Bicycle commuting is a win-win. You get a little exercise on your way to and from work. The roads have one less car on them, which makes Mother Earth happy. The only problem is what you look like when you arrive at the office.
There used to be two options. You could look like a rumpled mess in work clothes ill-designed for riding; or you could show up Tour de France-ready in high performance Spandex. Fortunately, there’s now a middle ground. Companies like Rapha, Outlier, Levi’s and others are making stylish bicycle commuting clothes using technical fabrics and cuts. The gear looks so good, you’ll want to wear it even if you don’t own a bike.
Here is everything you need (aside from the bike and helmet) that you’ll need to look great on your commute.
Rapha Merino Boxers $50, rapha.cc
Being comfortable on the bike starts with the right underwear. Rapha’s boxers are made of merino wool that wicks away sweat and polyester which allows for full range of movement.
Chrome Crew Socks $16, chromeindustries.com
They are warm, soft, and stay up. There isn’t much more you can ask for in a commuter sock.
Outlier New OG Pants $240, outlier.cc
Outlier helped pioneer the use of technical fabrics in apparel that could go from bike to boardroom, and the company’s OG pants are pretty close to perfect, from a waistband that lays properly in the saddle to a fabric that sheds dirt and water with ease.
Rapha Jeans $220, rapha.cc
If you prefer jeans to chinos, this pair from Rapha will serve you well. There is stretch in the denim so you can pedal and there is a reflective log on the inside of the right leg that is revealed when you roll the pants up.
Levi’s Commuter Trucker Jacket $148, levis.com
Levi’s classic jean jacket has been updated for bike riders with a packable hood and reflective tape to stand out at night.
Rapha V-Neck Base Layer $80, rapha.cc
A great undershirt whether you’re on a bike or not, Rapha’s V-neck is incredibly light and won’t chafe. It is cut longer in the back so it won’t come untucked when you’re bending over your handlebars.
Outlier Blazed Slim Button Down $125, outlier.cc
Slim shirts look better. The challenge is moving in them. Outlier solved this with its Pivot Sleeve which allows full range of motion. The Blazed Cotton fabric is breathable and resists sweat.
Chrome Kursk Shoes $75, [chromeindustries.com]
The Kursk is hiding something. What on the outside looks like a classic sneaker is actually a performance shoe thanks the reinforced sole which allows you to deliver more power to your pedals.
Osprey Momentum 22 $129, rei.com
You can pack a lot into this pack, which has a padded laptop sleeve, clips to secure your helmet, and a breathable back panel so you won’t arrive at your destination looking like a sweaty mess.
Brooklyn Cycling Cap $20, Chari & Co.
The classic Brooklyn cycling cap worn by Mars Blackmon in the Air Jordan commercials still looks great today, regardless of whether you’re from the New York City borough or not.