We know how challenging choosing appropriate clothing for colder weather riding can be. We believe the key to cycling through changeable, harsh weather is layering, as this allows you to adapt your temperature and level of cover according to conditions at the time.
It’s hard to give a definitive answer to the question ‘what should I wear?’, as how hot or cold you’ll feel when riding can depend on the type of ride you’re doing, your exertion level, and how much you generally feel the cold. Everyone is a little different, which is why we offer a few different kit options which can be paired together and interchanged depending on the ride.
To help you understand a little more, we’ve put together a breakdown of our winter kit and what conditions we use them for.
Tops: From Shield Jackets to Thermal Jerseys…
Our Long Sleeve Foundation Jersey is a lightweight jersey which is designed for mild spring and autumn conditions. It’s essentially the same cut and fabric weight as our shorts sleeve summer foundation jersey, just with long sleeves. So it’s ideal for when you just need to take a bit of the chill off of your arms. And it can be paired with outer layers where necessary.
Our Thermal 2 Long Sleeve Jersey is a stretchy, fleece-lined jersey designed to trap warm air close to your body, which it does very well. Ideal conditions for wearing just this jersey and tights would be a crisp, cold day that's not excessively windy or rainy.
Above: Francis wears the Cosmos Thermal 2 Long Sleeve Jersey. Below: Emily wears the Navy Thermal 2 Long Sleeve Jersey, Olive Foundation Windproof Vest, Full Finger Gloves and Women's High Waisted Thermal Tights
For days where the wind is high or cold, we’d recommend layering this thermal jersey with a wind blocker such as our Foundation Windproof Vest. This will keep trapped warm air from the thermal close to your core - which is where you primarily need it. Our vests are easy to carry in your pocket or a bar bag so ideal for taking on or off during your ride.
The Shield Jacket is a fully windproof and water resistant mid-weight jacket. It's the sort of jacket you'd keep on for the whole ride rather than pulling out of a pocket. Again it's going to help trap that warm air in, block wind and stop the rain soaking into your clothes and making you cold.
Above: Dave wears the Black Shield Jacket. Below: Louise wears the Pastel Haze Shield Jacket
Depending on if you naturally run more hot or cold, and on how hard the ride is, you may choose to pair the Shield Jacket with a lightweight under layer such as the Long Sleeve Foundation Jersey. For the coldest days (sub 7C sort of range) and/or showery days, a Thermal 2 Jersey with the Shield Jacket would be a good option.
Bib Tights vs Warmers
Whether you prefer to wear Thermal Bib Tights, or layer bib shorts with leg or knee warmers comes partly down to personal preference. Generally speaking, if the weather conditions mean you’re unlikely to want to remove your warmers, then Thermal Bib Tights probably make more sense.
However many people prefer to have Thermal Knee, Leg and Arm Warmers as an option for days when the weather looks changeable. For example, when starting an early morning ride in spring or autumn, you may benefit from wearing warmers at the start of the ride when the temperature is likely to be much cooler, but may want to remove them as the day warms up.
Our bib tights and all of our warmers have a Durable Water Repellent (DWR) coating which makes them water repellent too.