When I travel, I’m very careful about what I pack. If it doesn’t serve at least two purposes it may not make the cut. On my last trip the Infinity Lyocell Buff’s 5 thousand uses made it an easy shoe-in. I first learned of the company and their innovative products the way most people did; customized Buffs were front and center on the CBS show Survivor in 2000, and have been worn as anything from tube tops to bandannas in subsequent seasons. I don’t think that I truly appreciated the versatility of the Buff until I owned an OriginalWomen’s Buff of my own, which has since become one of my favorite backpacking accessories. Now with the new Infinity Buff the company graciously sent me, this Buff offers even more versatility along with style and my favorite, sustainability.
All in One
At first glance, the Infinity Buff may appear to just be a fashionable scarf that drapes nicely, but thanks to the thoughtful design and a little user creativity, this multifunctional piece can be used for much more. Over a two-week trip throughout southern Spain I magically transformed my Infinity Buff into nothing less than a scarf, neck warmer, sun hood, wind scarf, shawl, head band, picnic ground cloth, seat cushion, shirt, shoulder pads, and a blanket. I know that there are many more uses, but these are the ones that stood out to me on this city-hopping trip.
I was surprised how many ways I discovered to use this 20-inch wide, 30-inch diameter circle of fabric. Almost every time I ventured out for the day I draped the Infinity Buff around my neck, with a new confidence that if the weather changed I would have some protection without carting around another sweater or hat. The best example is when I left one brisk and variable morning with my Infinity Buff as well as my favorite regular Buff in its hat form for a day hike to some Moorish ruins in the foothills of the Sierra Nevadas. Throughout the morning I continually transitioned from scarf to neck warmer as the sun disappeared and reappeared. On the descent from the ruins the sky turned ominous and I was mercilessly pounded with freezing rain and hail. Like a magician I was able to quickly create a hood that not only trapped heat near my neck and head, but also kept icy rain from running down my back.
The Infinity Buff is made from pulped fibers from eucalyptus trees that have been sustainably harvested. The resulting Tencel® fabric is soft and falls beautifully, plus it’s completely biodegradable. The fine fibers are silky and didn’t bother my sensitive skin at all. Plus, Tencel® naturally manages moisture to keep you comfortable and is anti-microbial for a stink-free bonus. Buff has created a knitting process that leaves no seams and allows the garment to be extremely durable and always retain its shape. I tried fairly vigorously to pull it out of sorts with no noticeable results. This knitting process also eliminates the risk of fraying, which at this point I can confirm. Even after countless abuse; stuffing into bags, friction with backpack straps and rubbing against stone surfaces, my Infinity Buff has edges that look like new. Impressive. Although I have only washed my Infinity Buff by hand, Buff says you can throw it in the washer and it won’t shrink or run; sounds easy to me.
The company Buff was formed in 1991 when motorcycle enthusiast Joan Rojas envisioned a more versatile accessory that he could instantly transform to meet the conditions. This dream spawned what is now an international company that is ISO 14001 certified, meaning that Buff meets strict requirements for environmental management. Manufactured just outside of Barcelona, Spain, Buff designs many variations of this genius concept including options to customize Buffs with branding for your company or events, and are available for men, women, kids and even dogs. The hundreds of styles, colors and fabrics are a testament to the growth and success of Joan’s vision.
In a nutshell, the Infinity Buff is a fashionable, practical and incredibly adaptable accessory well equipped to protect your from cold, sun, wind, and dust; Qualities that have certainly earned it a permanent position on my packing list.