Eight of the best reflective jackets for winter cycling - Road Cycling UK

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Eight of the best reflective jackets for winter cycling

Reflective cycling jackets for winter which don't compromise on style or performance

There was a time when riders looking for reflective clothing were strictly limited to the commuter section in bike shops – but that’s not the case anymore.

Gone are the days when reflective clothing meant literally just that – clothing purely designed to be seen in the dark. Now a number of clothing brands have cottoned on and produce a range of high-performance, safety-conscious clothing which wins in the style stakes, too.

With daylight hours at a premium in winter, if you want to get the miles in then, chances are, you’ll be riding either in low light conditions or the dark at some point, whether that’s on the commute to work, a mid-week training ride, or just an early start on a weekend group ride.

Luckily, nowadays reflectivity no longer need not come at the expense of windproofing, waterproofing or breathability, with no shortage of options out there if you want a jacket to help keep you seen on the road.

With that in mind, we’ve picked out eight of the best (and most stylish) reflective jackets. Here’s what made the cut.

Sportful HotPack Hi-Viz NoRain Jacket

Sportful’s HotPack Hi-Viz NoRain Jacket offers all the benefits of the Italian firm’s ‘standard’ HotPack jacket but throws in 360-degree reflectivity for good measure.

That means outstanding waterproofing, thanks to Sportful’s Acquashield fabric, taped seams and a waterproof zip.

It’s also windproof and offers good breathability, making it a versatile option outside of winter, while also offering a well thought out, ergonomic fit thanks to the stretchy panels. You’ll also find thumb loops and a closed seal on the wrists to keep out bad weather.

Oh, and the jacket weighs just 157g, so will easily pack down into a jersey pocket when the weather brightens up.

Price: £125.00
Website:
Sportful

HOY Vulpine Beacon Waterproof Jacket

The Beacon jacket is new from HOY Vulpine for the winter 2016/17 season and has been designed specifically with visibility in mind. That’s obvious, thanks to the high-viz yellow colour, but there are also strategically placed reflective panels on the shoulders, along with generous reflective detailing on the arms and rear.

 

The Beacon is a robust jacket, designed for the worst weather in deep winter, and that’s reflected in the fabric used – a fully waterproof, three-layer, rip-stop material with a 15,000/15,000 waterproof/breathability rating. The back of the jacket is perforated, too, and there are large dorsal vents to further improve breathability.

Otherwise, if you’re looking for something for the ride the work, the new Nightfall jacket from Vulpine looks to combine reflectivity, style, waterproofing and breathability in one city riding piece.

Price: £160
Website: HOY Vulpine

Madison Sportive Hi-Viz Waterproof Jacket

Madison’s RoadRace Apex jacket hit the nail on the head as far as performance was concerned, with the Madison-Genesis pro team giving it their seal of approval.

That basic design and race-ready fit has now been taken and applied to the Sportive Hi-Viz Waterproof Jacket, with Madison having been tasked by the pro team to make the ‘ultimate winter training jacket’.

Madison made us of a ‘pixel pot print fabric’, which by day is a subtle dotted pattern on the arms and most of the back, but by night is unmissable when car headlights catch it. The use of that fabric, rather than fully reflective panels, ensures breathability remains high, according to Madison.

Otherwise, it’s still lightweight, with articulated arms for a comfortable fit and a fully waterproof, windproof, 2.5-layer fabric construction.

Price: £99.99
Website:
Madison

Altura Podium NightVision Waterproof Jacket

Altura have packed the tech into the Podium NightVision Waterproof Jacket, combining their Shield fabric technology with 360-degree NightVision reflectivity.

That Shield fabric means the jacket has been constructed to provide protection from the elements – both wind and water – without too much of a sacrifice when it comes to breathability. It’s a lightweight fabric, too, so can squeeze into a jersey pocket.

NightVision, meanwhile, means Altura have used strategically placed reflective detailing across the entire jacket, for for maximum ‘360 degree’ visibility in low light.

Price: £99.99
Website:
Altura

FWE Kennington FX Waterproof Reflective Jacket

When car headlights or street lamps catch the FWE Kennington FX Waterproof Reflective Jacket, it will be almost impossible to miss it. The jacket is aimed at safety conscious commuters and while it has a stylish silver finish by day, it illuminates by night.

Alongside impressive reflectivity, the fabric is waterproof, breathable (with a 10,000 rating for both) and stretchy for a comfortable fit, while perforations on the front help provide some ventilation.

Other little touches include a chest pocket and two waist two pockets, while there’s also a removable hood.

Price: £74.99
Website:
Evans Cycles

Castelli Mortirolo Reflex Winter Jacket

Unlike most the jackets here, the Castelli Mortirolo Reflex Winter Jacket isn’t a shell, but a thermal piece designed for general winter riding across a range of conditions.

That’s because Castelli have combined their fleecy Warmer fabric, which helps lock warmth in while still offering excellent breathability, with a windproof and water resistant Gore Windstopper X-Fast fabric on the front.

Castelli are aware of this limited weather-proofing – it’s not one for heavy rain – but instead billed as ‘perfect for those dry [autumn] and winter days’, when there could be the chance of a light shower or water kicked up from the road.

Reflectivity is provided by a perforated reflective fabric, layered over the fleecy interior on the sleeves and side panels, while the front features zippered chest vents to aid temperature control.

Price: £199.99
Website:
Castelli

Bontrager Velocis Halo S1 Softshell Jacket

Featuring reflective Pixel technology combined with a warm Profila Thermal fabric on the front and rear, Bontrager are confident their Velocis Halo S1 Softshell Jacket will perform day and night at anything above freezing conditions.

A streamlined fit makes no secret of the fact this is built for performance, and impressive waterproofing and breathability (the jacket has a 10,000/11,000 waterproof/breathability rating) make this a piece capable of standing up to tough winter conditions.

Three open back pockets and two zip-up security pockets complete the look in a jacket which combines deep winter performance, reflectivity and style.

Price: £199.99
Website:
Trek Bikes

Sugoi RS Zap Jacket

Sugoi’s RS Zap Jacket combines a lightweight fabric with highly-reflective Pixel technology which is subtle by day and illuminating by night.

Otherwise, the fabric is water resistant and is designed to offer a close fit thanks to the stretchy panels, while there’s the choice of ‘Baltic Blue’ and ‘Chilli Red’ colours – both of which light up under the beam of headlights.

There’s also a zippered chest pocket for your essentials, along with a rear pocket.

Price: £99.99
Website:
Sugoi

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