Best kit for the naked motorcycle rider | Let MCN get your kit on with our top picks

4 naked motorcycles with riders
4 naked motorcycles with riders
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The type of gear that is worn by the naked motorcycle rider is probably the most wide and varied style that there is. It tends to be a crossover of sportsbike gear through to a more retro look and maybe some touring kit for the more adventurous rider. This means that the rider can really style themselves entirely to their own taste and requirements.

Whatever type of motorcycle gear it is that you are looking for, it is important to understand and check the safety ratings; ECE 22.06 testing standards and SHARP stars for helmets and CE ratings for jackets and trousers, boots and gloves. Then there is the armour ratings to consider, these are often listed separately from the abrasion resistance ratings.

We’ve pulled together a selection of gear that we have tested and think is worth considering in your search.

Suzuki GSX-8S ridden by rider

Helmets

Pretty much any style of helmet will work on a naked style motorcycle but the main thing to consider is wind noise as without any windshield you will be more at the mercy of mother nature. Whether that helmet is a sports style or more of a touring helmet will probably come down to what you like the look of and what type of riding you do. Below are a few that we reviewed and liked at MCN.

Tested by Alison Silcox for six months, 2000 miles

Price: £249.98 (was £379.99)
'If you’re looking for a touring lid but with a sporty feel, this HJC R-PHA 70 helmet is a great option. It’s good value, stylish and comfortable. What more do you need?'

Read Alison's full review here

Pros

  • Good fit
  • Stylish
  • Good value

Cons

  • Not the latest safety standard
  • Comfort
    5.0
  • Practicality
    4.0
  • Looks
    4.0
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Protection
    4.0
  • Value
    4.0
  • Verdict
    4.0
Construction Carbon fibre, aramid, carbon-glass hybrid fibre
Type Full-faced touring lid
CE rating garment ECE 22.05
  • Double d-ring fastener
  • Internal drop-down sun visor
  • Emergency removal
  • Vents
  • Pinlock insert

Tried and tested by Adam Binnie for one year

Price: £275.49 (was 289.99)
'For a helmet at the more affordable end of the spectrum, the fit, finish and overall looks are first class. But where the SHARK Skwal i3 really works for me is in that feeling of compact lightness, which is primarily down to the ‘Smart Fit’ technology. This is the first SHARK helmet I’ve owned and, certainly for the price, it’s an impressive piece of kit. The LED brake lights have definitely worked in drawing attention, as confirmed on the aforementioned group ride, and in tightly packed town traffic have the potential to give you an edge – even if it’s just a slim one.'

Read Justin's full review here

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Compact
  • Lightweight feel
  • Excellent main visor system
  • Drop down sun visor
  • LED running lights and integrated brake lights

Cons

  • Ventilation could be better
  • Comfort
    5.0
  • Visor
    5.0
  • Ventilation
    2.0
  • Noise
    4.0
  • Looks
    4.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    4.0
Construction Lexan injected polycarbonate
Weight 1570g
ECE rating ECE 22.06
Warranty 5 years
Strap type Quick release buckle
  • Integrated LED brake and marker lights
  • Quick release visor
  • Drop down sun visor
  • Removable anti-microbial interior
  • Micrometric strap buckle
  • Integrated spoiler
  • Four intake vents (two each on chin and crown) and two exhaust

Tried and tested by Richard Newland for 1,000 miles

'It’s always gratifying to find fault with a product, but that’s a struggle when it comes to the new Shoei GT-Air 3. The comfort is superb; the airflow management – both around and through the helmet – is great; the ratchet buckle works well; the visor aperture is big, and the closure, lack of wind whistle, effectiveness of the Pinlock and addition of the internal sun visor all work well in harmony; the removeable and washable lining feels great; the graphics and finishes are classy and well done – and the price tag is right where you’d expect it to be for a product at this end of the quality spectrum. A more positive action on the top vent, the alien imprint on my bald head after a long ride, and the slightly fiddly faff when reattaching the visor aside – I’m struggling to find fault with it.'

Read Richard's full review here

Pros

  • Superb build quality
  • Integrated design features
  • Impressive venting
  • ECE 22.06 certified

Cons

  • Quality doesn't come cheap
  • It's not particularly light
  • Comfort
    5.0
  • Practicality
    5.0
  • Looks
    5.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Protection
    5.0
  • Value
    4.0
  • Verdict
    5.0
Construction AIM multi-composite fibre construction
Safety standard ECE 22.06
Warranty 5 years
  • Emergency quick release system
  • Fully removable and washable interior
  • Anti-fog anti-scratch internal sun visor
  • Compact and lightweight steel micro ratchet retention system

Tried and tested by Justin Hayzelden fro 12 months and 3,100 miles

'The K1 S is AGV’s entry-level full-face lid, but with its race inspired shape, integrated spoiler and panoramic visor, it could easily be mistaken for a model higher up the range. Approved to the new and more stringent ECE 22.06 standard, the polycarbonate shell features a fully removable and washable spectacle-friendly interior, with a plush, high-end feel to it. In use it is reassuringly snug, enhanced by a close-fitting neck roll and additional chin curtain, the latter proving its worth over winter by blocking out icy draughts. 

