ASSOS WOMEN'S JACKETS/VESTS
The aggressive patterning of Assos winter clothing is attractive to the part of us that delights in modern design. But what might make it appealing to a fashionista isn't its most important feature. Clothing like Assos' women-specific umaJack Jacket is an intensely technical piece of bike equipment. It's made to do a difficult job: Make you feel toasty warm on a frigid ride.
Appearances aside, warmth is the purpose of the umaJack. The front of the jacket and the front of the arms are made from Assos airBlock 851 fabric, the flexible, stretchable, waterproof, windproof, and lightweight material that Assos uses to great effect throughout their winter apparel line. The collar is lightweight and windproof, with a stretchier, breathable Roubaix panel in back of the neck. The collar closes with an off-center snap, putting little pressure on the neck. The shoulders and top of the back are covered by a less-stretchy windproof fabric that helps anchor the jacket as a whole to the body. The rest of the body is constructed from a heavy-duty Roubaix fabric. The Roubaix allows the moisture produced by spirited riding to evaporate out the back, while keeping the front protected from the wind.
The umaJack is cut for women. It's shorter in front than the men's equivalent, known as the airJack 851. The umaJack is built with curved panels and narrower shoulders. The pockets are different as well. Knowing that the jacket sits a bit higher on a woman, a traditional top-opening pocket is harder to access. So Assos re-engineered the pockets to be side-opening. The material is stretchy, allowing for anything inside to be held into place by the material when in the riding position, but still easily accessible from the side. A third pocket is zippered for keys, a credit card, and the other things you want to keep ultra-secure.
We're fans of reflective material sewn into cycling garments, and we're happy that Assos put reflective piping on either side of the front zipper and on the edge of the windproof panels in back for safety's sake. It's a small but vital detail. The umaJack comes in Black, Blue, Red, and White. All have black panels for the collar, shoulders and bicep.