It’s an annoying reality that sometimes when you’re cycling the weather isn’t going to be perfect. However, the important thing to remember is the old saying: “there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.” Nothing should stop you from getting out on your bike, and if you choose the appropriate clothing, then you’ll be able to stay warm and dry in whatever conditions.
Cycling jackets are all specifically designed to allow you maximum leg movement. Beyond that, there’s a whole range of choice that can be quite disorientating. It is worth taking some time to consider your different options. Some jackets are specifically a shell layer and will offer you only waterproof functionality. Sometimes, there’ll be a waterproofed fleece that also offers insulation. In addition, you’ll want to consider the weight of the jacket and its visibility.
In this article, we’ve selected ten jackets and told you exactly what makes them a good cycling rain jacket. We’ve analyzed their technical capacity and explained why they might be a good choice for you. In each case, we’ve picked out their strongest features to give you a clear idea of what you’ll be purchasing.
View The Best Cycling Rain Jacket Below
1. Pearl Izumi – Ride Men’s Elite Barrier Jacket
This is a great jacket for a rider who wants to keep their options open. The sleeves zip off so it can easily be converted from a jacket into a vest. If you’re a keen cyclist, you know that conditions can change quickly and that a rain jacket can often cause you to overheat once it has stopped raining. The removable sleeves really help to prevent this. It has an ELITE barrier fabric which offers great wind protection and water resistance. This will mean that it will keep you dry in all conditions.
There’s also a breathable waterproof membrane which prevents humidity build up. In addition, there are vent panels and a full-length internal draft flap which can be used to increase ventilation. There are two side pockets and a back pocket which mean you can store your rain gear. It has BioViz high visibility colors and design, meaning that other road users will be able to spot you more easily.
+ Convertible into vest
+ ELITE barrier fabric
+ Breathable waterproof membrane
+ Draft Flap
+ BioViz design
Why We Like It – This is a highly versatile rain jacket that will suit you well for long rides that experience changing conditions. It has well-developed visibility features that’ll mean that other road users will be able to see you. Stay warm and safe at the same time.
2. ARSUXEO Winter Warm UP Thermal Softshell Cycling
This is a softshell jacket that comes in a variety of high visibility colors. It is made of fleece material and is designed particularly to keep you warm during the winter months or in particularly cold climates. The fleece material means that it is highly breathable and won’t cause you to over sweat. The jacket is both windproof and waterproof.
However, because it is a soft-shell, it doesn’t have the immediate runoff that a shell layer would have. This being said, it’s a jacket that is designed to protect you fully from the elements, it’ll keep you warm and dry in nearly all conditions. There are a zipper pocket and a back pocket for carrying the essentials. There are three choices of high-vis color that’ll keep you seen when the conditions are poor.
+ Fleece material
+ Four-way stretch
+ High-vis color choice
Why We Like It – This is a great choice if you’re looking for something that’ll keep you warm and dry in unpleasant conditions. It is resilient and comfortable due to the 4-way stretch fabric which also moves with your body. The result is a very comfortable jacket.
3. Santic Men’s Cycling Skin Coat Jersey Bicycle
This is a skin or shell cycling jersey. Because of this, it is ultra-lightweight. The advantage of a lightweight jacket is that it is extremely portable and often more comfortable. There’s a back pocket which the jacket itself folds up into. This means you can easily throw it in your bag for those moments when the rain comes out of nowhere.
It’s totally waterproof and windproof which means it’ll considerably reduce windchill during tough conditions. It comes in a high-vis green which is essential for safety. There are designs with and without an additional hood, depending on what you prefer in your rain jacket.
+ Extremely lightweight
+ Shell layer
+ High-vis color
+ Packs into itself
+ Optional hood
Why We Like It – A great value shell layer if you’re just looking for something to keep you dry while you’re out and about. The optional hood is quite a rare feature and useful if you want to keep your head dry.
4. Baleaf Men’s Cycling Running Jacket
Here we’ve got another shell layer that is very lightweight. It doesn’t offer lots of insulation, but because it is both wind and waterproof, it’ll offer crucial protection when the elements become unkind. This running rain jacket has a full-length zipper which allows for basic but effective venting. There’s also an internal zipper with a zipper garage which seals in warmth. It features elastic cuffs which also keep the chill-out.
The two hand pockets and back pocket aren’t found in every shell jacket and are a useful extra feature for storing items like your phone. There’s a mesh-ventilation system in the back which helps you to stay cool and dry. It comes in two colors: black or fluorescent yellow. The fluorescent option allows for good low light visibility.
+ Lightweight shell coat
+ Back pocket
+ Mesh ventilation system
+ Internal draft flap
+ Elastic cuffs
Why We Like It – This is a shell layer that is slightly more advanced than some. It’s a little more functional because of extra features like the pockets and the ventilation system. Would make for excellent everyday use.
Related; cycling bibs.
5. ARSUXEO Winter Thermal Fleece Cycling Jacket
This is a stylish thermal fleece jacket. It’s got a great-looking, dynamic design that’s built to move with you. On the exterior there’s an outer polyester mesh fabric, in the middle is the waterproof and windproof layer and inside is the fleece material. The combination makes for a rain jacket that keeps you warm and dry in all sorts of conditions.
The design is also extremely breathable which means it is excellent for long-duration usage when you’re really exerting yourself. The underarm portions are made from spandex. This makes them more flexible and offers excellent moisture wicking. It does mean that this portion of the jacket isn’t waterproof, but that shouldn’t matter apart from in the very worst conditions.
