Invani men's bib shorts review
Stylish, affordable and the perfect accompaniment for hot summer riding
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For the price and the promise of durability, there are few bib shorts on the market that can match Invani’s offering. Boasting outstanding performance in Mediterranean sun, these bib shorts eventually fit to one’s body form perfectly and the funky logo that adorns the lower strand of the shorts screams style and quality from a growing independent retailer.
Terrific fit after a few rides
No sweat marks
- Environmentally conscious
Takes a while to adapt to body form
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Invani (opens in new tab) have only been in existence a few years but they have the credible mindset of being unmoved in what they want to be, even in the face of pandemic obstacles: providers of high-quality clothing at attainable prices and items that are durable.
With more awareness around fashion’s role in the climate crisis, reducing wardrobe clutter and sourcing environmentally-friendly materials is at the heart of what makes Invani.
When they offered me their black bib shorts to test, I was excited to marry their philosophy with that of my own, and after a few months on test I was delighted to find that their words are replicated in their products.
Invani men's bib shorts: the construction
Upon unboxing the bib shorts, and reading a welcome letter from the company’s founder Ed, I was immediately struck by how stylish the shorts looked. Sure, they’re not massively different to other black bib shorts, but one can feel on first touch that the fabric of which 78% is nylon and the remaining 22% elastane – has been hand-picked, chosen for its elasticity and desire to hug the rider.
Ideally for myself riding in such hot climes, the fabric has a UPF 50 rating, a very useful feature that ensures there is limited risk of burning.
The straps and leg grippers are both constructed from Italian fabric, too, and the latter - that are 5cm in height - are a simple design with Invani’s funky, bold white logo stretching around the side.
No matter how good the fabric is, a pair of bib shorts is ultimately reliant on the quality of the chamois pad, and Invani are not naïve to that. With that in mind, they have sourced their chamois pad from Elastic Interface, a supplier who have impressed Cycling Weekly down the years when paired with other bib shorts.
The chamois boasts several density foams that allows for comfort and, they say, helps aid blood flow.
I opted for a small man’s version, measuring 90cm at the hips and 44cm at the thigh. I chose the black colour scheme, but the navy option looks a smart option, too.
Invani men's bib shorts: the ride
I had two desires that I wanted to satisfying when I first got my hands on these bib shorts: first, as a bike guide, I need bib shorts that are a comfortable fit for long days out in the saddle and without barely any rest days. Secondly, given that I would be testing them first in the intense Spanish summer sun of Andalucía and then in Greece, they had to respond to the heat well and not leave me bathed in my own pool of sweat.
It took me a few rides to really settle into the bib shorts because the elasticity felt weak and untrustworthy, but within a few days the shorts had suitably stretched to my body shape and soon I was marvelling at how the bib straps had seemingly transformed completely and now I was able to stretch them significantly before rebounding back to my figure without being too loose.
Being black, any white, salty residue could show up easily, but it’s an event that has never occurred. Given that I have been riding in temperatures approaching 40 degrees on some days, that’s a seriously impressive feat.
On occasions I found the bib shorts lacked high-end breathability, and would have to shuffle around slightly to avoid the fabric digging into me, but it has to be said that this only occurred on a handful of occasions and for a matter of minutes. Most probably the consequence of a bakery stop than material weakness.
The shorts evidently wick away the moisture and sweat expertly, and even after jumping into the sea after long rides while still wearing the bib shorts, I have been impressed by how quickly they dry.
The padding never felt uneven and I was able to maintain the same position throughout the riding, never once suffering with a sore backside.
Invani men's bib shorts: value and conclusions
Being someone who is constantly moving around, I share Invani’s philosophy of reducing the amount of clothing one requires, and I have been very impressed with these snug-fit, smart-looking bib shorts.
Coming in at just £95, they are at a price that most can afford, and knowing that they are durable, the price tag seems a bit of a steal.
I have been unable to test them in colder or wetter conditions, but they have become my go-to selection on guiding days that last all morning and into the early afternoon in the baking summer heat. What’s more, the stylish cut and groovy logo add the premium element that we all secretly crave.
RRP: £95 with worldwide shipping
Colours: Black and navy
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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.
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