About Le Col
Le Col is a cycling apparel brand established in 2009, for men and women set up by Welsh professional Team Raleigh rider, Yanto Barker. The Sport collection is the most affordable range from Le Col, but it’s certainly not a budget range. Le Col was set up by long time pro rider Yanto Barker, currently on Team Raleigh.
Le Col say they are ‘committed to delivering the finest products, meaning all their apparel is rigorously tested before being put into production. The personal input and critical eye on all aspects of the brands products and services sets Le Col apart from other cycling brands.’
I personally think it’s a really stylish brand. I love the simple design, the logo and the lettering. And their colours are pretty cool too. This particular top comes in this lovely bright blue, a vivid yellow and a striking red – all contrasting great against the flattering black to provide some visibility on the road.
Le Col isn’t a budget range; the Le Col Sport short sleeve women’s cycling jersey is the cheapest in their range and retails at £80.
The Summer Sport Jersey has been developed using a soft fabric called Meryl, selected for its excellent heat management properties combined with a high level of stretch for the perfect fit.
The jersey is made in Italy and the fabric is lovely and soft to the touch and very comfortable to wear.
Apparently it’s a ‘dry-tex’ fabric – yep, that was a new one on me too, but according to the label it’s an optimized synthetic fabric made of anti-bacterial fibres, which is breathable, soft and stretchy and keeps its shape. Well, you won’t hear any differently from me!
Dry-tex makes the material especially good at wicking away moisture from the skin and means it dries very quickly. I first wore this whilst doing some hill training and after a few weeks of illness, I can honestly say I was sweating a fair bit! The fabric was brilliant at taking the moisture away from the skin. There’s nothing more yucky than being left in a wet and sweaty top, so it scored well for me in this area! The black area is slightly meshed and so lets in lots of cool air as you get some speed up, which really helps with the drying process!
I also noticed that it dried very quickly after washing – so if it ends up becoming your favourite jersey there’s no worries about it being clean, dry and ready for the next day’s ride. And it washed really nicely, keeping it’s shape after a cool wash at 30 degrees. So far, it’s doing well against Le Col’s claims.
There’s two decent sized pockets at the back for those all important bits and pieces whilst out cycling. I personally love Ana Nichoola kit for ease of access to the pockets and whilst the Le Col pockets aren’t quite as easy to get into they are useful and easily big enough to fit in your gels, flapjacks, spare inner tube etc. plus there’s also a zip pocket to keep keys and tea and cake pennies safe.
So, this is perhaps where the Le Col Sport women’s cycling jersey is let down slightly. Le Col offer women four sizes: size XS which Le Col say equates to a UK size 6-8, a size S equivalent to a UK size 8-10, a size M equivalent to a UK 10-12 and a size L equivalent to a UK size 12-14. I’m usually a UK 8-10 so I ordered the S but I had to return it as it was just too snug to be comfortable for riding in. So my advice would be to go up a size – the medium fits me perfectly and I felt really nice in it. The need to move up a size though means that this brand is not for everyone seeing as it stops at what they term a UK 12-14.
Also, at 5ft 9″ I found the length of the body, both front and back, just a little too short for me when I was down on the drops – but I have this problem with a number of brands. I have been wearing it with bib shorts, so I haven’t found it too drafty on the back, it’s just a bit irritating when you feel you have to keep pulling it down as you get off the bike. I have heard that the Le Col cycling shorts are high waisted (although I don’t have a pair so I can’t vouch for this) – perhaps the length of the body is a little less critical if you’re a fan of high waisted shorts or bib shorts.
What I do love about the fit is the length of the sleeves. They’re not too short and being a nice mid-length they don’t ride up too far when you’re forward on the handle bars. This also means they cover that top arm area beautifully so are very flattering from that perspective! And they’re nice and soft and very comfortable!
And the full length zip is very handy and nice to see on a women’s cycling top. It makes going to the loo with bib shorts on that bit easier!
The Le Col Sport short sleeve women’s cycling jersey review in brief:
What I love:
- The choice of colours
- The logo
- The design
- The full length zip
- The zipped pocket
- The cool and soft fabric
- The sleeve length
What I don’t love quite so much:
- Access to the pockets
- The length of the body
- Too few sizes
- The price – but having said that, you do get what you pay for and this is a great top!
Overall, I really like this jersey, I love the compliments I receive whenever I wear it, it’s well-made and it’s a super comfy, flattering fit. I’ll just make sure I wear it with my bib shorts.
Disclosure: Le Col sent me the above top for the purpose of review. Opinions are all my own.