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Best winter cycling jackets 2024 — stay warm and comfortable on your cold-weather rides

Keep riding through the colder months, wrapped in one of the best winter cycling jackets

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The best cycling jackets for winter riding should not only protect you from the elements, they should also be able to cope with the heat and sweat that you produce when you want to ride at a decent pace. After incredible developments in textiles over the past decade or so, there's no reason to wear the wrong cycling clothing any more. Here's a selection of the best winter cycling jackets that'll keep you warm and comfortable in the colder months, starting with our top six and plenty more recommendations to cover almost every budget and use case. 

There is a jacket designed specifically for every type of weather you might encounter. The most common conditions you’re likely to face in a typical British winter where is based are rain, wind and cold, down to freezing or sometimes just below.

Winter cycling clothing for your top half can be broadly distilled into three types: waterproof jacketswindproof jackets and soft shell jackets. Add in variations on those and cross-over jackets designed to perform multiple functions, and you’re suddenly looking at a huge choice.

In this guide, you'll find winter jackets with insulation to provide warmth and protection against the cold, wind and light rain. You'll find our more specific guides to waterproof and windproof jackets linked above, and we've also got an overall guide to the best cycling jackets if you want to see a broader range. If you're in need of something warm for your bottom half, then be sure to check out our guide to the best winter bib tights too.

How we review winter cycling jackets reviewers know what they're looking for in a winter cycling jacket, and will live with the product for a month or more before writing up their findings. Jackets are assessed on their quality of construction, performance, durability, waterproofing, breathability and fit. Sizing, weight, comfort and the all-important value for money are also considered. 

We'll judge a product fairly based on its price point and features list, and compare apples to apples as much as possible. For example, if a jacket claims to be water-resistant, we're not going to mark it down for not being fully waterproof if that's not what it was designed to do. 

Why you can trust us

All of our reviewers are experienced cyclists, as are those of us who put together these buyer's guides, so you can be sure our guides are far from pesky AI-generated listicles designed to make you by stuff you don't need! 

The winter cycling jackets included in this guide have all scored highly in reviews - ideally at least an 8/10 or better - and a number of them have been awarded Recommends badges too. We'll only include products that deserve to go in from our vast reviews archive... it's as simple as that. 

The best winter cycling jackets: our top picks

Castelli Perfetto RoS 2 Jacket

Castelli Perfetto RoS 2 Jacket

Best overall winter cycling jacket
Buy now for £157 from Sigma Sports
Brilliant breathability
Good water resistance
Excellent fit
Easy to layer
Big pull-loop on zip
Price increase

Castelli's Perfetto RoS 2 Jacket is a popular choice amongst road cyclists. It's a great winter investment as well as being a brilliant bit of kit for the autumn and spring months, which helps to justify the price. 

What we have here is enough insulation for the autumn and spring in a jacket that is easy to pair with a heavier baselayer and thermal jersey on those extra cold winter days.

The water resistance is impressive too, seeing off heavy showers and road spray, while the lightweight design and breathability means that mild conditions won't leave you a sweaty mess. 

Galibier GrandTour Jacket

Galibier GrandTour Jacket

Best budget winter cycling jacket
Buy now for £82.34 from Galibier
Excellent comfort
Smart look
Great warmth for winter
Works well with dedicated gilet
Very good price
Slightly small pockets

Despite being a cheaper option, you get a lot of jacket for your money with the Galibier GrandTour jacket. It's an excellent option with a great performance and a quality to rival some of the top cycling brands around. 

Tester Josh writes: "Immediately on receiving the jacket I was struck by the quality of the material and the cut – even more so when its modest price is taken into account. I've been blown away by the quality of the jacket, which is up there with those from the likes of Castelli and Rapha, but at a fraction of the price."

This jacket does a great job of keeping the heat in and also features a pleasingly large reflective panel on the rear of the back, which is great for kit designed for the darker months of the year. 

Gobik Jacket Unisex Thermal Armour Vanta

Gobik Jacket Unisex Thermal Armour Vanta

Best unisex winter cycling jacket
Buy now for £219.99 from Bike Inn
Only available in black

 Gobik is a Spanish brand and clothing provider for pro team Ineos Grenadiers and their Unisex Thermal Armour Venta Jacket is an excellent winter jacket that copes well with the harshest of conditions. 

