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Most overshoes are much of a muchness but the Nanos from Castelli have a few features that set them apart from the crowd, and not just their Ann Summers looks.
The lightweight, stretchy fabric is a much more supple than normal – you’re hardly aware you’re wearing them – and the polyurethane face is waterproof, unlike standard neoprene. Rain and spray can slowly soak in through the seam that joins the upper and lower sections – it’s not taped – but your feet will stay drier than normal in these. Even if water does get in, they still keep your feet reasonably warm, like most other overshoes.
You don’t get as much insulation as with thick neoprene, but the Nanos keep the wind off and allow your feet to heat up inside. There’s good coverage around the sole too with just small holes for your cleat and heel, and that makes a lot of difference. We’ve found them about right for autumn use and milder winter days, swapping to something more hardcore when the mercury dips below about 7°C.
You get a sturdy YKK zip at the back with a flap behind that stops it catching on your clothes or shoes, and reflective piping along the side makes a valuable safety feature. The cuff is elasticated to give a comfortable gap-free fit around your ankle while a silicone gripper is designed to hold the top in place – not that we’ve ever had any issues on that score.
As for the price, these are certainly among the more expensive overshoes out there but they do back that up with an impressive performance and the build-quality is high.
High-quality, water-resistant overshoes for autumn/spring and milder winter conditions
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Make and model: Castelli Nano Shoecover
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?
Castelli say, "Our most versatile bootie. Windproof to keep the cold off? Yep. Waterproof fabric? Yep. Super aerodynamic for time trials? Got that one too. So it’s good for everything, but we’re tired of the “you could wear that to the disco” jokes. It wasn’t that funny the first time we heard it."
We never mentioned any disco. But now you say it...
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Age: 40 Height: 190cm Weight: 74kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, sportives, general fitness riding,
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.