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Cold Weather Cycling

December 17, 2018 7 min read

Cold Weather Cycling

We know cyclists love lycra. But in the cooler weather, a layer of ioMerino will keep you comfortable for longer. Keeps you warm without overheating. 

Makes chilly mornings infinitely more bearable. Add our natural, high performance merino layers to your kit today. 


Getting a bit chilly when you’re out on your bike?

Plenty of us here at ioMerino like riding our bikes - whether it be on the roads or trails. And being from Australia, it goes without saying we like to stay comfortable and warm, so when the temperature does finally drop during winter, albeit briefly, we’re the first ones to throw on an extra layer or two. And not just any layer, of course, but some of the best, softest, most lightweight, natural performance layers going around.

Oh, and before you even think about whether or not our Merino gear will be comfortable enough for you, rest assured, it will be. Our fabrics are all no-itch, no-scratch, softer than a baby’s bum. Think less ‘old school jumper’ and more ‘smooth as silk is this really even wool’. Trust us, it’s soft. In fact, if you buy something, and don’t agree it’s as soft as even the experts say it is, you can just send it back for a full refund. Even after wearing it a few times. And while we won’t ever try to come between you and your beloved lycra emotionally or spiritually, you'd be kind of nuts to not consider letting a lightweight layer of ioMerino come between you and your lycra physically if you want to stay warm out here. Whether you ride a bit or a lot, fast or slow, here’s our top ioTips for staying warm and comfortable out there when it’s cold.


Cycling Jersey

We know you love your Lycra, but trust us, you’re going to love this jersey even more. The boss is an avid cyclist, so we made this for him. He loved it so much, he wanted you to have one as well. The most important thing to know about this jersey is the fabric. It’s our latest, greatest, finest, most comfortable, lightweight Merino fabric ever. So it will help keep you comfortable for longer through all sorts of conditions. It’ll keep you cool when it’s warm, and warm when it’s cool. And we all know lycra is as stinky as it is colourful, so what our jersey lacks in colour it more than makes up for in natural breathability and odour resistance. It’s so soft we guarantee it will be chafe-free on even the longest, toughest rides. And whether it’s raining or you’re sweating up a storm, it will stay comfortable even when its wet. 

Model wearing ioMerino's Women's Cycling Jersey in Orange Model wearing ioMerino's Men's Cycling Jersey in Chilli and a helmet, standing on a trail with a bike.



Whether you’re wearing overshoes, shoe covers, toe warmers or anything else when it gets cold, (all worthwhile options), a great pair of socks is still going to be the foundation of high performance layering. While your legs will be working hard, pumping blood and generating their own warmth, your feet tend to be more relaxed and get colder faster - even more so if they’re pulling some cold air through your shoes. 

Wear an extra pair of socks and your shoes can start to get a little tight, so you’re much better off chucking a pair of our soft, luxurious ioMerino Mid Weight Mini Crews on to do the job. Anyone who’s anyone out there in adventure world will tell you Merino is the way to go when the temperature drops, and with 80% Merino in them, ours are more Merino-ey than just about any other sock on the market. They’re thick enough to deliver real warmth, but still naturally breathable to prevent you from overheating if and when things do finally warm up. They’re also short enough to look good solo, yet long enough to meet up with your leggings and say ‘hi’ so there’s no cold spots in between.

Model wearing ioMerino's Unisex Mullet Trail Socks in Blue Model wearing ioMeirno's Unisex No Show Socks in Blue


Skull Cap

If you're looking for an extra layer of head warmth when you're out on your bike, then this lightweight skull cap is for you. Made with 96% superfine Australian Merino wool, it's completely breathable and delivers warmth without bulk or overheating, which is a must if you're on the go. It's also got a nice stretch thanks to the 4% Elastane so will sit snug and comfortably on your head. And it's even long enough to pull down over your ears when it's really cold. The light streamlined design means you can wear it under a helmet with no extra bulk or gathering - and it will take up hardly any room in your pack! 



We love keeping you warm here at ioMerino and there’s not many things worse in the world than being cold ‘down stairs’ if you know what we mean. Even if you wouldn’t usually wear undies out on your bike, if your bits get cold, it’s something you might want to consider as they do a very different job to regular bike pants. Our MicroMerino® Altitude Active Boxers for men and Zodiac Boy Briefs for women are the foundation of your cold weather wardrobe and will generate natural, ‘clean’ warmth without the same risk of the stinky, sweaty, overheating you can get from synthetics. Don’t let ordinary undies compromise your comfort when our super comfy underwear will do the job perfectly. Be sure to choose the red ones if you want to go faster. 

