The ashmei Men's Classic Cycle Jersey takes a traditional design and marries it with the latest high-tech fabric to create an excellent top, especially when the temperature ramps up. Brilliantly comfortable and highly breathable, it really has become one of my favourites.
For the Classic jersey ashmei uses a blend of merino wool (65%) and a polyester (35%) from a company called 37.5 Technology. According to its website, the 37.5 polyester 'helps keeps your body at the ideal core temperature of 37.5°C and helps keep the microclimate next to your skin at the ideal relative humidity of 37.5%.' Apparently when you are hot, patented active particles embedded in the material remove sweat in the vapour stage before liquid sweat forms, cooling you down. If you are cold, it traps the heat you generate to warm you up.
Before I'd done any research to write this review I'd been on a fair few long rides in the Classic in some very warm conditions, and each time I was amazed at how cool I remained even when climbing, and that the jersey was just damp when I finished the ride rather than being soaked in sweat.
It's hardly a clinical trial I'll admit, but I'd say there is definitely something in the claims.
The fabric blend also creates a very soft material which feels great against the skin, and even though the jersey has quite a form-fitting cut it doesn't feel restrictive anywhere.
For such a close cut the ashmei is still quite flattering if you aren't blessed with a racer's physique. The rear has plenty of drop to keep your lower back covered even when you are crouched low in the drops, while the front is arched high towards the centre to stop bunching of the fabric at the stomach.
The full length zip runs smoothly and it's good to see a flap to stop it irritating the neck because of the tall collar.
At the rear the 'classic' theme continues with three traditional pockets spread across the lower back. The way they have been stitched keeps them quite taut so carrying heavier items like a phone or multi-tool doesn't make them sag down too much.
For your valuables there is also a zipped fourth pocket.
The Classic is available in six colours and six sizes, and the fabric offers UPF 50+ sun protection.
Technological fabrics don't necessarily come cheap, which goes some way to explaining the Classic's £118 price tag. It is a quality garment, too, being very well made with a well-thought-out design and clean, tidy stitching throughout.
Both of these show that although the ashmei might be pricey, it's not outrageously so, and to my mind it's not bad value for money. Plus, the natural bacteria-killing properties of merino wool mean you can wear this jersey day in day out throughout the warmest days of the summer without fear of it smelling after a long ride, so it's going to get loads of use.
Excellent fabric choice backed up by a great fit and loads of comfort
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road.cc test report
Make and model: ashmei Mens Classic Cycle Jersey
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for
It's a traditional styled race jersey with a merino/polyester mix designed to regulate body temperature.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Ashmei lists these details:
Highly breathable fabric
Three rear stuff pockets with pump loop
Alcantara zip guard
Blended MERINO + CARBON with 37.5® Technology fabric
Super lightweight, high performance – 167g
YKK® Reverse Coil #3 Zipper with enlarged zip pull
Sun protection of UPF 50+
65% Merino Wool, 35% 37.5® Polyester
Cool wash at 30C
Wash dark colours separately
Do not use fabric softeners
Do not tumble dry
Great close fit without being skin tight.
The sizing is exactly as ashmei's guide says it should be.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Following ashmei's instructions I have had no issues with getting the jersey clean or with it shrinking.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
It does everything you need for a jersey that is going to be worn in very warm weather.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Brilliant fabric choice.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Nothing really stands out.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It's up there with some of the most expensive but justified I'd say.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
There is very little to fault here with the ashmei Classic jersey. It's a simple design but every aspect has been cleverly thought out.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed
With 20 years of road cycling and over 150,000 miles in his legs it's safe to say Stu is happiest when on the bike whatever the weather. Since writing his first review for road.cc back in 2009 he has also had a career in engineering including 3D-CAD design and product development, so has a real passion for all of the latest technology coming through in the industry but is also a sucker for a classic steel frame, skinny tyres, rim brakes and a damn good paintjob.
His fascination with gravel bikes is getting out of control too!