Salomon Active Skin 4 Review: A Running Hydration Vest That Keeps You Light and Hydrated

Alastair shares how the Salomon Active Skin 4 (his current go-to running vest) offers optimal hydration, comfort, and storage for trail runs and races.


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The Salomon Active Skin 4 running hydration vest, with its 4L capacity, comes equipped with two 500ml soft flasks, a versatile gear storage system, and all the essential features you need for your trail runs and races. It’s my current go-to running vest for most of my trail runs, as you’ll have noticed if you’re subscribed to our Youtube Channel.

Salomon’s Memorial Day Sale is currently on (through May 29, 2024), with 25% off running shoes, hydration packs, apparel and accessories! Visit Salomon’s website for all the deals!

Fun fact, my first ever running hydration vest was from Salomon which has long been one of my favorite trail running brands. In this Salomon Active Skin 4 review, I’m going to explain what make this vest stand out from other options on the market right now. I’ll also go over how it combines essential features, compact gear storage, comfort, and adjustability.

Salomon Active Skin 4 Review | Trail and Kale Running Co.
Salomon Active Skin 4 Review | Trail and Kale Running Co.

I love how natural it feels when adjusted correctly, almost like it’s an extension of my body – and that’s what we all want from our hydration vests, right? Bounce is bad!

Key Features and Specifications

Before diving into the performance details, here are the key specifications worth knowing about.

  • Price: $100 at Salomon / £85.49 at (UK)
  • Sizing and Fit: Unisex sizing with multiple size options from XS to XL.
  • Material: Made from lightweight, stretchy, and breathable materials.
  • Hydration System: Includes two 500ml soft flasks, compatible with a 1.5L hydration bladder.
  • Safety Whistle Included: A whistle for emergency situations.
  • Reflective Details: Enhanced visibility for running in low-light conditions with some small reflective detailing.
  • Best for: Short to medium-distance trail runs and races.

Introduction to Salomon

Before we get into the performance of the Salomon Active Skin 4, let me introduce Salomon for those who might not be familiar with the brand yet. Salomon is renowned for its high-performance gear, catering to outdoor enthusiasts and athletes worldwide.

Founded in 1947 in the French Alps, Salomon has a rich history of innovation in outdoor sports equipment. Their commitment to quality and performance has made them a trusted name among trail runners and hikers. Based in Annecy, France, Salomon continues to push the boundaries of design and technology in their products.

Performance and Comfort on the Run

The Salomon Active Skin 4 running hydration vest is designed with the needs of trail runners in mind, ensuring you’re prepared for your runs.

The vest features an adjustable fit system, allowing for a customized fit for various body types. The dual sternum straps ensure the vest stays secure while running, minimizing bounce and without feeling like your lungs are being constricted.

The soft stretchy materials, and snug fit make it comfortable to wear for extended periods.

Salomon Active Skin 4 Review: A Running Hydration Vest That Keeps You Light and Hydrated 1 - Trail and Kale | Trail Running & Adventure

The Active Skin 4 offers versatile storage options, including a large rear pocket for larger items – this can be tricky to access while running so I recommend storing things in there that you’re less likely to need frequent access to, like your waterproof jacket for example.

There are also multiple front pockets for easy access to essentials like your iPhone (I use the zippered pocket for my phone – see photo below), energy gels, and of course water. There are also some stretch pockets for added flexibility. The vest’s 4L capacity is perfect for carrying your trail running essentials without weighing you down if you’re running up to a 50k ultra marathon.

Salomon Active Skin 4 Review: A Running Hydration Vest That Keeps You Light and Hydrated 2 - Trail and Kale | Trail Running & Adventure

The included safety whistle is useful (as pictured above, it’s the orange things on my left hand side), allowing you to provide an audible alert in case of emergencies. A whistle is mandatory in some mountain races.

If you’re planning a longer ultra running adventure, you will be better placed going for the 8L or 12L Active Skin options that have more storage capacity.

The vest includes two 500ml soft flasks, positioned for easy access while running. It is also compatible with a 1.5L hydration bladder for those who prefer a higher capacity option but you’ll have to buy that separately.

Salomon’s commitment to sustainability is evident in the materials used for the Active Skin 4. The lightweight and durable construction ensures the vest withstands demanding trail conditions while remaining environmentally conscious.

➡ WATCH ME RUN IN THIS VEST: I have been wearing this vest for a few months now, and although I still haven’t needed to wash it yet, durability does seem good so far. Here are some recent running shoe review videos that show me running in the vest, to give you an idea of how it looks whilst running:

Is it worth buying?

For only $100 – absolutely! The Salomon Active Skin 4 is a reliable and comfortable hydration vest designed for runners who like t run trails of up to 50km in distance – and it’s my current go-to choice, so hopefully that should hold some weight in itself! 🙂

Its combination of fit, style, safety features, storage options, and hydration system makes it an excellent choice for short to medium-distance trail runs and races. For alternative options out there, head over to my Best Running Hydration Vests roundup next

If you have any specific questions about this running vest, please just ask away in the comments below, and I’ll get an answer to you asap. -Alastair

As the founder of Trail & Kale, and seasoned marathoner & ultrarunner, Alastair loves bringing our readers independent running shoe reviews and gear insights to help you run your best. Learn more about Trail & Kale here.


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