Where the K1 S does show its price point is in the lack of a drop-down sunshade, and although it comes Pinlock prepared, the insert is extra. Switching visors is a doddle though and only takes a few seconds, my only gripe being that the gap between just cracked and the first notch is a gaping 5cm. Air vents are effective, if a bit stiff to operate, and the traditional double-D ring strap fastener is simplicity in itself.' 

Read Justin's full review here.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Meets latest ECE 22.06 standard
  • Quick release visor system

Cons

  • No internal sun visor
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Value
    4.0
Construction High-resistance thermoplastic shell
Safety Rating ECE 22.06
Chin strap Double D
  • Pinlock ready
  • Five adjustable vents
  • Ready for. acomms unit
  • Removable and washable interior

Tried and tested by the MCN team

The Arai Quatic helmet has been reviewed by a few members of the MCN team. The general opinion was that the Arai Quantic is very comfortable, well vented and of course quality as you would expect from Arai.

Both Michael Neeves and Richard Newland have written their reviews for you to see what they they thought of this sports helmet.

Read the full reviews here

Pros

  • Quiet
  • Comfortable
  • Top-Spec

Cons

  • Not cheap
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    4.0
Construction Multi-composite
Safety Rating ECE 22.06
Chin strap Double D
Warranty 5 years
  • Pinlock included
  • Quantic ventilation
  • Emergency release system
  • Removable and washable liner
  • Facial contour system

Jackets

In terms of which jackets work well for this type of bike, this is going to come down to your priorities and preferences. For example you are probably not going to require a race hump, but you may consider how many pockets there are or whether the jacket is waterproof. Alternatively you may be someone who values the look of the jacket over some of the practicalities.

The main fabrics used are leather and textile, generally leather offers a higher abrasion resistance but textile can offer versatility with ventilation, waterproofing and machine washability that a leather jacket may struggle to offer.

We have made a selection of our tried and tested jackets below to cover a few different options.

Tried and tested by Michael Neeves for 18 months and 5,000 miles

Price: £197.99 (was 219.99)
'It isn’t the cheapest softshell jacket you can buy, but it’s excellent value. If you’re after something to wear on your bike, or casually that’s lightweight, easy to throw on, sturdy, warm and windproof, it’s highly recommended.

It’s proved to be robust and looks great, fits superbly and has lots of nice features for maximum comfort and practicality. It isn’t hugely vented or have a thick lining, so it’s best for the spring and autumn months.'

Read Michael's full review here

Pros

  • Warm
  • Wind and waterproof
  • Light and sturdy
  • Comfortable
  • Stylish

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Not vented or thick lined so only really for spring and autumn riding
  • Comfort
    5.0
  • Practicality
    5.0
  • Looks
    5.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Protection
    3.0
  • Value
    4.0
  • Verdict
    5.0
Construction Water-repellent soft shell outer with breathable mesh lining
Type Casual style riding jacket
CE rating EN17092-4:2020 A
Armour Level 1 shoulder and elbow protectors
  • Water resistant front zip
  • Four zipped outer pockets
  • Fixed hood collar with elastic drawstring and internal rib collar
  • Waist cord drawstring
  • Velcro adjustable cuffs

Tried and tested by Richard Newland for three months and 2,150 miles

Price: £299.99 (was 339.99)
There’s really nothing I can suggest to improve the Daytona 2 – beyond getting it up to the AAA CE rating to really deliver ultimate peace of mind. You’re getting a quality looking, quality feeling leather jacket that’s well lined, well spec’d, thoughtfully designed and well put together – with a decent AA CE safety rating – and all for a price that is entirely fair. It feels like it’ll last a decade, and I can’t imagine I’d be any less keen to wear it if it does.

Read Richard's full review here

Pros

  • Looks great
  • Works on almost any bike

Cons

  • AA not AAA rated
  • Overall
    4.0
  • Comfort
    5.0
  • Practicality
    4.0
  • Looks
    5.0
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Protection
    4.0
  • Value
    5.0
Contruction Buffalo Leather
Protection D3O back, elbow and shoulder armour
CE Garment Rating AA
Zip attachment Short
  • Removable thermal liner
  • Retro shoulder stitching
  • Snap button neck closure
  • Available in black or brown
  • Unisex

Tried and tested by Ben Clarke for eight months and 500 miles

'This AA rated riding hoodie from Roadskin is really comfortable on and off the bike and looks almost like a standard casual garment. It’s not the lightest or the coolest option out there, but that’s the compromise you make for improved safety. I’ve worn a few different riding hoodies over the years and one of the common complaints is that the soft fabric allows the armour to flap around in the breeze, leaving you wondering if it will be there to protect you in a crash. This isn’t the case at all with the Easyrider II, which uses an elasticated liner to hold everything in place as you ride. There are also hand hoops that keep the sleeves from riding up and a belt hoop at the back to keep your back covered. 

