The dhb Aeron Equinox Short Sleeve Base Layer is a close-fitting under layer for cooler summer days and for spring and autumn. It's nice and airy but thicker across the front where the wind hits you.
- Pros: Stretchy with extra thickness where you need it
- Cons: The change in fabric across the stomach
Thicker at the front, mesh elsewhere – that's the main selling point of dhb's Aeron Equinox Short Sleeve Base Layer. It uses a double-knit fabric for the warmer panel, which stretches from neck to navel, and a more open mesh elsewhere so that you don't overheat from your own efforts.
The back and sleeves are largely polyester, with a dash of Spandex, while the warmer front is not far off half-and-half polyester and polypropylene. Both materials are soft and light and quick to dry, as you'd hope for a baselayer.
The fit is designed to be close. I was testing a medium, which I found tight but forgivingly stretchy. The dhb size guide has me on the medium-large threshold. Perhaps I'd have been better off with the latter, but the material gave enough that it wasn't really a major concern. (It's not me in the photos, by the way.)
The only real sizing issue I had was that it tended to ride up a little when I stood – a sensation that was exaggerated by the change in material towards the bottom of the front.
As you can see in the photo up top, the double-knit fabric gives way to mesh again for the last couple of inches. This makes sense when you combine it with a pair of bib shorts, but because the garment's figure-hugging, you'll be aware of that line across your stomach when you first put it on. That said, I can't say I was remotely aware of the issue while riding.
I wasn't really aware of the Aeron Equinox at all on the bike, in fact – which is pretty much what you want from a baselayer. The fabric, shape and stitching are unobtrusive and while you can certainly tax the breathability of the front if you put your mind (and legs) to it, the rest of the thing's plenty breathable enough to compensate.
Price-wise, this is pretty much par for the course for a short-sleeve baselayer. The Chapeau Mesh Base Layer is £34.99, the Lusso Race Base Mesh Base Layer is £24.99 and the Castelli Pro Issue SS Base Layer is £35.
You can also get the Equinox's slightly warmer cousin, the dhb Aeron Body Map Short Sleeve Baselayer, for the same price.
Very good, well-thought-out baselayer at a perfectly reasonable price
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road.cc test report
Make and model: dhb Aeron Equinox Short Sleeve Base Layer
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for:
A short-sleeve baselayer, primarily for spring/autumn.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Back & Sleeves: 93% Polyester, 7% Spandex
Front: 56% Polyester, 44% Polypropylene
Offering a good balance of warmth in the places you need it most, and excellent ventilation where you need to dump heat out, the dhb Aeron Equinox Short Sleeve Base Layer is the one to reach for as the seasons change.
dhb have used a double-knit fabric on the front to trap in heat, and an open mesh elsewhere to effectively regulate your temperature. High-level moisture management means that you will also stay dry and comfortable, which this makes the Aeron Equinox base layer perfect for cooler summer days, or rides where the temperature is just starting to drop.
The fit is close to ensure it fits comfortably under your Aeron jersey, with natural stretch to ensure you can more freely. It is finished with an anti-odour treatment for long-term freshness.
Designed to be close. It's stretchy, but I'd be tempted to size up if you're between sizes.
You can find lighter, but we're talking a handful of grams.
Unnoticeable once you're riding – which is what you want.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Stuck it in the normal wash. Came out fine.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Warmer at the front, cooler at the back, close fit, comfortable, breathable.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Light, functional, comfortable enough to forget about.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Slightly weird sensation across the stomach where the front changes to mesh when you first put it on.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Average. Alternatives include the Chapeau Mesh Base Layer Short Sleeve, £34.99, dhb Aeron Body Map Short Sleeve Baselayer, £30, Lusso Race Base Mesh Base Layer, £24.99, and Castelli Pro Issue SS Base Layer, £35.
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
Overall I'd say it's very good: comfortable and adaptable, with the change in feel where the fabric changes across the stomach only a very minor quibble.
About the tester
I usually ride: Scott S40 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: general fitness riding