Marking the return of Anna Glowinski to the arena of women's cycle clothing, Anna's Legs are a new project in conjunction with specialist women's retailer Velovixen. These full length cycling tights are a high quality, high style option for cycling comfort.
When these arrived in their own characteristically design-led cardboard box, it was obvious they were designed to be a cut above the average cycling tights. The relatively lightweight fabric and full-length design means they are suitable for year-round use, for both on and off-road (with or without baggy shorts over the top) and for those who just prefer a bit more coverage.
The fabric is a high tech synthetic blend and feels extremely robust, with a flattering, slightly matt finish, if a tad revealing… (Tass, who modelled them for the pics, was less enamoured – saying she hadn't realised her knees were quite so knobbly.) The rear of the waist is cut high with a short section of gripper tape to avoid unseemly builder's bum on the bike, but it's flat at the front so doesn't cut in. The chamois is a top notch women-specific CyTech pad.
Elasticated ankles keep everything in place and reflective accents help low-light visibility. But the most exciting thing about these tights has to be the bright colours and funky patterns, including the stars that Anna is well known for.
For me, there was an issue with length. The tights are on the long side for an average height woman (I'm pretty spot on average at 5ft 5in). Even with some of the stretch of the fabric going into larger than average thighs, there was excess at the ankles, making it slightly tricky to get the tights to fit 'just right' without some wrinkles. The waistband took some getting used to as well, with its height at the back, but was comfortable to wear on the bike. I also found the ankles awkward to get on over my feet, but OK once on, although Tass thought they were very (too) tight at the ankles.
On the bike, I found the tights pleasantly unobtrusive, with the fabric wicking moisture well, although I did find them overwarm in summer conditions. This is where I'd suggest that perhaps 3/4 tights might have been a more versatile option for a single style range, suited to more conditions and also to more heights. For the colder seasons they are spot on, offering excellent levels of comfort. The waist stayed put, as intended, without digging in, and the pad was supremely comfortable for all lengths of ride, low profile yet supportive and cushioned.
In an ideal world (for me) these would have been 3/4 tights, but as full length tights to be worn year-round, they carve their own niche. The level of quality and attention to detail is high, and their funky style, be it plain bright blue, star print or the innovative Mountain Sunset colourway, is sure to catch the eye.
All in all, a great product, but for me not quite perfect.
Great style, bright colours and serious comfort, but a touch on the long side for the average woman
road.cc test report
Make and model: Anna's Legs
Size tested: 12
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?
Aimed at female cyclists looking for cool-looking full-length cycling tights with padding.
Anna Glowinski says: "I wanted to create something that I knew the women's cycling market was crying out for. I love designing, I love speaking to female cyclists and hearing about what they want, I love thinking about small, new ideas and features that will make products more comfortable and more user friendly than anything else out there."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Made from long lasting XtraLife lycra & Carvico Igloo performing fabric (80% polyamide/20% elastane XtraLife lycra)
Strong, durable and stretchy.
Women's specific CyTech chamois pad.
Unique, dropped waist band
High raised back
Elastic ankle cuffs.
Reflective ankle tabs.
Reflective back logo.
Lower back key pocket.
Steadfast dyed colour
Available in three colours/patterns
Arrives in recyclable packaging & includes a booklet with tips and advice on how to best wear and look after your leggings.
Very well made from very high quality fabric.
Comfortable and effective on all lengths of ride.
Fabric seems very durable, with good stretch retention.
Slightly quirky – very long in the leg, and the high waist makes them feel unusual in comparison with average cycling tights.
Sizing was good, with a medium being roughly equivalent to a UK12 but with plenty of stretch in the fabric to accommodate body shape differences. If you can it would be worth trying on a couple of sizes to check for a good fit.
Light but durable, and year-round comfortable.
Very comfortable in terms of the fabric and the chamois pad; the higher than average waistband took some getting used to but proved very comfortable in use.
These are a new venture and from a designer so they are not cheap, but they should last well and are wearable for most of the year.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Very easy, washed at 30 degrees they came up very well.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Patterns/colours, fabric and pad.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Personally, the waistband didn't feel 100 per cent right for me, and the leg length was a touch generous for the average height woman. The elasticated ankles were on the neat side too.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Definitely in the iconic stars pattern.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
Well designed and attractive, but a 3/4 tight would probably have been more popular and versatile for most riders.
About the tester
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.