10 Best Cycling Arm Warmers

cycling arm warmers

Cycling arm warmers can extend the time of the year when you can wear your favourite jersey, or add extra insulation under a jacket if your arms feel the chill.

That’s especially useful on autumn and spring days that start cold – you have them on, and then when it unexpectedly warms up, peel it off and effortlessly stuff them in your bag or pockets and continue on! This versatility to your cycling wardrobe is of course priceless. You definitely should make this product a staple among your other gears.

Best Cycling Arm Warmers Reviewed

We have compiled a list of the best cycling arm warmers ( sleeves ) for a guaranteed warmth & compression reviewed by a team of experts :

1.Pearl Izumi Elite

As with other Izumi products, these have had a lot of research and technology gone into its design and construction. Ticking the right boxes, your only difficulty with these is choosing between the two colours – black for easy matching with your other cycling get-up, or the aptly named screaming yellow for high visibility and attention-seeking qualities.

Sizing has been hit and misses for some. The silicone holders especially, tend to hurt and even lead to numbness. This is if you get too small a size for your arms. The holders can also loosen, slide and sag if not sized right.

The fabric that is used for Pearl Izumi Elite  is fleece, which has been enhanced with a lifetime lasting water-repelling layer, aimed to keep you dry. You can imagine that these will keep you reasonably warm, and protect you against the wind. The feel of these has been described as a cross between Lycra and neoprene, stretchy in the right places. More so as it incorporates the anatomy of each hand for a good fit. The top of it has a wide band of silicone to latch onto your skin/jersey and hold it up.

It folds small, taking up very little room in your bag. It is also thin enough to be used a base layer should you want to extend its wear into really cold winters. At the end don’t forget  that Pearl Izumi also known for producing high quality cycling gloves

With the addition of fleece and water-repellent coating, this is a premium quality product that will boost your enjoyment during rides, as it keeps your hand warm and free from wind-chill. Its lightweight factor is alluringly useful – it deserves a permanent place among your gear, as preparation to face any type of weather.

Pros
Warm
Has layer to resist water
Anatomical design – left and right hand
Stretchy
Folds small
High visibility

Cons
Attention to sizing needed
Silicone grip can hurt for some – too tight
May slide down your arms

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2.Gore Bike

As apparent in its name, the main appeal of this Gore Bike product is its claim to shield your arms from wind and wetness. Made of soft-shell, elastic material, it comes in black on black or white on black for easy coordination with the rest of your outfit.

Due its wind-proofing quality, these are somewhat stretchy and are inflexible. You may experience this if you try to move or bend from the usual cycling arm positions. Care should be taken in getting them on or off, as too strong a pull on these may result in its seams unravelling.

With long rides, comfort is optimised with the Gore Bike warmers, as it is designed with abrasion-proof seams. The elbow area has been pre-shaped, and to maximise the material’s hold and prevent it from sliding down, there are silicone grips placed on the top rim of the arms, as well as cuffs that hugs your wrists snugly. It is possible for you also peel them down from the top should the weather suddenly warms up.

Feedback on breathability has been widely positive, with pores to ensure that moisture passes through. Its fabric make-up provides excellent insulation, without the heft. This makes it great should you want to layer up when its get colder. These are also easy to clean – just pop them into the washing machine.

For those in-between weather conditions – not too cold, but not warm enough, these are perfect! It functions as promised and satisfaction is guaranteed in terms of providing warmth and blocking wind, while at the same time porous enough to allow just the right amount of air to pass through.If you are seeking warmth more than compression we suggest to read our guide about the best arm warmers .

Pros
Wind stopper
Warm – insulated
Repels water
Good design to fit left and right side
Breathable & machine washable
Does not slide down
Not bulky

Cons
Not very flexible
Seams can unravel if pulled too hard

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3.Castelli Nanoflex

Standing at just 69 grams weight for a pair(!), these roll small enough to fit your pocket and you probably will forget that it is even there! It is made from Castelli’s own special fabric – the Nanoflex, on which light rain and moisture slides off while maintaining warmth.

