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This is a review of two of my favorite, go-to women’s cycling jerseys – these two win top marks for style, comfort and durability. They are the Sugoi Women’s Ruby Jersey and the Pearl Izumi Women’s Rev Jersey. Cycling jerseys are technical garments that use lightweight, sweat-wicking fabrics to keep you cool, dry, and comfortable while cycling, so you can cycle further and faster.
I give Pearl Izumi high praise for their Women’s Rev Jersey.
Pearl Izumi Women’s Rev Jersey is one of the only women’s cycling jerseys that I have found NOT to be form fitting, which has the effect of making me look like a sausage. The Pearl Izumi Women’s Rev Jersey is tapered at the waist but only skims the body – as opposed to sticking like glue.
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I like the two-tone design and the “faux-hint” of layering, with the white bit at the hem. I find the weight of this women’s cycling jersey to be comfortable for riding from spring into fall, and I have worn it into winter with an extra layer underneath. The zippered front makes it easy to vary your temperature as you ride. I am usually zipped tight in the morning and then slowly drop the zipper as I ride. The color of the jersey is beautiful; as you all know I am all about the fashion. There is a good sized pocket in the side with an invisible zipper which helps keep the lines clean.
My other go-to women’s cycling jersey is my Sugoi Women’s Ruby Jersey which, coincidentally, is also pink. I’m not usually a “pink” person but these shades flatter any skin tone. I wear this jersey in warm weather only because the fabric is light weight and the sleeves are slightly shorter. Like the Pearl Izumi Women’s Rev Jersey, the styling is tapered, skimming the body.
Of the two jerseys, the Sugoi is a little less athletic looking so I usually wear this if I know we will stop for a snack or a glass of wine. The design is slightly mandarin inspired with a small stand-up color, and the white piping on the neck and sleeves is really eye-catching. My only complaint is a minor one, that there is only one pocket and it is pretty small, but it also has an invisible zipper so that the lines are clean.
Both of these women’s cycling jerseys are good value for money, fashionable and extremely durable. I am pretty rough with my clothes, yet both these jerseys have survived two seasons and are still going strong. I recommend both jerseys, the Pearl Izumi as a comfortable riding jersey, and the Sugoi for when you want to be a little more fashionable and less “ridey.”
Technical Features of Great Jerseys
Why Do You Need a Cycling Jersey?
Yes, you could cycle in a five-dollar tee shirt. In fact, I did that all the time as a kid. But then, I was mainly just riding around the block, or down to the beach. Plus, my standards were incredibly low back then! You see, the problem with cotton is that it does not deal well with sweat. Cotton hangs onto sweat like white on rice, so that if you are doing a long bike ride, you will soon be soaking in your own sweat. Even if that does not bother you – if a breeze gets up (because of weather or because of your own speed) – your sweat will get cold, and then you will get cold. Your shirt will get heavy and may start to chafe. All of this is just not going to help you to cycle well.
What a Great Cycling Jersey Does
A great cycling jersey will wick sweat away from your skin to the outer side of the fabric, where it can evaporate. A cycling jersey made from a breathable fabric will keep you dry and cool no matter how long you ride, or how hot the weather is. This means that a good cycling jersey is an essential part of any cyclist’s wardrobe once the weather warms up.
Why Are Some Jerseys So Expensive?
Once you start looking for a cycling jersey, you will quickly realize there is a vast range of prices. Why? Well, the higher prices are usually for more technologically advanced fabrics that will wick sweat better and keep you cool and dry better.
Some cycling jersey are Lycra; other cycling jerseys are made from woven synthetics for a less shiny look. There are even some cycling jersey made from very lightweight wool blends.
Better features will also push up the price. For example, you can expect to pay more for better fit, styling, and features. Full-length zips work really well for cooling, but some cyclists don’t like them. A good compromise is to look for a cycling jersey with a half-length zipper, such as our no. 1 and no. 6 choices, the Pearl iZUMi Select Quest and the Pearl Izumi Ride Select Tour, respectively.
The classic design with three rear pockets is the most common for cycling jerseys, but some also have a small zipped pocket for valuables, or a side pocket to keep something handy, such as your phone.
Protection from UV Rays
It’s great to get a tan while cycling, but you do not want to be laying the groundwork for future skin cancer as you optimize your cardiac health on your bike. So really, if you plan to spend hours in the saddle, you should be looking for a cycling jersey that offers you some protection from the sun. For the longest time cycling jersey have been so focused on keeping you cool that UV protection has been completely neglected. This was a problem, seeing as we basically offer our backs up to the sun when we cycle. Now, however, a lot of manufacturers take this into account by making clothing that is designed to protect you from the sun.
Get a Jersey Fit that Matches Your Cycling Style
If you are racing, you need a tight-fitting jersey that does not flap in the wind. Most of the wind drag when you are cycling is caused by your body (which is a whole lot larger and heavier than your bike), so keeping your body as aerodynamic as possible makes a lot of sense.
On the other hand, if you are touring, and stopping off for picnic lunches along the road, you can no doubt live with a more relaxed fit. Similarly if you want a cycling jersey for commuter cycling that won’t make you feel embarrassed if you suddenly decide to meet your partner for a drink or dinner on the way home – relaxed would be better.
How to Care for Your Jersey
Sweat will settle into the fabric of your jersey, creating bacteria, which creates a bad smell. So it is best to wash your jersey after every ride. However, be careful to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. To prevent the jersey from deteriorating rapidly, it is essential to follow the manufacturer’s advice on laundry temperature and techniques.
Also, avoid using a tumble drier. Allow your cycling jersey to dry naturally. Cycling clothing dries quickly!
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