Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Gameness Pearl Gi Review

Gameness Pearl Gi Review

Guest Review by Ronald Willbanks

This Gameness pearl gi review features a 550g pre-shrunk top, ripstop pants and the collar of the gi is also ripstop.  There are patches on the shoulders and lapel and some cool taping along the bottom of the skirt and the pants.

At the time of its release, nobody else had really done a gi like this, so it was pretty cool, but even with lots of other ‘pearl' weave gis on the market, the Gameness Pearl is still pretty solid.  It remains a mainstay for Gameness, but has been replaced by the Gameness Feather and Gameness Air.

Check out Gameness BJJ Gis at Amazon

One of the advertised features is that its fast-drying so if you train a lot, that may be a cool factor for you.  Lots of people who have contributed to the gameness pearl gi review noticed this (see comments section below for users' reviews).

Gameness Single Weave, Pearl, Feather, Platinum and Elite Gis
Size A1 A2 A3 A4 A5 A6
Height 5'1″ – 5'6″
(155cm – 167.75cm)
5'6″ – 5'9″
(167.75cm – 175.25cm)
5'9″ – 6'0″
(175.25cm – 183cm)
6'0″ – 6'3″
(183cm – 190.5cm)
6'3″ – 6'6″
(190.5cm – 198cm)
6'6″ +
(198cm +)
Weight 105lbs – 135lbs
(47.75kg – 61.25kg)
130lbs – 165lbs
(59kg – 74.75kg)
160lbs – 200lbs
(72.5kg – 90.75kg)
190lbs – 245lbs
(86.25kg – 111.25kg)
240lbs – 270lbs
(108.75kg – 122.5kg)
265lbs – 300lbs
(120.25kg – 136kg)


I'm the kind of guy who likes a gi that has some style but not too much bling. So when I was researching which gi to buy, the Gameness Pearl really caught my eye. I research just about everything before I make a purchase, and the Pearl fit in the mold of the Manto Evo or Atama Mundial gi – which I learned are the higher quality gis out there.

gamesness Pearl Gi ALL 01-20-13 121

Since this was my first BJJ gi, I thought I'd get a good value gi. I live in Texas so I wanted a gi that wasn’t going to be too hot. (I live in San Antonio, Texas).   I ended up ordering the Gameness Pearl.


gamesness Pearl Gi Top 01-20-13 118

When I first opened the package I thought to that this is a nice looking gi. I bought a white one because I really like the grey trim on the jacket, seam tape inside the wrists and inside of the apron.

The pants are ripstop, too, but not that waxy feeling type. These actually feel like softer cotton / canvas type pants. And they're thicker than the regular ripstop you might be accustomed to if you ever wore military BDU's. The rope is made out of the same material as the gi, I think… although I would've preferred bungee cord better. I never seem to keep the knot tied when rolling a while.

Fitgamesness Pearl Gi Pants Tape 01-20-13 117

According to their sizing chart, I'm supposed to be an A3 (5'10” @ 188 lbs) with a fairly athletic build. When I first tried on the kimono the arms were a bit too long — about 1-1/2″ past my wrist bone. Also, I was expecting the jacket to be shorter than my judo gi — it's not. It also seemed a little tight in the chest.

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I washed it in hot and dried it on high heat and it did shrink up to about even with my wrists (arms extended forward) and pulled in the chest a little. Hmmm.

The pants have six loops to for the draw string, which unlike my judo gi, they cinch in easily. Again, the pants feel great and are light weight. While I like the pants, they just seem too big.


gamesness Pearl Gi Logo 01-20-13 114

The shoulder patches seem to be designed very well. Not too much… not too little. I don't even mind the chest patch. It has been tastefully designed. However, if you want to remove it you should let them know at the factory before you order because it’s sewn under the lapel.  In some of the pictures it looks as if you could take a seam ripper and take it off.  Not so.

Like I said, I’m really not a bling gi kind of guy, but this gi is just plain cool.  The shoulder tape is tastefully done and the embroidered pit bull on the back of left leg is pretty cool, too.  The designers at Gameness have skills.


The collar is made out of ripstop instead of the cotton, but feels decent. It doesn’t rub your skin, which is nice. Having been in judo, I didn't want a flimsy collar that everyone could easily grab.   Without having yet tried it on, I definitely like it so far.


gamesness Pearl Gi Pants 01-20-13 116

The pants are ripstop, too, but not that waxy feeling type. These actually feel like softer cotton / canvas type pants. And they're thicker than the regular ripstop you might be accustomed to if you ever wore military BDU's.

The drawstring is made of out of the same material as the gi, I think… although I would have preferred bungee cord better.  In previous gis, I never seem to keep the knot tied when rolling a while.  It has six belt loops – two doubled up on the sides and one on each side in the middle.  It draws in without much effort.  The belt loops are grey, so it adds to the cool look and shows their penchant for detail.

The knees are reinforced and the stitching seems well done. They’re not as thick as my judo gi pants but they’ll do.  I wanted lighter and cooler anyway.