Bear in mind that Castelli Nonoflex \ is not entirely waterproof, it will still be soaked through in heavy rain. Be prepared for it to feel quite tight the first few times you have it on. This generally eases with time. Durability is an issue, as you can expect its seams to unravel at certain weak points with vigorous tugs and pulls. This also only comes in black.

The highlight of this cycling arm warmer is its breathable but water repellent fabric it is constructed from. It is however also noteworthy to mention that its most loved feature it the great fit, spot-on sizing and elasticity which allows your arm the freedom of movement and dexterity for hours on end. This flexibility of the Nanoflex reduces the hassle in taking it off and having it on. It also stays in place, is not prone to slipping due to the double sided silicon bits on the upper areas. Your ride will be trouble free and more enjoyable.

Its quality is further ensured with a manufacturer’s warranty of one year from the date of purchase.

Spot on sizing, with extra attention paid to ensure good and enhanced rider satisfaction makes the Castellli Nanoflex a worthy buy. It is easy to take with you at all times due its lightness, plus you will be well-prepared for any eventual inclement weather – drizzles as well as wind chills will not deter you from potentially the best ride of your life.

Pros
Good airflow
Lightweight and small when folded
Easy on/off folded
Stretchy fabric
Well-sized
Stays up & warm

Cons
Tight at first
Moisture wicking, not waterproof
Lack of colour choice – just black

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4.Louis Garneau

Ginger, white or black, pair these up with your jersey and you will not only be stylish, but also remain snug and cosy.

Take note if you have longer than normal arms as these may come up too short for you, as attested by some. Annoyingly, these do tend to slip, exposing a band of uncovered flesh on your biceps. One way to overcome this would be to check the sizing chart carefully, as it might be caused by incorrect measurements. It does let in wind through, and due to this you may want to consider added layers on standby for really cold temperatures.

These are made with the manufacturers own HeatMaxx fabric, which consists of a smooth fleece-brushed internal layer meant to flick off water and contain heat internally at the same time. Equipped with silicone material on the bicep area – these stay on until you take them off. Adding to the rider’s content is its flat lock seam, as this feature aims to prevent friction between your skin and the fabric, thus allowing you to stay on your bike much longer.

Safety is enhanced not only when you select among its highly visible colours, but also through reflective elements strategically placed to catch light especially for road-riders. Its lightweight and soft fabric allows air to flow, and just fold these into your bag or pocket when it is no longer needed.

These are the product for you, if you do not want to wear a vest but need a boost in warmth. It delivers both, while drawing the much needed attention with the bright colours while you are on your bike for added safety, while also being small enough to carry around in your back pocket for when it is needed.

Pros
Lined for warmth
Light and small enough to fit pocket
Attractive colours
Allows air flow
Reflective elements to enhance safety
Friction-free seams
Silicone grips

Cons
May not be long enough for some
Not fully windproof
Slides down arms

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5.Defeet

Made of soft, good quality Merino, if comfort is what you look for, then this is the right product for you. While the words toasty and winter rides may not be uttered often in a sentence, this is exactly what you will get in the case of the DeFeet cycling arm warmers!

The slightly narrow tubular design of these makes it cumbersome to pull up all the way up the biceps, especially if you are of athletic built. Once it is up though, it does not stay put, with a tendency to roll down. Further feedback on it is that it is also rather scratchy – so beware for those who cannot stand this material. Compared to similar products, it is unsurprisingly bulky and it is rather low on visibility as it only comes in a dark colour.

Proudly made in the United States, DeFeet cycling arm warmers offers a straightforward product, sold sans the jumble of jargons of others on the market and hits the mark for being spot on. Winter wear has always incorporated wool, and for good reason. These gets plus points for the soft, fuzzy feel it offers on a cold day or night, beating more modern cycling arm warmers in this department. Wool is also breathable and offers incomparable durability.