Gobike says that the jacket is suitable for temperatures between -5 and 10°C, and tester Ben said that it's warm and waterproof, has a great fit, and provides good breathability. 

Ben writes: "Upon opening the jacket, I was a bit worried about breathability because the Polartec Alpha lining looks incredibly warm. I needn't have worried, though, as the material and the vents did a good job of regulating my temperature."

The only downside is that it's only available in black. 

Endura Pro SL 3-Season Jacket

Endura Pro SL 3-Season Jacket

Best winter cycling jacket for versatility
Buy now for £83.99 from Wiggle
Loads of venting
Extra pockets work well
Gilet can twist

The Endura Pro SL 3-Season Jacket is an impressively versatile jacket with a well-designed venting system meaning it works really well across a huge range of temperatures.

It has a removable Primaloft gilet which clips into the jacket via three poppers and will keep you warm in temperatures down to -4°C with a jersey and baselayer underneath. If you remove the gilet, the jacket can cope with double-figure temperatures up to 16°C with the vents open. 

The clever shaping, quality construction and attention to detail all impress too and the waterproofing comes via a PFC-free water repellent finish which worked very well throughout the review period. 

Showers Pass Men’s EcoLyte Elite Jacket

Showers Pass Men’s EcoLyte Elite Jacket

Best winter cycling jacket for commuting
Buy now for £245 from Showers Pass
Waterproofing is top notch
Loads of ventilation
Plenty of length in the sleeves
Hood is removable
It's a big price tag

The Showers Pass Men’s EcoLyte Elite Jacket is one of the best waterproof, breathable, packable jackets on the market, making it a great choice for commuting in the British winter. 

It comes with great ventilation, a cut that suits all kinds of riding styles, and it's packable too. You even get a removable hood for those atrocious weather days and it's large enough to fit over the top of your helmet. 

In terms of construction, the outer face and lining are made from 100% recycled material, so it's got some eco credentials going for it, and so are the zips on the vents and rear pocket. The three-layer fabric is coated with a DWR (durable water repellent) finish which sees the rain water and road spray just bead off even in long, heavy downpours. 

Castelli Alpha RoS 2 Jacket Men’s

Castelli Alpha RoS 2 Jacket Men’s

Best money-no-object winter cycling jacket
Buy now for £199.99 from Tredz
Versatile double-layer construction
Excellent Windstopper fabric
Stretchy enough for a close fit
Among the more expensive options out there

The Castelli Alpha RoS 2 Jacket Men’s is an exceptionally versatile winter windproof jacket that's warm and highly water resistant, albeit with an RRP of £320. 

The exterior is made from Gore-Tex Infinium Windstopper 150 which, as the name suggests, prevents cold air from blowing in and although Gore doesn't call it waterproof, Infinium Windstopper 150 is way more water-resistant than you might expect. It's also highly breathable so you don't get that boil in a bag effect when you hit the climbs.

Another crucial element of the Alpha RoS 2 is the clever double-layer construction. The bottom line is that this structure isn't a gimmick, it works really well, allowing you to adjust things according to the conditions, the terrain, and your riding intensity, without the jacket as a whole flapping about or the need to stop and add/remove layers.

Tester Mat said, "I've been using this jacket in all kinds of winter conditions, and it has put in an exceptional performance throughout. Castelli says the Alpha RoS has a temperature range of -5°C to 10°C. The coldest I went in this jacket was -2°C, but it was a really blowy day and the wind chill meant it was considerably colder, so I'd say Castelli is about right."

More of our favourite winter cycling jackets

Galibier Colombière Jacket

Galibier Colombière Jacket

Buy now for £68.22 from Galibier
Lightweight side-panel construction
Removable hood
Could perhaps feature a little more reflective detail at the rear

Northern Irish brand Galibier has been quietly producing high-quality cycle wear at very competitive prices for some years now, and the Colombière jacket can certainly be added to the list of its successes. For the money, I doubt you'd find a better casual winter cycling jacket and you may not find better spending considerably more. 

