Cycling Vest Product Selection Guide

Cycling Vest Product Selection Guide

Here's how it works for me:  sometimes when there are too many options, making a decision can be paralyzing.  Rather than seeing the potential in multiple opportunities, I get bogged down trying to decide and can get overwhelmed and just freeze.  In our Hi Vis Collection, we have six different vests so chose each of them for this collection quite deliberately and each one is appropriate for different types of rides or riders.  Hopefully, this article will break it down for you.

Reasons You Need A Vest (Or Two)

  • An extra layer of weather protection.  In early spring or early morning, when temperatures are on the cool side, adding a lightweight vest is sometimes all you need to stay comfortably warm.
  • Most are lightweight and fold up small. You can tuck a vest in your pocket in case the weather worsens and temperatures fall while you ride. It is stored away but easily accessible when/if you need it.
  • A vest with reflective, brightly coloured or actual light accents will really enhance your visibility on the road.
  • The vest will give you some layers of protection but can still be worn in hotter weather.
  • A well designed and fitted vest can enhance your visibility without the extra bulk and messy drag you'd experience with a boxy safety vest.

Which Vest Is Best For Your Needs

First off, here are the needs we considered when putting together our collection of vests:

  1. Light weather/wind protection
  2. Visibility
  3. Breathability
  4. Aerodynamics

Hopefully this chart will simplify your selection. We've ranked the different vests on each of the needs we considered. Now, these ratings are entirely our own and absolutely subjective.  You might agree or disagree with some of our arbitrary ratings but hopefully this chart will at least help highlight the differences between each piece.

Vest  Windproof Visibility Breathability Aero
--------------------- | --------------- ------------- ---------------- --------------
LED Belt | No Very high Yes  Good
LED Vest | Minimal Best Yes Very Good
Minimal Vest | Minimal High Yes Very Good
Hi Vis | High High High Very Good
360 Degree Vis


Very High Very High Least Good
Mesh Back | Front only Minimal Very High Best


Summary of Features 

And here's a summary of the key features of each that might be more helpful for those of you looking for specific purpose garments:

----------------- ----------------- ------------------------------------------------------
Hi Vis Vest

Broad reflective accent front and back for excellent visibility in fabric only vest

Lightweight and packable

Wind resistant fabric for moderate weather protection

--------------- ----------------- ------------------------------------------------------
Mesh Back Vest

Reflective accent on the front panel

Stretchy mesh back offers great fit and high breathability

Can be worn very fitted and close to the body comfortably for best aerodynamics

--------------- --------------- ------------------------------------------------------
360 Degree Reflective Vest

Reflective fabric front and back for maximum visibility of our fabric only vests

Reflective coating limits breathability of fabric so not ideal for hot weather

Fabric side panel and venting on back yoke for moderate breathability

Non-stretch fabrics so this one will be less aerodynamic

--------------- --------------- ------------------------------------------------------
Minimalist Reflective Vest

Minimal coverage so excellent breathability and suitable for hot weather

Highly adjustable fit but non-stretch fabric so you need to allow some room in the fit which will limit aerodynamics

We recommend anyone riding with a big, bulky safety vest use this instead.

--------------- --------------- ------------------------------------------------------
Reflective LED Vest

Minimal coverage so excellent breathability and suitable for hot weather

Highly adjustable fit; more of a harness than a full vest

Our most visible piece

USB chargeable but reflective fabric ensures high visibility even if you forget to charge it.

--------------- --------------- ------------------------------------------------------
Reflective LED Belt

Minimal coverage so excellent breathability and suitable for hot weather

Highly adjustable fit; more of a harness than a full vest

Lights are not very noticeable in daylight so best used a night

LED-illuminated tubes can catch on trees and branches so this isn't the best option for riding or running wooded trails.

--------------- --------------- ------------------------------------------------------


Hopefully, something helps you find the best pieces for your needs.