The Lusso Merino Reversible Thermal Belgium Hat is incredibly warm winter cap that will keep even the coldest of ears cosy. However, it is quite bulky, so do check it will fit your head/helmet combo if pairing with a lid.
Too bulky for some helmets
Peak doesn't play nicely with some helmets
Lusso is a British brand which began trading nearly 40 years ago, to address perceived inadequacies in the cycling kit of the time. The brand has been continually developing its products ever since.
Designed to be reversable, this is essentially two caps in one, with a smart two tone black and grey colour scheme on one side and a stealthy black on the other. Although those on the ‘peak up’ side of the divide will be dismayed to hear that the Lusso branding on the peak is made to be read with the peak down.
The reflective print of that branding is a nice touch and it really does leap out at you. Good to see is that the fabric is 60% merino; enough to confer the antibacterial and thermal properties of the wool, but not so much as to have a negative effect on the fit. Which, although it is one size fits all, was pretty much perfect on my M/L head.
The peak is constructed from the same material as the rest of the cap and as such it is less rigid than other cycling caps and the fabric stretches low to comfortably cover the ears. It’s also made in the UK, which is an added bonus.
Taking the cap out for a ride was not the most simple of affairs. Firstly, it was a bit too bulky for my usual helmet, a MET Strale, and although it did play more nicely with a Kask Valegro, that was only with the peak down.
Once actually out on the road, I found the cap to be incredibly warm. It was impervious to even the cold November winds on early morning rides. Such was the warmth, unless you suffer from particularly cold ears, it would be overkill for most conditions. But it’s definitely one to reach for when the temperature really drops—providing you can fit it under your helmet.
At £19.99 this winter cap is very reasonably priced, the Rapha Pro Team Hat (opens in new tab) offers similar warmth but costs more than twice as much at £45. The Gore Windstopper (opens in new tab) is £34.99 and could be a better option if you don’t have much spare space in your helmet. For those with room to spare, the Lusso Merino Reversible Thermal Belgium Hat does represent better value.
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