items 1, 3, and 4 – in that order.
Affordability – Compared to other undershirts in it’s category, RIPT Fusion is attractively priced. That’s not to say I think spending $58 for an undershirt is practical, but specialty clothing like this is more expensive to manufacture, thus you’d expect it to cost more than a regular undershirt. Also, if you contrast spending that kind of money for an undershirt that serves a specific need (making you look slimmer) to spending the same amount on a high-end undershirt that doesn’t, it’s a lot easier to justify the spend. Like I’ve said in other undershirt reviews, I don’t really see myself going out and replacing all my undershirts with these high-tech marvels, but I could easily see having a couple (one v-neck, one crew) in my arsenal of undershirts for those special occasions when I want to look more streamlined or when I’ve eaten a little bit too much the night before.
Overall, I give the RIPT Fusion high marks across the board. If you’re in the market for a slimming undershirt, you should give this undershirt a try.
Where to buy RIPT Fusion:
- RIPT Fusion website (www.riptfusion.com) – U.S. & Canada residents. Orders ship via Fedex Ground.
- RibbedTee website (www.ribbedtee.com/getript) – U.S., Canada, UK, Australia, and other international destinations. Orders ship via USPS Priority Mail. The folks at RibbedTee have a special going on through mid August – buy a RIPT Fusion, get one package of RibbedTee undershirts free. Details of the special are on the RibbedTee Blog.
Sites That Link to this Post
- Ask Tug: Spanx for Men versus RipT Fusion. Which is Better? | Undershirt Guy Blog | August 1, 2011
- Ask Tug: Slimming Underwear Options | Undershirt Guy Blog | August 1, 2011
- Rid Yourself of Rolls and Suck In Your Gut. The RIPT Fusion Body Sculpting Tank Top Is Here. | The Undershirt Guy Blog | June 19, 2010
- Men’s Undershirt Sales Jumped 11 percent in 2009 | The Undershirt Guy Blog | February 27, 2010
- RipT Fusion Undershirt News: Tank Tops & Black Undershirts Coming, Plus Big & Tall Sizes Now Available | The Undershirt Guy Blog | February 11, 2010
- Undershirt Guy Blog Mentioned in March 2010 Issue of Men’s Health! | The Undershirt Guy Blog | February 9, 2010
- Need to Find A Holiday Gift? Think Undershirts! 43% of Americans in need of an Underwear Overhaul | The Undershirt Guy Blog | December 13, 2009
- RIPT FUSION – A New Compression “Undershirt on Steroids” from Yummie Tummy Designer Heather Thomson | The Undershirt Guy Blog | August 19, 2009
- Whoot! Wore My RIPT Fusion Mens Body Sculpting Undershirt Yesterday! | The Undershirt Guy Blog | August 13, 2009