If you don’t want to ride with the hood attached then you can zip it off, but I don’t normally wear mine for long enough at high speeds for it to become an issue. I’ve worn this hoodie on everything from a BMW M1000R to a Triumph Scrambler 400 X and it’s been comfortable on everything. It also feels like it will hold together well over time. '

Pros

  • Good level of protection
  • Comfortable

Cons

  • Not very lightweight
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
Armour Level 2 back, shoulders and elbows
CE Garment Rating AA
  • Waterproof membrane
  • Mesh lining
  • Detatchable hood
  • Belt loops
  • Two front external pockets

Tried and tested by Adam Binnie

I’m really taken by the Oxford Dakar Dry2Dry Air 1.0 Textile Jacket – style isn’t everything but I really like the way it looks combined with how light and non-restrictive it feels to wear.
Adventure bike kit with a sportier cut might sound a bit niche but there are plenty of off-road machines that cater for faster road riding too – the Ducati Multistrada, or any KTM, for example – where something between full touring textiles and race leathers would sit.

Most of all though I like how versatile it is. A mesh jacket traditionally spends more time in your wardrobe than on your back, waiting for a weekend hot enough to justify wearing it. This one’s the opposite, I reckon.

Read Adam's full review here

Pros

  • Versitile
  • Waterproof and breathable
Contruction High-density polyester outer shell construction
Armour Level 1 CE shoulder and elbow protection
CE Garment rating AA
  • Dry2Dry removable waterproof jacket
  • Removable waterpoof and breathab;e liner
  • Waist adjusment straps
  • Durable mesh outer
  • Pocket for additional back protector
  • Handwarmer pockets

Tried and tested by Emma Franklin for 12 months and 6,000 miles

This buffalo leather jacket combines retro looks with a sporty twist, thanks to its detachable
cotton hood which fixes to the collar via poppers. The AA-rated Toulon 2 is my go-to jacket for dry spring and summer days, and even after considerable wear, it's still looking and performing as good as new. It comes with a full complement of D30 Level-1 soft armour in the back, elbows and shoulders that feel comfy and don't add too much bulk. Inside there's a detachable thermal gilet to help keep the chill away from your core on cooler days, but I have to admit to riding without it most of the time. I found the fit to be pretty much true to size, although you will need to go a size up if you're
planning on wearing multiple layers underneath

Available in sizes UK 8-20, and in mens' cut, too.

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Value
    4.0
Construction Buffalo leather
CE Garment Rating AA
Armour Level 1 back, shoulder and elbows
  • Detachable liner
  • Detachable hood
  • Handwarmer pockets

Tested by Joseph Wright for 6 months and 4500 miles

Price: £386.99 (was £429.99)
The Alpinestars sports jacket is a premium and durable item with exceptional quality and attention to detail. It offers ample protection with flexible elbow and shoulder armour, but lacks a back protector. Its design strikes a balance between sporty and simplistic, making it a versatile choice that looks great on modern and retro bikes alike. Despite its high price, it's an ideal choice for those seeking the ultimate in motorcycle clothing.

Pair with Alpinestars Track V2 Trousers to create a full suit.

Read Joseph's full review here

Pros

  • Leather and mesh construction
  • Airflow zips are effective
  • Soft collar 

Cons

  • Elongated rear could be longer
  • Back protector should be included for the price
  • Comfort
    4.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Looks
    5.0
  • Protection
    3.0
  • Value
    4.0
  • Overall
    4.1
Construction 1.3mm multi-panel leather
Liner Mesh
External armour TPU shoulder sliders
Armour CE level 2 Nucleon Flex Plus shoulder and elbow - optional back protector
Overall CE rating AA
  • Maximum ventilation
  • Stretch panels in non impact zones
  • Soft collar
  • Elongated rear
  • Available as part of a two piece suit

Jeans

If you’re a commuting biker or a sunny weekend blast type of rider, this will play a role in which trousers you opt for. Jeans are a go to choice for a lot of people these days as the safety ratings have been improved with better abrasion resistant fabrics. Jeans tend to be more comfortable and casual for on and off the bike and there are lots of ladies options available too. However as a commuter you might be looking for something weatherproof and easy to slip over regular clothes. Below are a selection of our reviewed trousers.

