The Ashmei Bib Short claims to set a new performance benchmark and we do like its pad and compressive fit, but there are some bunching issues to be resolved
Ashmei is a company claiming to set a new benchmark in performance clothing. It’s a massive claim and one that comes with an equally large price tag, with the Ashmei Bib Short costing an eye-watering £235. It’s an enormous amount of money, but it’s in line with Assos and a little cheaper than some of Rapha‘s offerings.
Of course, the difference is that both Assos and Rapha have multiple shorts available whereas the Bib Short is Ashmei’s one and only.
However, for that price you’re getting two shorts in one. On the one hand they’re water-resistant and windproof, while on the other they’re lightweight and breathable. It’s an interesting mixture, resulting in thin, stretchy and waterproof shorts – at least until the first wash, when all its rain resistance washes straight out.
The Ashmei Bib Short (or shorts, if you prefer plural) are super tight and very compressive, which I loved, but it’s a matter of personal preference. Ashmei hasn’t specced any grippers on the cuffs, instead relying on this compression to keep them in place.
Wearing a size small, I found that they’re quite short on the legs and bunched around the groin area. This isn’t such a problem if you’re wearing warmers but it does get a little uncomfortable when the sun comes out and the warmers stay in the drawer. If you’re about to drop £235, it’s probably worth trying a pair first to make sure you get the right size.
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On a happier note, the high-density foam chamois is simply superb. When I spoke to Ashmei, they said the pad works in the same way as a memory-foam mattress so it’ll keep getting better with age as it learns the contours of your sit bones. It’s one of the few pads I’ve tried where you can totally forget you’re sitting on it, which makes it such a shame that you can’t say that about the rest of the shorts’ fit.
Unlike what Ashmei would like you to believe, these aren't the best bib shorts on the market. They do have a superb chamois, but it's worth double checking the sizings before you buy.