The dhb Merino Long Sleeve Jersey is a classically-styled piece for cool conditions. It’s fair value for money for a merino jersey and works hard to regulate body temperature, but it’s a fairly lightweight piece so requires some layering on cold winter rides.
If you’re not familiar with dhb clothing, sold through Wiggle and Chain Reaction Cycles, the brand has developed a strong reputation over the years but its jerseys are typically made from man-made materials like polyester. This jersey, launched this winter and also available in a women’s cut, changes that, but it’s not 100 per cent merino.
Instead, merino makes up 35 per cent of the construction, blended with 40 per cent nylon to add more stretch, while the remaining 25 per cent is made up of polypropylene on the inside of the jersey. The idea is to add a hydrophobic layer to quickly move moisture away from the skin and to the outer merino layer, while retaining the insulating, anti-bacterial and luxurious qualities of wool.
dhb Merino Long Sleeve Jersey
- Price: £80.00
- Sizes: XS-XL
- Size tested: M
- Colours: Black; grey; khaki; blue, winterbloom
- Website: Wiggle
Due to the lack of windproofing and the relatively thin fabric, this isn’t a jersey for freezing rides - it’s more for cooler temperatures, around seven degrees and above (for me, anyway), at least as an outer layer. In those cool conditions, whether it’s a spring/autumn ride or milder winter day, the jersey strikes a balance between insulation without letting excess heat build up. That’s not only due to the fabric choice, but the large vented area that runs down the centre of the back. There’s also a full-length zip if you need more air flow.
Merino wool has good wicking properties in itself and combined with the jersey’s polypropylene layer was able to quickly move sweat away from my body. While merino wool doesn’t dry as fast as a 100 per cent polyester piece, the jersey is able to cope well with moisture and, if things do get a little damp, merino is naturally insulating when wet.
Because the jersey is best-suited for cool, clear days, if things do start to get chilly it’s best combined with a windproof layer (perhaps a lightweight gilet) or something more winterproof when temperatures really start to head south. That being said, the fact the fabric is pretty thin makes it ideal as a mid-layer, particularly when you takes its wicking qualities into account. I used the jersey several times between a base layer and windproof layer and it worked really nicely.
Other features include three large pockets on the rear, as well as a zipped valuables pocket. They are all of a good size and capable of holding everything necessary for a longer ride. There is also a high-visibility strip across the bottom of the central pocket, while a strong silicone gripper across the bottom of the jersey helps to prevent it from riding up.
The fit is more performance than casual but it sits lower around the neck than most other long-sleeve jerseys I’ve tried. This is both a blessing and a curse - obviously you get less protection around the neck, but it does make wearing a snood considerably easier than with a more all-out cold weather jersey where the collar sits higher. Sizing is about right, too, with the medium size reviewed fitting as I would expect a British-branded medium to. That is to say, it’s not as slim as some European brands, but is sensibly proportioned.
The dhb Merino Long Sleeve Jersey has a luxurious quality to it that only wool can bring, while bringing the additional qualities of two manmade fabrics into the mix. It wicks moisture well, has some nice design touches like the vented back, and comes in a range of smart colours, including the ‘winterbloom’ tested. However, the neck is looser than most jerseys, which may not be to everyone’s taste, and the jersey begins to struggle in cold conditions. On the flip side, as an insulating mid-layer, it’s excellent.
- Wicks moisture well
- Lightweight fabric ideal for spring/autumn rides
- Stylish and varied colour options
- Low neck
- Best as a mid-layer in colder conditions