Rest assured that your pair would withstand a ride in the washing machine, coming out of it retaining its original shape, with hardly any shrinkage.

If basic warmth is what you need, the DeFeet delivers. Made in the United States from good quality Merino wool, this will hug your arms and keep them snug throughout, while allowing them to breathe at the same time.

Pros
Warm
Allows skin to breathe
Soft and feels good
Made in the USA
Durable
Machine washable and no shrinkage after

Cons
Only dark colour – low visibility
Arm area slides down
Narrow design – care on size selection needed
Hard to pull up
Slightly scratchy material & bulky

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6.Giordana

The Giordana has made use of the Super Roubaix material in its construction and for good reason. For those unfamiliar with this fabric – it is fleece-backed Lycra, aimed to add and retain body heat while preventing the cold from getting in. This will no doubt enhance the Giordana’s appeal to those looking to stay heated up outdoors when the mercury drops.

The seams are clumsily sewn, and when the cycling arm warmers are worn for an extended period of time, certain sections feel bumpy and uncomfortable. The upper bicep section of these are secured with elastic grippers, but without any silicone added. It therefore tends to slide down rather easily.

With two colours to choose from – basic black or bright white, these make a good addition to your cycling apparel. The best feature is of course the cosiness it offers, having been made with Super Roubaix, but not to forget that Lycra also adds to this product in terms of ensuring perfect, form-fitting comfort. The elasticity means that you can move your hands and elbows without restrain and therefore will be able to enjoy your ride much more.

There are reflective elements in the form of the Giordana logo added on these, thus making sure that you are highly visible to others. These are minute when folded up, and this increase its allure to the light packer.

No frills in this cycling arm warmers – it promises warmth and it delivers warmth. Other added bonuses of course include its slim-fit and almost featherweight quality, making it an essential part to every ride.

Pros
Super Roubaix & extra warm
Highly visible
Small when packed
Inconsequential weight
Elastic and form fitting
Allows full movement

Cons
Imperfect seams – may cause discomfort
Slides down easily – no silicon grip

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7.New Balance

Our task at New Balance is to support athletes in seeking success, whether it’s helping professional athletes set records and win medals, or propelling ordinary people to achieve a new PR completing their first five thousand, or just leading a safer and more active lifestyle. The items are the perfect combination between feature and design, supplying you with the value technologies you need and the style you desire.

If we take a look at the downside of this arm warmers by New Balance, there is one important thing to mention regarding the material of this product. The leading material used in the making of this product is polyester. For certain people who are suffering from specific allergies from particular fabrics, this point can create a problem. The use of such material for these people can cause allergic reactions. However, if you do not acquire such a problem, then these might be the perfect one for you.

On the upside, many fabulous qualities make this product stand out as a main competitor in the market. First of all, the availability of these warmers in different colors allows you to choose according to your own will. These are ultra-tight for offering you greater compression while you ride your cycle along the track. You will be able to retain your bodily warmth with the help of this product in colder days as well.

Moreover, as they offer perfect compression, they are also efficient in increasing or enhancing the blood flow of people. It can reduce the recovery time you may take from a fatigued or strained muscle. The dexterity that it offers is incredible. Other than this, it is also breathable and wicks away all the unwanted moisture from your arms to provide you with comfort.

The New Balance cycling arm warmers offer a great value to the customers. They deliver high-performance in combination with quality and durability. All in all, it is a perfect treat for all the riders out there. Investing your time and money in buying will undoubtedly prove as a worthy decision.

Pros
Available in different colors
Ultra-tight for compression
Warm
Increases blood flow
Fastens recovery from muscle strain or fatigue
Moisture-wicking
Dexterity

Cons
Polyester (may cause allergic problems to some people)

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8.Evo Shield

These individually sold arm sleeves are intended to improve your blood circulation and support your limbs from early onset of fatigue while you are engaged in activity. Its attractive and bold pattern and striking colours sets you apart from others and increases your visibility even from afar.

