cycling chic

I’ve been thinking a bit more about cycling style.  Some think there are two distinct styles: “Militant Cyclists” and “Civil Cyclists”  as described in this article.  The Militants are the aggro dudes – fully decked in lycra emblazoned with logos, on fast, high-performance road bikes.  The Civils are said to be the people wearing regular street clothes and regular shoes riding commuter bikes on flat pedals.

I think most of us are a combination of the both.  If I’m going for a ride just to ride I’ll most likely wear my lycra bike shorts, sports bra, and a tech fabric top.  If I’m tooling around town on errands I’m likely to be found in street clothes.  I always wear my helmet and gloves anyway – I feel naked without them.  But sometimes I wear a combination of cycling lycra and street clothes.  Most jeans have bulky seams where I don’t want them and they sure don’t give in the knees when I pedal!

Lately I’ve been seeing more cycling-specific, fashionable clothing for women.  Some are projects that are just starting out and they haven’t been funded yet for wide commercial availability.  Others are readily available now.  Below are some links for you to enjoy.  Jeans, trim skirts, casual pants – we can now enjoy the benefits of cycling-specific clothing that looks like regular fashionable street clothing.

I’m thinking we need a third category of cyclists.  Along with the Militants and the Civils, we’ll now have the Hybrids?  What do you think?

Let’s start with the undergear:

  • Chamois Panties – two styles to cushion your bum; they look like regular underwear.

Then pants:

  • Club Ride Women’s Rale Jeans – these don’t have a chamois pad but they do have nice touches like a higher waistband in the back so they don’t ride down when you’re pedaling and reflective accents.
  • RYB Denim jeans – these have a loop for a u-lock, higher rear waistband, reflective touches, and a nice chamois.  Really nice.
  • Grey Bike to Work Jeans – These also have stretchy denim for flexibility and reflective touches, including on the inside of the cuff when you roll the leg up.  No chamois.
  • Ladies Slim Fit Jean – These have a light chamois, stretchy denim, and are water-resistant!

And a nice skirt:

  • Women’s Reveal Bike Skirt – This is a tailored straight skirt with a unique hidden zipper and additional fabric in the back  to allow movement when you’re on the bike.  It also has a higher back waist.  Classy looking.

All of these are made with technical fabrics that stretch or give so you can feel comfortable moving in them.  They all have a higher waistband in the back so you don’t have that uncomfortable gap when you’re leaning forward.  Many have chamois but even if they don’t, the cycling underpants can provide you with cushioning.  Most of these have extra pockets or hidden pockets for your keys, phone, wallet.

I am so heartened to see the smart and stylish cycling clothing now coming out for women.  No longer do we have to make do with men’s items or wear street clothing that gaps at the waistband or doesn’t have enough give in the knees for pedaling. We can cycle in in comfort and style!

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