I’ll be honest; I didn’t have the best expectations for the samples that Aldi sent me until they arrived and I felt them. These items are not something to turn your nose up at, they are worth the asking price and more. These three reviewed items as well as the list of items at the bottom of the page will be available at Aldi from the 26th of September. They are sure to sell quickly, so get in there early.
Helmet covers can be looked down on a bit in some parts of the cycling community. It’s true, they are kinda dorky, often clunky and never really look that good. However, no one can denny the usefulness of keeping your head dry – and the Aldi helmet cover does a great job. It fits my helmet almost perfectly with its adjustable elastic surround to tighten or loosen – it even has reflective patches for extra visibility.For £4.99, it’s hard to go wrong. Oh, and if anyone asks, you’re wearing it for the extra aero.
Also, apologies for not having any on the bike pictures. The guy who usually does them whilst I’m riding has been away and it’s surprisingly hard to do selfies whilst cycling! Click on images to enlarge, use arrow keys or swipe to navigate.
Winter Cycling Jacket
The first time I tested this was on a 9c day, hill training was scheduled and after the trend of 28c days that had been happening previously, it felt a bit chilly. I ended up getting incredibly hot, and that was with summer bibs on too. The second time was first thing in the morning with a 20mph wind, the wind didn’t penetrate at all until I unzipped – still a little too warm. It hasn’t gotten cold enough to use it properly, but I have no doubt that it will be at least one of my go-to jackets this autumn and winter.
Unlike some of the highest end jackets, the cuffs are secured with a velcro flap rather than skin-tight lycra. This combined with the thread used to stitch means that sometimes they can be a bit itchy on your wrist – a problem that isn’t noticeable whilst actually riding, only when being critical. Although lycra cuff-less, it does have some of the features found on higher end jackets, like a sewn-in zip cover where it meets your neck to prevent irritation, fleece lining and more that’s just too cool to summarise in a couple of words:
On its back are a series of pockets, three open, and one zipped. The middle one is separated with a few stitches down the middle, but has enough room at the bottom to keep a mini-pump horizontally! It’s exciting for me because it is something that has annoyed me for years, no where to reasonably put a pump in any clothing. The zipped pocket is also great for keeping a card, ID, phone, and some cash for emergencies.
The back of the jacket is also longer than normal non-cycling jackets as is fairly standard for any cycling gear. Although that is standard, it is also grippy to prevent it riding up your back. Potential disgusted looks from people passing you averted!
The red and back version that I have looks great. They are very compelling colours, Coca-Cola use them on some of their bottle designs and Canon even use them for their renowned L lenses. Together with reflective patches and tubing sewn into the seams, it is hard to not see anyone wearing this jacket. It looks – and is – swell.
How much do you think this will cost? I wore this jacket recently and asked a few cycling buddies the same question, whilst withholding that it will be a part of the Aldi Specialbuy event or any other clues. Their answers ranged from £50-120, painting a clear picture of this jacket’s surprisingly high quality. The real price? £15.99. If you have just £20 to spend on riding gear this year, spend it on this.
King of Cycling-Related Selfies
Winter Cycling Trousers
Remember the cold and rainy day in the middle of a heatwave a few months ago? That wasn’t caused by low atmospheric pressure, it was actually caused by me doing the rain dance so I could test these out.
Even whilst wearing them when it is raining, they are very cozy and not the slightest bit damp inside as far as I’ve tested them. Their black appearance with sewn-in reflective tubes and printed reflective patches make them great for the dark winter days where visibility is always a problem.
They have a polyester waterproof face that seems to completely repel all of the raindrops hitting you. It works well, and my legs didn’t get wet at all. The back of them are more stretchy, much like what bib shorts feel like. These two surfaces combined keep the trousers pressed against your legs well, they keep you warm and keep you dry.
To help get them on and off, their ankles are zipped so you don’t have to do any funny dances to aid you. The zips aren’t itchy or irritating even when directly on your skin, but are often over socks anyway. Perhaps the best part of them is the inside; they are completely fleece lined which is a comforting feeling when you are getting up at 6am to go out cycling and it’s still cold, dark and even wet or icy.
As is fairly standard with any kind of cycling trouser or short, they have a built in seat pad. Unfortunately, here is where I think that they fall down and whyI wouldn’t wear them alone. It is a COOLMAX® freshFX® pad and just isn’t as fitted or dense as is seen in bibs from the £40 mark. It’s comprised of 15 individual bumps containing comfortable looking foam, but this foam is completely compressed with the smallest amount of pressure and does next to nothing for the comfort – just makes the front of them stick out very… curiously. I have found that wearing them over a pair of bib shorts works much better and makes them something that I’ll probably wear at least a few times more.
Comparing the pad to that of my considerably more expensive bib shorts shows that the front most pad is probably to stop them being so revealing. But as on my bibs this is just a thin and flexible extension, on these it is a fully fledged pad. This is me being pretty critical though – whereas bib shorts and tights can easily pass the £100 mark, these are only £13.99. For that price it is easily justifiable for an occasional wear over some bibs.
See the creases? This is with skin-tight bib shorts under
REJOICE: Extra Testing
So I didn’t get the slightest bit wet whilst wearing this gear in the rain… this didn’t please me at all. What are the limits? Well, after getting home I decided to keep everything on and hop into my shower on the ‘arctic freeze your hair off’ setting to see. I was still not cold or wet, so I used the bath shower head that comes out at mains pressure to get right into the seams and detailing – eventually me legs and arms did get a little bit damp. So if you happen to be riding through monsoon season and not through a hurricane, you’ll be good.
These are just three parts of the huge range that will be out in Aldi stores across the land from the 26th of September, and only whilst stocks last. Below is the whole list – get in there early for your cheap but sweet gear.
Ergonomic Cycling Socks £3.29
Winter Cycling Gloves £4.99
Winter Cycling Shirt £8.99
Cycling Compression Base Layer £9.99
Ultra Bright Cycling Shirt £9.99
Waterproof Cycling Trousers £9.99
Ladies Winter Cycling Trousers £13.99
Winter Cycling Trousers £13.99
Cycling Merino Shirt £14.99
Triathlon Suit £14.99
Winter Cycling Jacket £15.99
Merino Base Layer £15.99
Cycling Shoes £19.99
Coin Cell Batteries £1.29
Micro Led Bicycle Light Set £2.99
Drinking Bottle With Cage £2.99
Bike Tyre Puncture Repair Kit £2.99
Gt85 Bike Maintenance Spray £2.99
Reflective Bands £3.99
Microfiber Towel £3.99
Under Helmet Cap £4.99
Armoured Bicycle Lock £4.99
Bicycle Spoke Reflectors £4.99
Helmet Cover £4.99
Cycling Accessories £6.99
Cycling Shoes £19.99
Front/Rear Led Bicycle Lights £6.99
Front and Rear Mudguard Set £7.99
Heart Rate Monitor £12.99
Bicycle Tool Kit £19.99
Bike Stand £29.99