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Women’s Guide – What To Wear Road Cycling by Type of Weather

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Whether your cycle for fitness, work commuting, or simply as a pastime, the right gear can significantly improve your experience. Get the most out of cycling by choosing the right gear for the weather.

For summer road cycling, wear a helmet with good ventilation, breathable gear with sun protection, and mesh footwear. Gloves are optional for summer riding. For winter road cycling, opt for a helmet with ear and neck protection, waterproof and windproof gear, warm socks, and waterproof gloves.

In this article, we’ll look at different seasons and weather conditions, and what you should wear when cycling in each situation. Read on to learn more.

What To Wear for Summer Cycling

Riding in the summer can be brutal at times, especially during high noon when the sun is at its zenith. Add humidity to the mix and cycling can become incredibly uncomfortable. With the proper biking clothing, however, summer cycling can be a pleasurable experience.

Cyclist Dressed Properly for Summer with Well Ventilated Helmet

Helmet

The helmet is a non-negotiable component for cycling, but the type of helmet you use may differ from season to season. 

In summer, you want a helmet that provides excellent ventilation to keep you cool during those long rides. Additionally, a lightweight helmet is best for those hot, humid days.

The ideal solution? The Bell Z20 MIPS helmet from Amazon.com. This headgear is designed for enhanced airflow and comes in an exciting range of colors.

Jersey

In the summer, you’ll need a top that protects you from the brutal rays while also offering enough breathability to keep you cool and energized. Moisture-wicking materials are best, to help keep you comfortable and not dripping with sweat.

The Catena Women’s Cycling Jersey, available on Amazon.com, is ideal for this purpose. It offers an anti-skid strap at the hem, which can help if you’re sweating during the hottest times of the day. The material is lightweight and breathable, providing additional comfort.

Shorts

Shorts come in various shapes and sizes, but you’ll need to ensure your cycling shorts have the right features to sustain you during your summer cycling escapades. They should offer padding, breathability, and the material should be lightweight.

The Louis Garneau Classic Gel Cycling Shorts on Amazon.com are made with a unique mat fabric for comfort and breathability. The gel cushioning on the back provides comfort during every ride and prevents chafing.

Additionally, these shorts come with silicone grippers that keep the fabric in place even during the most intense cycling sessions.

Footwear

While you can wear any shoes in warm weather, summer-specific footwear will make the experience a lot more pleasurable. Ideally, your cycling shoes should be snug yet offer enough room for breathability.

These CyclingDeal Cleat Mount Women’s Cycling Shoes on Amazon.com are the ideal pair for summer. Its mesh finish and the vents on the outsole provide a breathable design that dissipates heat during rides.

Gloves

While gloves aren’t an essential component for summer cycling, some cyclists prefer the extra padding to prevent calluses and sweaty palms. Fingerless gloves are an excellent option for summer cycling.

This pair of Giro Tessa Gel Women’s Road Cycling Gloves are fingerless, but prevent the hands from getting clammy with sweat during humid weather conditions, thanks to the breathable mesh. The four-way stretch makes them an ideal fit for all different hand sizes.

Glasses

Sunglasses are an integral part of the summer cycling experience as the glare from the road, and repeated exposure to UV rays is detrimental to your eyes in the long run. You’ll need a pair of sunglasses that’s sturdy enough to stay on during bumpy rides while shielding your eyes from the sun.

The most economical investment here would be the Rudy Project Sintryx Sports Sunglasses from Amazon.com. This pair of sunglasses comes with three lenses made for riding in various weather conditions, so you only have to invest once for the whole year.

These glasses come with heavily vented frames to ensure regular airflow and prevent fogging even during the most humid days. And the spring-loaded design makes switching between lenses a cinch.

What To Wear for Winter Cycling

Winter cycling is an inherently enjoyable experience, with darker skies and a cool breeze brushing your face. However, without suitable clothing, the cold can be problematic during extended cycling sprees. It’s important to invest in the right gear to protect your skin when cycling in the winter.

Cyclist Dressed Properly for Winter with Winter Cycling Tights

Helmet

A winter helmet needs to provide added protection to your ears and the back of your neck to ensure you don’t freeze up. At the same time, it must be breathable and ensure adequate airflow to prevent excessive sweating and discomfort.

The Giro Timberwolf Helmet on Amazon.com is perhaps the ideal headgear for winter cycling. It comes with added padding on the sides and rear to keep you warm even during the lowest temperatures. You can easily adjust this padding to suit your preferences.

Additionally, this helmet comes with an adjustable air vent on top that can be opened if you start feeling too hot.

Jersey

Winter is sometimes accompanied by wet weather and it’s important to regulate your body temperature when cycling in the winter, especially if it starts to rain.

It’s best to get cycling gear that can handle both the cold and the rain. You’ll want a windproof and waterproof jacket to keep you protected from the harsh elements.

The BALEAF Women’s Windproof Thermal Softshell Cycling Jacket on Amazon.com, is built for cold and wet weather conditions. The windproof design will keep you safe from strong winds and the waterproof feature will protect you from heavy rains. You’ll stay warm and snug even in the most frigid temperatures while retaining breathability with it’s vented zipper.

Trousers

Winter cycling trousers should block out the cold, stay breathable, and keep snow from getting in. Additionally, you’ll need padding to keep your cycling expedition as comfortable as possible. The Santic Women’s Cycling Windproof Pants, available on Amazon.com, offer all of those features and more.

These high-waist trousers are padded and fleece-lined, offering additional warmth and protection from the elements. They’re reflective for night riding and offer breathable fabric that’s also moisture-wicking.

Footwear

Footwear can get a little tricky during winter as you’ll have to consider socks and shoes that keep you warm and provide ventilation while also keeping out water and snow during adverse weather conditions.

Luckily, we have gear for each of these concerns.

Socks

Giro Seasonal Merino Wool Cycling Socks on Amazon.com are the ideal pair for cycling during winter. These socks stay warm even at lower temperatures. And this warmth is regulated by a woolen-nylon design that removes moisture, preventing your feet from getting damp and clammy.

Shoes

Your winter cycling shoes need to provide extra purchase on slippery surfaces, as well as warmth. If you don’t want to invest in a winter cycling shoe, you can instead cover your regular cycling shoe with cycling overshoes. These are covers that go over your shoes to further protect you from the elements.

Cyclist dressed for Cooler Weather

The LOVTRAVEL Winter Cycling Overshoe from Amazon.com comes in six different sizes and keeps feet warm and dry in cold weather. The Kevlar base wear prevents the shoes from wearing down quickly and the neoprene and rubber outer shell resists water and prevents abrasion.

Gloves

Winter cycling gloves should allow comfort and ease of movement while keeping your hands warm during long journeys.

The Sealskinz Windproof & Breathable Gloves for women on Amazon.com are perfect for winter and wet weather. The gloves are waterproof and windproof to protect your hands from the biting cold and rain. They’re thick enough to keep out the cold yet thin enough to ensure you still have an accurate feel on the handlebars.

Glasses

As mentioned already, you can use the pair of Sintryx Sports Glasses from Rudy Project for all weather conditions. Before setting out, all you have to do is switch the lenses to accommodate cold and wet weather, and you’re good to go! 

Final Thoughts

For ease of classification, we have grouped cold and wet weather so that you can use the same gear in both weather conditions.

Wearing the proper clothing for road cycling can significantly enhance the experience and help you stay motivated to cycle even on the most challenging days.

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