Saddles are always an extremely personal issue, and what's comfortable to one rider might be torture to another. The Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow saddle is, however, one of the most widely rider-recommended saddles I've ever come across, and trying it out, it's easy to see why. It's comfortable, flexible, light and it even looks good too.
Straight off it's easy to see that this is a high quality saddle. The top is made from full grain leather and is nicely finished as well as attractively designed, sitting just the right side of feminine rather than being overtly girly.
There's a substantial cut-out in the middle, and it's crammed with gel and other padding for a comfortable ride. The width is 152mm, which isn't the narrowest and might not suit hardened racers, although I do personally know a multiple medal winning track cyclist who never races on anything else! Those looking for a narrower option might want to investigate Selle Italia's SLR Lady Flow instead, at 131mm wide. The rails are made from 7mm Vanox tubing.
It's neither the lightest nor the most aggressive saddle, but out on the road (or off – Selle Italia markets this saddle as suitable for either) the Diva Gel Flow really is a winner in the comfort department. Despite the fairly broad rear (the saddle, not mine), which is broader than I would normally ride on, there was sufficient flex in the wings that this was not a problem and led to a very comfortable and natural feeling ride motion.
The body of the saddle and the nose are plenty supportive enough for all distances of ride, and cope well with a variety of riding positions too.
Price wise, this sits somewhere along the continuum of performance saddles, but it's far from being at the super-expensive end, and marks really good value for money for female riders intending to go out for long periods of time. There seems to be a very good reason for all the positive chat about this one!
A superior quality design offering superb comfort for all styles of bike and ride. An excellent women's saddle
road.cc test report
Make and model: Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow saddle
Size tested: 152 x 270mm, Black
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
For female riders - a women-specific saddle for any style of riding or bike.
Selle Italia says: "Selle Italia's DIVA has a shape that is perfect for the female anatomy and posture. With its unique streamlined shape and sporty style, DIVA is the perfect high performance comfort saddle for women.
"For women who ride leaving no one behind."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
152mm wide/270mm long
Vanox 7mm rails
Full grain leather cover
Silicone gel inserts around cut-out
Cut-out in centre
Elastomer suspension shock absorber system
Comes in black or white
Extremely well made from very high quality materials.
Performed exceptionally well on a variety of different bikes with different riding positions.
Should last for years, particularly if you look after the leather cover with some leather treatment now and then.
Not the lightest, but far from being a heavyweight for its levels of comfort.
Superb levels of comfort for a variety of riding styles and distances.
Very good value considering quality and levels of comfort and also versatility for use on a variety of bikes if you like to swap around.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Performed exceptionally well.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Style, quality, comfort, versatility.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Very much. A surprising amount considering it's broader than my usual choice of saddle.
Would you consider buying the product? Definitely
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
Many women recommend this saddle and now I know why. Comfortable, supportive, attractive and well made.
About the tester
Age: 43 Height: 1.65m Weight: 73kg
I usually ride: Boardman Hybrid Fi My best bike is: Specialized Ruby Elite
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, sportives, general fitness riding, mountain biking
Lara has been riding bikes for longer than she'd care to admit, and writing about them nearly as long. Since 2009 she has been working as part of the road.cc review team whilst championing women's cycling on the side, most notably via two years as editor of the, sadly now defunct, UK's first and only women's cycling mag, erm, Women's Cycling.
Believing fervently that cycling will save the world, she wishes that more people would just ride a bike and be pleasant to each other.
She will ride anything with two wheels, occasionally likes to go fast, definitely likes to go far and is always up for a bit of exploring somewhere new and exciting.