Tried and tested by Joseph Wright for six months and 2,500 miles

Price: £99.99 (was 149.99)
These are the first pair of proper riding jeans I have tried but with their knee and hip padding combined with stylish looks, l am now a convert. They offer a great balance of safety vs comfort from
their lightweight single-layer material, which is flexible on and off the bike, twinned with Level 2 CE hip/knee protectors which mould neatly around your joints all creating a fairly slim profile. I opted for the slim-fit style which exceeded expectations though the winter and spring but seem to have more restricted breathability in summer. A straight-leg fit is available and the looser fit may encourage more airflow

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Look good

Cons

  • Not very breathable in summer
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Value
    5.0
Construction Lightweight single layer Armourlite denim construction
Armour CE Level 2 knee and hip
CE Garment Rating AA
  • Triple stitched seams
  • Reinforced lined yolk
  • Lined back pockets

Tried and tested by Ben Clarke for 12 monts and 3,000 miles

Price: £161.99 (was £179.99)
Most riders, no matter what type of bike you ride, will probably want a good pair of motorcycle jeans in their wardrobe. These Taranis Elite jeans for Roadskin are a great choice, providing AAA safety rating they will give you the piece of mind that they will protect you if needed, and they achieve this while remaining remarkably comfortable and stylish.

They are not the cheapest option on the market but you get what you pay for.

Read Ben's full review here

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Look like normal jeans
  • Piece of mind with AAA safety rating

Cons

  • Not the cheapest
  • Comfort
    5.0
  • Practicality
    3.0
  • Looks
    5.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Protection
    5.0
  • Value
    4.0
  • Overall
    5.0
Construction Cotton, Kevlar, PE, Cordura, Lycra
Type Denim riding jeans
CE Garment Rating AAA
Armour CE Level 2 hip and knee
  • Available in three lengths
  • Mesh lining
  • Triple stitched main seams
  • Double belt loops to attach top layers
  • High and low pockets for knee armour fit adjustment

Tried and tested by Justin Hayzelden for eight months

Price: £215.89
The Trilobite Parado jeans are something a little different to the mainstream, and in terms of functionality and comfort score full marks. The look won’t be to everyone’s taste, but if you think of them as an alternative to textile or leather jeans, rather than bike kit in disguise, they can certainly hold their own.

Having worn them for thousands of miles I would happily spend my own money on them, or better still throw in a few extra quid and trade up to the new CE AAA version, offering a higher level of protection.

Read Justin's full review here 

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • God ventilation
  • Good protection
  • Look good

Cons

  • Kevlar reinforcement only at impact zones
  • Comfort
    5.0
  • Practicality
    5.0
  • Looks
    4.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Protection
    4.0
  • Value
    5.0
Construction Outer 11.5 oz cotton denim 2% Elastane, Inner Kevlar lining for knees and seat
CE Garment Rating AA
Armour CE Level 2 hip and knee
Type Jeans
  • Romovable knee and hip protection
  • Power stretch panels at crotch, knee and hip
  • Ventilation zippers
  • High waist at the back

Tried and tested by Saffron Wilson for five months and 2,500 miles

“These Richa trousers do what it says on the label. Waterproof, comfortable and warm. Although as you can imagine, I didn’t ride much with the detachable thermo liner as it worked too well, but the D30 knee protectors were comfortable even on the cruiser, and the ventilation zippers were ideal for wet but humid conditions. The other zip pockets were an ideal size for a phone, so they are practical overall too.

“I had a small issue with the leg length that resulted in wet ankles on the odd occasion, but taller boots should help out here. The fit was also bit snug if you needed to throw them on over jeans in sudden rain, nevertheless, they still worked which is a bonus as that’s not what they were designed for. So, there’s nothing to forgive really.

“I like the subdued styling, and the contra glide tech fit was effective at stopping saddle slip without making the trousers too bulky meaning you could easily wear them to walk around in once you hop off the bike. Although the zip-attachment to Richa jackets is a nifty feature, I did forget to detach the jacket more than once, but I’m definitely to blame for that one!”

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Comfortable

Cons

  • Watch out for soggy ankles
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
Construction 600D high density nylon Cordura
CE Rating A
Armour D3O knee protection
Type Waterproof textile
  • Mesh lining
  • Adjustable Knee protection
  • Two storage pockets
  • AVS zips. onupper legs for ventilation
  • Detachable thermal liner
  • Short jacket connection zip

Gloves

There aren’t many differences between the various types of motorcycle gloves. The main choices are gauntlet or short cuff and summer or winter, beyond that it generally comes down to style preference and level of protection against the elements.

Tried and tested by Adam Binnie for eight months and 1,500 miles

These gloves are a very practical option for any rider. If you hate getting caught in the rain wearing the wrong kit – especially when your hands get cold and wet, which can have a massive effect in how confidently you can use the bike’s controls. In an ideal world all gear would be waterproof as a matter of course, and then it wouldn’t matter what you are wearing when the weather changed unexpectedly.

If that’s you then these gloves are a great choice. Granted there are cheaper ways to do it, but the reassurance that comes with the name Gore-Tex and the way it has been so stealthily integrated into the construction makes them worth the extra money, in our opinion.

