The name of Gore's Base Layer Windstopper Lady Shirt might be a bit of a mouthful, but the garment itself is delectable. It is a winning combination of windproof panels and soft mesh that does a superb job of regulating your temperature by keeping the wind off you while wicking away sweat. It is ever so versatile. I've worn it on its own on mild days, with arm warmers when it's a bit cooler, or underneath a mid layer when it's cold.
Gore's well-proven, breathable Windstopper membrane is sewn over the superbly soft polyester mesh base fabric to give two distinct layers to the windproof panels. There is a slight rustle to the top Windstopper layer but you only notice this when handling it, not when wearing it, and the membrane is stretchy for a comfortable, close fit.
The panels are just where you need them when riding a bike: at the front, across the shoulders and tops of the arms, plus two side panels wrap around to protect your kidneys from wind chill. These panels have a slight sheen but are not as shiny as they appear in our photos.
The remainder of the jersey, including underarms, is the open-weave mesh, which feels lovely against the skin and is very effective at removing moisture from your skin, as well as being quick drying. All the seams are flatlock stitched so there's no chafing, which further enhances the comfort of this technical tee.
There is a V-shaped stretchy material insert over the back of the right hip with a transfer of the size label inside, and a decent sized reflective logo on the front for night-time visibility.
The snug, body-hugging fit is exactly what you want in a baselayer to maximise its fabrics' technical properties. Gore clothing comes in three fits – comfort, slim and tight – and this top is a tight fit, as you'd expect. The website description says 'extra-long back' but in fact the back is the same length as the front, though both are adequately long.
While the V neck is very comfortable, it can leave you with a cold spot below your neck sometimes, in the gap below a buff if you're wearing one. I wonder why Gore chose this rather than a crew neck like the long-sleeved version of this baselayer sports.
However, this is a small niggle about a top-performing piece of clothing. The price tag of £50 isn't out of line with other windproof baselayers, though it can be found cheaper online. It's also available in white.
A very useful and comfortable windproof baselayer that works year-round
road.cc test report
Make and model: Gore Base Layer Windstopper Lady Shirt
Size tested: L
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?
Gore says: "This shirt is ideal for windy, cooler days. The combination of materials ensures rapid moisture wicking and protects against wind chill when riding."
Sums it up perfectly.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Elastic GORE® WINDSTOPPER® insert on front, over shoulders and on kidney area
Reflective logo on front
MAIN FABRIC: 100% POLYESTER
WINDSTOPPER® MEMBRANE: 88% POLYPROPYLENE, 8% ELASTANE, 4% POLYAMIDE
The fit is nice and snug as intended, but the features list says it has an extra-long back and it's the same length as the front. It is adequately long though!
I am a size 40 (L) which is consistent with Gore's size chart.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Machine wash inside out at 30 degrees.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Very well - the Windstopper membrane does just that while the mesh back wicks sweat.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The soft-feeling fabric, its windproofness and the cool mesh back.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
A versatile, comfortable and well-performing technical tee that lives up to Gore's typically high standards.
About the tester
I usually ride: Marin Point Reyes 29er My best bike is: Giant Anthem X1
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, club rides, mountain biking, audax