These ETC Snug Arm Warmers share many of the same attributes of more expensive sleeves but cost just a tenner. They offer a good fit, they stay put, and work in temperatures typically found in early spring and late autumn.
Arm warmers are a pretty simple concept: a tube of material to keep your arms warm when paired with a short sleeve jersey. ETC's take on this little wardrobe staple is impressive for the money.
First up, rather than just a single seam, the Snug warmers have a second one that creates a sort of elbow area. I found this to help with the flex, and stopped any material bunching on the inside of the elbow. They aren't exactly 'shaped', but this really helps.
To keep them in position at the top there are a couple of silicone bands which do the job. I didn't feel as though they caused any unnecessary pressure points.
The wrists kind of take care of themselves.
Sizing-wise there are three options: small/medium, medium/large and large/x-large; I've been using the smallest. The distributor doesn't have a size guide on its website, but I'd say go with your gut instinct: if you generally wear a medium/large jersey, then that's the size to go for.
I usually wear a medium jersey, and though I didn't find the small/medium too small, I would have liked a little more length, hence I'd go up a size.
When it comes to their ideal temperature range, I'd say you are looking at around the high single figures, from around 7°C, up to about 15°C. They aren't quite thick enough for really cold winter temperatures and there is no windproofing as such, so icy northerly winds will make their way through.
One thing is for sure, though, they pack down very small, so they'll fit in a jersey pocket without taking up much room.
At just £10 these are some of the cheapest arm warmers we've ever tested, and they certainly don't feel like ETC has scrimped anywhere when it comes to the fabric or build quality.
Neat little touches like reflective logos on the wrist are a bonus, although Emma did notice that hers started to peel off on the ETC leg warmers she was testing.
Galibier consistently delivers on the price per performance balance, as seen here on the Ardennes II arm warmers. Two different fabrics are used to give increased protection from the elements, and they are shaped specifically for each arm. They are a bargain at £19.58, but that also highlights how cheap the ETCs are.
The UK-made Lusso Active Aero arm warmers offer a similar performance to the ETCs, being more for cooler temperatures than cold ones. They'll set you back £24.99, though.
Overall, for a little bit of extra warmth when riding early or late on a spring/autumn day, the ETC Snug arm warmers can't really be faulted. Cheap and cheerful while retaining decent quality and design.
Good cool weather performance and a great fit – not just for those on a budget
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road.cc test report
Make and model: ETC Snug Arm Warmers
Size tested: Small/Medium
Tell us what the product is for
These are lightweight arm warmers that will give decent protection from the weather, from early spring through to late autumn.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Moore Large lists:
Gender Unisex, Adult
Fabric 94/6 Polyester/Elastane
Sizing seems realistic to the UK demographic.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Absolutely no issues whatsoever going through the washing machine plenty of times.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
They fit well and keep you warm.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
All-round quality and performance for the price.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
They won't quite see you through the depths of winter.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Very cheap compared with most of the arm warmers on the market, without sacrificing on quality.
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
They're very good, with some great design features that can be found on arm warmers two or three times the price. They're not ideal for really cold winter temperatures, but they'll get plenty of use on those early spring and late autumn days.
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!