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Can padded cycling undies look cute and work hard? Yes, if you're wearing Urbanist Cycling's Brigitte briefs.
The Brigitte briefs are one of two designs from Urbanist Cycling, a new Texan brand that was supported by successful Kickstarter funding. They are designed for city cycling, or indeed anything short of long distance or race rides.
Wearing the Brigitte means that any clothing can become cycle clothing, as the briefs provide both a chamois for commuting comfort and protection from the hems in non-cycle specific trousers or jeans.
The Brigitte has a snazzy black and white striped 'look at me' design. Although I prefer to keep my underwear to myself this is a design which I would be happy to be seen sporting in the changing rooms before spin class as it doesn't look like traditional underwear. The Brigitte briefs are definitely feminine, but in a fun, cute way. There is a thin pink stretch lace on the top of the waistband, sensibly not continued around the legs where it would chafe. This acts instead of a traditional waistband to avoid cutting in and producing the dreaded muffin top.
The cut of the briefs is full without being grannyish. They are high at the back but not so high that they showed over the top of my trousers. This was useful as I generally wore non-cycle specific trousers or jeans with them and other cycling briefs I own can show significantly in use.
The chamois pad is of a good quality and really well attached to the briefs themselves with soft stitching which I couldn't feel in use. It is soft and flexible and didn't give a 'nappy' appearance in use. I've mostly been wearing these briefs under merino tights or jeans, and they've certainly got enough padding to wear for a medium to long commute. I didn't feel that I had to change out of them straight away afterwards either as they coped well with sweat and wicked moisture away fairly well.
The briefs stayed in place without riding up and were comfortable in use. My only gripe was that on the XL size the front of the crotch had been sized up too much, so there was excess material to wrinkle between my legs. This isn't an issue on the smaller sizes and didn't pose a comfort problem even in the XL.
The Brigitte briefs are available in four sizes, covering waists from 63 to 89cm between them. They are definitely on the generous side, so if in doubt (or buying as a present) go smaller.
I'm not surprised these briefs raised 250% of their Kickstarter target as they fill a real gap in the market.
Turns normal clothing into cycling gear with more style than anything comparable on the market
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Make and model: Urbanist Cycling Padded Brigitte
Size tested: XL
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?
Ever dreamt of a comfortable ride around town without having to resort to full-on cycling shorts? Something you can wear all day and feel feminine in, but still helps cushion your most sensitive parts as you ride?
Urbanist Cycling's Brigitte chamois-padded knickers are the answer to your prayers. Beautifully cut to fit and enhance the female form, they've been tested tirelessly by the Texas cycling community where Urbanist is based to ensure no chaffing or digging in. The material is sumptuous, whilst the chamois pads come from one of Italy's most respected chamois designers.
The Brigitte is well suited for medium/longer rides of up to 25 miles, or even longer. A quantum leap forward for women's cycling kit.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Full coverage cycling knickers
Extra thick, flexible chamois pad designed and made in Italy
Breathable, quick drying fabric to wick moisture efficiently
Tested by real women to ensure no chaffing or digging in discomfort
Wear under clothes, for outdoor riding or spinning
Nicely made with no loose threads. Labels are all heat sealed so nothing to rub.
Good for rides up to about two hours.
Despite me failing to wash them on a delicate cycle as instructed, these washed really well with no loss of shape.
A lovely chamois and soft, smooth all-round fit.
Comparable with similar items available.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
The briefs were comfy to wear and fitted well.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The snazzy colour scheme.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Age: 36 Height: 5'7 Weight: size 16
I usually ride: Trek 7.5 WSD My best bike is: Turquoise Cruiser
I've been riding for: Under 5 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Novice
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, general fitness riding, Leisure