With a reputation for eco-friendly, ethically produced garments, Patagonia's new range of MTB clothing aims to make you feel good as well as look good.
Patagonia has just entered the mountain bike market, having earned a loyal following in other outdoor markets for its ethical credentials. We tested the Women’s Short Sleeve Merino bike jersey which oozes quality, but alongside that comes a hefty price tag. At £80 it is the most expensive jersey on test.
The fabric is lush. Made from a blend of Responsible Wool Standard certified merino and recycled polyester, the fabric is quick-wicking and super soft against bare skin. In true Patagonia fashion, the fabric is also Bluesign approved and Fair Trade Certified sewn.
Rachael wore the jersey for back-to-back rides to test the merino credentials. After three sweaty rides, the jersey was still odour free to the point it could still be worn for a post-ride pub trip without any need to be banished to a table for one, making it a great jersey for multi-day trips and bike packing where you don’t want to carry lots of spare kit.
The merino is quite thin and lightweight, but more importantly it’s extremely comfy. It has a loose, boxy fit that lets in the breeze and helps make it super breathable on hot rides. Whilst it is slightly loose fitting, it isn’t baggy. If you prefer a baggy fit, best to go up a size. The incredible climate controlling properties of merino means you don’t get sweat chills the minute you stop riding. But the fabric is so lightweight, it will be interesting to see what the durability is like.
As with most other jerseys on test, the Patagonia top has a bike-specific tailoring with a drop back hem, however, it appears to have the most exaggerated shaping due to the frontal rise. Patagonia claims the shape contours body posture on the bike. We found that for Rachael, with a small-ish torso, the front of the jersey sat just on her hips. For anyone slightly taller wearing the small there is a reasonable risk the stomach area may be exposed when standing straight. Those with slightly bigger boobs may find the shorter frontal length may also expose some tummy.
Rachael: Small – perfect fit in every way – length, shape and sleeve length. Taller petite person may struggle with the jersey length.
Laura: Laura didn’t recieve a jersey to try so can’t comment on the larger sizing.
Available in three different colours, mellow melon, black and camp green, this jersey is top quality with a hefty price tag. If your body length suits the cut, and you can justify the price tag, then treat yourself. But taller riders may want to check the sizing before fully committing.