dhb Aeron Lab bib shorts review - lightweight and breathable but not so durable

It's very possible that my review is an outlier, but these bib shorts and I just never clicked.

dhb bib shorts
(Image credit: Future)
Cycling Weekly Verdict

The material of the shorts didn't give me confidence that it will pass the wear and tear test for long. But there are still plenty of things to like - they are competitively priced and offer good breathability. But this could be one of those times where you should 'buy nice' or risk having to 'buy twice'...

Reasons to buy
  • +


  • +

    Light as a feather

  • +


  • +

    Wide and comfortable straps

  • +

    Good gripper

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Chamois positioning is out

  • -

    Durability doubts

You can trust Cycling Weekly. Our team of experts put in hard miles testing cycling tech and will always share honest, unbiased advice to help you choose. Find out more about how we test.

Sometimes you just don’t click with a product, no matter how hard you try.

I’ve worn many items of dhb clothing down the years, and always been impressed by how they have managed to match affordability with quality, not skimping on excellence.

But the dhb Aeron Lab and I just didn’t get on. Truthfully, these are not a bad pair of bib shorts, and most buyers will not be disappointed. Yet no matter how hard I tried to put aside first ride impressions, I never quite fell in love with them.

On the face of it, they look elegant: simple black bib shorts with white straps. Get a little closer, however, and you might have the same feeling that I did that it was cheap fabric that won’t be as durable as some of its competitors. And as for the chamois, well, its position is too far back.

It’s not all bad, though. Honestly. Many people will be satisfied.

dhb bib shorts

(Image credit: Future)

dhb Aeron Lab bib shorts: construction

As its name suggests, and as the opening line of the press release alludes to - “full gas has never felt so good” - improved aerodynamics is the focus with these bib shorts, with a new fabric to keep seam lines to a minimum on the front panels.

The chamois features the Hybrid Cell System which, dhb claim, allows the rider to get in a more aggressive racing position. They also claim the non-gel pad permits greater breathability and resistance to wear and tear. 

The main thing to note about the look is that the stretchy front and back panels are separated by a side panel that looks more like mesh, permitting breathability. This is a good look. AERON LAB is very faintly visible on the back panel, while dhb is glued onto the left side. All the panels are made up of 80% polyamide and 20% elastane, while the stretchy bib straps are made from 100% polyester.

The printed leg gripper is backed by silicone dots to ensure they don’t crawl up the leg. 

dhb bib shorts

(Image credit: Future)

dhb Aeron Lab bib shorts: the ride

These bib shorts certainly look good. The grippers stay in place, and the mesh-like side panels look stylish and are appropriate for hot summer riding. Although I was unable to test the shorts in anything over 25 degrees, they didn’t stick to me under sweatier conditions, and I don’t think they’d disappoint in much warmer temperatures. The fabric certainly performed.

The straps, without being too flashy, did the job as expected, and the upper mash panel provided good support to my back, the fabric doing a good job of wicking away sweat.

A frequent issue I found - and one that I noticed has been reported elsewhere - is the chamois is too far back, not giving ample coverage to the front loading area. This is against the stated aim.

This was more of an issue when I was in an aggressive mode, sprinting on the edge of my saddle. And given that these are designed for riders seeking to enhance their aerodynamics, this is a real issue. 

Where I have more concern is the durability of the product. The front and back panels might look contemporary, but they also look and feel cheap. The thinness of them doesn’t give me confidence that it will pass the wear and tear test for long, and it was disappointing to see the thread becoming loose towards the leg gripper after just a few rides. This, of course, can happen by accident, but it didn’t alleviate my concerns that already existed.

dhb Aeron Lab bib shorts: value and conclusion

Pad of the dhb Aeron Lab bib shorts

(Image credit: Future)

For $125 / £100, you can also buy the Lusso Perform Carbon v3 bib shorts which, having had both on test, I’d opt for any day of the week.

It’s not that these dhb bib shorts are bad or won’t provide a good option, but they are towards the cheaper end of the market for a reason, The adage says, buy cheap, buy twice, and I just have a nagging feeling that these shorts won’t stand up to the durability test, unlike Lusso’s products. I do hope I am wrong though, and history with dhb tells me I may be.

Perhaps I’m being too harsh because it is true that they stayed in place, were comfortable most of the time, breathable, lightweight and looked stylish. They just didn’t inspire confidence in me. Three stars is your lot.

dhb Aeron Lab bib shorts: specs

  • Price: £100/$125/€110
  • Sizes: XS - XXL
  • Color: black
  • Website: dhbsport.com

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Chris Marshall-Bell

Chris first started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2013 on work experience and has since become a regular name in the magazine and on the website. Reporting from races, long interviews with riders from the peloton and riding features drive his love of writing about all things two wheels.

Probably a bit too obsessed with mountains, he was previously found playing and guiding in the Canadian Rockies, and now mostly lives in the Val d’Aran in the Spanish Pyrenees where he’s a ski instructor in the winter and cycling guide in the summer. He almost certainly holds the record for the most number of interviews conducted from snowy mountains.