It's an excellent everyday jacket, whether the day includes riding a bike or not with features such as lightweight panelling to prevent overheating when you do ride and a zip-off hood. 

This jacket is also reversible and both layers have been treated with a water-repelling DWR treatment that will see you through any shower. It's not designed for prolonged downpours but tester Paul said, "I've been caught in some pretty horrible weather and if has stood up to it well."

Altura All Roads Fleece

Altura All Roads Fleece

Buy now for £90 from Altura
Very warm
Good weather resistance
Decent breathability
Practical pockets
Holds odours
Quite bulky

The Altura All Roads Fleece is a comfortable and well-priced multi-purpose fleece that looks good and will keep you warm. Tester Bryn said, "It's snug, warm and with good resistance to the elements when you're riding – it's also casual enough to use it when you're off the bike and reasonably priced". 

The body is made from a DWR (durable water repellent)-coated softshell, and with the High Loft fleece used for the upper section being naturally hydrophobic, the All Roads is a practical piece of clothing for changeable weather.

It's a relaxed fit but has cycling-specific features such as back pockets and a slightly tapered waist. 

Endura GV500 Insulated Jacket

Endura GV500 Insulated Jacket

Buy now for £103.99 from Wiggle
Jacket feels lovely and light on
Packs down super small in pocket or bag
PrimaLoft® Gold Active keeps you super warm
More reflective detailing needed on rear

The GV500 Insulated Jacket is great on and off the bike when it's freezing or low single digits. It's not designed to be waterproof but it will shrug off light showers. It's also super lightweight and packs down to next to nothing when you need to stow it. 

The inside is a very bright safety orange but unfortunately, the main zip is not double-sided so you cannot easily turn it inside out (although I’m sure you could manage in an emergency). The orange side has no pockets, but at least you would be seen as opposed to blending in with the very nice, but super stealthy Action Man green colour.

Other features include two handwarmer pockets (one of which it can pack itself into), a double-ended zip, a snug adjustable hood and front and rear reflective markings. 

Stolen Goat Men’s Mango Alpine Epic Jacket

Stolen Goat Men’s Mango Alpine Epic Jacket

Buy now for £114 from Stolen Goat
Good water repellency
Excellent fit
Unusual short length won't suit everyone

Stolen Goat has rolled some novel design ideas into the Alpine Epic to create a jacket that works extremely well for riding in cruddy weather, suitable for temperatures between -5°C and 8°C according to Stolen Goat. 

Tester John writes: "There's something remarkably clever about the waffled/dimpled fabric Stolen Goat has used here. Wearing it, you know that it's cold and wet outside, but that cold and wet doesn't get through and seep into your bones. You're isolated from it even if you're not completely insulated". 

The Alpine Epic's fabric blocks the wind extremely effectively and insulates even when it's damp. It has impressive water resistance too - light rains beads and runs off. 

Santini Adapt Multi - Jacket

Santini Adapt Multi - Jacket

Buy now for £152.99 from Trade Inn
Highly breathable
Waterproof beyond expectations
Balanced temperature when working hard
Great cut
Great looks
You need to be working hard to stay warm

The Santini Adapt Multi - Jacket is a very lightweight jacket that can be worn in atrocious conditions. It's wonderfully warm yet also breathable, and very good at keeping out rain.

The fabric chosen by Santini for the Adapt Multi is Polartec's Power Shield Pro which represents the cutting edge of highly waterproof, thermally insulating and breathable material.

The design of the Adapt is a classic winter jacket – snug fit, high collar, generously-low hem at the back with gripper tape, and long sleeves to fully cover the wrists. The three back pockets are deep enough to swallow the largest of phones or a decent tool roll, and on the left pocket is a zipped pocket for valuables.

MAAP Training Winter Jacket

MAAP Training Winter Jacket

Buy now for £215 from Maap
Impressive wind and weather protection
Comfortable cut without being baggy
Warm and soft lining

The MAAP Training Winter Jacket is very impressive, offering excellent protection in a variety of conditions. It doesn't come cheap and it's exceptionally good - warm, comfortable, waterproof and well-made. 

