Technical details
Open Accordion
Size + fit
Open Accordion

Fit guide: The Copper Baselayer is slim fitting and designed to be worn close to the body. If you’re on the borderline between two chest sizes or would like a more relaxed fit as shown in the photos, we recommend you go for the size up.

Model wears: Skier, snowboarder and surfer Will Higginson is 6ft 2 / 188cm with a 40in / 102cm chest and 32in / 81cm waist. As the baselayer is slim fitting, Will wears the Copper Baselayer in size Large to get a more relaxed fit.

Personalised advice: See our size guide for more advice on sizing, or you can ask us for personalised sizing advice here.

Returns and exchanges: Don’t worry if you order something and it doesn’t fit – we have a free, no hassle 30 day return and exchange period.

XSSMLXLXXL
Fits chest83-9091-9899-106107-114115-122123-130
Fits waist71-7676-8181-8686-9191-9696-101
XSSMLXLXXL
Fits chest33-3636-3939-4242-4545-4848-51
Fits waist28-3030-3232-3434-3636-3838-40

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Copper Baselayer

From graphene, to carbon fibre, to copper

In our first 5 years we’ve made clothing from some of the most cutting-edge materials known to man. We built the world’s first Graphene Jacket and created t shirts entirely from plants and algae. We’ve worked with the world’s strongest fibre, Dyneema Black, as well as carbon fibre, ceramics, glass and bioluminescent material. Making the world’s most resilient, intelligent and adaptable clothing means we often end up re-engineering materials that started life being used for radically different things. And copper is the next material in our journey.

Copper Baselayer

Why we’re looking at disease-resistant clothing

One of the challenges we were already exploring when Covid-19 hit was the role clothing can play in protecting against disease in remote environments on Earth as well as up in space where astronauts’ immune systems are already compromised. While we want the first people on Mars to be wearing our clothes, making sure we survive on Earth first, and understand how to avoid taking diseases from one planet to the next, is a good starting point.

Copper Baselayer

Why we’re working with copper

Copper is biostatic, so bacteria and other life forms can’t grow on it. It also has exceptional antimicrobial properties which means bacteria and viruses die when they make contact with it. So as we enter a new era of disease on Earth, and we start to think about preventing Earth’s illnesses being carried up into space, we wanted to see whether it was possible to start making clothing almost entirely out of copper.

Copper Baselayer

Why metal will be part of the future of clothing

Metal may not sound like an obvious candidate to help create the future of clothing. It’s incredibly expensive, has no real precedent in clothing beyond suits of armour, and there’s no established supply chain. But we’re exploring its potential because to make intelligent clothing you need to start with base materials that can do things normal clothing can’t. You can think of copper as a platform on top of which other innovation can be added – a bit like an operating system in a computer. Copper’s ability to resist disease, while also conducting heat and electricity without a power source, make it an obvious contender.

Copper Baselayer

Copper will be a building block for intelligent clothing

Making clothes out of naturally conductive materials is the first stepping stone towards intelligent clothing. Over the next 10 to 10,000 years clothing has the potential to help us become stronger and faster and even live longer. But everything from exoskeletons to integrated monitoring and intelligence will require power distribution. Which is why the ability of copper and graphene to conduct heat and power while killing bacteria and viruses make them the first likely building blocks for the future of clothing. With graphene remaining incredibly expensive to produce at scale, we’re trialling copper at the same time.

Copper Baselayer

Copper’s journey from computer chips to clothing

Copper has always been central to the history of innovation – from the Guttenberg printing press, telegraph and telephone, to circuit boards, computer chips, broadband and telecommunications cables. The first clock, watch, telescope, microscope and battery all relied on copper. And if you’re reading this on your phone, 12% of that is copper too. But now copper can be woven into fabric.

Copper Baselayer

How we put 4km of copper into a baselayer

The process for building our Copper Baselayer is radically different to how we make our Full Metal Jacket. While every jacket is built with 11km of copper that has to be lacquered, scoured, heat-set and dyed, each baselayer is built with over 4km of copper that is coated with a protective polyester before being warp knitted with nylon and elastane. You can see the copper strands running through every square centimetre of the material in a tessellating hexagonal pattern.