Do note that these are not sold in pairs, but individually. It does not stay put and needs constant adjustment during activities, which can be distracting and cumbersome. It is also thin – may rip easily therefore be selective of what you wear them for. It only keeps you minimally warm due to its thinness.

With its tight-fitting design, the compression it provides is noteworthy. It is also elastic enough to ease in wearing and taking them off – a plus point for when you are in a hurry to get going. It is also durable, sewn together with flat lock stitches, which has been known to hold fabric together extremely well. The brightness of the colour and design remains vibrant even after more than a few washes.

Being ultra-thin, its breathability is incomparable, while at the same time preventing droplets of sweat or water to settle in and soak through. You will no doubt be comfortable in these. It is ambidextrous in design – it can easily fit on either arm.

For those needing extra boost in terms of blood-circulation and fatigue-reduction, these must be among the products to be considered. Coupled with its unmistakably alluring print you can go about with the confidence that you are highly visible and probably be the centre of attention!

Pros
Fits either arm – ambidextrous
Wicks moisture
Elastic and easy to wear
Attractive pattern
Breathable
Sturdy seams
Promotes circulation
Reduces fatigue in the arms

Cons
Does not provide enough warmth
Slips down easily
Easily ripped
Individually sold

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9.Columbia

With current concerns on cancer risks from sun exposure – these come with added UPF50 sun protection and are attractively designed to boot. If you love being in the sun, you can be confident being outdoors in these, knowing that you have additional safeguards against ultraviolet rays – still, do not forget your sunblock!

As you put them on the first time, expect a less than perfect fit, you do need to wait a while for the material to encase your arms and fit properly and you will feel better about it. Do note that over time, it gets a little loose and will slide down the length of your arms.

Columbia has done well in making sure that these state of the art sleeves function as intended. It comes with the patented “Omni-Freeze Zero” feature, where as you sweat and a light breeze hits, you will be enveloped with a pleasant cool sensation. This feature adds to making sure you are comfortable yet your limbs are protected. No longer will you feel the baking sensation when you have these on.

The special fabric also shifts sweat away from your arms, and due to its super thin and light texture, you will often forget you have anything on at all. It is elastic, and therefore easy to put on. You will not have trouble taking these off even if you are still sweaty.

Take advantage of the technology offered by Columbia and get these if you are constantly outdoors or are just someone who enjoys being cool when the temperature is high up. The UPF 50 deserves a second mention as this means that you are getting more than just barrier protection from the material but reflecting away harmful rays from touching your skin.

Pros
UPF 50 protection
Special cooling feature
Attractive design & gets sweat off your skin
Elastic
Can be taken off easily
Thin and light

Cons
Has the tendency to slide down
Loosens up after extended use
Weird fit in the beginning

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10.Phiten

Classy in outlook, with two colours – heather black and heather grey to choose from, these are easily matched with any sort of gear. The singularly sold Phiten sleeves are made for those looking to protect against harmful ultraviolet rays while being outdoors, and is the choice of anyone with concern over premature muscle tiredness or aiming for enhanced sports performance.

Unfortunately, you will have to be prepared to continuously pull these up, as they do not stay put on your arms. It is also rather thick – if you are looking to wear these in warm weather, be prepared to sweat!

If you have scoured high and low for sleeves that are long enough to cover the length of your limbs up to almost the armpit area – look no further. These have been made extra long and fits better than most products in the same category. It has been given great feedback when it is worn for the purpose of reducing tiredness in the arm area as well as when recovering from certain muscle injuries. The thickness of the material provides support to the elbows and special fabric, namely nylon/polyurethane makes this soft on the inside.

It is sewn and put together to endure a lot of use and its manufacturer is proud with its “Aqua-Titanium” feature. It keeps sweat away from your skin, which also makes it more pleasant when in high temperatures.

Rather versatile for use – be it for sports, for injury protection and recovery or simply for walking about in the sun – this fits the bill. Definitely worth the money, you can just pack these with you and you have all you need!

