We all like to keep our bikes cosy and warm as much as possible - but the sad truth is that sometimes we've got to walk away and leave the bike locked up outside. In winter, that often means returning to a wet and cold bike - with a wet and cold saddle to match.
If the idea of planting your bottom onto a frosty saddle doesn't fill you with joy, or a wet patch on your trousers isn't your idea of a fashion accessory, then a saddle cover is an excellent investment. One of these 'saddle tablecloths' can be applied when you leave the bike and removed on return, and they'll also prolong the life of your seat. Plus it's another way of jazzing up your bike.
There's a myriad of cool and quirky designs available - we've rounded up some of our favourites, just for you...
Animal Seat Covers
Yep - really! These saddle covers are available in a range of designs - you can choose to turn your perch into a bear, cow, dog, fox, horse or goat. All styles are available in black, white, or black and white, and they cost €10 (with a €5 shipping fee) from Giorgia in Dublin. We're just a bit sad that there isn't a cat option.
Kelly Connor 'I Wheelie Love Riding My Bike' Saddle Cover
Don't we all?
This PVC elasticated saddle cover is waterproof, and one size fits all. And of course it spreads a very good message. Check it out for £10.75 at CycleChic.
Basil Wanderlust Saddle Cover
Wanderlust: a strong desire for or impulse to wander or travel and explore the world. It's something most cyclists can probably identify with, and cycling accessory brand Basil have based this water repellent polyester saddle cover around the concept. Available in charcoal or ivory (we vote charcoal unless you never intend for it to get wet, in which case...) this cover costs £9.99 at CycleChic.
Follow Me Rainproof Seat Cover
It was pretty hard to choose a saddle cover from the extensive collection at Bike Belle - but we did love this one with its bright and snazzy designs. The cover comes with a cord to allow you to fit it perfectly to your seat, and that same cord will keep it safe and attached too. Designed and made in Kraków, Poland, you get a full one year warranty. It costs € 6.90, with delivery from € 7.50 - see it here.
Hare Knitted Bike Saddle Cover
Ok, so we couldn't pick just one saddle cover from Bike Belle. Here's our second choice...
This hand knitted cover comes from Kraków in Poland, too. It's not a waterproof model, instead it's been created to keep your bottom warm and toasty on those days where it's cold enough that sitting on your saddle doesn't feel too dissimilar to settling down on a giant ice brick. Not nice. Warm up with the hare, for € 16,90 here.
BEG Bicycles Sheepskin Cover
Another one that's about keeping that saddle a little warmer, so you can pedal in comfort during the colder months. If this cover isn't a taste of luxury, we don't know what is. These natural sheepskin covers are made in Britain, from 20mm pile sheepskin. They're designed to fit a Brooks B66 or 67 saddle - but a drawstring and toggle mean they'll sit well on any seat.
Available in natural colour, or charcoal, this one will set you back £22.50 with a £3.95 delivery charge in the UK.
Bike Cap Dutch Designs
If you're after endless choice, then the best thing we can do is recommend you check out 'Bike Cap'. This Dutch company offer pages of options designed to keep your saddle dry and stylish - and all of them come with an 'anti-theft ribbon' and cost under €10. Take a look at the range here.
FWE Gel Saddle Cover
Something a little bit different. This one isn't designed for protecting your saddle when you leave the bike out in the rain or cold, but for protecting your bottom whilst you ride the bike.
Firstly - discomfort in the saddle is very common, but it should not be a part of cycling. If you're struggling, we recommend you look at what it is you find uncomfortable about your saddle and set about finding the perfect perch. That might involve visiting a local bike shop and discussing the issue with someone there - most quality specialist shops will work with a specific saddle brand and will have tools to measure your sit bones and flexibility to help you find the right perch. Covering up the saddle with a gel cover is not a long term solution. But in the mean time, this gel cover with drawstring closer (so that it fits all saddles) from FWE might help tide you over. It costs £17.99 and you can see it here.
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