IF YOU want to be prepared for cycling in all conditions, it’s a good idea to invest in a waterproof cycling jacket.
While a standard coat or waterproof sports jacket can do the job, it’s worth considering a cycling-specific one due to the number of features they’re likely to include.
The big one of course is being able to keep you dry in a downpour. A waterproof cycling jacket will stand out because of its use of taped seams (meaning water can’t creep where fabric has been sewn together) and, in some cases, an extended flap at the rear to protect you from spray from the road.
Outside of this, a waterproof cycling jacket is designed to be breathable – keeping you protected from the rain while also preventing the build-up of sweat inside.
It will also generally include some reflective detailing, while premium offerings will be made from materials such as Gore-Tex.
Finally, it’s worth opting for a women-specific cut as not only will it fit you better, but will also remain comfortable long into your ride.
Not sure where to start in your search for a women’s waterproof cycling jacket? The seven selections below are some of the best you can currently get on the market.
1. We Tested: Madison Protec Women's Waterproof Jacket
- Madison Protec Women's Waterproof Jacket, £59.99 from Freewheel.co.uk – buy here
This Madison cycling jacket is the most affordable in this list, showing you don't have to fork out a fortune to get a decent product.
We tested it out over the winter months and were impressed with everything from the fit, down to the colour.
It claims to be waterproof, windproof and breathable which we found to be the case – though we didn't get the chance to test in any extreme weather conditions. However, it kept us nice and warm during chilly winter morning rides.
It's roomy over the shoulders, which made it comfortable to wear for long rides and also we liked that it's slightly longer at the back.
It comes in three bright colourways – blue, pink/grey and yellow, all of which have reflective stripes making it easier for motorists to spot you on the road.
It has a small breast pocket that is easy to reach when cycling, though we would have also liked for it to have a side pocket to put our phone in.
But otherwise, we love it.
2. Le Col Womens Pro Rain Jacket
- Le Col Womens Pro Rain Jacket, £240 from Le Col – buy here
Le Col's experts put this jacket through rigorous testing to ensure it's the best it possibly can be.
Made from a breathable, windproof and waterproof fabric, it will keep you dry in a downpour both inside and out.
It has a high collar, and elasticated cuffs to keep out the elements and it's longer at the back for added protection.
Happy customers have described it as "a super jacket" and "a great investment".
3. Patagonia Women’s Dirt Roamer Jacket
- Patagonia Women’s Dirt Roamer Jacket, from £171.86 from Alpine Trek – buy here
American brand Patagonia is well-known for its outdoor clothing range, but it also does a small line of mountain bike-specific clothing.
The Dirt Roamer jacket is great for autumn, winter and spring shredding, and will keep you dry and warm even if you get caught in a downpour.
The lightweight and breathable fabric benefits from a DWR (durable water repellent) treatment, meaning water simply beads on the surface.
It is also really wind-resistant – handy for keeping the chill off when zooming downhill.
The jacket has two pockets (one in its interior lining, the other on the rear), ensuring essentials are kept at hand, and can pack down to be stuffed into a jersey pocket when not in use.
A final cool feature is its hood. Stowable when not in use, it is large enough to cover your helmet if it does start raining – keeping things comfortable and dry.
4. Endura Women’s FS260-Pro Adrenaline race cape II
- Endura Women’s FS260-Pro Adrenaline race cape II, £74.09 from Wiggle – buy here
Although it might not have a catchy name, the FS260-Pro Adrenaline race cape by the Scottish brand Endura is a staple of many road cyclist’s wardrobe.
A perfect ‘just-in-case’ jacket for road cyclists, the waterproof shell is super lightweight, durable and, thanks to an included stuff sack, can be slotted into a cycling jersey pocket whenever you head out on a ride.
As well as keeping you dry, the jacket helps you stay seen on the road thanks to reflective detailing front and back.
And while it’s available in black, white or pink, all of the jackets are translucent – perfect if wearing a race number that needs to be seen, or just a really jazzy jersey that you want to show off, whatever the weather.
5. Assos UMA GT Clima jacket EVO
- Assos UMA GT Clima jacket EVO, £148.50 from Wiggle – buy here
The Swiss brand Assos is renowned for high-quality kit at high-end prices, and its UMA GT Clima jacket is its take on a lightweight shell that will protect you from both the wind and rain.
The ideal purchase for spring and autumn riding in the UK, the UMA GT Clima can easily be stored in a jersey pocket when not in use, and its regular – rather than racing – fit is loose enough to fit over a number of layers.
While rain jackets of old had the breathability of a bin bag, the Assos offering is made from two layers – a thin mesh to help airflow and a water repellent membrane to keep you dry.
Rather than have reflective detailing, the entire jacket lights up when a vehicle’s headlight shines on it, helping you to stay seen in low light settings.
