Waterproof and water resistant jackets for men
Cycling has become an everyday activity for many people. Exposed to wind and nasty weather when cycling, weatherproof outer clothing is indispensable no matter whether you use your bike as a means of transportation or for sports. A waterproof cycling rain jacket therefore presents a basic garment for all kinds of cyclists. It should always be at hand in unpredictable weather conditions. But not all cycling rain jackets are the same, there are major differences depending on the sports discipline, the use and the demands.
Cycling Rain Jackets – Watch for This
You will probably be very surprised to see the variety of cycling rain jackets and their differences in terms of price. We would like to shed some light on the world of rain jackets for cyclists and point out the most important features to you:
1. The cut of a cycling rain jacket is always adapted to the seated cycling posture. The back has to be extra long for your behind to stay dry. This way you are not simply protected from rain but also from spray if your bicycle has no mudguards. In the front area the jacket must be shorter for it not to bulk in the seated posture bent over. The more extreme the seated posture (e.g. in road biking) the more pronounced this difference in length between front and back needs to be in cycling rain jackets.
2. Concerning the material of cycling rain jackets you will probably find the most striking differences. High quality rain jackets for cycling are made from a 3-layer membrane fabric which prevents moisture from penetrating from outside yet wicks excess body heat and perspiration away towards the outside. In this context a balance between protection from rain and breathability is extremely important. Because cycling rain jackets with poor or no breathability at all make you feel like you are wrapped in a plastic bag. Cycling jackets for performance driven cyclists are made from membrane material with a high ratio of stretch material. This way the jacket can feature a tight fit without restricting your freedom of movement or reducing comfort.
3. Apart from the material the seams and zippers also need to prevent water from penetrating. The waterproof features of a rain jacket for cycling include:
- seams welded from the inside
- waterproof zippers in front and pockets
- well fitting grippers at sleeve ends and hem
- a high and tight fitting collar or, depending on the use, a hood
4. Weight and pack size of a rain jacket for cycling should be as small as possible because it needs to fit either into a backpack or a jersey pocket.
Cycling rain jackets are available with a specific cut either for women, men or kids. Women’s cycling rain jackets differ from men’s cycling rain jackets only in terms of colour and perhaps more feminine details.
Differences in Cycling Rain Jackets for Road Biking and MTB
In general cycling rain jackets for sports feature more technical details than cycling rain jackets for occasional use or everyday cycling.
- Cycling rain jackets for road cyclists are especially lightweight and feature a tight fit to allow the highest possible aerodynamics. Here extremely thin membrane fabrics are used which are highly elastic and breathable. Cycling rain jackets for road cycling have a very small pack size as they are often stored in rear jersey pockets.
- Cycling rain jackets for mountain bikers and tourers who ride in rough terrain are usually made from more robust material which does not tear when touching smaller branches. They feature a rather casual fit so further MTB cycling clothing will fit underneath and are adapted to the more upright seated posture. MTB rain jackets feature some pockets and often a hood which, if needed, can be rolled into the collar.
When choosing a cycling rain jacket you should also make sure it either has reflective elements or is totally made from a neon coloured fabric. Since rainy days also mean low light conditions you should make sure you are seen in traffic.
Castelli and Gore Rain Jackets – the Best for Demanding Cyclists
Castelli is among the top-of-the-range brands for road cycling equipment. Accordingly rain jackets by Castelli are conceived specifically for ambitious road cyclists: close fit, no fluttering, climate regulation and weathertight finish. An absolute highlight: the Castelli rain jacket Idro Pro 2 made from GORE-TEX SHAKEDRY. It is extremely lightweight, super breathable, quickly drying and has a very small pack size. It keeps you dry for many hours even in persistent rain. This cycling rain jacket features waterproof, elastic membrane fabrics and waterproof Gore stretch panels providing a perfect body climate and maximum freedom of movement.
Gore themselves produce rain jackets for all, very active road cyclists as well as mountain bikers and tourers. Gore rain jackets have high tech features. The patented GORE-TEX membrane is absolutely waterproof and highly breathable. In addition cycling rain jackets by Gore feature many technical details which you do not want to do without on a long tour such as an Alpine cross.
Gore is a vanguard in the production of membrane fabrics. In the new elastic GORE-TEX SHAKEDRY material the third layer was omitted, the membrane is located outside and the inner layer provides the body climate regulation. Water from the outside simply drips off immediately and permanently. You can simply shake this jacket dry. Gore rain jackets made from GORE-TEX SHAKEDRY therefore are extremely lightweight and unbelievably breathable.
Apart from Castelli and Gore we also recommend you to look at cycling rain jackets by Vaude, Endura and Pro-X. Here you will find convenient garments for everyday use and good quality for touring, MTB and road biking.