Copper Baselayer

It’s soft and stretchy and doesn’t feel like metal

You wouldn’t know that the baselayer had copper running through it just by touching it. Not only is the copper soft and malleable, but the baselayer is built with 19% elastane which gives it incredible four way stretch. There’s no move you could pull where the baselayer would restrict you. It’s also high wicking and breathable, so you’ll stay comfortable when you’re working up a sweat. And the underside has a soft, silky feel, making it easy to wear all day.

Copper Baselayer

You can wear it from the office to the Arctic

The baselayer adapts to life in the city as easily as it thrives running, climbing or skiing in the mountains. We built a high integrated collar that can be pulled up - so whether you’re in the Arctic, the desert, or the city, you can protect your face from the heat, the cold and the weather. When you’re inside you can wear the baselayer with the collar down like a regular top, but still be ready for somewhere a little more hostile in a second.

Copper Baselayer

Two concealed side pockets

You’ll find two hidden side pockets at the waist. Both pockets fasten with concealed zippers with rubberised pullers. And they’re big enough to keep your hands warm, or to carry your phone, wallet and keys.

Copper Baselayer

Viruses and bacteria can’t live on copper

Disease resistant clothing will become normal in the future, which is why we’re starting to work with copper now. It’s antimicrobial, which means bacteria and viruses die when they make contact with it. The copper releases electrically charged ions which make it difficult for a microbe to breathe, before punching holes in its outer membrane, moving in and completely wiping out its DNA, preventing it from developing any future resistance. These properties have been demonstrated by an extensive body of research and have come under the spotlight again in Covid-19 studies.

Copper Baselayer

The Egyptians were using copper medical tools in 2200BC

Copper has been used to combat disease for thousands of years. The oldest medical tools ever discovered were made from copper 4,000 years ago, and were found entombed with the remains of Qar, a royal physician from the Sixth Dynasty in ancient Egypt. The Smith Papyrus shows that 1,000 years earlier the Egyptians were using copper to sterilise wounds and transport clean drinking water. And they weren’t alone. The Babylonians would sharpen their swords and put the copper alloy filings into cuts sustained in battle, to reduce infection and speed healing.

Halo

Copper’s halo effect

During the 19th century Paris was one of many cities worldwide struck by a series of devastating cholera outbreaks which killed tens of thousands of people. In 1852 a physician called Victor Burq found that the disease wasn’t killing anyone who worked in the copper smelting plants around the city. Not knowing about the ancient Egyptians, he dubbed it “the antidote to cholera.” Recent research in the US suggests that copper may produce a halo effect, potentially reducing bacteria by 70% up to 50 centimetres away from the copper itself and reducing it on surfaces not made out of copper.

Copper Baselayer

Now it’s NASA experimenting with copper medical devices

4,000 years after the Egyptians, NASA is exploring the use of 3D-printed copper medical instruments on long-duration space missions. One of the issues with longer missions is that astronauts can experience an altered immune response, known as Immune System Dysregulation. It’s a condition that can leave them more susceptible to infectious diseases, which can harm their performance and in turn limit human space exploration. So NASA is now testing medical instruments built from copper for use onboard the International Space Station, to help reduce the risk of infection in space.

Copper Baselayer

Copper’s future role on Mars

As Matt Damon demonstrated in The Martian, we’re going to have to be highly resourceful when we do get to Mars. Survival is going to hinge on making the most of every resource available, and Rover missions have already been able to find copper ore deposits on Mars. Even rocket parts are now being built with copper. Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center have recently developed and 3D-printed a new copper-based alloy known as GRCop-42. It’s incredibly strong, highly conductive and will be used to line rocket’s propulsion engines.

Copper Baselayer

Copper can be recycled without any loss in quality

Copper is one of the few materials that can be recycled infinitely without losing any of its chemical properties. Recycled copper, or secondary copper as it’s known, is completely indistinguishable from primary copper, and it can be recycled from its raw state as well as from manufactured products. Copper recycling can be traced back over 2,000 years to when the Romans were recasting weapons and armour using scrap metal from foundries.

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