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Verdict: 
Great race-cut jacket that stands out in headlights, but at a massive price
Weight: 
190g
Contact: 
Huez Starman Reflex Jacket
7 10

Riding at night is a blast, and the Huez Starman Reflex Jacket makes sure you get noticed thanks to its 360-degree reflectivity, plus it'll shrug off a bit of wind and rain too. If you're a racer who trains in the dark you'll also love the close cut that reduces flapping – if you're willing to pay for it.

  • Pros: Race cut, impressive reflectivity
  • Cons: Expensive for what it is

A lot more companies are thinking about how they go about making their clothing and accessories more visible at night without making riders look like a full DayGlo warrior with strips of 3M Scotchlite adorning their kit at random angles.

> Find your nearest dealer here

> Buy this online here

Huez has gone with a similar concept to brands such as Proviz and Sugoi with full reflectivity, giving 360-degree coverage.

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - reflective 2.jpg

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - reflective 2.jpg

The Starman Reflex uses thousands of tiny little glass beads sewn into the fabric to bounce the light back at whatever source is providing it. By day the fabric looks a shiny dark silver just like any other race cape, but at night it works really well, giving you this ghostly upper body that shimmers in the light and defining you as a human object thanks to your shape. I've even worn it when running on unlit lanes and was very confident about my visibility.

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - reflective 1.jpg

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - reflective 1.jpg

I've tested a lot of these sorts of jacket over the years, and the Starman Reflex is one of the better ones, especially in terms of breathability. It'll still overheat if you push the pace hard, but for most moderate training rides and the odd bit of hill climbing, the underarm mesh vents and the opening that runs just below the shoulder blades are enough to keep you comfortable.

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - underarm.jpg

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - underarm.jpg

There is also a long opening that allows you access to your jersey pockets, held shut by Velcro, so if you get really clammy you can keep this open to let more heat out.

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - opening.jpg

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - opening.jpg

The material is a decent windstopper, just taking the edge off a chilly breeze when worn over a jersey and light baselayer, even if the temperatures are only hovering around 3°C.

It's also claimed to be waterproof. It has a 5,000mm rating, which means it'll keep out a light shower or drizzle for a while, although to make sure the breathability is the best it can be Huez hasn't taped any of the seams so it's more of a water-resistant jacket than a waterproof.

> Buyer's Guide: 10 of the best windproof jackets

I've mentioned the fit already, and it really is very well cut, and will appeal if you like your kit close to the body to reduce flapping and keep you aero. You get a dropped tail for rear end coverage against road spray and also to stop any draughts getting up the back.

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - riding.jpg

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - riding.jpg

The front is also arched up towards the zip to stop any bagginess when you crouch on the bike, plus it reduces rub from the zip on the front of your shorts.

The sleeves are a good length, and feel slightly shaped at the elbow so you don't get any creasing here. The cuffs are elasticated, which stops wind and rain from getting blown up your arms, and they stay in place well as there is plenty of tension.

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - cuff 2.jpg

Huez Starman Reflex Jacket - cuff 2.jpg

At 190g the Starman Reflex is barely noticeable when on or when stuffed into your jersey pocket, so you can carry it as an emergency jacket. To keep things neat and tidy it folds into its own storage pocket.

It's £160, though, which is pricey for this type of jacket – especially when you can get something like the similar Showers Pass Ultralight Wind Jacket for just 60 quid, or the Shutt VR Showerproof jacket for £75.

The Huez is very good when it comes to the cut and the quality, and the reflectivity does bring on a whole new level of usability in the winter that the Shutt VR and Showers Pass don't have, but I'm not sure it's enough to justify the cost.

Verdict

Great race-cut jacket that stands out in headlights, but at a massive price

road.cc test report

Make and model: Huez Starman Reflex Jacket

Size tested: Medium

Tell us what the jacket is for

Huez describes the Starman thus: "The Starman Reflex jacket is our most technical to date and brings the added value of reflectivity to a highly breathable and waterproof material. The jacket is designed to perform at the highest level of road cycling, ensuring the fit is fine-tuned for your bike position and reducing fabric to ensure weight is kept a minimum."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the jacket?

From Huez:

100% Polyester

Hand wash 30 degrees for best performance.

Reflective

Water resistant

Underarm mesh

Storage pocket

Access to jersey pockets

Rate the jacket for quality of construction:
 
8/10
Rate the jacket for performance:
 
7/10
Rate the jacket for durability:
 
7/10
Rate the jacket for waterproofing
 
6/10
Rate the jacket for breathability
 
7/10
Rate the jacket for fit:
 
8/10
Rate the jacket for sizing:
 
8/10
Rate the jacket for weight:
 
8/10
Rate the jacket for comfort:
 
8/10
Rate the jacket for value:
 
5/10

How easy is the jacket to care for? How did it respond to being washed?

Hand wash at 30 degrees is the recommended but I've also washed it in the machine with no issues.

Tell us how the jacket performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Impressive reflective properties and decent breathability.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the jacket

The reflectivity.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the jacket

Pricey.

Did you enjoy using the jacket? Yes

Would you consider buying the jacket? Not at full price.

Would you recommend the jacket to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

It's a decent race style cape for performance riding in the cool weather with good breathability and the added bonus of great reflectivity, but the waterproofing isn't the best around and it's a lot of money.

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 38  Height: 180cm  Weight: 76kg

I usually ride: This month's test bike  My best bike is: Kinesis Aithein

I've been riding for: 10-20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed

Stu knocked out his first road.cc review back in 2009 and since then he's chucked the best part of seventy test bikes around the West Country, a couple of them quite literally! With three alloy and two steel bikes in his fleet he's definitely a metal man (that'll be the engineering background) but is slowly warming to that modern carbon fibre stuff along with fat tyres & disc brakes.
It's not all nostalgia though, after spending the last few years in product design Stu keeps banging on about how 3D printing is going to be the next big thing and he's a sucker for a beautiful paint job too.