Tester George said, "It kept out all the wind and rain that a winter in the Midlands could throw at it, and there were plenty of heavy downpours. Alongside the waterproofing it's also impressively windproof."

Despite it being warm and comfortable in even the most foul conditions, it maintains good breathability and ventilation. This semi-relaxed fit means it's comfortable to wear in a variety of situations as you can layer up to suit making it suitable for a slightly nippy autumnal day or a bitterly cold winter blizzard. 

Altura Grid Women’s Half Zip Softshell Hoodie

Altura Grid Women’s Half Zip Softshell Hoodie

Buy now for £115 from Altura
Warm and windproof
Water repellent
Nicely reflective
Good value
Only comes in one (quite pale) colour

Altura's Grid Women’s Half Zip Softshell Hoodie is cosy, protective and versatile for all sorts of riding and outdoor activities, without looking too technical. 

The Altura hoodie is like a cross between a sweatshirt and a softshell jacket with a thermal grid fleece lining and is remarkably protective. It has a half zip at the neck, an adjustable hood with peak, zipped side pockets, a shaped tail and long stretchy cuffs. It also has reflective print patterns along the rear hemline, at the cuffs and on the chest.

It's windproof and warm enough to use with a fairly thin top underneath until the temperatures start to drop. When they do, there's room underneath for thicker baselayers, especially as the fabric is very stretchy. It was spot on even on very cold days around zero. The water-repellent treatment is very effective too, even keeping out heavy rain showers, though it's not claimed to be a waterproof jacket.

Gore Tempest Jacket Women’s

Gore Tempest Jacket Women’s

Buy now for £111.99 from Gorewear
Very high quality feel
Cosy collar and cuffs
Room to layer
Soft inner
A touch too short

Gore Tempest Women's Jacket is made of Infinium windstopper fabric and a DWR treatment and is designed for day-to-day winter riding in all but the wettest conditions. 

The Tempest offers a pleasingly cosy 'slim fit' cut (the middle of three fit options) along with a mega-soft fleece interior. It follows body contours without being skin-tight, and produces clean lines with decent space for layers. 

Tester Janine said, "Put simply, the super-effective wind protection and attractive design of this jacket is easy to love. The fleeced inner is so plush that it serves up that bit of extra motivation for those cold, dark commutes – exactly what you want from a winter cycling jacket". 

Velocio Women’s Alpha Merino Air Jacket

Velocio Women’s Alpha Merino Air Jacket

Buy now for £199 from Velocio
Warm yet breathable
Deep pockets
Low-profile cuffs
Great fit
Low bulk
Some recycled fabrics used
Two-way zip
No zipper tag

The Velocio Women's Alpha Merino Air Jacket has a fantastic warmth to weight ratio and works very well across a wide temperature range of dry weather conditions and light showers.

Tester Anna writes: "It fits wonderfully, feels delightful against the skin, and has excellent low-profile cuffs." Alongside the windproof and water-resistant outer, Velocio has used a merino wool version of Polartec's Alpha insulation inside the jacket, across the front, through the sleeves and around the collar. It's incredibly soft and snugly, making this jacket a delight to wear.

It's also still breathable enough for those fast and intense blasts thanks to the soft fleece-backed panel at the back. It's made from 100% recycled polyester, which is a welcome nod to sustainability. 

Le Col Womens Hors Categorie Jacket II

Le Col Womens Hors Categorie Jacket II

Buy now for £330 from Le Col
Very warm
Great wind and rain protection
Comfortable fit
Lots of reflective panels
The price

Le Col's Womens Hors Categorie Jacket II is a very warm jacket that offers excellent protection from the wind and rain while still being breathable, but this quality doesn't come cheap. 

I reviewed this one and was very impressed. The outer is made from Polartec's Power Shield fabric, a bio-based material offering a defence against both wind and rain. It performed fantastically at keeping out the elements, with rain and road spray beading effectively while completely blocking out the wind.

It's Polartec once again on the inside, in the form of its fleecy Alpha material. This feels very soft against your skin and kept me lovely and warm but without being sweaty.

How to choose from the best winter cycling jackets

What do you wear under a winter cycling jacket?

