Unless you have pots of money at your disposal, it's likely that you will be riding your bike for many years to come. As it's January, why not try a couple of small upgrades to give it a new lease of life.

Sometimes, it's nice to give your bike a little make-over, help it to reflect your personality and make you want to ride it day-in-day-out for the next 12 months.


Why not spend a little time and give your bicycle some love by trying these easy, inexpensive ways to spruce up your steed.

It doesn't take thousands to make a difference, just a couple of subtle changes and you'll have your bike looking like new in no time. What's more - it will be one of a kind.

What are you waiting for? Go forth and have a Blue Peter moment with your beloved bicycle.

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[part title="1. Fresh handlebar tape"]

Available in

Whenever editor Kirsty sets out on a new cycling challenge, she treats her handlebars to a new set of tape. It's a great way to make your bicycle feel like new again, without breaking the bank.

Try not to scrimp too much though, you'd be surprised at just how much of a difference a decent tape can make. You want it grippy enough to stop your mitts from slipping when you're sweating and just the right amount of cushion to prevent sore hands.

With so many colour options available, we can guarantee you'll be able to find a shade to compliment your bike.

Clockwise from top left = 1. Cinelli Gel Ribbon Cork Handlebar Tape | 2. Michaux Lightsaber Gold Reflective tape | 3. Lizard Skins DSP 2.5mm Handlebar Tape | 4. Brooks England Leather Bar Tape | 5. Cinelli Mike Giant Velvet Black Bar Tape

[part title="2. Personalised headset cap"]

Deputy editor, Aoife, had a surprise Christmas present. Obviously someone knows her very well.

Bling up your cockpit by swapping out your bland headset cap for a personalised design.

Khush Jabble founder of Kapz, a custom cap company claims, “If you can draw it, we can produce it – simple."

However, if you're overwhelmed by the options, you can go for a stock design.

Aoife's Sugar Skull cap is from Kustom Caps and can be ordered in a multitude of colours, both on the cap itself and the bolt through the eye!

[part title="3. Streamline your saddlebag"]

The slick Aeronaut saddlebag from SciCon will vamp up your ride in no time

Instead of carrying a small caravan underneath your saddle, why not streamline your accessories and treat yourself to a nice new neat saddlebag?

There are so many to choose from, all varying in size, shape and material, however, we like this rather space age offering from Scicon, aptly named the Aeronaut saddlebag.

[part title="4. Name decals"]


Brand your pride and joy with your very own name decal. If the pros do it, well, so can you!

There are a number of companies that offer this service, including UK based Names On Frames who create vinyl stickers with both your name and a flag of your choice, so you can pledge your allegiance.

[part title="5. Coloured hoods"]


No, not a hood for your head, we're talking about the hoods you find on your handlebars, housing the gubbins for your brake and gear levers.

Long gone are the days when hoods were available in any-colour-as-long-as-you-like-black. You're now able to get them in a rainbow of shades, so get ready to jazz up your handlebars.

Hudz have possibly the widest range, making hoods for both Shimano and Campagnolo levers. They also produce them in two materials, offering varying levels of grip and comfort.

[part title="6. Seat clamp"]

Machined in Barnoldswick, these bolted seat clamps from Hope are available in black, silver, red, blue, gold and gunsmoke.

Another area you can inject a bit of colour to is your seat clamp, where the seat post inserts into your frame.

The seat clamp may be small, but colour matching it to your headset cap and spacers can add a certain je ne sais quoi to your bicycle.

British brand Hope, who make high quality cycling components, have bolted and quick release versions, so what ever style you like you just need to pick the right colour to match your bike.

[part title="7. Original bottle cage"]

Left = PDW The Bird Cage, Right = The Carton Cage

We all need to carry liquids with us while we ride, so why not transport your H2O in style with a quirky bottle cage.

Have a flutter with the PDW Bird Cage, where the wings cradle your bidon, or store 1 litre of your favourite juice with the Original Carton Cage available in black, blue or grey.