Bikerumor Review: Look Cycling Winter Bibs and Jersey

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Seeing as how we keep going back and forth between Spring and Winter temperatures, you’re probably wishing you had some cool weather apparel like Look’s Pro Team L/S Jersey and Bib Tights.  

I’ve worn the set (items are sold separately) in temps ranging from about 40º to 60º F (4º – 16º C) with conditions ranging from cloudy and windy to calm and sunny.  Sometimes I had a long sleeve base layer top or short sleeve wicking t-shirt underneath, and on the really cold days, a wind breaker vest over the top.  Since they’re not water- or wind-proof, I didn’t wear them when things got nasty, but even in the coldest of test days, they did a good job of keeping me in a comfortable temperature range.

So, should you consider them for your  cool weather riding wardrobe?  Short answer: Yes.  Long answer: Read “more” for the full review and tech specs…

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TECHNICAL SPECS:

  • Bib Tights (MSRP $129.00 USD) are a combination of Nylon/Elastane and Polyester/Elastane panels that are stretchy in all directions.  They have a built in anatomical chamois pad.
  • Long Sleeve Jersey (MSRP $129.00 USD) is 100% Polyester and has some horizontal stretch due to the way it’s knit, but no real vertical stretch. It has a full length zipper.
  • Other items in this collection (not tested) are a Windproof Vest that’s waterproof and has a single zippered pocket, and a Windproof/Waterproof Removable Sleeves Jersey.  Sleeves zip on/off, it has three pockets on rear and front panel is wind/water proof.
  • Colors available are: Blue, Red or White, all of which have black trim.
  • Sizes available are: S, M, L, XL and XXXL.  (Apparently if you wear a XXL, you’re out of luck for all but the available Windproof Vest.
  • These models are from their current collection and will carry through to next Winter.

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FIT and PERFORMANCE:

I’m 6’2″ / 178 lbs and usually wear a size “Large” for cycling clothing, which is the size of both garments tested.  With Bibs, a size Large usually has a tradeoff between fitting the legs and waist properly and having the bib straps being too tight for someone of my height.  They end up feeling like their a) pulling my shoulders forward or b) pulling the chamois uncomfortably into my crotch.  Fortunately, the Look Bib Tights have long enough bib straps to be comfortable even when standing perfectly upright.  Where they fall a little short…and just a very little… is in the leg length.  In the pics above and below, you can see that a bit much of my ankle is showing.  Granted, in cooler weather, you might be wearing longer socks or even shoe covers that would hide that skin, but if you’re over six feet tall, these may be a bit short in the leg.

The Long Sleeve Jersey fit very well through the body, being snug enough not to flap around, but not so tight as to be uncomfortable.  The length of the body was perfect, falling just below the waist and staying there.  Even when reaching up or stretching, it never felt like it was pulling up too far.  The sleeves are the real test for someone of my height, though, and they did fall about two inches too short.  Typically, cycling clothing has longer sleeves to accommodate the stretched reach when on the bike, so it was a little surprising that these sleeves were as short as they were.  Again…over six feet tall and you’ll probably be showing some skin between the cuff and your gloves.

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Front view (above) shows where the legs and arms are a bit short for someone over 6′ tall.

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Sizing issues aside, these are some very comfortable garments.  The legs fit very well, with no saggy parts and weren’t too tight or too loose anywhere.

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The bibs were comfortable over the belly and shoulders…in fact, once they were on, I forgot they were bibs, which is the ultimate compliment.  You get the performance you want without the waist-squeezing of normal tights.

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The brushed insides are very soft and cozy and provided good insulation.  The photo above is the inside of the tights (black) and close-up of the chamois pad (light gray).  The white panels on the tights are just ever-so-slightly thinner, but still have a brushed inner surface.

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The Chamois pad is very, very soft, using the same brushed fabric, and it was comfortable with or without any sort of chamois cream.  The center “blocks” have thin gel padding in them, with the “sit bone” blocks having gel in the thicker circumference around them, but not in the centers.  The pad was very comfortable on 2- to 2.5 hour rides, and it’s thin enough that you could add a baselayer with padding for really cold days without feeling like you’re wearing a diaper.

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The bottom of the legs have a grippy gel band to keep them in place.

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The top has the same brushed inner surface.  The zipper does not have an inner flap to block wind, which lets a bit of chill in on the colder days, but not too bad.  The outer knit detail can be seen in the bottom right of the photo above.

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The jersey has four pockets on the back: Three standard ones with elastic cuffs and one zippered pocket on the outside of the center pocket; perfect for cell phones so they don’t end up on the side of the road like this:

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The side panels of the jersey have a nice graphic detail, but it’s the same material inside and out as the rest of the piece.  It’s a raglan sleeve design, which offers great mobility without pulling the jersey awkwardly as you move around.

Bottom line: They kept me comfortable in the range of temperatures they’re designed to work in, and I never got overly sweaty or wet, which meant they breathed well.  They have a thermoregulation device that allows you to control your body temperature if you get to warm or too cold…it’s called a zipper…and it works wonders if the temp changes as your ride progresses.

BIKERUMOR RATING:

What I like about these items are:

  • They’re comfortable and fit well overall
  • They work well for a good range of late Winter / early Spring temperatures
  • Great chamois pad
  • Nice materials and stitch quality
  • Seems to hold up well to numerous washings
  • Stark black/white contrast looks sharp.

Here’s what could be better:

  • Sleeve and leg length could be a little longer to better accommodate riders over 6 feet tall.
  • No reflective piping or stitching, and backside is mostly black, which may make you hard to see on the fringes of daylight.
  • Jersey zipper could have a little flap to keep wind from sneaking in on colder days.

Overall, these are some pretty solid pieces of cycling clothing.  My complaints/dislikes are minor, and honestly, I found myself wearing these quite frequently (and will continue to do so).  If you’re of average height, they should fit you like a glove, though, which erases one of the issues altogether.  I give them four thumbs up and recommend them to anyone looking for quality cool weather cycling gear.

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NOTE: Look also offers an “Ultra” line that is above this “Pro Team” trim level.

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