+ Triple-layer design
+ Fleece interior
+ Spandex underarms
+ Great design
Why We Like It – A versatile cycling jacket that’ll suit a variety of conditions well. Perfect especially if you’re looking for something for winter.
6. J. Carp Women’s Packable Windbreaker Jacket
This women’s shell jacket offers a great lightweight option for cyclists. It is made from 100% polyester and is waterproof in light rain. It’s predominantly designed as a windbreaker and would work best when paired with some mid-layers. There is a ventilation system at the sides of the jacket which improves breathability and will make sure you don’t get too hot. There’s one back pocket which the jacket can fold neatly into. Elastic at the hem makes it adjustable.
+ Women’s fit
+ Good color choice
+ Adjustable elastic
+ Fold away design
Why We Like It – This is a nifty little windbreaker that is extremely portable. It’ll keep you dry and warm in light conditions and would be extremely useful to have on hand.
7. Baleaf Unisex Rain Jacket Packable Outdoor Waterproof
This rain jacket has a slightly looser fit than most of the other jackets we’ve chosen. This means it would suit someone who prefers their clothes a little roomier. It is designed to be more of a poncho, so the front zip only covers half the jacket. The jacket is made from nylon and is totally waterproof while still being very lightweight.
There are two side pockets and a back pocket that the jacket folds into. On the back, there’s a reflective logo which improves visibility during poor light conditions. Additionally, there’s a funnel hood with an adjustable drawstring, meaning your head can stay dry too.
+ Poncho design
+ Fully waterproof
+ Reflective rear logo
+ Choice of colors
Why We Like It – A traditionally designed waterproof jacket that’ll keep you dry. It works well as a shell layer, and the roomy fit offers good versatility.
8. Wolfbike Cycling Jacket Jersey Vest Wind Coat
This Wolfbike Cycling Jacket Jersey Vest Wind Coat shell jacket offers you a really lightweight design that is extremely portable. It’s fully waterproof and despite its lightweight will keep you dry in all conditions. It comes in a wide range of high-visibility colors to suit your taste and has additional high-vis features to ensure that you stay safe while on the road.
In the back of the jacket are a ventilation mesh system and a direct vent panel that will mean that your sweat can easily evaporate. There is a good range of pockets, and the cuffs are usefully elasticated.
+ Reflective details
+ Very portable
+ Adjustable elastics
+ Vented back
Why We Like It – Another great option as a shell jacket. It’s got a really varied range of colors, meaning that you can pick one that’s just right for you. The wide back vent offers good ventilation.
9. Showers Pass Waterproof Storm Jacket
This rain jacket offers a low back with a tapering edge at the front. This traditional design offers maximum protection, especially when you’re adopting a racing position in the saddle. It offers great value for money considering the materials that it uses. There’s 2.5 layers Artex waterproof-breathable fabric, and the seams are fully taped.
This means that you’ll have the confidence that this jacket can keep you dry when the rain starts coming down. The large vent at the back allows excess body heat and moisture to escape. It comes in a range of colors with high-vis features.
+ Tapered design
+ Machine washable
+ 2.5 layer Artex
+ Taped Seams
+ Large back vent
Why We Like It – This jacket offers a traditional design and could be well suited to racers. It uses great materials while still offering good value for money.
10. Shelcup Women’s Windproof Water Resistant Convertible Cycling
This Shelcup jacket comes in a range of choices. Options on the jacket allow for either a neat foldaway design or detachable sleeves. Both offer versatile jackets and venting solutions. The jacket is lightweight and doesn’t offer extra insulation. This allows it to be easily stowed in the bottom of a bag or pannier.
At the sides of the jacket, there is an option to have additionally breathable fabric. It slightly reduces the waterproofing capability but will mean that you’re sure to stay cool. The jacket is suitable for light use, and the high-vis colors will make sure you’re safe on the road
+ Optional detachable sleeves
+ Very lightweight
+ Venting options
+ Variety of pockets
Why We Like It – With this women’s jacket, you can select what features suit your needs best. It’s a versatile option that’s sure to suit your needs.
Cycling Rain Jacket Buyers Guide
When you’re thinking about what jacket’s going to suit you best there are a couple of main points to consider. Aside from what your jacket looks like (which does matter), you should also be thinking about the weather conditions you’re going to use it in as they can make a big difference. Below are the main factors to consider.
Shell v. Insulated
You’ll have noticed there are basically two types of jacket that we’ve shown you. The jackets that have no insulation (shell) and those which have a fleece lining. If you’re looking for a jacket that can keep more than just the rain off you and would be suitable for winter use, you should definitely think about fleece. A shell jacket is lighter weight and suitable for hotter climates.
Breathability and Venting
If cycling is a sport to you, then you’ll know that you can get sweaty while you’re doing it. You don’t want to get wet from the inside when you’re trying to stay dry from the outside. The key to this is breathability and venting. If you know that you’re likely to get hot, make sure you get a jacket that is made with a breathable material. This is especially important if you’re also getting a fleece jacket. Built-in vents will also help with temperature control.
When you’re deciding on your jacket purchase, it’s important to remember your primary purpose for buying it. It all really depends on the environment in which you’re cycling. If you’re regularly caught in a downpour, make sure to get something sturdy and fully waterproof. If you just need something for light use and you live somewhere fairly warm, choose something fairly lightweight with plenty of vents.