The Velotoze Cooling Vest with Cooling Packs is not your standard baselayer. It has four pouches that hold reusable ice packs to keep you cool on the indoor trainer or during a pre-race warm-up. It's soft, made from light mesh and has a full-length front zipper for easy removal. However, this cooling comes at a price, with this vest costing more – usually much more – than any of the products in our guide to the best cycling baselayers.
> Buy Velotoze Cooling Vest for £92.49 from tradeinn
Sometimes you're sweating away on Zwift with every fan you own blowing full in your face and chest – but even that's not enough to cool you down.
Well, it's in situations like this that the Velotoze Cooling Vest is genuinely a game-changer. Put this on for your Tuesday night Zwift Racing League exertions and you'll only need one fan to keep you cool – it really is that effective.
When you buy the Cooling Vest you also get three small ice packs and one larger one, which fit in the baselayer's rear and side pockets.
These ice packs are essentially the same as those you put in your coolbag, and they work instantly, if anything being too good at cooling you down. Oh, you're also likely to end up with a larger puddle beneath your bike than usual...
Velotoze has very sensibly used a full-length front zipper. I found this ideal for pre-race warm-ups on the rollers, as I could swiftly strip the vest off and put on the upper half of my skinsuit.
It also means you can ride on the trainer with the top fully unzipped, which combines with the ice packs in the cooling vest pockets for maximum cooling effect.
I have a few mesh baselayers that have ripped to pieces when I've washed them with other cycling kit, but I have had no issues with the Velotoze so far. I would recommend zipping it up fully before washing to protect other stuff in the wash.
The cooling vest sizes up well without the cooling packs, though it did sag a little with the ice packs added – which is the only serious issue I had.
That said, this could be due to my pathetically skinny body, and if you have a more well-balanced body shape you may well not experience the same issue.
You can't avoid the fact it's £90 for a mesh baselayer with some ice packs. But the idea is sound and most of us aren't World Tour pros with access to our own cooling vests, though if you do want one, Jumbo-Visma sells a stylish-looking team cooling vest for €90.
This is the first product of its kind we've reviewed, but it is almost double the price of most mesh sleeveless baselayers. Pas Normal Studios is known for its higher-priced kit and Sam recently gave its sleeveless baselayer a very positive review, but even that cost 'only' £46.
Another well-rated baselayer we tested recently is the Nopinz Souplesse Baselayer that George had back in the spring, and which at £29.99 is only a third of the price.
There aren't really any baselayers on the market that are direct competitors to the Velotoze Cooling Vest. It's very effective at cooling you down and the ice packs don't take up much space in the freezer. It's definitely worth considering and potentially investing in if you're an avid Zwift user or want to cool down as much as possible before a time trial or similar challenge.
Comfortable and an extremely effective cooling solution for indoor training – just a shame about the price.
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Make and model: Velotoze Cooling Vest with Cooling Packs
Tell us what the product is for
The cooling vest is for the serious indoor cyclist or somebody that lives in a hot climate where cooling is required on summer rides.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
The vest is similar to a mesh baselayer, with the added feature of a full-length front zip that lets you easily put it on and take it off, and lets you fully open it while still carrying the ice packs. It has three small pockets for the relevant cool packs, and one larger pocket on the upper back for the large ice pack. All four ice packs come with the Cooling Vest when you buy it.
Rate the product for quality of construction:
It feels soft against your skin and the zip isn't uncomfortable. The seams aren't itchy either.
Rate the product for performance:
If anything, it was doing its job too well and I was getting cold.
Rate the product for durability:
The ice packs are reusable and I also used them to help keep my spare bottles cool in an insulated bag on the way to races.
Rate the product for fit:
I found the fit good without being too tight or overly compressive, but adding the ice packs does make it sag a bit.
Rate the product for sizing:
Follow the size guides unless, like me, you're pathetically skinny, in which case I'd suggest sizing down.
Rate the product for weight:
The baselayer itself feels very light, though with the cool packs added you can definitely feel the extra weight.
Rate the product for comfort:
Rate the product for value:
It is very expensive for a baselayer and a quartet of cool packs, but it is innovative and while very much a niche product, it does have its place.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Wash with other sports kit at 30 degrees, non-bio, then hang it to dry. I've done that and it's still soft. I'd recommend doing up the zip before washing so it doesn't snag other clothing.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
This is an ideal way of staying cool when you're riding indoor on the turbo or when you're warming up in the car park before a race, when you won't have access to an electric fan. If anything, it is too good at keeping you cool.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The front zipper allowed me to easily take the baselayer off at the end of my pre-race warm-up.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The added weight and sag from putting the cool packs in the vest.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It is a lot more expensive than your standard mesh baselayer. Though the price is similar to the cooling vests worn by Jumbo-Visma's riders when they're warming up before a time trial.
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
Velotoze's innovative Cooling Vest performs exactly as it's intended, and is ideal for warm-ups on hotter days as well as for indoor training or when you're on the rollers at a velodrome. But pretty much every cyclist carries a bit more meat on their upper body than I do, so while sizing is a personal issue, I don't think this affects my overall score.
Age: 21 Height: 185cm Weight: 69kg
I usually ride: Dolan Rebus My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Semi pro
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, commuting, club rides, Always love some off-road with some mates.
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