Chapeau Clothing knee warmers fit very nicely, the fabric is thin and stretchy, and their simple looks will win fans.
Knee warmers are an indispensable accessory for at least two seasons of the year, adding versatility to your cycling outfit. Even in the summer, they're ideal for early morning rides and those more unpredictable days when it might not be as warm as one would hope.
Like the arm warmers, they have opted for a very simple construction, nothing fancy, just a single piece of 90% polyester/10% Lycra fabric. The main fabric used is very stretchy vertically, but not so much horizontally. To give a little extra expansion room around the back of the legs, they've used a small triangular section of very stretchy mesh fabric. It works well, and provides a comfortable fit.
Two sizes are available, the s/m I tested definitely came up smaller than other knee warmers, but once they're on there's no excessive pressure, and they proved very comfortable on rides. The gripper tape at the top further aids their ability to stay planted on your legs. These knee warmers aren't going to slide down your legs, unless you've skinny poles like Chris Froome.
And like the arm warmers, the care label is stitched externally so there's no irritation on the skin. But it doesn't mean the washing instructions are easily visible when you're wearing them. It's a trivial thing, but could be a dealbreaker for some. The excellent price and all-round good fit and comfort overcomes that for me though.
The lightweight fabric Chapeau have used provides just the right level of insulation for the knees, making these knee warmers better suited to milder weather. If it gets colder, I'd be reaching for some Roubaix fleece-lined knee warmers, but up until that point these are adequate.
Good comfort and price makes these a top choice.
road.cc test report
Make and model: Chapeau Knee Warmers
Size tested: Small/Medium
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?
Like our arm warmers, we wanted to make a best in class pair of knee warmers. Again, you might assume this to be an easy one to do, but again, not so. Getting the length, thickness, gripper and seam placement just right all took a long time, but the result is a good one.
When pedalling, your knee is the joint most exposed to the elements whilst also being the one having the most force put through it, so looking after them is always worthwhile. Assuming cleat and saddle positioning are all fine, then the next thing to do is keep them warm which is where a good set of knee warmers is invaluable.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Single seam design, extremely comfortable
Lightweight stretch fabric
Textured inside for added warmth
Designed and tested in the UK by real cyclists
Manufactured in Portugal
90% Polyester / 10% Elastane
Very nicely made.
Fit is good and they stay put.
Good so far.
When you need to remove them, they go unnoticed in a jersey pocket.
Excellent comfort once in place, they don't shift about or exert too much pressure.
Extremely well-priced knee warmers
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Tick the boxes well.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The fit and lightweight fabric.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The external care label.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
Decent priced and nicely designed and made arm warmers.
About the tester
Age: 31 Height: 180 Weight: 67
I usually ride: My best bike is:
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: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, mtb,
David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.