Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Pearl Izumi Spring ‘17 Cycling Gear Review



Pearl Izumi was started over 50 years ago in Tokyo, Japan by a father who wanted to make bicycle racing clothing for his son.  It has become one of the largest makers of cycling apparel in the world.  The name Pearl Izumi means “fountain of pearl” and was named after Izumi, which is an area of Japan known for its clear water and the gem, pearl.  They have been selling their gear in the United States since 1981 and have branched out into selling gear for running and triathlons as well. 

I have been using Pearl Izumi cycling products for over 15 years and have found that the quality of their gear is top notch.  The durability and design has never left me disappointed.  I have several different Pearl Izumi cycling shorts, bibs, and jerseys and love them all.  My favorites are the P.R.O. series shorts and bib shorts, which shouldn’t come as a surprise since they are Pearl Izumi’s top of the line products.  You can check out my review of the amazing P.R.O. Pursuit Bib Shorts and ELITE Escape Jersey (click here for my review) from last year.  I have also reviewed the P.R.O. Escape Thermal Jersey, P.R.O. Softshell Lite Glove, and the P.R.O. Thermal Skull Cap (click here for my review).  I received the latest and greatest from Pearl Izumi’s Spring/Summer lineup a few months back and have been testing them feverishly.


ELITE Escape Semi-Form Jersey

The Elite Escape Semi-Form Jersey is one of Pearl Izumi’s newer jerseys and has a great balance of price and features.  The semi-form fit is made for those riders that are average to bigger in size, but still want a high-performance jersey.  It also works well for smaller riders that want a looser jersey.  Not all riders want a race cut jersey.

One of the really cool things about this jersey is that they use their Elite Transfer In-R-Cool® fabric powered by Ice-fil®.  This fabric provides excellent skin cooling capabilities along with the Direct-Vent panels to allow for extra ventilation.  It worked really well in the 90 degree heat of my training rides.  I felt cooler than when I wear most of my other jerseys. 

Other great features include a full-length zipper   There is a silicone gripper on the back to hold the jersey down (nobody likes when their jersey rides up).  It even has reflective elements for extra visibility in low-light situations.

The Elite Escape Semi-Form Jersey has three large pockets in the back as well as a two smaller pockets for gels or keys.  You have a great deal or storage with these 5 pockets and your items stay put. 

This is really a great jersey that can help make your Spring and Summer rides more enjoyable.  It’s made from 100% polyester and is UPF 50+ so you get sun protection as well.  You can purchase the Elite Escape Semi-Form Jersey for $85 on the Pearl Izumi website or at a local dealer near your (click here for locations). 

Pros:
Elite Transfer In-R-Cool® fabric powered by Ice-fil® keeps you cooler
Ventilated panels
Full-length zipper
Silicone grippers keep your jersey from riding up
Three full pockets and an additional zipper pocket
Reflective elements to provide better visibility in low-light


ELITE Escape Bib Short

I used to be all about bike shorts and never wanted to wear bib shorts in the past.  I tried a pair of Pearl Izumi P.R.O. Pursuit Bib Shorts last year and love them.  The ELITE Escape Bib Short is a great bib short that you can enjoy for longer rides as well as shorter ones.  Its form fitting and has a great price for the features.

The ELITE Escape Bib Short uses the new P.R.O. Transfer fabric in the body of the shorts for better comfort and amazing moisture transfer.  It really will keep you cool and comfortable mile after mile.  Other areas use SELECT Transfer fabric for great moisture wicking.  The leg openings use raw edge P.R.O Transfer fabric with silicone for a softer stretch that still will grip your leg and prevent riding up.  It has a 9.5” inseam to provide more muscle hugging compression further down your leg. 

The new ELITE Escape 1:1™ Chamois with a floating top sheet is used in this bib short and reduces friction for all day comfort.  It provides enough cushion without feeling like you are wearing a diaper (like some of the cheaper bib shorts out there). 

The ELITE Escape Bib Short uses BioViz™ reflective elements for added visibility on low-light situations.  I was really impressed with the quality of the ELITE Escape Bib Short, which is not quite as nice as the P.R.O. series, but does cost a less as well.  You can get yours for $140 on the Pearl Izumi website or at a local dealer near your (click here for locations). 

Pros:
Great ELITE Escape Chamois
Awesome moisture wicking
Great fit all day long.
ProViz™ reflective elements
Decent Price at $140

P.R.O. Gel Vent Glove

The Pearl Izumi P.R.O. Gel Vent Glove will help keep your hands cool and dry on those hot days.  They are super lightweight but provide enough cushion thanks to the patented Direct Vent palm design that has built in ventilated padding.

The padding in the palm is made of gel and is really comfortable.  There is some mesh over the gel and the glove uses Clarino™ synthetic leather around the mesh for a soft, durable feeling.  Like most gloves out there, the P.R.O. Gel Vent Glove has an area on the thumb to wipe off sweat or a runny nose.  The material on this glove is softer and was made to be low-profile. 


The closure is made of hook and loop and there are loops on two of the fingers to make the glove easier to get off.  It truly is a great glove and by far the most comfortable glove I’ve used to date.  You can get yours for $45 on the Pearl Izumi website or at a local dealer near your (click here for locations). 

Pros:
Ventilated gel palm cushion
Soft Clarino™ synthetic leather
Loops to help remove glove
Extremely light weight and comfortable
Decent Price at $45

Pearl Izumi’s Social Media Links:

I’ve never been disappointed with the products that Pearl Izumi makes.  As always, I am very pleased with the quality and value that these three products offer.  I will be using them a lot this summer and think that you should definitely give them a try.  You can purchase these items on the Pearl Izumi website or at a local dealer near your (click here for locations).  I would love to hear what you think about these products, so please leave a comment and let me know.

Note:  I received this product in exchange for a review.  The review is my personal opinion of the product and I was not required to give a particular opinion of it.  I am not a doctor, so please use all of the products that I review at your own risk.

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