The Ultralight Bib Shorts earn their title with weightless fabrics that are perfect for warm weather riding or indoor sessions. While they aren’t limited to warm conditions, the fabric’s breathability certainly handles it well. With a comfy pad and good levels of compression, they are an ideal choice for long or short days in the saddle, as well as indoor sweatfests. Correct sizing is key to ensuring fabric's opacity, as our tester discovered.
Potential transparency at seams
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Warm weather isn’t a luxury we all have, that’s not to say you shouldn’t be armed and ready with a pair of lightweight shorts for it when it arrives though… and if it doesn’t, at least with the Ultralights from Velocio, you have something suited to an indoor cycling session.
We tested these bib shorts as part of a women's bib short grouptest, alongside Endura's FS260-Pro Bibshort DS, the Cafe du Cycliste Adeline Fade Women's Bib Shorts, and Assos Women's UMA GTV Bib Shorts C2.
The shorts are made in Italy using an ‘ultra-high gauge stretch woven’ fabric weighing only 140gsm. Velocio claims the Ultralights are roughly 30% lighter than their Signature Bib Short (opens in new tab) while still offering the same level of compression, all without compromising on opacity. The medium pair I have been testing tip the scales at 150g, that's pretty light in comparison to most.
There’s a noticeable roughness to the fabric. Velocio is known for their use of recycled fabrics, unfortunately the Ultralights don’t boast any eco-credentials whatsoever. Velocio says in its sustainability pledge (opens in new tab) that it is looking to bring the material of its shorts in line with that of the jerseys, and in the mean time, it's working on using factories that utilise renewable energy and cutting down on supply chain wastage.
The 5-panel design is anatomically cut and minimises seams. The leg grippers are a 4cm deep, microfibre band and the leg length is about average.
Velocio's microfibre bib straps are completely seamless and contribute to the FlyFree bio-break system.
The Ultralights are finished off with a proprietary signature chamois that’s been developed in partnership with Cytech- supplier of chamois’ to the likes of Assos and Cafe du Cycliste.
Velocio’s size chart takes into account your height and weight to place you in a particular size bracket. With significant overlaps in the chart there’s an element of judgement regarding your body shape. I’ve been testing a medium- I fell squarely into that bracket. The shorts fit well, offering a good level of compression, no squeezing at the leg end and no pulling at the shoulders. However, there's definitely some transparency at one seam... better at the side than the rear, I guess!
The first pair I received were actually much worse than this. Velocio kindly replaced, claiming a 'production error'. If I shuffle and pull the fabrics around, it's not so apparent, but it’s not ideal. Should I have sized-up? I wouldn’t class myself as having big hips but maybe the transparency issue would have been resolved (potentially with some loss of compression). However, this may have adversely affected fit elsewhere, ultimately compromising chamois comfort.
For sure, I’d say select your size with caution, opting to size-up if in doubt. Given Velocio’s claims about opacity, I wouldn’t expect to be seeing this, indeed the rest of the shorts offer a deep black that there’s absolutely no seeing through. It's worth knowing that Velocio have what they call a 'Signature Guarantee': 'Try any of our products for 30 days to ensure it meets your needs. Wear it. Ride in it. Wash it. We believe it will provide a better riding experience. And if you are not happy with it, return it for a full refund.'
The styling is understated but appealing; the fabric’s matt finish with discrete logos on each leg make it easy to pair with almost any jersey. While I have significant reservations about the longevity of the fabrics at the seams, the overall construction is flawless.