6. Gore Wear Women’s C7 Gore-Tex Shakedry Jacket
- Gore Wear Women’s C7 Gore-Tex Shakedry Jacket, £239.99 from Wiggle – buy here
While it's certainly expensive, the Gore C7 is the best of the best when it comes to waterproof technology.
So what do you get for that rather serious investment? Well, if you were to look at the scales, the answer would be not a lot.
At 95g, the jacket weighs the same as a deck of cards, and you’ll certainly have an ace up your sleeve if you take the plunge and buy the C7.
Constructed using Gore-Tex’s Shakedry technology, any water can literally be shaken from the fabric – preventing any seeping in and damp patches common with cheaper water-resistant materials.
It’s also incredibly breathable, managing your temperature so it feels like you’re not even wearing an extra layer.
Available in this female-specific cut, the jacket has a slim fit to prevent any annoying excess fabric flapping around in the wind, while an elasticated hem stops it rising up when crouched and riding in the drops.
7. Brompton x Protected Species City Rider
- Brompton x Protected Species City Rider in Burnt Horizon, £180 from Brompton – buy here
If you're looking for a jacket that will take you from your bike, to work, to the bar and everywhere in between, this is it.
Both stylish and practical, it doesn't look like your average cycling jacket, making it a great choice for city riders and commuters.
Made from a stretchy, waterproof and breathable fabric, it'll keep you both warm and dry on any journey.
It has adjustable cuffs, hideable reflective tabs, a stowable hood that can be worn under your helmet and zipped pockets.
It's also creaseless, lightweight and easy-care, what's not to love?
8. Canyon Signature Urban Reflective Turn Jacket
- Canyon Signature Urban Reflective Turn Jacket, £93.95 from Canyon – buy here
Not all cycling-specific jackets have to be tight-fitting Lycra affairs (although there are quite a few selections below if that’s what you’re after).
This cleverly designed bomber jacket by German giants Canyon combines style and substance to leave you with a waterproof layer that looks good both on and off the bike.
The jacket is reversible and can be worn in a subtle black or eye-catching reflective silver.
The former still has some reflective features though (including a fold-down flap at the rear that also protects your bottom from road spray), but the black side’s key selling point is its construction from a water- and wind-resistant nylon.
While not as protective as some of the jackets featured below, it’ll help keep the worst of the weather off if you get caught in a shower when commuting.
9. Rapha Women’s Core Rain II Jacket
- Rapha Women’s Core Rain II Jacket, £100 from Rapha – buy here
Although renowned for being expensive, Rapha has started to bring its high-quality kit to the masses in the form of its Core range.
The second iteration of its Women’s Core Rain jacket takes everything that was great about the first one and adds some subtle improvements – a redesigned elastic cord at the hem to help keep it in place and reflective elements on the sleeve and rear.
Like the original Core Rain jacket, it protects you from the wind and rain and can be packed easily into a jersey pocket when not on your back.
Nice finishing touches include an off-centre zip to prevent draughts penetrating all the way to your skin and that all-important signature Rapha armband.
What is the best rain gear for cycling?
The best rain gear for cycling will depend on the sort of riding you’re doing. If you’re commuting by bike, a good waterproof jacket that is breathable and durable enough to be worn with a bag is an essential.
If road cycling is your discipline of choice, a compact waterproof shell that can be stuffed in a jersey pocket is a must, while mountain bikers might opt for a water-resistant jacket and shorts.
What do pro cyclists wear in the rain?
Depending on how hard it is raining, a professional cyclist might wear as little as a lightweight rain cape, through to a waterproof softshell jacket and neoprene boot covers.
Is it OK to cycle in the rain?
Cycling in the rain is absolutely fine for you and your bike, but there are a number of things to be aware of.
Firstly, braking distances are likely to increase, while certain surfaces can become slippery when wet. If you’ve got a good set of waterproofs though, cycling in the wet can be just as fun as in the dry.
Should you dry your bike after rain?
If you can, it’s a good idea to dry off any water on your bike after riding it in the rain – although water on its own won’t hurt your bike, leaving it on metal surfaces can cause rust over time and therefore shorten the lifespan of certain components.
How do I protect my bike from rain?
There are a few things you can do to protect your bike from the rain – both when riding and when it’s not in use.
A good set of mudguards is the perfect addition to any bike that’s going to be used during the wetter months of the year as they will help protect you and your bike from rain and spray from the road.
And when not being ridden, a good bike cover will keep the worst of the elements off of your pride and joy.
Enjoyed our roundup of the best waterproof cycling jackets for women? We've got tons of great cycling content in our Sun Selects Health and Fitness section.
Whether you're looking for new wheels, wall mounts or locks, we've got you covered.
Source: Read Full Article