What to wear under a winter cycling jacket will depend on the conditions you're riding in and the quality of the winter jacket. Some of the best winter jackets need very few layers underneath to keep you nice and toasty but it's always a good idea to start with a base layer. 

> How should you dress for winter cycling?

Layering up your core is essential to keeping warm. Depending on the conditions, add a short or long-sleeve jersey over your base layer for more insulation. And of course, check out the feature linked above for a more detailed explanation!

How do I choose a cycling jacket?

It's important to think about the type of riding you'll be doing and how long your rides generally are when trying to pick the right winter cycling jacket for you. The most common conditions you’re likely to face in a typical British winter are rain, wind and cold. As we outlined in the intro, winter cycling jackets can be broadly distilled into three types: waterproof, windproof, and soft shell. 

You may also want to consider pockets. Well-designed pockets are useful and many winter cycling jackets come with three rear pockets or variations on this theme. For more versatility, chest pockets and side pockets can be useful for things like keys and phones, or keeping your hands warm when you’re not riding. Some people like lots of pockets, some don’t — it's up to you.

A decent full-length front zip is a must, with a good size puller that you can use even with thick winter gloves on. Some zips will have a storm flap behind to stop draughts, and a zip garage (a fold of fabric at the top) will prevent the zip snagging the soft skin of your neck.

Most winter cycling jackets will have a dropped tail, the rear section extending lower than the front. This is so that when you're on the bike the jacket keeps your bum covered and the front doesn't bunch up around your stomach. The more race orientated a jacket, the more extreme this cut will be.

Many jackets will feature some sort of ventilation. Of course, there’s the full-length front zip that is an almost universal feature. Extra zipped ports on the chest and under the arms can help deal with any excess heat when you’re riding. The more breathable a fabric is, the less it’ll need extra vents.

Are cycling jackets waterproof?

Cycling jackets can vary in terms of their water resistance or waterproof capabilities. Not all cycling jackets are fully waterproof but most are designed to be water-resistant or water-repellent.

Despite windproof and soft shell jackets not being completely waterproof, they will often feature a water-resistant coating that will protect you against light showers and road spray.

If you cycle commute in all weathers and you're not particularly riding for fitness, you might want to invest in a hardshell, proper waterproof and layer underneath to keep the warmth in and the rain out. If you only ride for leisure and can be a bit more choosy about what weather you ride in, then a softshell jacket with some water resistance and thermal capabilities may work for most situations; but it's still a good idea to invest in a packable waterproof should the heavens open. 

What type of jacket is best for my riding?

For winter cycling there are many different types of jackets depending on your riding preferences. Windproof jackets are ideal for blocking the wind (of course) and are suitable for cold weather, often featuring a water-resistant coating. Insulated jackets are designed for colder temperatures with added insulation to keep you warm. Waterproof jackets are designed to keep you dry in heavy rain, but this may come at the compromise of breathability. Softshell jackets typically combine breathability and water resistance and a suitable for a range of conditions, offering a balance between protection and comfort. 

How tight is a cycling jacket supposed to fit?

Like any garment, a winter cycling jacket needs to fit well. One key consideration is the arms. They need to be long enough to cover your wrists when you stretch to the handlebars.

The fit of the jacket can range from loose for casually style jackets, popular with leisure and commuting cyclists, to more snugly fitted jackets with an emphasis on aerodynamics that are suited to more performance-driven cyclists. When trying on a jacket it’s vital you consider how many layers you could be wearing underneath and allow a bit of space for, say, at least two long-sleeve layers.

Some jackets, especially those lightweight shells designed for occasional emergency use, skimp on the features in pursuit of lightness, so don’t expect pockets or other extras from this style of jacket.

Emily is our track and road racing specialist, having represented Great Britain at the World and European Track Championships. With a National Title up her sleeve, Emily has just completed her Master’s in Sports Psychology at Loughborough University where she raced for Elite Development Team, Loughborough Lightning.

Emily is our go-to for all things training and when not riding or racing bikes, you can find her online shopping or booking flights…the rest of the office is now considering painting their nails to see if that’s the secret to going fast…