Nikwax Tech Wash and TX.Direct | Review - Outdoors Magic

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Nikwax Tech Wash and TX.Direct | Review

These easy-to-use products are a great way to take care of your kit and the planet

Why We Chose Nikwax Tech Wash and TX.Direct: Effective, easy to use, eco-friendly

Price:  £4.75 (300ml)
Weight: n/a
More info:

When it comes to putting the planet first, few outdoor brands are even in the same league as Nikwax. Sustainability has always been at the heart of their business – and when you think that their core business is basically about helping to make things waterproof and stay waterproof, that’s even more impressive. After all, most companies in the outdoor industry turned to complex chemicals to formulate durable water repellent (DWR) treatments for their products, which often included the harmful fluorocarbons or perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) that have now been proven to be both persistent in and damaging to the environment. Nikwax, however, have never used PFCs in any of their DWR treatments.

But it’s not only the product range that is environmentally friendly. Using Nikwax will prolong the life of almost all your outdoor gear by helping to restore its performance. That should mean you can use and abuse your kit far into the future, rather than simply discarding it and buying new stuff – which, ultimately, isn’t good for the planet or for your bank balance.

“Nikwax continues to work on reducing its impact and is refreshingly honest about its effort.”

Nikwax Tech Wash removes contaminants like dirt and oil from technical fabrics, as well as revitalising any DWR waterproofing treatments that have been applied to the material. This should help to stop jackets and other gear from ‘wetting out’. Additionally it can revive breathability, allowing moisture vapour to pass through the item, optimising performance in cold and damp conditions.

The purpose of TX.Direct is to reapply waterproof capabilities to your jacket. Use it and it can genuinely bring an old jacket back to life, giving it a new hydrophobic layer and making it bead effectively once more.

The washes are easy to use – just stick your kit in the washing machine and add a capful or two of Tech Wash or TX.Direct, depending on the garment type and how dirty it is. Don’t add detergent – in fact, check there is no detergent residue in the machine, as normal laundry detergent is really not good for outdoor kit. It’s also usually best to wash on a low heat and a slow spin cycle, but check the care labels of your garments.

Some of the other products available from Nikwax. Photo: Chris Johnson

As a brand, Nikwax continues to work on reducing its impact and is refreshingly honest about its efforts. They even share their environmental performance data online so it can be scrutinised publicly. And in late 2017, they reached a notable milestone by becoming the first company in the world to be completely carbon-balanced. That means they can legitimately claim to have offset all their CO2 emissions produced over 40 years of business. This was the culmination of a decade-long programme undertaken in partnership with the World Land Trust, and here at Outdoors Magic we were pretty impressed. And although Nikwax bottles have always been made of recyclable plastic, they have also committed to reducing plastic packaging and ensuring that all their bottles will be made from 100% recycled plastic by 2020.That’s why they were one of the first brands on our list when we compiled this Green Gear Guide.

Tester’s Verdict

Will Renwick, Outdoors Magic Editor

“Nikwax might be known best for their waterproofing solution – the stuff that goes into Paramo’s kit, and that you can add into your own garments and sleeping bags as well but these two products are also rather nifty as well, and really do make a big difference to your kit.

“Seeing a saturated waterproof jacket makes my toes curl a little. It reminds me of hypothermic D of E expedition weekends when none of our group knew what a good rain jacket was let alone knew how to look after one. Because of those memories, I’ve always been aware of the difference a well-looked-after jacket can make. So I use this stuff.

The Tech Wash is well capable of removing dirt and body oils from the fabrics, without damaging the durable water repellent treatment. It’s definitely the safest way to clean your waterproof jacket. Then the reproofer, the TX.Direct is excellent for making sure your waterproof jacket remains not only waterproof but breathable as well.

“Before you dive into trying one of these though, I’d recommend just checking all of the advice for using them on Nikwax’s website. ”

Chosen For Our Green Gear Guide 2019/20
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