Read Adam's full review here

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Good protection
  • Very versatile

Cons

  • Tight to get on and off
  • Not touchscreen compatible
  • Comfort
    3.0
  • Looks
    4.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Protection
    4.0
  • Value
    3.0
  • Verdict
    4.0
Construction Leather and textile
Type Sports/sport touring
CE Rating 1 KP
Armour Knuckle and wrist
  • Gore-Tex
  • D3O
  • SuperFabric
  • Integrated visor wipe

Tried and tested by Adam Binnnie for three months and 600 miles

'These Oxford Nexus 1.0 gloves are a pretty perfect balance – thin in the right areas, and sturdy in others, at a price where rivals are offering lowlier Level 1 protection.
A waterproof membrane would open them up to an extended riding season, while those of you with hotter hands might want more ventilation on the warmest days of the year. Otherwise I don’t have a bad word to say about them.'

Read the full review here

Pros

  • CE LEvel 2 protection
  • Comfortable
  • Great value for money

Cons

  • Not weatherproof
  • Comfort
    4.0
  • Looks
    3.0
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Protection
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
  • Verdict
    4.0
Construction 100% Aniline leather
Type Sports
CE Rating Level 2 KP
Armour TPU finger and knuckle protection
  • Aramid Reinforcement
  • Touchscreen compatible
  • TPR cuff protection
  • Sweat wicking lining

Tried and tested by Emma Franklin for six months and 3,200 miles

Whereas many winter gloves can be a total compromise – warm but lacking feel, comfy but lacking protection – the RST Pro Series Paragon 6 prove that you can have a bad weather glove that does it all. It’s clear that they’ve been very thoughtfully designed, with features such as zoned leather in key areas, silicone grips on the palms, pre-curved fingers, and visor wipes, too.

Read Emma's full review here

Pros

  • Warm
  • Waterproof
  • Some thoughtful features

Cons

  • The main chassis of the glove feels a little floppy
  • Comfort
    4.0
  • Looks
    4.0
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Protection
    3.0
  • Value
    5.0
  • Verdict
    4.0
Construction HTC and full-grain leather outer. Internal lining brushed polyester with Sinaqua waterproof/breathable membrane
Type Winter/touring
Ce Rating EN13594:2015 1KP
Armour Hard external knuckle protection with memory foam inner
  • Drawstring cuff
  • Hook and loop wrist
  • Visor wiper
  • Smart-touch leather

Tried and tested by Jim Blackstock

 have used these gloves quite a lot and while fit – particularly on the thumbs – can be a bit annoying on the roads, where you need constant indicator use, for example, on a track or rural roads where you need feel and control, they are great.

They feel lovely on the hands, are cooling and work superbly with the bike’s controls and the highest rating for protection, combined with their obvious protective qualities, is enormously reassuring. And at less than £70 a pair, you can’t really go wrong.

Read Jim's full review here

Pros

  • Highest protective rating for gloves
  • Excellent value
  • Comfortabe and feel freat

Cons

  • Thumbs a bit awkward on indicators
  • Comfort
    4.0
  • Looks
    4.0
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Protection
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
Construction Leather
Type Sports
CE Rating 2 KP
Armour Hard knuckle and finger
  • Goatskin palm
  • Perforated cowhide thumb
  • Vented knuckle armour
  • Superfabric reinforcements
  • Finger bridge
  • Visor wipe
  • Silicone palm grip
  • Touch screen friendly finger tips

Tried and tested by Stuart Prestidge for four months

Hand protection and comfort during the summer can be a compromise, some favouring cooler but less protective gloves for warmer weather. The DXR TTR gloves deal with that dilemma well, blending comfort in warmer weather with CE-approved protection. Made from goatskin leather with a waterproof and breathable inner membrane, the gloves are supple and remained dry through summer showers. A visor wiper on the thumb is a nice touch. It has been my glove of choice this summer, especially when the weather doesn't play ball.

Pros

  • Good protection for a summer glove

Cons

  • Good price
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Value
    4.0
Construction Premium goatskin leather
Type Short summer glove
CE Rating EN 13594
  • Waterproof and breathable membrane
  • Reinforced metacarpus, fingers and palms
  • Leather covered soft knuckle protection
  • Hook and loop adjustable wrist strap

Boots

In terms of boot choices for the naked motorcycle rider, you are likely to be looking for something like a casual sportsbike boot or maybe a more street style. Protection level is the main difference between these different styles, with sports style boots often offering shin protection where a more casual street style probably won’t as they tend to be a shorter boot.

A sports boot may have toe sliders also if you are wanting to really push limits of your bike. If however you are wanting a boot that you can stay in all day you may opt for the more relaxed style. If you are commuting in all weathers you may choose a touring boot with its waterproof properties. Below we have selected a few of our tried and tested boots.

