The Altura Neckwarmer II is a simple but effective piece of kit, providing some windproofing and warmth in colder temperatures. Worn bandana style in temperatures down to around -5°C, it kept the cold sting off my face when descending, which is pretty impressive.
It's made from 100% polyester and has a simple construction: a single seam and a hem at each end. These aren't flatlock stitched, but I had no problems with chafing.
Its 470mm length means it's fairly flexible in how it can be worn: on the neck scrunched or folded as a scarf, covering the bottom of your face, with the back tucked under a casquette and the front covering your ears... I tried all these and it gave good extra protection, even in dire conditions.
There's a decent amount of hold in the material itself so it doesn't really sag after being in place for a while, something I have found with other neckwarmers.
When using it over the mouth you certainly notice the condensation forming when you breathe into it for around 20 minutes, but it never got to the point where it became irritating. It didn't really smell, either, even after using it every day for a week without washing – which is always a bonus!
I like the black and fluorescent yellow of our test model – it's always nice to add a bit of visibility in low light conditions – but it also comes in black/grey if you want to go for the more 'stealth' look. It's worth noting that allthough it's fluorescent yellow, it doesn't have any reflective material on it, so it won't light up under car headlights.
It's well priced, comfy and relatively windproof – more so if you fold it for particularly cold conditions. It would be good to have some reflective elements included, but for six quid, it can be forgiven.
Warm, cheap and versatile
road.cc test report
Make and model: Altura Neckwarmer II
Size tested: One Size
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?
It is a piece of kit to be worn round the neck or face in cold weather.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Altura Dry Technology
Our Altura Dry™ Technology delivers superior moisture management and wicking ensuring that your ride is dry and comfortable.
Simple, one piece of fabric, one seam and two hems. Stitching isn't flatlock, but seems strong.
Performed very well, kept the cold air off my neck and face.
Stitching seems strong.
Universal size, but with enough length that it can be used in a multitude of ways.
One size fits all.
It's a neck warmer.
Doesn't get soaked with your breath and fabric is relatively soft.
Great value, one of the cheapest and still performs well.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Easy, washed it several times at 30 degrees with no issues.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Very well, kept the wind off nicely.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The price vs quality: really good quality, really low price.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Could have some reflective elements.
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
Very good neckwarmer that has many uses and doesn't cost the earth.
About the tester
I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Evo 6 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mountain biking
George spends his days flitting between writing about data, running business magazines and writing about sports technology. The latter gave him the impetus (excuse) to get even further into the cycling world before taking the dive and starting his own cycling sites and writing for Road.cc.
When he is not writing about cycling, he is either out on his bike cursing not living in the countryside or boring anybody who will listen about the latest pro peloton/cycling tech/cycling infrastructure projects.