- Slim fit without being restrictive
- Quality construction
- Dark colours won't suit everyone
- Hi-viz strips at the rear would make it even more versatile
- Can get warm - this is one for colder days
Aussie Grit Apparel looks to provide both ladies and gents with a range of practical, well designed, good quality cycling gear and the Flint Women’s Bike Thermal Gilet is no exception. A warm gilet for colder days, this offering from the new brand will see you through the shoulder seasons in comfort.
The Flint Women’s Thermal Gilet is, Aussie Grit say, designed as a mid-weight gilet for off-road riding, whether that be on a gravel or mountain bike. That said this conservative number wouldn’t look out of place on the road either making it a pretty versatile piece.
The gilet is constructed from a soft and stretchy material, the front panels feature an added textured thermal lining whilst the front outer is also wind and water repellent. At the back, the panels are one layer of stretchy material with a perforated thin middle insert to help with temperature regulation.
The rear also offers two large pockets one of which features a zip which auto-locks keeping it closed for extra security. The other pocket is elasticated with a flap covering the top to stop items from jumping out. Both pockets are easy to reach whilst wearing the gilet with openings cut on a slight slant, helping the fabric conform to the body. They are pretty cavernous too, swallowing my laptop sized iPhone and small pump with ease in one and an extra jersey and snacks in the other. To finish off the feature details there is a silicone strip around the hem which was helpful in keeping the gilet in place and reflective strips on the arms and front logo for that ‘safety first’ aspect.
I am a dress size 8-10, 5'4" in height and wore the gilet in a size small, where it proved to be true to size and plenty long enough in length. The cut is pleasingly slim whilst not being restrictive, well-shaped side panels mean the fit is flattering too with a little extra room at the shoulders and chest which I, ahem, couldn't fill. In this size, I was able to wear the gilet both with just a single layer and also with a thicker zip up jersey for very cold rides.
One of my favourite things about the gilet is the flexible main zip, one of my bugbears is a zip that folds and sticks out mid-chest when in a riding position and I’m pleased to say there is no such evidence of this on the Flint Gliet. The zip is soft and malleable, lying flat against my body with the zipper fitting neatly into its protective housing when the collar is fully zipped up. Speaking of the collar, this is neither too high or too low, it’s comfortable to wear zipped up for long periods.
The two-tone fabric is stealthy and perhaps a little conservative but it fits well with the entire range of clothing and is clearly the theme Aussie Grit are going for. One thing is for sure, it’s never going to clash with any of your riding clothes. Despite the arm and front hi-viz elements, it might not be the wisest choice for on-road visibility, additional hi-viz strips on the rear might go some way to combat this though.
I’ve used the Aussie Grit Flint Gilet on many a gravel bike ride as we exited winter and found it to be a cosy number, it is warm though and I found I was pleased for the addition of a thinner rear panel and vented section. At £95 the gilet appears to be good value compared to the men's version which is priced at £99, with the only differences (aside from size and cut) being the addition of that hi-viz strip on the rear I mentioned earlier. The £95 price tag does set the women's version in a similar price bracket to other competitors, take the Morvelo Hemisphere gilet as an example. Of course, you can buy cheaper too, the dbh Roubaix gilet is just £65.
The Aussie Grit gilet keeps wind chill and mud splatter at bay, with a short rain showers beading off the fabric well even after multiple washes. Like the lycra bike shorts we reviewed recently, it is a hard wearing garment ready for some rough and tough trail riding. This gilet is a great option for colder days, it’ll keep you toasty and does so without extra bulk too.
As an aside, if you want a lighter gilet, check out the brands Bike Light Gilet, this one and the Thermal Gilet here are available for both women and men.