women's cycling jacket
Georgia in Dublin's Hustle and Bustle Jacket is a love or hate piece of cycling kit. If you love it, it's a truly innovative design, that looks a bit different and raises the spirits, whilst still managing to be functional and technical cycle wear. Or you'll hate it. It's a fact.
Polaris is a manufacturer with a huge range of clothing for all types of cycling, and this Sapphire jacket is described as being suitable for road, trail or urban use. It's a nice piece of kit, but can it really be so versatile?
The Packaway Jacket from Zoca is testament to just how compact and light it's possible to make a pakcable windproof now, whilst still retaining genuine usefulness. A super light windproof shell jacket is a godsend for the inconstant British weather. It's easy to pop into the back pocket of a jersey or into a bar bag and makes a hell of a difference to core warmth when required.
Having a lightweight packable windproof jacket makes an enormous difference to comfort levels on a ride in changeable conditions or at the turn of the seasons, Dare 2b's Swept Away Windshell is designed to offer all those benefits to women riders and it's keenly priced too.
The All Weather Jacket by Sweaty Betty sets out to be a funkier alternative to a standard waterproof, while still trying to retain that functionality. If you are going to ride your bike year-round, no matter what the weather or the season, you are, at some point, going to need a waterproof jacket of some sort. There are a few companies around now seeking to make something as functional as a waterproof cycling jacket a little more stylish at the same time. Most succeed to a greater or lesser degree, but often to the detriment of the very functionality that started the whole thing off.
Made from extremely lightweight Gore-Tex Paclite, the Xenon is available for both men and women and is designed to be a waterproof shell for cyclists wanting protection from the elements with no weight penalty.
It's a pared down jacket as far as features go, with clean lines and just one single pocket at chest height. There's a full length front zip, dipped tail with hem drawcord, plenty of reflective accents and a shaped collar with soft fleecy lining. There's also no hood. Arms are articulated and the cuffs fasten with slimline Velcro fasteners.
Soft shell jackets are, on the whole, pricier than more traditional ‘hard shell’ or fleece/Roubaix style non-waterproof jackets. They offer a compromise between the warmth and breathability of a non-waterproof training top and the out and out weather protection but potential sweatiness of a waterproof.
Known for bringing a little street chic into cycling, women’s specific brand Cyclodelic specialize in lovingly made, carefully designed pieces of fashion that are functional too. The Edwardian Waterproof Jacket is a good example. Conceived to be a winter conditions waterproof that looks as good off the bike as on, it’s anything but ‘just another waterproof’.
The women’s specific version of Paramo’s popular jacket made from the company’s lighter weight waterproof fabric, the Ladies Velez Adventure Light is a smock style pullover jacket, designed for multi-activity use, but ideal for long wet days in the saddle. As such, it’ll appeal to tourists, but is also a good option to consider for winter training rides and mountain biking.
I got very excited, along with probably every other lycra loving lady in the UK, when I heard that Rapha, the Gucci of the cycling world, were bringing out a range of women’s specific clothing. Rapha has long been a name associated with style, quality, and ahem, price, and I was delighted to have a look at the women’s range to see if it came up to the standard of the men’s.