The variety of cycling shorts available is huge as is the price range. Thankfully there are there are budget cycling shorts available, our budget cycling shorts review has looked at 4 great options for the price conscious rider. The summary table below has our verdict.
If you’re new to cycling and commuting by bike, it’s important to make sure you’re comfortable when you ride. Without a bit of comfort, your commute would be much less enjoyable. Your saddle is one of three key contact points between you and your bike and one which bears significant weight. So good padding, moisture wicking and an anatomical fit are really important.
Bib shorts are usually favoured over non-bib shorts as the shoulder loops help to keep the shorts in the right location. Cycling shorts should be worn without underwear, but if Lycra isn’t your thing they can be worn underneath baggy shorts.
As Lycra shorts are very close to your skin they should definitely be washed after a days riding. So having plenty of pairs of cheaper shorts is a big advantage for commuting. Some people even wear a different pair for the ride to work and the ride to home.
Cycling Shorts Review: Merlin Wear Core Cycling Bib Shorts
First on our list are Merlin Wear Core Cycling Bib Short. These are Merlin’s own brand entry level bib shorts. They feature an anatomical shape with a chamois pad with Silver Dry technology for antibacterial and moisture wicking properties. Priced at £19.99 the Merlin Wear Core cycling shorts are aimed at both regular riders looking to add to their existing kit and beginners looking for their first pair of shorts.
- Very reasonably priced entry level bib short.
- Anatomical shape tailored to your on bike riding position which means these shorts are very comfortable to wear
- Light weight Lycra fabric
- Chamois with Silver Dry antibacterial technology and moisture wicking properties
- Silicon leg grippers around the bottom of the shorts
- These shorts are intended for shorter rides, so the chamois may be a little thin for longer rides
- To get the best fit you might need to go a size up from your normal clothes
Not quite as comfortable as the Merlin Sport Wear bib shorts but the difference in price might be worth the trade off if your commute is only short.
Cycling Shorts Review: Wiggle Essentials Cycle Padded Bib Short
Wiggles Essentials is Wiggles own brand of basic cycling clothing. The Wiggle Essential bib shorts are superb value but still designed with rider comfort in mind. The shorts come with a triple layer Chamois for extra comfort and cushioning and at £18 these are the cheapest shorts we’re reviewing.
- Superb value for money cycling kit
- Triple layer chamois for increased comfort
- Flat stitched seams for less chaffing
- Elasticated leg openings to hold the shorts in place
- At such a lower price point the durability of these shorts might be an issue for the everyday commuter
- The fit could be more suited to cycling shape
- These shorts are thinner than their counterparts and are more suited for shorter rides
- Fairly basic and budget looks (if that bothers you)
At £18.00 the Wiggle Essentials shorts are the cheapest we have reviewed here. As with anything there is a trade off between price and features, but if cost is your biggest driver then these could be the shorts for you.
Cycling Shorts Review: Merlin Wear Sport Cycling Bib Shorts
The second Merlin shorts here are the Merlin Wear Sport Cycling Bib Shorts. These shorts offer an increase in comfort and performance over the Merlin Wear Core Bib Shorts for longer dies. The Sport range of clothing is designed for cyclists who ride regularly for longer periods and need that extra padding and comfort. The Chamois for these shorts is also an upgrade on the core shorts and has multiple layers of padding with different densities to help dissipate pressure whilst also retaining the Silver Dry technology. These shorts are priced slightly more expensive than Core range at £29.99.
- A heavier weight Lycra fabric than the Merlin Core Wear short for increased warmth and comfort
- The bibs on these shorts are made from a different material for better breathability.
- Anatomical shape tailored to your on bike riding position and two-way stretch Lycra for extra comfort.
- Silicon leg grippers with neat Merlin detailing.
- Good reflective detail to make you more visible to other road users.
- The multiple layers and different materials used in the chamois can make the shorts feel a little rigid, especially if youneed to some walking in your shorts.
The Merlin Wear Sport shorts are fantastic value and feature plenty of the same features as shorts at more than double the price.
If your commute is a bit longer than others, or if your commuting everyday or if you planning on getting out on your bike for longer rides at the weekend then these shorts are a great choice.
Cycling Shorts Review: dhb Bib Shorts
Also from Wiggle are the dhb Bib Shorts, priced at £30 these bib shorts are for riders who are seeking a bit more comfort and performance than the cheaper Wiggle Essentials Bib shorts. The shorts feature a high-quality Italian Miti stretch fabric and a CyTech ‘Veloce’ chamois. The Chamois pad is designed with central channel to relieve pressure on gents sensitive areas. The Chamois also has Soft wings around the edge to prevent chafing and provide greater freedom of movement. Whether for commuting or leisure riding these shorts should keep you comfortable for 2-3 hours.
- High-quality Italian Miti Stretch fabric
- The fabric panels are stitched together with flat lock seams to reduce chaffing.
- Reflective dhb logos on the side and rear of the shorts for night time visibility
- dhb branded Silicon leg grippers around the bottom of the shorts to hold them in place.
- Whilst the pad is designed for male comfort the extra channel make it feel thin for some riders
The dhb Bib Shorts are a plain but effective pair of shorts which would be suitable as staple core kit for both commuters and leisure riders. They may lack some of the fancier design features of the others reviewed here. But, if you’re looking for a durable, comfortable pair of shorts that won’t break the bank then the dhb Bib Shorts could be for you.
Well there you have our list of the best budget cycling shorts! We hope you found what you were looking for. Let us know how we did in the comments!