Rolling Performance

gamesness Pearl Gi Top Trim 01-20-13 120

It seems pretty durable yet not too stiff like a double weave. After rolling in it a few times it still looks new. No fraying, to strings hanging and all the stitching seems to still be in place.  I like the ripstop material on the pants.  It is lighter and easier to move in.

My issues lie in fit.  I feel like the kimono wasn’t made for my body type. As for the pants, while the material feels good, after training they feel like they're falling off me and I'm stepping on the pants legs because they’re too long.

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While this is a beautiful gi, it just doesn't fit me well. Even if I got an A2, I think the gi top is just cut for a different body type. In a suit jacket, I'm a 44R with 34″ sleeve length. Yet, the A3 seems as if it would fit a taller, thinner fellow much better. If I were to compare the fit like I would a business suit, I'd say it fit like a 44L.

Even though I really like the looks of this gi, it's really doesn't fit me well. It's too bad because the style and looks of the gi is very nice. If I was to do it over again, I’d buy the A3 top and have it tailored to shorten the sleeves and apron. I’d also mix it with A2 pants.

That said, if you’re taller and thinner than me, you’ll love the fit. My last tip would be to request the dimensions instead of looking only at their sizing chart.

Gameness Pearl Gi Review by Georgette Oden

Head on to Georgette's blog site to read an insightful review of the older version of the Gameness Pearl Gi.

Below are preview images from her blog post:

Disclosure: I bought this gi myself so what follows is a frank and honest opinion about my experience buying my first BJJ gi.  I hope this helps you if you’re researching what gi to buy for yourself.

Please post your own reviews in the comments section below!



  1. via Georgette

    Gameness Pearl gi: I bought it here from for about $95 plus shipping. I have a size A1 and it weighs 4lbs.
    This feels heavier than my pink Keiko. The kimono is slightly stiffer and feels more heavily woven/thicker, but is still quite silky to the touch. The collar is more flexible than the pink Keiko, but the Gameness sleeves are harder to grab. I’m not as crazy about the pants, which I think have less room for my rear, and also have a self-fabric drawstring that’s harder to adjust. I also dislike the belt loops, which are set about 2″ apart in the center (I’d prefer them more widely set.) The pants fabric is a little thicker, rougher than the Keiko ones. I like that it doesn’t have the big dog patches. I do wish the trim on the pants wasn’t fraying though. It didn’t shrink much at all, maybe 1″ in pants length. The kimono is pretty much the same size it started as.
    Grade: B+

    Check our Georgette over at her awesome blog

  2. Via Edmund

    It is a very nice gi for the price you pay. Despite the fairly lightweight top, the pants are pretty heavy. Also, the pants and collar start to wear out pretty fast compared to my other gis. A little less than a year of use, and I started getting holes on the knee. Although I have last years model, I don’t like the fact that they added a patch. Especially one that kinda seems like you belong to someone else’s team. Overall, it’s a good gi for the price you pay.

  3. via R.H.

    I originally wanted last year’s model, as I have one already. I just didn’t want the patch on the chest. Last year’s gi didn’t have it. But due to Budo’s special sale, they sold out before I could get one. But after opening the box, I’m very happy I got this gi. The pants are not that heavy canvas Gameness usually has. They are that rip-stop material, which is much lighter than canvas. Also, the collar on the jacket is rip-stop. I’m curious to see it this wears better than the collar on my other Pearl, the only part that’s worn. This is an awesome gi. Gameness really does make a good gi.

  4. via Leon

    Nice gi I’m about 5’10 210 to 215 lbs. I got an A3. At first the fit seems a little tight around my Lats and upperback. Pants are a good fit not too baggy. All in all I like this Gi. Wore it for the first time today, made me sweat a lot.

  5. via Kirby
    This lightweight gi is my gi of choice for tournaments. It has very good construction and is a better fit for my 5’11, 180 lb frame than the platinum weave. It is not as sturdy but is more durable than keiko’s summer weave and my gold weave. One of the best gis I own.

  6. via Donny
    This gi is my everyday training gi; I have two. It is very durable, comfortable, and air dries super fast (about 16 hours). Only problem, as others have noted, is that the decals aren’t sewn on very well, so they come off easily. I don’t really care much for the decals, so I just pull them off once they start to go; this might really bother others. But for the price, it’s worth it.

  7. via Ramsey
    5’7″ 165 lbs- A2. Washed in cold water and dried on high heat for 2 cycles to shrink. Fits great now! Very light and strong weave, actually it’s identical to the On The Mat midevil gi if you’re looking for a comparison. For the price you can’t get a better gi!

  8. I had the pearl and wasn’t a fan. It felt stiff and rough to me. People saying it is great gi for the price confuse me because I have 2 gis I paid less for and are much better gi’s. The chest patch either shrunk or didn’t shrink and the gi top did and it looked all puckered out. I tried to rip the patch off but it was stitched into the Lapel. The trim on the bottom started to rip off and fray as did the shoulder patches, I wore this gi less then 25 times and always hung it to dry. I feel like I got sucked in by the name. I sold it today for $60

    • I know a lot of people, including some friends, had a lot of problems with the pearl gis seam tape and other stuff ripping off. Thanks for the thoughts Craig!


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