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When it comes to all-weather resistance, GORE-TEX is one of the most recognized names in the industry, if not the most recognized player. Having been adopted by both fashion and technical apparel aficionados alike, GORE-TEX has managed to bridge the gap between the ongoing of form and function. As reliable as it is aesthetically fitting, GORE-TEX has found equitable attentions from many whose affinities normally are bent towards traditional, non-water-resistant textiles such as leathers, suedes and even fabric knits. In our latest A Conversation with feature, GORE-TEX associate Jay Stroup speaks out on his day-to-day activities as one of the minds behind the storied material, the science behind GORE-TEX as well as the general lifestyle and ongoing care required for GORE-TEX owners.
My day-to-day… involves working with global brands and their key retailers in North America to create relationships and help bring the footwear styles to market. The most interesting part of my day to day is working with the brands to get their styles right. I spend hours in the lab, evaluating each shoe style to ensure the aesthetic design from the brand meshes with the functionality of the GORE-TEX lining. Our goal is to provide consumers with waterproof protection and climate comfort throughout their entire day.
My interest in The GORE-TEX Brand began… many years ago when I picked up golf as a hobby. The GORE-TEX brand is synonymous with waterproof/breathable gear and proved to be a real life saver on the golf course. When I saw an opportunity at Gore, I jumped at the chance to work with such a well-known and respected brand.
Since its start, GORE-TEX has… been a science driven brand. We focus on creating new innovations and testing them to make sure they stand up to the elements. We aim to help our users experience more during their outdoor pursuits. And we partner with some of the best brands in the business to ensure that the science goes to market in an attractive package.
The parameters used to measure GORE-TEX’s performance are… rigorous and unique for the industry. We have labs around that world where we put products through a relentless battery of tests to ensure that every GORE-TEX product meets our exacting standards for durability, waterproofness, breathability and comfort. Specifically for lifestyle products, we focus on meshing fashion and function and delivering essential footwear for everyday use.
Using the GORE-TEX name requires… making a very strong commitment to quality. Every product carries our GUARANTEED TO KEEP YOU DRY™ promise, which means if a consumer isn’t completely satisfied with the waterproofness, windproofness or breathability of a GORE-TEX product, Gore will repair it, replace it or refund the purchase price. Because of this, we only work with brands that are equally committed to making quality products and collaborating with our team.
The most creative use of GORE-TEX… is hard to choose because Gore uses its versatile polymer polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) to make everything from medical implants to dental floss. If I had to choose one for GORE-TEX fabrics specifically, I would say the Burton snowboarding pants that look like jeans. The U.S. Olympic Snowboarding team debuted them during the Vancouver games and we got a lot of great feedback.
Care of GORE-TEX fabric… is very easy and will help to ensure performance and extend the lifespan. Simply clean the exterior of the footwear with a cloth or brush and lukewarm water. You should also shake out sand, gravel and dirt from the inside, shake out the foot bed and use a leather treatment if recommended by manufacturer.
What GORE-TEX can help with general lifestyle… is filling a basic, fundamental need in a person’s wardrobe – a pair of fashionable, versatile shoes that can go anywhere, anytime, in any weather. Shoes with GORE-TEX® linings are more than a fashion accessory for people who live active, urban lifestyles – they are an essential. Also, since we work some of the world’s leading fashion footwear brands, there’s no need to sacrifice style for performance.