Pros
Multiple uses – for muscle protection, recovery
Good fit & extra long
Sun protection
Keeps sweat away from skin
Reduce muscle tiredness

Cons
Thick -may be stuffy inside
Does not remain on your arm – need to pull up constantly

Check It Out On Amazon

Cycling Arm Warmers Buyer’s Guide

For your love of cycling, you probably often wonder how you could possibly extend your season outdoors. Or you have been caught starting out on a bright sunny day which turned chilly and wintry within hours, and thought of wanting to be prepared these conditions.

Consider arm warmers as part of the answer – it can revamp your summer garb to brisk-ready ensemble in no time, without having to bulk up. With the various lingoes surrounding this specific product – from specialised fabrics, protective UV ray features, it can nevertheless be confusing.

Which to choose?

As selecting the right arm warmers accompaniment during rides makes or breaks your enjoyment, stay with us as we take a closer look at the attributes of this product and guide you to a getting it right.

Picking Fabric

Terms you need to understand includes – Lycra and jersey material, which you may be familiar of, and Roubaix, which you may not. Roubaix is Lycra that has fleece sewn onto the back of it. This construction bags air up against your skin, effecting in warmth for you. There is also Super Roubaix – with added extra thickness for the same purpose.

There is also knitted fabric, which can be made from plush wool, sometimes of luxurious Merino or the basic polyester. With knitted fabric, the advantage would be the lack of seams (if it is knitted as whole piece) in the arm warmer design. Seamless designs reduce the chance of material rubbing against your skin, a small but pertinent detail to enhance your ride.

Useful Extras

With recent technological developments, fabrics have also been enhanced with special features. These include water-repellent qualities. Bear in mind that eventually it seeps through, just that it’ll take longer to do so.

With the recent sunny temperatures witnessed this last summer (and also predicted for upcoming years) you could also consider UV protective arm covers.

Grip Type and Placement

The second thing to consider when shopping cycling arm warmers should be how it will grip and stay in place on your arms. If you buy a pair, you surely do not want something that will ruch up or down and distract you while cycling.

In this instance, consider the use of silicone on the edges of the arm warmers, either on the inside to latch onto your skin or on the outside to grab hold of your jersey or clothing.

As for length, it is supposed to start from the wrist and touch your biceps. Pay attention to measurements of the manufacturer for accuracy.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is it cold bad for cyclists?

For some riders, it’s really extreme to ride a bike at any point below 50 degrees. However, it comes with several benefits as well. By riding a bike in the cold season, you have to work harder. Hence you will burn more calories. It will also boost your defensive system against the cold. If you ride in groups, cycling can also have an optimistic effect on your mood.

What temperature do you wear cycling arm warmers?

If the temperature reaches below 65F, it is suggested to wear a cycling arm warmers. They significantly increase the circulation of the blood, which helps to preserve body temperature and reduce muscle tension.

What the warmest fabrics for cycling arm warmers?

Arm and leg warmers are usually constructed of some kind of insulating cloth that is heavier than the average content from jersey or Lycra contents. The most famous is Roubaix, a Lycra in combination with a fleece back that prevents air from entering in to maintain the warmth. Moreover, a Super Roubaix is a more substantial and a warmer variant of the same design.

Conclusion

With the array of products out there – this guide has covered the basic features to look for. These are the fabric, design, grip and additional features that may be important to you such as UV protection, water repellent qualities.

With your limbs protected and comfortable, we hope that your rides are more enjoyable, that you and your bike ride further and that you stay out longer, be it in the rain or shine, in chilly or sunny temperatures.

Now It’s Your Turn

Let us know what you think about cycling arm warmers – we would love to hear from you! Leave your comment, thoughts and opinions in the section below:

Guy Shiffer

Sagi Shiffer

He lives an active lifestyle and wearing gloves are part of his daily routine. This drive his passion for sports gear and accessories to share his ideas through this blog.

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