Unequal Hart Lacrosse Goalie Chest Pad Review | Lax Goalie Rat

Unequal Hart Lacrosse Goalie Chest Pad Review

It’s not too often that you get to try a piece of equipment that has a cult-like following around it. Like that indie rock band that you know is just going to hit it big eventually the new Unequal lacrosse goalie chest pad has arrived and it’s taking the gear world by storm.

Unequal has been around for quite some time now and they’ve always had a chest pad that piqued everyone’s interest with its unique design structure and bright green color scheme.

But it wasn’t until recently in 2022 that the chest pad got NOCSAE certification, meaning high school and college goalies could legally sport the neon green on their chest.


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A post shared by Unequal (@unequaltech)

But what is it about this chest pad that has everyone ranting and raving about Unequal?

Blaze Riorden Unequal Chest pad quote

To help us with this Unequal chest pad review we recruited the help of PLL Waterdogs Lacrosse Club goalie and Delaware alum Matt Deluca.

Matt Deluca with Unequal Chest Pad

Matt was an early adopter of the v1 Unequal chest pad. He started using it during his junior season after a freshman goalie showed up at Delaware with the chest pad.

The neon green color really caught Matt’s eyes and after learning more about the chest protector and its unique features the Blue Hens goalie made the switch.

Deluca wearing Unequal Chest Pad

Since then Matt has been a loyal follower of the Unequal chest pad and has been involved in testing out the product and providing feedback as they’ve developed it over the years.

Unequal Hart Chest Pad Protection

Unequal Chest Pad Specs

In terms of protection, the Unequal chest pad is easily the most accredited chest pad.

  • Patented HART CC pads are the only lacrosse chest gear to pass the new NOCSAE ND200-21 standard and are certified by the Safety Equipment Institute (SEI).
  • FDA also issued an IFU claim for Uneqaul’s HART CC pads and the risk reduction of commotio cordis soon after a published peer-reviewed study by Tufts Medical Center that verified the effectiveness of HART pads.

The HART Protection Zone of the chest pad which precisely surrounds the center and left side chest utilizes Unequal’s HART CC pads, a patented 4-layer composite made with Kevlar, ImpacShield, Accelleron, and Airilon.

I don’t know about you but I like the idea of Kevlar in my chest pad.

This technology helps absorb, disperse, and dissipate the impact energy better than typical plastics and foam used by other chest pads on the market.

“Heart protection is super important for me as a goalie,” said Deluca. “I’m sure most goalies have taken a shot to this area that has stung. One thing that has stood out for me about this chest pad is that after eating a couple of shots to the chest you realize that you don’t actually feel anything, and it just bounces off like it hits a brick wall.”

A lax goalie Mom and trauma OR nurse said the same thing:

Unequal Chest Pad quote

The chest pad also features a unique adjustable rib pad on the left side of the chest pads to help further protect you against impacts to your heart area.

Unequal Adjustable rib pad

See your heart isn’t dead center in your chest.

It’s actually offset to the left side of your body and many people who have experienced commotio cordis were not faced with impact to the center of their chest but to the left side of the body.

With an Unequal chest pad, you’re actually getting more protection coverage to your heart area than every other chest pad on the market not to mention the Kevlar padding of the chest pad is much more reinforced than many other chest pads you’d see on the market today.

You also do have the option to purchase an additional rib pad to attach to the right side of your body to provide you with more protection. Matt had suggested that this would be a great option, especially for lefty goalies to keep your rib area more protected on off-hip saves.

“I’ve definitely eaten a couple of off-hip shots before so I like rib pad because as you open up you can expose some of the rib area unless you like your chest pad extremely close to your chest,” said DeLuca.

Unequal Chest Pad – Look & Fit

Goalie with Unequal Chest Protector

Besides the bright green, the other noticeable feature is its unique shape. Unlike many other chest pads, the Unequal Chest pad has a very slim and narrowed profile.

Unequal Hart Chestie

This non-restrictive narrowed-designed shape was engineered with help from hall of fame goaltender Brian Dougherty to allow for complete range of motion when in the net.

“The biggest thing that sold me on this chest pad and the main reason I decided to keep going back to it was the maneuverability that it offers me,” said Deluca. “It does the best of both worlds. It’s super protective but it’s also very slim. Some of the other chest protectors have protection over the heart region that sticks out a decent amount and that was really messing with my throat guard getting caught on the chest pad.”

