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The Nopinz Pro-1 Gilet is an impressive windblocking layer that's packable into its own rear pockets, of which there are three. It's a useful layer for cool morning/evening rides thanks to its reflective trims, but while breathability is decent for most efforts, sweat does build up fairly easily around the pockets.
A Windstopper front blocks out the chilling wind, while round the back and at the sides, the perforated Chrono fabric is designed to wick moisture away. The well-judged close fit prevents wind coming in at all through the armholes, and the same applies to the collar up top.
Down below, a wide elasticated band with hexagonal silicone grippers – ranging from 6.5cm wide at the front to 10cm at the back – spans the circumference of the jersey, keeping it in place with a flush finish thanks to its raw cut edges.
The gilet also has a longer back which helps protect from road spray, even when shifted forward in a low, aggressive riding position.
One issue is that the pockets are the same windblocking material as the front of the gilet, which I found trapped more heat than usual, especially when filling my pockets.
Nopinz has slightly angled the outer pockets, which makes access genuinely easier as you're riding, although it also means only the centre pocket is deep enough to conceal a decent-sized smart phone. The only other thing missing is some drainage holes for water.
While the YKK zipper itself is robust and smooth at the top for venting adjustments, it's very sticky at the bottom of its run, which makes this Nopinz difficult to remove quickly while pedalling. The zipper could also do with a longer tag for easier grabbing.
Available in stealth black or brighter options of orange or teal, all have reflective strips around the arms, shoulders and rear pockets for visibility, which is great.
The £64.99 asking price seems fair for the effective windproofing and neat, close cut. For a slightly cheaper , While the inclusively-sized Fat Lad At The Back Women's Windy Gilet is bright and lighter than the Pro-1 for £54.99, it does lack pockets.
You can get much more reflective options too, such as Proviz's Reflect360 CRS Plus Women's Cycling Gilet (£79.99), but it runs a bit sweaty all over, whereas the Pro-1 just lacks breathability at the pockets.
Overall, the Nopinz Pro-1 offers a great fit with no chance of the wind finding its way in, and it scrunches up to a reasonable size too. It's not the lightest though, and if you're pushing on the pace expect a sweaty lower back.
Effective wind-blocker with a great fit and easy-access pockets, but can get sweaty in the lower back
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Nopinz Pro-1 Gilet Women
Size tested: Small
Tell us what the product is for
Nopinz says: "For serious road riding in cooler or changing temperatures, layering with a gilet is the only way to go. Our gilets provide additional warmth and waterproofing via a Windstopper front panel. Around the back, our breathable Chrono fabric wicks moisture and keeps things dry. Water-resistant pockets help keep your stuff dry and reflective binding around the arms and pockets provide the finishing touch."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Water-resistant and windproof front.
Highly breathable Chrono back and side panels.
Three rear pockets for storage.
Reflective detailing to shoulders and pocket.
The Pro-1 is an impressive windblocking layer that's easily packable, but sweat builds up fairly easily around the pockets. The zipper is also a little sticky, and I found it difficult to remove quickly while pedalling.
The close fit is not tight in any places.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
All good when machine washed at 30 degrees.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
It provided excellent windproofing with its close cut, but the rear pockets run a bit sweaty.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Sweaty across the lower back due to the pocket material, and the sticky zipper is difficult while riding.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
There are cheaper options – such as the Fat Lad At The Back Women's Windy Gilet – but the Pro-1 is still well priced.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes, but not for hard rides with blocks of threshold
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
The Nopinz Pro-1 gives a great fit, with no chance of the wind finding its way in. It also scrunches to a reasonable size and stows into one of its three rear pockets. It's not the lightest though, and if you're pushing on the pace expect a sweaty lower back. Overall it's good.
About the tester
I usually ride: Road bike My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, Gravel riding, indoor turbo and rollers, track