It wasn't too long ago when women's mountain bike attire was virtually non-existent and we were having to make do with both men's and children's riding wear.
However, when the industry began to recognise the rise of female shredders, Troy Lee Designs were one of the first major brands to come to our aid. Okay, so the multi-coloured leopard print wasn't to everyone's taste, but they helped get the ball rolling for gender equality in the sport.
Today, we have a new wave of Troy Lee Designs women's trail kit and we've been taking it out on the bike to see whether it's withstood the test of time...
Troy Lee Designs: Women's Trail Jerseys
You may think that a good trail jersey isn't hard to come by, but in my experience, I've struggled to find something that ticks all the boxes.
Of course, there's the fit. I like mine to be loose but with a good shape on it that doesn't leave me feeling boxy, and because I have a giraffe neck body, it needs to be long too! The material needs to work with me; breathe, be soft on the skin and fairly tough for my inevitable lie-downs. Finally, there's design... There are no two ways about it, I want it to look good, who doesn't?
So, we have the women's Skyline s/s jersey in a colour-fade blue and straight off the bat, it fits like a dream. It's long and loose, thin and comfortable and even the neckline is low as it forms a v-shape. I particularly like the navy-fade colourway and appreciate TLD's efforts to stay away from traditional pink designs. In fact, they seem to be one of the only mountain bike brands to offer a range of all-black women's riding apparel!
There are three colour options; 'Dissolve Navy', 'Dissolve Turquoise'and black with sizes ranging from small to x.large.
If you're looking for a little more coverage and slightly thicker material, then definitely check out the Troy Lee Designs women's Ruckus jersey.
With three-quarter length sleeves, the Ruckus women's trail jersey is available in black or 'Chop Navy'and comes with a handy discrete zipped side pocket on the hip.
Not being one to usually opt for longer sleeves, I was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable this jersey was and with the sleeves still allowing enough room to wiggle up some elbow pads for more hair-raising rides.
Troy Lee Designs: Women's Trail Shorts
Shorts are arguably one of the trickiest fits to find in women's mountain biking. Many of us want them to be long, roomy for chamois shorts, hard-wearing, flattering and with pockets!
Troy Lee Designs women's Ruckus trail shorts is TLD's attempt to tick all the boxes and more. Available bright yellow and plain black, they're simple, elegant and they are great to ride in.
With an adjustable waistband, zipped pockets and a secure fastening system, I was stoked to find these shorts had length and sat low enough on the waist to not dig into my stomach when I rode.
Admittedly, if you're going for the bright yellow colour, consider your undershorts/pants because they can show a little more than you're willing to. However, the black colourway is solid and not transparent in the slightest.
Troy Lee Designs: The Extra Bits
If you weren't already aware, Troy Lee Designs offer everything to kit you out from head-to-toe and this includes protection like helmets and pads.
If you're looking to splash out and really finish off your new kit, check out the Ace 2.0 gloves. Super lightweight, breathable and great for an all-day ride.
Troy Lee Designs are an impressive brand, not only for their efforts to produce great women's trail kit but for creating an entire collection of riding apparel that doesn't conform for the expected pinks and teals we're so accustomed to seeing in the market.
Going forward, I hope they maintain their integrity as a brand who caters to all styles of riding whilst maintaining their focus on improving the mountain biking experience for female riders.
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