Tried and tested by Simon Brown for six months and 1,000 miles

The grippy sole ensures a cosy connection with the pegs and has decent flex for comfort when you are walking about – particularly handy in my case because I stash the bike in a rented lock-up about a quarter of a mile from the house. Some retro boots incorporate a zipped closure but I prefer standard laces like these because you can get a nice secure fastening every time and it’s hard to argue that doing up your laces is any sort of hassle. Double knot, naturally. Don’t want them coming undone.

Read Simon's full review here

Pros

  • Sensible price
  • Comfort
  • Look good

Cons

  • Scuffing on the gear change pad
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Value
    4.0
Armour Ankle
Construction Cowhide leather
  • Waterproof and breathable
  • Leather overlay for gear shifter
  • Non-slip sole

Tried and tested by Jim Blackstock

Price: £242.99 (was 269.99)
I love these boots. They are sporty enough for almost any road use but are superbly comfortable and very reassuring, with the armour and protection. They go under most of the jeans I normally wear in summer and easily go under textiles while leathers also fit inside easily. They have kept my feet warm and dry for two years on a variety of bikes and have plenty of life left in them yet.

Read Jim's full review here

Pros

  • Superbly comfortable
  • Completely dry
  • Highest rating for protection

Cons

  • None I have found
Construction Microfibre upper construction for durability and abrasion resistance
Armour Ankle, toe sliders and shin
  • Waterproof and breathable
  • TPU lateral ankle brace support between calf, shin and ankle for impact shock protection
  • Mesh air vents on the shin plate
  • Replaceable toe sliders
  • Alpinestars compound rubber sole with improved grip, water dispersion and durability

Tried and tested by Justin Hayzelden for six months and 3,700 miles

I absolutely love these boots, and over the three seasons I’ve tested them they’ve been my go-to choice for any shorter ride or one that’s likely to involve significant time off the bike, such as going to the office, shopping, bike meets or hanging out with mates. And perhaps not ideal for the job due to the lower CE protection level and short height, I’ve toured in them too and they were great for wandering off and exploring on foot.

They’re comfortable for wearing all day, have more than proved themselves when the going gets wet and feel durable enough for a few seasons yet.

Read Justin's full review here

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Waterproof
  • Look good
  • Durable

Cons

  • Could do with a gear shift pad
  • Laces are quite long
  • Comfor4
    4.0
  • Looks
    5.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Protection
    3.0
  • Value
    4.0
  • Verdict
    5.0
Condtruction Full grain leather upper
Type Waterproof urban/casual
CE Rating 1-1-1-1 WR
Armour Reinforced heel and toe, TPU ankle inserts with memory foam
  • Double density rubber sole
  • External plastic heel cup
  • Padded tongue and collar
  • Zip and lace closure with reinforced eyelets
  • Rear and side reflective inserts
  • Forma Drytex tubular lining (waterproof and breathable membrane)
  • PP Mid Dual Flex with anti-shock EVA midsole
  • Antibacterial replaceable footbed with A.P.S. (Air Pump System)

Tested by Richard Newland for five months and 1,400 miles

Price: £237.49 ( was 249.99)
Traditional all-weather touring motorbike boots always feel like wellies to me, and from my first winter of discontent as a biker with a set that impressed less than wellies would have, I’ve always eschewed the style in favour of sports or adventure boots with Gore-Tex in the mix. But this pair of TCX Airtech boots look pleasingly technical and modern, boast all the key safety attributes you’d hope for, and promise the performance I’m looking for.

Read Richard's full review here

Pros

  • Impressively waterproof
  • Comfortable and breathable
  • Easy to put on

Cons

  • Uncomfortable velcro placement
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    4.0
Construction Microfibre with Gore-Tex membrane
Armour Reinforced shin, malleolus, toe and heel
Type Touring
  • Side zip fastening with hook and loop
  • Ortholite footbed
  • Low profile, Groundtrax rubber sole

Tried and tested by Gareth Evans for five months and 3,000 miles

These boots arrived with a somewhat distressed look on the sole, and to be honest I've done nothing at all to help matters, because I've been wearing them in all sorts of conditions; including freezing temperatures, 40°C+ heat, and pouring rain. They've taken a real pasting, in fact, as my day-to-day riding footwear of choice.I wore them as a road boot to go alongside the more focused items I used for trackdays, so their number one requirement was comfort, and they're excellent in that respect.
One of the features that helps most is the liner, which is a mix of polyester and Hipora, so it's breathable, soft and 100% waterproof.

It's a joy to push a foot into them, actually like hugging an old friend! And while l've definitely put them to a fragrance test over my time with them them, the cushioned sole has been up to the task, and I can confirm that even as I type this, they smell as fresh as they did from the factory, despite my best efforts. Furthermore, the laces are particularly strong with decent low-friction eyes, so they're easy to tighten comfortably. This gives them a premium feel, which goes a little way to justifying the one-ton price tag. The exterior leather is soft, but the carcass is supportive in all the right places, with additional high-impact protection for shin and ankle and extra armour for the toe for gear-changes. But the negative point is the fashion-first nature of the design, by which I mean they look and feel great, but aren't up to the highest levels of safety certification. They score the highest of two for transverse rigidity, but one for all other aspects.