Model wearing ioMerino's Men's Altitude Boxers - Ready for Adventure in Blue with Orange stitch Model wearing ioMerino's Women's Altitude in Raspberry


Altitude Tights

Your legs are going to be doing a lot of hard work, so you may as well be nice to them. Put them in a pair of our Altitude leggings and they’re going to love you for it. Remember, lycra and even compression garments are not the same as thermal layers. They may cover your skin, but they won’t necessarily keep them all that warm. In certain conditions, they may even do the opposite! With the natural breathability of our unique MicroMerino® fabrics, these will keep you toasty warm, but keep you from overheating when you’re in action. Wear them under your bike shorts or even under your full length compression or lycra to keep your legs and your rear-end nice and warm. 

Model wearing ioMerino's Men's Altitude Tights - Ready for Adventure in Black
Close up of ioMerino's Women's Altitude Tights - Ready for Adventure in Black


Merino-Compression Leggings

If you’re crazy enough to be out there on your bike when it gets seriously below zero, and you’re looking for an extra level of warmth, or are looking for opaque leggings that can be worn on their own and come with extra compression performance, the Merino-Compression Leggings are for you. They’re more than double the thickness of our Altitude leggings and are incredibly warm and comfortable, natural breathability, temperature regulation, odour-resistance and moisture wicking but still naturally breathable and allow for plenty of movement,

Model wearin ioMerino's Women's Pace Compression Leggings in Black with Outsider Wildflower print Model running in ioMeirno's Men's Pace Compression Leggings - Original



If you’re looking for core warmth, these are so much more than your average Tank Tops. For anyone who’s on the go, these tanks are the perfect choice, especially if there’s a chance you’re going to warm up along the way. Breathable, lightweight, moisture wicking, odor-resistant and ridiculously comfortable. These ‘second skin’ tanks are ‘contact fit’ with 4% Elastane added to supercharge the natural stretch of the 96% superfine Merino for maximum freedom of movement.

These make a perfect base/first layer for core warmth when you’re layering up and need to keep your core warm, or can be worn on their own in milder weather for naturally better performance than cotton or synthetics. The flat lock seams are designed to eliminate chafing and maximize comfort.

Altitude Long Sleeve

The Altitude Long Sleeve can be worn on its own as a next to skin layer in slightly milder conditions (down to around 10°C/50°F), or as a base layer over the Vital when the temperature drops even further. Usually, we’re Merino purists but we’ve made a slight exception and added 4% Elastane to these to give them an awesome, and very comfortable, four-way stretch. Something our Crew and customers all rave about. So no matter which way you zig, zag or fall, you’ll have a great range of movement. No restrictions. No limits. Choose the crew neck for a regular level of warmth and comfort, or go the Zip for even more versatility. Zip up for a warm neck and zip down to let some air in when you need to cool down.

Model wearing ioMerino's Men's Altitude Crew in Rust Close up of model wearing ioMerino's Women's Altitude Crew in Khaki


Altitude Neck Tube

This little piece of fabric is actually a whole lot more multitalented and useful than you might think. Yes, we called it a Neck Tube because you can wear it around your neck, but as ioMerino Head Honcho David Michell likes to refer to it, it’s actually more of a “head thing”. The versatile Neck Warmer can be worn as a face mask, beanie (great for under helmets!), bandana or as its name suggests – a neck tube! Original, right? But in all seriousness, the Neck Tube is super handy, incredibly soft and will keep your neck/face/head warm and will stay warm and not freeze, even when wet. It also happens to come in a pretty awesome range of colours. This is perfect for cold weather. 

Model wearing ioMerino's Unisex Altitude Neck Warmer in Gothic Grape
Model wearing ioMerino's Unisex Altitude Neck Warmer in Blue with Orange stitch



For many cyclist, cold hands can be a real problem in cold weather. Your arms and legs usually warm up nicely enough, but your hands don’t have the same level of circulation and can stay cold, so a good pair of gloves is essential. Ours are lightweight, natural, breathable, soft, warm and comfortable. And you can even use your touchscreen devices without taking them off, thanks to the touchscreen friendly pads on the thumb and forefinger.


Arm Warmers

Our Arm Warmers are ideal for changing weather conditions and trans-seasonal weather. The arm warmers maximise heat retention and offer additional coverage in low temperatures, but are easily removed or rolled down if it warms up or if you're wearing a pack. Unlike regular arm warmers or sleeve, these feature a high merino content so are fully breathable, lightweight, and deliver both UV protection from the sun and warmth without bulk, and help stop you overheating. 

Model wearing ioMerino's Unisex Pace Arm Warmers



Click here to check out our base layers for cycling