Arc’teryx Norvan Women’s Shorts review: Run like the wind, ‘cause these won’t weigh you down

I’ve slowly been getting back into the swing of running. The summer weather could be all I need for encouragement, but my Norvan running shorts and Norvan shoes have given me a further push in the right direction. Trying them out on our neighborhood paved road wasn’t enough. I had to venture off-course for a true test. There has been big equipment doing something in the woods behind our neighborhood, so since it was too early in the morning for them to be working yet, I took advantage of my lightweight Norvan shoes and their shorts partner and took off down the wildness trail to take a peek.


I haven’t gotten myself into the tight-fit runner shorts yet, so the loose fit of these shorts is the perfect feel for me. They feel weightless as you run, while not being carried away in the wind by their flowy design. There is a built-in brief inside to keep from showing too much or being transparent. These are made with trails and challenging terrains in mind. So my venture down the unmarked trail was nothing new for them. They keep you feeling comfortable and breathable the whole time you run. They won’t lock in sweat but rather encourage proper airflow. They don’t bunch up between your legs to cause chafing.

Norvan Photo of Running Shorts

Fit and Bits

There is a drawstring at the waist that allows a tight fit if needed. I got a size up, hearing that these shorts ran small. I think my usual size would have been just right, as the size I currently have feels slightly too big. They still work, as the drawstring keeps them from falling. But next time I will stick with my usual size. I would say sizing depends on your acquired look. I like things to look fitted but not skin-tight. If a baggier look is what you like, then sizing up can still work for you in these shorts because of the drawstring. A zippered pocket is located in the back of the shorts for gels you might take on a long run. I haven’t run far enough to need gels for that boost of energy. Or maybe that is exactly what I’m needing so I want to run a longer distance. Whose to know?

Personal Disadvantage

I like it when running shorts offer me a cellphone pocket somewhere, which the Norvan shorts don’t have in this particular model. So depending on your preference of phone carrier, this might not matter to you. This is often a hit-and-miss with women’s running shorts, so I should probably just invest in an arm phone carrier.


All in all, I like that the Norvan shorts won’t weigh me down during my runs in the sun this summer. As well as liking that they work to keep my body breathable and comfortable all at once. I have yet to see myself feeling sweaty and sticky in the shorts area with these Norvan run shorts! A great perk for these shorts is that they are also certified FairTrade, so if that is an important aspect to you as it is for me, these are your shorts to try!