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Waterproof

Cons

  • Not the best protection
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Value
    4.0
Construction Cowhide leather
Type Urban/street
CE Rating Level 1 for PPE - 1 1 1 2
  • Soft ankle protection
  • Rubber sole for enhanced grip
  • Internal waterproof breathable liner

Luggage

You may want to carry some additional things with you when riding, especially if you have chosen a jacket with few pockets. There are a few options in terms of luggage, tank bags, rucksacks and tail bags tend to be the most popular for the naked motorbike. Below is our selection of luggage that we liked when we tested it.

Tried and tested by Michael Guy for seven years and 5,000 miles

Kreiga have been making the R15 backpack for 12 years and l've owned mine for the last seven During that time l've used other rucksacks and camel backs. They've all been and gone, but the Kreiga has proved to be my bag of choice. For me it's the perfect size. Big enough to hold two litres of water in the camel back, plus tools, spare gloves and a waterproof, but not so big that it's ever a pain when riding thanks to the waist and chest strap stopping it from bouncing around. I've raced rallies with it, been green lanning, ridden across Spain, and- apart from being dirty and looking a bit battered- it remains in perfect working condition There's an internal pocket that holds the drinks bladder and an outer pocket which is easily accessible and bigger than it looks. My only criticism is that the bag is not 100% waterproof. There is, however, a small, internal fully waterproof pocket for keeping real valuables dry. lt's not cheap, but you get what you pay for. I have absolutely no itch or need to try anything different

Pros

  • Very durable
  • The Quadloc strap sytem holds it firmly in place
  • 10 year guarantee

Cons

  • Not the cheapest
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
Construction 5mm airspace fabric
Type Rucksack
Capacity 15 litre capacity
  • 10 year guarantee
  • Optional 3 litre hydration resevoir
  • Quadloc harness
  • Lightweight and durable

Tried and tested by Gareth Evans for six months and 3,000 miles

For one reason or another I've been through three bags quite recently and this unassuming item from RST is by far the best of the bunch. For me and my lifestyle, it's pertectly-sized, seriously comfortable, and practical. The 42.5-litre capacity features a laptop pocket, while a trio of zipped smaller pockets hold stuff like disc locks.or earplugs. But it's the thick, highly adjustable chest and waist straps and breathable back protection that make this bag a joy to use. Plus it's taken a battering over the last six months and remains in perfect nick. For the money,I can't see how luggage gets any better than this.

Pros

  • Durable
  • Comfortable
  • Plenty of space
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
Construction 1680D polyester with PVC backing
Type Rucksack
Capacity 42.5 Litres
  • Multiple internal and external pockets
  • Chest and waist straps
  • Laptop pocket

Tried and tested by Michael Neeves for one year and 3,000 miles

Price: £78.97 (was £129.99)
I wanted something big enough to hold a decent stash and to lean up against to take the weight off my wrists. Oxford's mid-size expandable,M15R magnetic tank bag fitted the bill perfectly. It takes a second to fit and once on it's secure, even at high speed. Threading and fastening the security strap underneath the headstock takes a few extra seconds, but is never a drama. Once on it's easy to use thanks to strong, easy-to-use zips and it's 15 litre capacity is more than enough for what I need. On big trips I generally keep a pair of trainers in the main compartment, stuffed and surrounded with odds and ends. I can fit wash bag and clothes over the top and keys, wallet, change, toll tickets, phone and knick-knacks in the side pockets. l use a rucksack or panniers for everything else. It comes with an internal waterproof liner that works perfectly in heavy rain, but even without it, the bag can withstand a light shower. The 420D Ripstop Nylon shell and zips are robust and after just 3000 miles it still looks like new. Just like the Oxford tank bags l've used before, the M15R magnetic tank bag doesn't disappoint. It's strong, hard-wearing. easy to wipe down, simple to use and dependable. It also makes a bike with sporty bars much more comfortable on big trips, too.

Pros

  • Hardwearing
  • Simple to use
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
Construction 420D Ripstop shell
Type Tank bag
Capacity 15 litres
Attachment Magnetic
  • Convrrts to a backpack
  • Electrical port with internal device pocket
  • Map or satnav holder with sunshield
  • Additional map holder in the base
  • Unzips from base

Tried and tested by Ben Clarke for six months

The QBag is certainly impressive in terms of quality and value and I would certainly buy one if I was caught short for luggage for a weekend away. The quality is exceptional and I think it would last you years and years – a lifetime of occasional use, in fact. But if I was using the luggage daily or keeping it permanently attached to the bike, I’d opt for something sleeker. Its 5kg maximum load capacity would prevent you being able to transport anything beyond standard luggage. You couldn’t, for example, use it to carry all your bike security to an overnight hotel stay. It’s also a bit annoying that it’s not waterproof without a cover added.

