Faction Dancer 3X Review: Best Women’s All-Mountain Freeride Skis?

Apr 08, 2024 BY Elsa Powell-Dooley

We are pleased to work with pro alpine skier Elsa Powell-Dooley again. This time we let her loose on some new planks to conduct a Faction Dancer 3X review. Ultimately we wanted to know if they are the best women’s all-mountain freeride skis?

Looking for a freeride ski that’s outstanding off-piste but doesn’t sacrifice its performance on groomers? Then dive into my review to find out how I found Faction’s Dancer 3X Skis whilst skiing in the French Alps.

Elsa Dooley-Powell review of Faction Dancer 3X skis

Before you buy, it’s smart to think about what you’ve liked about skis in the past, such as length, width, rocker/profile and materials. This will give you an understanding of what works for you and helps narrow down the search (there are a lot of skis out there!)

Faction’s Dancer 3X Review

Waking up to a fresh layer of powder in the French Alps, I knew it was time to test the Faction Dancer 3X. There was about 10cm-15cm of fresh snow with temperatures around -2 degrees Celsius.

I opted for the Dancers as they suited my ski preferences. I’m 162cm tall and 63kg, I went for this 164cm length skis as I prefer a shorter radius turn and nimble handling on the slopes. It’s worth noting that shorter skis can be less stable at higher speeds.

I deliberated between 106mm and 112mm underfoot. In the end I went for 106mm as I wanted it to be wide enough for powder skiing but narrow enough to perform on the piste. So 106mm width struck a good balance for me.

We asked Elsa Dooley-Powell if the Faction Dancer 3X the Best Women's All-Mountain Freeride Skis

Faction Dancer 3X Review: Powder

These skis were an absolute blast in powder, I felt as if I was on a cloud. They had a lovely bounce to the turn in about 15cm of fresh snow, they were energetic and gave me ultimate control.

For my size, 106mm underfoot allows you to float on top of a decent amount of fresh snow. But if you’re purely looking for a off-piste powder ski I’d recommend a wider width underfoot.

Review of Faction Dancer 3X Skis: Piste

Despite being primarily for freeride skiing, these skis surprised me with their performance on the piste. With a radius of 16m, I was able to carve long and short turns which isn’t always the case with skis that are 106mm underfoot.

They have a strong edge hold and a full-strength side wall which provides stability when the ski is in a turn. With an elliptical sidecut, it gives you a longer radius underfoot which means you can pivot faster. The shorter radius at the tip and tail helps with turn initiation.

Are the Faction Dancer 3X the Best Women's All-Mountain Freeride Skis

Testing the Dancer in Cruddy Snow

The Faction Dancer 3X powered through crud effortlessly, providing stability and power. They gave me confidence that I wasn’t going to catch an edge or feel out of control. You are the pilot on these skis even in poor conditions.

Speed/Stability of the Dancer

The skis felt solid underfoot when picking up speed on and off piste. Constructed with poplar, a softer wood, these skis had a slight jitter/vibration at the tip when reaching my top speed. While a stiffer wood might offer more stability at high speeds it would sacrifice the playful, nimble and lightness of the Faction Dancer X3s.

Build and Design of Faction Dancer X3

Each ski weighs 1890g with a combined pair weight of 3780g excluding bindings. Depending on the choice of bindings it can significantly impact the overall weight of the ski so keep that in mind. I added touring bindings to give me the versatility to ski-tour and explore different terrain.

You’ve got to love the way your skis look! The vibrant purple ombré design not only looks stunning against the white stuff but also celebrates women in skiing—which is pretty cool! It has a high-resistance topsheet which is perfect, as powder skis get a beating.

Faction Dancer 3X Review of skis by Elsa Dooley-Powell

The poplar core is a durable and softwood this gives the ski a nice amount of flex, energy and absorption of bumps/crud. The torsional stability and two razor-thin sheets of titanal increase edge grip and stability. This is great on pistes and helps make them one of the best women’s all-mountain freeride skis.

Ski Shape/Rocker

The Faction Dancer X3 has a freeride flat tail. A flat tail is traditionally for piste riding and aids speed and control. But that has been modernised with a slight tail rocker, which enables you to ride how you like in the fresh stuff without getting hooked.

The Dancer’s have a moustache flex profile. This is 20% rocker at the tip, 65% camber in the middle, and 15% rocker at the tail. In combination this helps absorb bumps whilst making turn initiation easy, super poppy and playful.

Which brings me onto their playfulness. These skis are very nimble and fun in the off-piste, any turn/movement I wanted was met with ease and precision. Jumps were a breeze, the skis were easy to pop and were solid and stable on landing.

Faction Dancer 3X Review by Elsa Dooley-Powell

How the Faction Dancer X3 Skis Made me Look

Being an Alpine ski racer I am more of a carving piste skier myself. So I was pleasantly surprised by how well these skis supported those skills. They not only made me look good, but also provided a sense of style and confidence in powder which was an absolute joy to ski.

Best Women’s All-Mountain Freeride Skis?

During this Faction Dancer X3 review, these skis shined bright in most categories, showcasing its versatility as more than just a freeride ski. I’d recommend these women’s all-mountain freeride skis to an advanced skier who loves groomers and is starting to explore off-piste terrain and delve into the freeride world.

I particularly love how environmentally conscious Faction is, which aligns with my values as a skier who hopes to enjoy the sport for years to come. Faction uses sustainable and recycled materials to reduce waste and strive towards positive change: www.factionskis.com/values

Overall, conducting this Faction Dancer X3 review has been a real treat. The smooth, stable and playful performance of the Dancer’s left a lasting positive impression. I can’t say if they are the best women’s all-mountain freeride skis, as I have not ridden them all! But they are a lot better than my piste skis in powder and far better than full on powder skis on the piste.

Faction Dancer 3X Skis Review by Elsa Dooley-Powell

With a price of £649 (without bindings), you are getting versatility, high quality and durability with these skis. In my opinion they are well worth the investment.

We hope you found this Faction Dancer 3X review useful. Let us know what you feel are the best women’s all-mountain freeride skis in the comments below. And if you want to pick up a pair for yourself then head to: www.factionskis.com/dancer-3-x-womens-ski

 

Ski Touring, Skiing
All Mountain, Freeride, Women's
Reviews
 

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