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We've already reviewed the men's dbh Blok bibs, and I'm happy to report that good value and comfort are reflected in the women's version too.
The bibs are part of the new Blok range from dhb, touted as fashion forward, highly functional, and in true dhb style, very good value. In addition to the long bib tights version, these shorts comprise the bibs/short in the range of hi-viz and brightly coloured jerseys and armwarmers.
The fluoro in the name makes an appearance on the overseam piping on the edges of the white bib straps, and the dhb logo transfer, as well as the obvious wide gripper band on each leg. The bands are quite striking, and I've been impressed with how they garner attention on the road, especially with a good cadence on a dimly lit morning.
The wide bands are also functional, providing a comfortable but firm grip on the thighs, supplemented by minimal and widely spaced silicone dots to ensure they don't ride up. The moderate elasticity, spread across a wider band, tends to make for a more flattering look on the leg than thinner and more restrictive options, comfortable without being constrictive. The legs reach to about mid thigh.
Bib fit can be much more of a complex issue for women, and, of course, depends a lot on body shape and personal preference. Having owned a few pairs of dhb bibs across the range, and not got on with the bib cut of several, I am quite impressed by the fit of the Blok Fluoros. For reference, I fit comfortably into the 12 in the Blok, though I opted for 14 in the more racy DHB Goldline bibs.
I found the wide soft straps supportive but unrestrictive, and the fabric is incredibly stretchy, which should cater for a good variety of shapes and sizes. I usually struggle with the bibs fitting comfortably over the chest, but the straps are placed wide enough, and the fabric elastic enough, for this not to be an issue for me at all.
The scoop of the bibs at the front is a little higher than most, which I actually found incredibly comfortable across my stomach. When bent over the bars, it sits an inch or two below my sternum.
The high lycra back and sides are sewn onto a white racer-back style panel which is perforated up to the shoulder blades to improve breathability. The lycra appears to be less silky than some, which I didn't find any less comfortable on the skin. It seems to grip very well to silicone hems on jerseys so they don't ride up, and increases staying power between the bibs and saddle.
Arguably as important as the fit is the pad. Dhb have chosen a CyTech pad similar to that found in their Aeron range. The material is soft and highly breathable, but it is also quite thin and lightweight. Pads are hugely down to personal preference, but I really liked the 'barely-there' feel, which provides a bit of cushioning while not feeling like a nappy. I found it especially good for whipping on for quick 10 miles commutes, but I've been totally comfortable on much longer rides.
For me, the mark of good bibs is to get to the end of a ride without having to adjust or even think about what I'm wearing, and this is certainly the case here.
Comfortable, eye-catching, and well cut bibs at a great price
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Make and model: dhb Women's Blok Fluoro Cycle Bib Shorts
Size tested: 12
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?
DHB say: "The dhb Blok Fluro Cycle Bib Shorts feature an Action 205 Lycra construction which offers a light compression effect, muscle support and freedom of movement for all levels of cyclists"
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
- CyTech Elastic Interface 'Speed Air' chamois for low bulk cushioning and heat exchange over long distances
- Action 205 Lycra construction for light compression, muscle support and freedom of movement
- Mesh back panel for ventilation
- Fluoro sublimated leg elastic and lycra binding
- Durable flatlock stitching to minimise chaffing
- Elastic cuffs with silicone grippers for a secure bunch-free fit
- Soft mesh braces designed for comfort and breathability
Well thought out cut and design, constructed to a high standard.
The bibs have made it through many cycles in the washing machine unscathed. Seams and fabric have worn well, and survived some scuffs.
Less bulky and thinner than some offerings.
Nothing digs in, nothing scratches.
Very good price; Wiggle's loyalty scheme and/or British Cycling membership brings it even lower.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The flattering female cut, comfortable slimline pad and grippers.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Age: 23 Height: 5ft7 Weight:
I usually ride: Sabbath September My best bike is: Van Nicholas Mistral for summer
I've been riding for: Under 5 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, audax