The Evolve Top Review: One Top Worn 8+ Ways

The Evolve top by Encircled - wear it multiple ways.

We’re always looking for ways to pack smarter. In fact, we love it when we impress our friends with all the fun items we pull out of our luggage, without looking like we packed much at all. And when it comes to doing both of those things, it all comes down to thinking in layers and packing multipurpose items.

Just like a sarong can also function as a towel or airplane blanket, or how leggings can work as pants (under longer tops of course!) and a warming layer under jeans, the new Evolve Top by Encircled can give you more bang for you precious packing list line item by offering various looks, for various personalities and activities, with one simple top.

Yes, you might remember Encircled from our review of their Chrysalis Cardi.

They sent us their most recent product, the Evolve Top, for a trial and review in regards to the traveling female. Here we go!

The Evolve Top

Evolve Top worn multiple ways, Evolve Top review

The premise for the Evolve Top is that it has transforming sleeves (thanks to a hidden snap) that take it from elbow length to capped sleep to tank top. In addition, the top is reversible, giving you the option to have a drape in the front or back.

And, if you’re feeling fun, you can even wear one side off the shoulder, or make your sleeves different lengths. The options for this one top are numerous.

The Evolve Top Fits Multiple Personalities

The Evolve Top fits multiple personalities.
The Evolve Top fits multiple personalities.

For me, I love that the Evolve Top can fit multiple personalities and styles. Made of a luxuriously soft modal/spandex blend (and also from a renewable source), it can easily be dressed up while also not being out of place when you just want to be comfy in your jeans and sneakers. You can layer it when it’s cool outside with a tank top given its loose nature, throw a belt or blazer around it to give it a more fitted feel, or even wear it to yoga.

>> Check out this video on the different ways to wear.

The Evolve Top for Travelers

Brooke wearing the Evolve Top in New York.
Brooke wearing the Evolve Top in a New York subway.

This top is extremely light and packable, and oh so comfortable. Let’s also not forget that this one item can serve you countless outfit purposes making it a perfect addition to a traveler’s minimalist wardrobe. I really enjoy the top because it is so loose and flowy – it would be perfect on flights or long-distance train journeys, good for warmer weather since it is not too constrictive, and great as an option that can take you from day to night with a few simple tweaks.

The fabric itself is sleek and does absorb a bit of moisture. However, I don’t feel as though it dries as quickly as I’d like. It’s not an item you would wash at night and expect to be fully dried in the morning unless in a very well ventilated location.

The price point is also a concern to many travelers. Coming in at $92 CAD, it’s definitely not a cheap top. But, if you factor it in as part of a minimal wardrobe with multiple personalities, the cost per wear definitely subsides.

Further Thoughts on the Evolve Top

I adore the concept of the Evolve Top, and I will definitely be getting my wear out of it in my upcoming travels. A few extra things I’d like to point out:

  • I’m wearing a size small in the photos above, and it is still very drapey. I am around 5’3″ with a smaller upper body/ narrow shoulders, so keep that in mind when ordering your top.
  • It is a hand-wash only item by nature to begin with, so keep that in mind when packing.

If you like the look of the Evolve Top, you can purchase one on the Encircled website.

Written by Brooke

I run the show at Her Packing List and love packing ultralight. In fact, I once traveled for 3 entire weeks with just the contents of a well-packed 12L handbag. When I'm not obsessing over luggage weight, I'm producing episodes of The UnPacking List or just snuggling with my pet rabbit, Sherlock Bunz.

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Gear We Use


Packing Cubes – Organize your luggage with the lightweight, durable and compressible Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Compression Cubes.

Backpacks + Daypacks

Pacsafe – Since they come with extra theft-resisting features, Pacsafe bags make you a more confident traveler. We especially love this bag.

Sea to Summit – Of all the Sea to Summit products, our most recommended is the fits-in-your-palm, super packable Ultra-Sil Daypack.

Personal Care

Nalgene Toiletry Bottles – These leak-free toiletry bottles and tubs come in all sizes – even super tiny, helping minimalists pack it all without bulk.

Turkish Towels – They’re thinner than most travel towels, and they actually cover your body! We can’t get enough of Turkish towels for travel.


Speakeasy Supply Co. – They make the awesome hidden pocket infinity scarves that are perfect for stashing secret cash, lip balms, and passports.

Anatomie – Anatomie travel pants come with luxury prices, but they offer many benefits for travelers. See our review of the famous Skyler pants.

Travel Resources

Booking Airfare

Dollar Flight Club – Get flight deal alerts for your preferred departure airport. There is both a free and premium version (recommended for more sweet deals). Members save on average $500 USD per flight!

Skyscanner – Skyscanner is our preferred site for searching flights. They offer unbiased search results and are free from hidden fees. You can also book your hotels and rental cars.


Airbnb – Airbnb is the best place to book out apartments around the world. Sign up using this link to get $37 USD off your first stay booking + $14 USD towards an experience booking! – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

Hostelworld – For hostels, Hostelworld remains our number one source for booking stays. Choose from straight up hostels, budget hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions


  1. Caroline says

    It looks great on you! I really like how you can wear it for different styles, some more girly and others more minimalist. It’s a top you could wear to work or on a plane.

  2. Daneen says

    I’ve been looking for a top that can be cool but also appropriate for visiting churches in countries where longer sleeves are expected for women, so this looks like a really handy and versatile option. Thanks!

  3. Sarah says

    I love the shirt, it looks very cute. The only concern I have is the tag. If you’re not wearing the black option and you have the v-neck in the back you can see where the tag was sewn in on your chest. At least that’s what it looks like in the pictures on their website.

    • Kristi {} says

      Hi Sarah,

      Thanks for your note!

      The tag was at the back on our first few production runs, however based on consumer feedback we removed it (and it’s now in the inside, side hem so it’s not in the way).


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