Castelli Principessa Women's Shorts $149.95
The princess becomes the queen.
The Castelli Principessa Shorts are the total package, combining a race-level cut with base mile comfort. Essentially, these shorts bridge the divide between the Castelli's top-tier Body Paint 2.0 and the more indoor/outdoor versatility of the comfort-driven Castelli Gisele's.
These Shorts are constructed with eight panels of lightly compressive Action Lycra, giving them enough return to support you on century rides and multi-day tours. Additionally, when mated with the purpose-driven panel locations, Action provides a focused muscle group support that dissipates the fatigue-inducing effects of road vibration and oscillation.
In terms of fit, the Principessa has been cut and paneled in order to mimic the body's position throughout the movements of cycling. Accordingly, the contoured design eliminates any bunching, pulling, and the chafing that occurs as a result. Securing the fit is Castelli's Soft Touch waistband. This waistband is gentle against the skin and rises a little higher in the back in order to prevent a gap from forming between your shorts and the jersey. At the leg cuffs, Castelli knit the grippers of the Giro3 leg bands directly into the fabric of the shorts. This distributes them over a wide surface area, creating a comforting, even pressure with its lay-flat hem. So, you'll find that these grippers keep the shorts in place without creating any discernible pressure points.
For further comfort, the shorts feature Castelli's highest end insert, the ProgettoX2 Air. This pad has a four-way stretch, so as you move and shift, the chamois moves with you, not against you. The padding is constructed with variable density, meaning that it's thicker under your sit bones, tapering off in areas where too much padding is unwelcome. It has a seamless bacteriostatic microfiber cover that's gentle against the skin in order to reduce the occurrence of irritation and abrasions.
Reflective rear tabs have also been added in order to keep you visible to motorists in low-light conditions.
The Castelli Principessa Shorts are available in five sizes from X-Small though X-Large and in the colors Black/white piping and White/black piping. Please note that Castelli estimates a useful temperature range of about 63 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit for these shorts.
Castelli Sizing Chart
- How to Measure:
- For best results, take measurements over your underwear.
- Measure under your arms, around the fullest part of your chest.
- Natural Waist:
- Measure around your natural waistline, keeping the tape a bit loose.
- Measure around the fullest part of your body at the top of your legs.
- Using pants that fit well, measure the crotch seam to the bottom of the leg.
Reviews & Community
I prefer the Vizio Tre
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
After buying the Castelli Vizio Tre shorts, I snagged the Principessa thinking I would like them even more given top of the line ProgettoX2 Air chamois. I actually prefer the Vizio Tre, but kept the Principessa and do a fair amount of riding in them each week. The waist band is wide and comfortable and I do love the leg grippers. The shorts are well designed and look great, but the fit is a little odd. I find they are a bit bunchy and definitely fit tighter than the Vizio Tre. I'm 5'6" 135lbs and ordered a medium and a large. The large was huge, while the medium is quite snug in the hips. I also find the chamois to be a little too much. I wanted to love it, but I find there is just too much material. These are very good shorts, but if you are choosing between these and the Vizio Tre, grab those instead or perhaps go up to the Body Paint shorts which are more worth the extra money.
Ugh, weird fit or cut or something
- Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
I'm not sure if this is a materials issue, a cut issue, or an issue with my body type (5'7", 120#), but I tried both a Small and a Med in these, and they looked just awful. The stitching bunched in a horribly unattractive way, so back they went. For reference, size small has worked great for me in the Castelli body paint shorts and wind-stopper tights. Great customer service from BackCountry.com on those exchanges.