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The Rivelo Lanterne Gilet does the job of keeping your core warm on windy, chilly days and will even keep light drizzle and road spray at bay too. If your main reason for buying it is the 'glow in the dark' feature, though, keep your cash in your pocket. It ain't all that.
With the chilly weather continuing into May, the modest gilet has become one of my staples when out for a ride at the moment, and I've worn the Rivelo many, many times as it does everything a good gilet should.
Rivelo has paid plenty of attention to detail, especially on things like the fit. The two-way stretch of the fabric and the cut allows for a close-fitting garment which cuts down on wind flap noise, and while snug, the elasticity of the material allows you to move easily.
Sizing is true to most other brands and well in line with Rivelo's own sizing guide.
The rear section is dropped for good coverage when in a tucked position and the tall neck stops unwelcome draughts from entering. It's also fleece-lined for comfort.
A baffle sits behind the zip for a bit of extra weatherproofing and there is a zip garage to stop irritation on your neck. I would have liked to see one at the bottom too, to stop damage to expensive shorts and tights.
The Lanterne has a two-way zip. As usual, you can pull it down from the top for venting if things get a little warm (and obviously removing the gilet), but sliding it up from the bottom while riding gives you easier access to your rear jersey pockets.
There is a small rear pouch at the rear for stuffing the gilet into when you aren't wearing it. When you are, though, it can be used as a pocket for a gel, or somewhere to put some ID. It's big enough for a lightweight set of gloves too.
Performance-wise, I was impressed with the Rivelo Lanterne. The 100% polyester fabric is a good windblocker, noticeable on my many rides into chilly northerly breezes, and it does well on the breathability front, no doubt helped by the mesh side panels which do a good job of stopping you getting sweaty.
I've worn it in temperatures of up to around 12°C and I'd say you'll be good up to around 14 or 15°C without it becoming too overwhelmed on all but the hardest of rides.
It also has a 5K water resistance rating, and it's just that, resistant. It'll keep out light drizzle for half an hour or so, and light road spray too.
The key selling point of the Lanterne, though, is its phosphorescent fabric, which glows in the dark. It charges itself using daylight or you can do it yourself using artificial light from a torch, bike light or phone. If I knew I was going to still be out riding as the sun went down I'd hang the Rivelo in a window for the day, or even in the garden.
But... it's all just a bit underwhelming. Yes, it does glow, but in comparison to the reflective detailing found all around the hem and arm holes of the Rivelo, it is very dull.
I suppose it can help drivers see you earlier on if their lights haven't picked you out yet as you are a long way up the road, but there would need to be absolutely no light pollution or clutter at all. (You can see how the fabric is meant to work in this video of the Lanterne jacket.)
Other than that, though, if you are likely to be riding in the dark while using lights, those and the reflective detailing of the piping and Rivelo logo will suffice.
If you want more 'see me' than that you could try the Craft Glow Vest which has large reflective panels. At £60 it's £15 cheaper than the Rivelo.
I wouldn't say the Lanterne is overly expensive compared to the opposition, though. It's a very well made garment with tidy stitching, and even though the fabric is lightweight it's proving to be very durable. I ride with a rucksack a lot of the time and the gilet hasn't marked, though there are a few stubborn stains on it from riding in the wet.
A similar quality piece of kit that I've used in the same conditions as the Rivelo over the last few months is the Chapeau Club Gilet Stripe. For comparison, it's £89.99.
Overall, the Lanterne Gilet is a good piece of clothing when it comes to the quality, performance against the weather and its attention to detail. Don't get too hung up on the glow in the dark qualities, though.
A packable gilet with good performance against the weather – I can't give the phosphorescent material a 'glowing' review though
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Rivelo Lanterne Gilet
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for
Rivelo says, "Our essential emergency gilet, the unique phosphorescent fabric offers wind resistance and glows in the dark to aid low light visibility. 'Charge it up' in daylight, with your phone or a torch, and depending on the intensity and time in the light source it will glow for up to 1 hour. Reflective binding at the armholes and hem as well as reflective logos provide further visibility. It also packs down small into the rear pocket ready for when you need it."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
100% Polyester Phosphorescent lightweight fabric - absorbs UV light and glows in the dark
Stretch Polyester mesh underarm & side panels aid freedom of movement and breathability
Reflective stretch binding at armholes & hem for added low light visibility
5K water resistancy & 3K breathability
Full length 2-way cam lock zip with zip garage & guard for protection
Angled collar, lined in mesh, for comfort and weather protection
Patch pocket at back hem doubles as a stuff sack
Reflective printed logos
Soft gros grain ribbon back neck hanging loop
No scratchy labels - care label is sewn flat
Sizing is fully in line with Rivelo's sizing guide.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
No issues with washing although not all of the mud stains came out.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Does a good job as a gilet, but the glow isn't that impressive.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Small details like the lined collar.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The material can rustle as you move.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It's decently priced against other quality gilets and I've picked up on a couple of competitors in the review. There are so many on the market, though, at a huge range of prices, so it's worth a look at our review section.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes, but not for the phosphorus material though.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
On the whole it is a good balance of performance and fit, and I really like Rivelo's attention to detail when it comes to the design. The glow in the dark material is more of a gimmick than a reliable safety feature, though.
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,
As part of the Tech Hub here at F-At Digital, our senior product reviewer Stu uses the knowledge gained from putting well over a 1,000 products through their paces (including hundreds of bikes) to write in-depth reviews of a huge range of kit. After first throwing his leg over a race bike back in 2000, Stu's ridden more than 160,000 miles on road, time-trial, track, and gravel bikes, and while he's put his racing days behind him he still likes to smash the pedals rather than take things easy. Although, as he spends a fair bit of his time reviewing ebikes these days he's becoming an expert in letting the motor take the strain. He's also waiting for 23mm race tyres to make a comeback!