Overall, I would say the QBag Tail Bag 4 is a high-quality bit of kit you wouldn’t regret buying, especially at such a reasonable price.

Read Ben's Full review here

Pros

  • Budget friendly
  • Easy to fit
  • No external fittings

Cons

  • Not great looking
  • Needs the waterproof cover
  • Practicality
    4.0
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
  • Looks
    3.0
  • Verdict
    5.0
Length x height x width 32cm x 30cm x 40cm
Capacity 26 litres (main compartment)
Construction 100% nylon
Mounting Hook and bungee
Waterproof No (rain cover included)
  • Soft foam pad to protect your paint work included
  • Side pockets for smaller items
  • Three outer pockets

Intercoms

Whether you ride alone or with friends you may want to consider an intercom system, to listen to music or keep in touch with others in your riding group. There is a large array of options to choose from, so we have listed a few of our reviewed kit below. Fitting your intercom to your helmet will vary depending on your helmet and the unit that you choose.

Tried and tested by Jim Blackstock

Price: £174.99 (was £243.00)
f you want to connect wirelessly to your smartphone to listen to music and make or take calls and either use its native navigation or indeed, an app or even connect to a separate sat nav, this unit works exceptionally well.

It’s easy to connect and the sound quality is excellent thanks to the JBL speakers. The ‘Natural Voice’ control works very well, meaning you don’t have to take your hands off the bars to control it and once paired with the smartphone app, you can update it over the air and tailor a range of parameters.
The fact it also works as an intercom and can be bought as a twin pack is an added bonus and highlights the attention to detail that has gone into it.

Read Jim's full review here

Pros

  • Exceptional sound quality
  • Reliable voice control
  • Avialablity of second helmet kit
Connectivity Bluetooth 5.2
Range up to 1.2km
Talk time 13 hours
Weight 37g
  • Waterproof
  • 4 way bluetooth
  • 40mm HD JBL speakers
  • Automatic volume control based on ambient ouside noise

Tried and tested by Jordan Gibbons for six months

Price: £74.45 (was £99.00)
The 3S Plus is not only the latest but also the smallest and cheapest Bluetooth headset from
communications experts Sena. Unlike other units with a great big pod on the outside of the helmet, Sena have cleverly tucked all the gubbins away inside the lid with a tiny control unit the only visible control on the outside, which means if you're after the sleek look then this is about as good as it
gets. There are some downsides to this approach-the speakers which contain the batteries/brains are thicker than most, so careful placement is required, and fewer buttons make it slightly
more difficult to set up. Once it's sorted though ease of use is a dream with good sound quality and decent battery life (around eight hours). If you're just an occasional communicator, or just fancy
a bit of music for the commute, this could be just the ticket.

Pros

  • Small and sleek design

Cons

  • Not as easy to set up as others
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Value
    5.0
Connectivity Bluetooth 4.1
Range 400 meters
Talk time 8 hours
Weight 48g
  • Two way intercom
  • Supports 2 riders
  • Multi language voice prompts
  • Noise cancellation and advanced noise control

Earplugs

No matter what motorcycle you ride, earplugs are another piece of kit to consider, protecting your hearing against wind noise and loud exhausts is important. Getting a pair that fit comfortably is crucial as you do not want the distraction of irritating earplugs getting in the way of your windy roads or track ride. There are lots of options available but the thing to look for is the SNR (single number rating), this is the level of noise reduction offered by the earplugs. The higher the number the more effective they are. This is also backed up by a CE approval of EN352-2, this is the PPE certification for hearing.

Tried and tested by Justin Hayzelden for more than 10 years and over 50,000 miles

Price: £14.94
These squidgy little 'rhubarb and custard' foam plugs were my introduction to hearing protection. They're so easy to use - simply roll between thumb and forefinger, insert into the ear canal and then hold them in place for a few moments as they expand to make a seal. Providing your ears aren't particularly greasy, they should stay in place for the day. I've worn them for in excess of eight hours continuously, and comfort is certainly not an issue. In fact, you can't feel they're in at all.

At 35 dB, the SNR is just about as effective as earplugs get. For keeping out noise, they can't be faulted. However, it is a total block and useful sounds such as engine noise, traffic and voices are heavily muted.

Howard Leight Laser Lites are designed as a disposable, single-use item, which does have environmental implications if you wear them on a regular basis. I've binned countless pairs over the years, and the lack of biodegradability is the reason I no longer use them. It's also why I've marked them down for quality.

Despite those drawbacks, they're still the choice of many professional riders, as they do exactly what they're supposed to and are dead cheap - especially if you buy in bulk.

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Economical

Cons

  • Not great for the environment
  • Quality