Women's Cycling Gear Guide: Dressing for Comfort and Performance

Women's Cycling Gear Guide: Dressing for Comfort and Performance

Cycling is a particularly male dominated sport, but women are also well represented and every year cycling is becoming more and more female friendly. However, despite this growth in female cyclists, it can still be difficult to find informative guides tailored to women's needs, specifically guides to  women’s cycling gear. This guide will help you navigate the essentials, from women's cycling pants to the perfect women's cycling jacket, ensuring your comfort and better performance on the bike. 

Cycling has become more and more fashionable of late, and we think the growing number of women in the sport certainly has something to do with that. But beyond fashion, it is also important to dress for comfort and performance, particularly to improve the experience of riding and to ensure you stay in the sport we love so much. 

Ladies' cycling shorts 

Cycling shorts are the most important piece of kit to stay comfortable on the bike, the shorts are the first contact point between yourself and the bike, supporting the majority of your weight when riding. 

When selecting women’s cycling shorts, it is important to look for a close snug fit, similar to the fit of underwear or tights. If you are a beginner we recommend trying sizes in store or purchasing online from a brand with flexible returns to ensure you end up with the best fitting size for you. We recommend selecting shorts that use a bib and brace, as they help to keep the cycling pants in place whilst you are riding. Shorts that do not have braces can sometimes slip or move when you are riding, which can lead to chafing, not a pleasant experience. 

As said previously, cycling shorts are the first point of contact between your body and the bike, with this in mind, it is important to select a pair of bib shorts with a good chamois pad for added comfort. Comfort from a chamois pad is not linked to how much padding there is or how soft the pad is, it is usually a result of the shape and also variation of padding thickness throughout that helps to create a comfortable chamois. At Velotec, we choose Elastic Interface pads for all our chamois pads in our Elite Women’s Range, as we believe they offer the best/most comfortable chamois pads on the market. 

Women's cycling pants

Also referred to as bib tights, women's cycling pants are a staple winter cycling item, and due to the similarity to cycling shorts, much of the previous advice rings true when selecting these. The only difference being that they are longer and will usually include a fleece like material to retain more heat during the colder months of the year. 

Women's cycling jacket

A good women's cycling jacket is an essential item for riding in Winter. Compared to your normal fluo rain jackets these jackets are typically  breathable and wind-resistant, these characteristics help to keep the wet weather and cold out, whilst maintaining an ideal body temperature. A good jacket will offer a snug fit, but years ago, jackets would be reminiscent of parachutes. The reason for jackets becoming tighter is to help reduce the effects of aerodynamic drag that these older jackets would create. Less drag means you go faster. Plus a more fitted jacket retains the heat better.

Our recommendation would be to choose a jacket with fluorescent colours, mainly to increase your visibility on the road in poor conditions. Many jackets are easily folded and can be stored in your back pocket when riding, this is ideal on longer rides where weather can change over the course of your ride, simply store the jacket when not needed and pull it out when the rain comes. 

Women's cycling gear

In addition to clothing, there are a number of accessories and gear that can enhance your cycling experience, which will improve both your comfort and performance. If you have not done it already, upgrade your shoes to cycling shoes and clipless pedals. This is the single biggest thing you can do to improve your ride, cycling shoes have a more rigid sole than your regular runners, and as such provide more efficiency in the transfer of power from your legs to the pedals. The clipless pedals keep your feet in a stable position, avoiding slipping which can be a common occurrence with normal shoes and flat pedals.  

Cycling sunglasses are something else to consider, not only as a fashion item, but also a safety item on the bike. Spending hours upon hours in the sun can have a damaging effect on your eyes, and so a good pair of sunglasses will help protect your eyes from the UV, furthermore they act as protective shield for your eyes against items that can be flicked from the road such as dirt, water or stones. 

Gloves are another essential accessory to improve your comfort. Many brands, including us at Velotec have specially designed padded gloves that reduce pressure in key areas of your hand, relieving nerve pain, and also providing better grip. In the case of a fall, gloves offer just that little extra protection for our hands, which are all so prone to injury when crashing. An ideal glove to look for is one that is well padded in the palm and ulnar nerve area. 


Investing in quality women's cycling apparel is a game-changer for comfort, performance, and safety. The cycling apparel that you use can have a crucial role in improving your riding experience. To ensure a great riding experience remember to consider the specific conditions you'll be riding in, and choose the clothing best suited to the weather. With the right women's cycling clothing, you'll be well-equipped to tackle any ride with confidence and style.