Top motorcycle waterproofs
Sometimes, you may not want to wear your full waterproof, breathable and super-technical touring clothing when you’re out on the bike. It might be a lovely summer’s day and you’re heading for the coast for fish and chips; to a racetrack for the latest round of the BSB, for a trackday or to a bike show (remember them?) and want to just wear a pair of jeans and a casual jacket or your leathers.
However, just like when we looked at waterproof sporty boots recently, the British summer has a habit of spoiling our best-laid plans. So you might want to carry a set of waterproofs with you, just in case…
In truth, if the weather forecast is appalling, then you’re either going to wear full-on textile clothing or not go out at all. Equally, if it’s stunning, then you may not bother. But if there’s a chance of rain, a waterproof oversuit in your rucksack, tailpack or topbox (or even under the seat on some bikes) will stop you from getting wet and cold and ruining that ride – especially if you’re out in leathers.
Waterproofs generally come in two flavours – an all-in-one oversuit suit or separate jacket and trousers. Which you choose is entirely down to personal preference. I personally favour separates, as I might decide to wear just the jacket if it’s not too wet or the trousers if a particular jacket has some water-resistance to it.
Like any waterproofs, there are inexpensive ones and expensive ones. The cheaper end of the scale will certainly keep water out (they all should – it’s the whole point) but will also keep any moisture from sweat in. More expensive ones may have a waterproof and breathable membrane involved that will allow your body to breathe so you not only stay warm inside but dry from your own sweat too.
When you’re looking, consider large, diagonal zips on one-piece suits and trousers with zips on the leg somewhere, as this makes it much easier to get your feet through when wearing riding boots. Also, keep a pair of plastic carrier bags to put your feet in first, then into the trousers – trust me, it makes things a lot easier and keeps the inside of your waterproofs dry too.
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£54.99 | VIEW OFFER
This one-piece suit from Richa took a Best Buy award from sister title RiDE when it tested waterproofs a couple of years ago. It is 100% waterproof and features reflective panels as well as a black/fluoro colour scheme to make sure you’re seen in the dark or poor weather conditions. It folds into its own storage pouch and is relatively easy to get on, though the lower legs don’t have zips to open to allow the feet in.
£39.99 (was £49.99) | VIEW OFFER
This budget one-piece suit gets good reviews online and comes with a diagonal zip covered with a Velcro-secured flap and a high collar to help keep the wet out. Seams are welded and taped to make sure they are waterproof and there’s a mesh lining to help promote some air circulation inside. Velcro straps help to let the ankles open up to make getting it on easier and it also comes with a zipped storage bag.
£59.99 | VIEW OFFER
This one-piece from Weise is lightweight yet waterproof, with welded and taped seams and features a mesh lining on the torso to help air to circulate and prevent moisture forming. It has a diagonal zip covered with a Velcro-secured flap and there’s corduroy inside the collar, for comfort. The waist is elasticated to prevent it from billowing and there is also a handy thigh pocket while the ankles are secured with poppers.
£69.96 (was £107.80) | VIEW OFFER
The Held one-piece suit has a diagonal zip which is covered with a Velcro-secured flap and goes down well past the waist for ease of putting on in a hurry. It has an elasticated waist for a good fit without billowing and there’s a mesh lining in the torso. It has leg zips to allow easy fitting in the rain and the outer features 3m Scotchlite reflective panels.
£49.99 | VIEW OFFER
This two-piece set from Weise is made in reflective polyester which not only keeps the rain out but highlights your presence to other road users. It has a lined collar, two external and two internal pockets and a pull-cord hem. The trousers have an elasticated waist and zips to the bottom of the legs for ease of use.
The jacket features a tall collar and elasticated cuffs and waist and is made in polyester to keep the rain out. It has fluorescent panels for visibility and two external pockets, as well as a large Furygan logo on the back to set it apart from traditional rain over-wear. The trousers don’t have zips at the ankle, which makes putting them on a bit trickier than others but it isn’t an issue.
£53.99 (was £79.99) | VIEW OFFER
Not a cheap jacket but this one from Alpinestars took the Best Buy triangle in RiDE’s product test, and with good reason. It’s a well-designed, 100% waterproof jacket with an adjustable waist and upper arms, tall collar and a mesh lining. It also has an inner pocket and a storage pouch, while the trousers also have a pouch. They have an expanding gusset at the ankle and zips to make access easy and quick.
£54.99 | VIEW OFFER
This two-piece set from FLM is well-cut, well-made and comes with a host of features, including an elasticated waist on the jacket and Velcro adjusters on the upper arms to prevent billowing while in the tall collar is an under-the-helmet hood to stop water from running down the back of the neck. There’s also a zip to join the jacket and matching trousers together to eliminate any gaping and it got a Recommended tag in RiDE’s test.
£99.99 | VIEW OFFER
By far the most expensive garment here but also, the most technical. The RainSeal Pro uses Oxford’s Dry2Dry waterproof, windproof and breathable membrane in a lightweight shell, meaning you stay dry but breathe as well. The jacket folds into an inner pocket when not needed but when it is, it’s easy to get on and uses taped seams and stretch panels for comfort. It has hand-warmer pockets, fluoro panels and is ‘intelligently’ sized, so you order your normal size of clothing and it’s cut to fit. Wear with either of the company’s over-trousers.
£49.99 | VIEW OFFER
This transparent short jacket is designed to go over race leathers for those on trackdays or racing. The transparent finish allows logos to show through and there’s a crotch strap to make sure it doesn’t ride up. There’s also a pocket for the racing hump on the back to ensure a good, proper non-flapping fit.