I ride my bike a lot, everyday, multiple times per day. But i'm not what you would call a serious sporty cyclist. So when i have been looking at new coats to buy for winter to cheer me up and keep me warm, i need a coat that works on a bicycle, but it doesn't have to be a specific cycling jacket.
So here are some options i found and reasons why they work well for cycling.
Cropped puffer jackets are good for cycling as they are normally not too heavy, but are extremely warm. When you are on your bike you don't want to be weighted down by a super heavy coat. This pink one below is from Monki and is £95.
However, not all puffer jackets are created equally, some are way warmer and also last longer. According to Glamour magazine's 'Best puffer jackets for 2023' article, "Puffer jackets offer a wide range of options that can suit your needs: Down holds in warmth, while feathers provide structure. Look for a higher down percentage if you want your coat to be light as air and easily packable, while a higher feather content means you can trust your puffer coat to hold its shape in inclement weather".
Mid-length fleece hybrids
The longer length jackets can be a bit of a pain when cycling with the risk of it getting caught in the chain, especially when it is unzipped. However the mid length coat is perfect for cycling because it keeps your legs a bit warmer in the cold but won't get in the way.
This one is from M&S and is called "Borg Quilted Hooded Puffer Jacket", at £75 it is quite good value. What i like about this is that it is a hybrid jacket with pockets. The fleece material is relatively light weight but most importantly it is easy to clear, you can just throw in washing machine and it also dries quickly being fleece.
Layering with wind breakers
If you are more the layering kind of person, you can invest in a good wind breaker which can add a surprising amount of warmth as it stops the wind from chilling your body. If you can find one which is not too sporty, then you can also use it as a regular coat. Right now, the athleisure style is in fashion so these kinds of coats can be found in fashion stores not just outdoor shops.
This one above is from Sweaty Betty and is £210, it is waterproof and windproof and also features reflective details.
These types of coats had their origins in the hiking and climbing world, but now have found their way into mainstream fashion.
Gilets (puffer or fleece)
Gilets are good for cycling becuase they keep the body warm whilst allowing the extremities to stay cool. You can layer them up nicely creating some nice looks for both on and off the bicycle.
This one above is from Monki, its cropped to work nicely with layers and features a gathered waistline. The fleece gilet below is from The North Face and has a price tag of £110. You can also find many others for lower prices as well from high street stores.
Here are some guidelines for choosing the right jacket for cycling, when you don't specifically want a cycling jacket or coat.
2) Not too stiff
3) Bright colours
4) Not too Long
5) Easy to wash
6) Quick to dry