Running Gear Clothing Review: Circa 2003 Iron Maiden T-Shirt from Kohl’s

My most recent post about running featured this gem of a picture:

I mentioned then that I’d be doing more reviews of running clothing and gear, and this will be the first of them. I discovered that my choice of clothing made a BIG difference in how I felt while running. I normally wouldn’t have paid much attention to clothing “tech” such as wicking fabric, reflective strips, bottle openers, cigarette lighters, and candy bar pockets (if only…), but I was surprised that such technology can actually be important.

Therefore, in the interest of presenting a cautionary tale, I present you with:

Running Gear Clothing Review: Circa 2003 Iron Maiden T-Shirt from Kohl’s

The subheading right above really tells you about all you need to know about this shirt. I got it at Kohl’s around 2003, probably on sale for about $10. It prominently displays a picture of Eddie, Iron Maiden’s skeleton mascot, and promotes their “1981 Killers World Tour.”


Obviously, this is one of those fake-retro tour shirts, but it’s still cool because I like Iron Maiden and because of its shock value. It’s just a fun shirt. It’s 100% cotton.

Also, as Han Solo says, I’ve made a lot of special modifications myself. Well, I cut off the sleeves. That’s really it. But that did make a big difference in terms of keeping cool while running, and it also helped me avoid getting a “farmer’s tan.” However, I suppose that for these purposes, I should refer to it as helping me avoid getting a “runner’s tan.”

That’s about all I have to say for the features, so let’s get into the pros and cons.


  • It looks cool.
  • It has the potential to be intimidating. People are less likely to try to mug you (perhaps).
  • It’s cheap, and possibly even cheaper if your mom has one of those Kohl’s discount cards that come in the mail every day.
  • You can wear it out for a night on the town. It gives you that true gym-to-opera flexibility prized by all serious, elite athletes.
  • It’s black, which helps it absorb all the available sunlight in the universe and channel it directly to your body, keeping you snug and warm while you run.
  • The 100% cotton construction helps trap moisture and keep it close to your body. It also holds in scents, even after you wash it, so you can relive fond memories of previous runs.


  • Even though it has a cool picture of a scary skeleton, it didn’t seem to scare the idiot dogs of Berlín de San Ramón, Costa Rica, and they still barked at me and tried to bite me.
  • Although the cotton fabric comes with all the benefits listed in the previous section, it also has a tendency to chafe some sensitive parts of your chest and back. And by that, I mean your nipples. After a few miles, it’s like wearing a sandpaper-lined shirt. Then again, bleeding nipples could be a pretty metal thing. No wait, that’s a punk thing. Never mind.
  • Chafed and/or bleeding nipples.

Bottom Line

As you can see, there are clearly many more pros than cons when it comes to this beauty of a shirt. However, it might not be for everyone. Especially if you prefer later-era Eddie pictures, where he’s gradually changed from a skeleton into a kind of killer robot, then this might not be the best shirt for you.

On the other hand, if you live in a place where dogs have developed an understanding of and true appreciation for heavy metal music paraphernalia, then wearing this shirt might finally get you the respect you deserve.

How about you? What’s your favorite version of Eddie? Do you think chafed nipples are a metal or punk thing, all things told? I’d love to hear your comments below. Thanks for reading!

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