The sting of bitter cold on his cheeks drove Joe Edwards into action more than 30 years ago. If you spend any time in the outdoors in cold weather, chances are you have benefitted from the result.
It was the late 1970s, and Edwards was enjoying a day of skiing at Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort.
"Necessity is the mother of invention, and that was certainly the case with me," said Edwards, co-founder of the Seirus - Cold Weather Essentials company. "I was familiar with neoprene as an insulator from the freestyle ski pants of that time, and I wondered ‘How do I get this warmth on my legs to my face?".
The answer — a neoprene face shield — was eventually named the Masque. More than three decades later, the Masque is still around, but Edwards and his business partner, Mike Carey, now help people keep their heads and hands warm, too.
Edwards didn’t have to drive far from his home in the Salt Lake Valley to show off the latest and greatest from Seirus at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market held at the Salt Palace Convention Center in January.
It’s fair to say that, hands down, gloves make up the majority of the Seirus product line.
Edwards says there are roughly 75 models of Seirus gloves available ranging from $20 for Childsplay mittens to $375 for HeatTouch rechargeable gloves or mitts.
There are three main Seirus goals, says Edwards.
Providing a good-looking and functional piece of equipment to match the activity; ensuring quality that endures; and making sure there is an "oooooo" factor.
The HeatTouch and HeatWave lines certainly provide that "oooooo" reaction.
HeatTouch provides a battery-operated (rechargeable) heating system with three settings (low, medium and high) to keep even those with the coldest hands outside when the temperature drops.
HeatWave, a patent-pending material using reflective and kinetic properties, may not generate heat by battery, but users can feel the gloves warming up about 30 seconds after pulling them on.
Edwards said Seirus is considered a "major player" in the winter gear accessory market with three of the top 10 best-selling items in the winter sports industry.
"We will continue our existing technical mindset to make sure we continue to build the best product available to help the consumer have a better experience," Edwards said.
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