One of the things that did have me concerned about the slim design of the chest pad is that it does leave you with some exposed openings specifically to the sides of the lower abdomen area.

As you can see on Blaze Riorden, supermodel/elite lacrosse goalie, the lower outer abdomen aka love handles are quite exposed.

When you put the STX Shield 600 chestie next to the Unequal pad, the slim design really stands out. Here is the Unequal vs. the STX Shield 600:

While those are lower ab areas is less likely to take a hit, we’ve all experienced that moment where we may have read a shot wrong and taken it off the body and it did have me a little hesitant to face shots in that area.

As Matt suggests, if this concerns you, you’re also able to adjust the lower belly pad to sit lower on your body to better protect those areas.

“Since I’ve moved to a size large I haven’t noticed it at all and you don’t really tend to get hit in those areas,” said Deluca. “Playing with the best shooters in the world they tend to not miss their spots. There are some open spots there but that’s why I like that the belly piece is adjustable and can fit as your body needs (e.g. longer torso) you can adjust the pad to find the right fit for you.”

The one thing that’s important to consider when ordering this chest pad is that it does fit a lot bigger than normal chest pads. Evan is about 5’9 and typically wears a Large or XL chest protector however with the Unequal chest pad, he’s using a Medium.

Unequal has a great sizing chart on their website that I would recommend using when ordering so that you can make sure you’re picking out the size that best fits your body.

This chest pad has a really cool look whether it’s the shape of the pad or its color when you see it you know it’s an Unequal chest pad without even seeing the logo.

“I really liked that fact that you can see it under the jersey it stands out in warm-ups,” said Deluca. “The neon green color really stood out and drew my attention to the chest pad.”

For some goalies standing out with a bright green chest pad is great. For others, who don’t want extra attention, not so much –

Or if your school uses porthole mesh jerseys, you’ll definitely see this chest pad through them:

Unequal Chest Pad – Comfort & Durability

Along with the unique narrowly shape, the Unequal chest protector also offers a ton of adjustable features that allow you to fit this chest pad to your exact needs while also maintaining its slim design for maximum mobility.

The chest pad has a 3-point adjustable Velcro strapping system that you can adjust lengthwise and widthwise to fit specifically to your body.

Matt prefers to raise up the Velcro straps of the chest pad to its highest point so that it doesn’t droop over his mid-region but so that it also does cover his abdomen as he extends his arms upwards.

As mentioned earlier, you can also adjust the lower half of the chest pad to provide you with more or less protection in that area depending on your preference.

The back strapping also features a breathable mesh material to allow for better ventilation on those hot summer days.

Deluca said that as you start to use this chest pad it starts to conform more to your body: “The padding may seem stiff at first but as soon as you get a couple of workouts in with it the chest pads almost starts to form to your torso, compared to other chest pads where over time as the strapping wears out you notice it starts to droop.”

Unequal Chest Protector Price

This chest pad comes in at the price of $159.95 which is slightly cheaper compared to a lot of other higher-end chest pads on the market.

If you would like to add the optional right rib pad the price of the chest pad goes up to $179.95.

You can purchase this pad on Unequal’s website here.

Video Review of the Unequal Chest Pad

Here is a video that Evan, Matt, and I did talking about the Unequal chest protector.


Overall, we think that the Unequal chest pad is one of, if not the best chest pads on the market today.

It’s very protective while also very slim and tapered allowing for good movement.

We also really like the fact that similar to other chest pads on the market you can adjust this pad to fit your needs as a goalie. There are a ton of options with this chest pad to adjust and maneuver the strapping and protective pieces so that it meets your desired preferences.

The only negative that I didn’t like is that the shape of the chest pad does leave you exposed in the side areas of your lower body which might be an issue at lowers levels where shooters might not be as accurate.

“I think it’s a really interesting product and all it takes is to just try it once to get hooked,” said Deluca. “The fact that they were able to keep it slim but also so protective is something we haven’t really seen before and having the ability to move in it freely is just such a huge confidence boost knowing that nothing is going to get in your way to attack the ball while also its design is going to protect you day in and day out.”

Grab the Unequal lacrosse goalie chest pad.

Does anyone out there use the Unequal chest pad? What do you think of it? Leave me a comment down below.

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