Company Spotlight and Review: Lift Cyclewear Raglan Jersey
Review by Tara Reddinger-Adams
July 9, 2015
I’m a proponent of supporting local businesses, so when I heard about Lift Cyclewear being designed in Minnesota and made in California, I was intrigued.
Lift Cyclewear is the creation of Lea and Brian Leopold who saw a need in the cycling market for apparel that was different from the standard formula of tight spandex, loud prints and limited styles. They wanted to design cycling clothing that was both comfortable on the bike and off the bike, something you could wear to run errands or to the coffee shop. Lea has a background in apparel and Brian in finance and marketing, so together they set out to launch Lift Cyclewear.
Lift Cyclewear is targeted to the recreational cyclist and currently offers women’s jerseys and is planning to launch a men’s jersey line in 2016. Lea and Brian want to appeal to families and individuals looking for a jersey to wear on a ride to the park with their kids and still be able to wear the jersey to meet friends for a coffee. Lea and Brian understand that “style is personal. Fit is personal. Lift may not be for you. We understand this, and we’re surprisingly ok with it.” As someone who is rather particular about style, fit and function, I found it rather refreshing to hear this.
So far, Lea says the response has been fantastic with many women stating that this is the jersey they have been looking for. Another plus for many women is that Lift jerseys fit like any other athletic jersey, which means no more sizing up one or two sizes to get the proper fit.
What’s next for Lea and Brian and Lift Cyclewear? Aside from the 2016 launch of a men’s jersey, they are also working on three women’s bottoms which will have a built-in chamois and incorporate Lift’s three design principals: comfort, function and style. What else will 2016 bring from Lift Cyclewear? Keep posted to Ride Like A Girl Cycling to find out.
Lift Cyclewear Raglan Jersey Review: Initial Impressions
I put my Lift Raglan Jersey to the test on two different types of rides, the first being a very casual bike path ride to a friends house and the second was a mountain bike ride at Battle Creek. On both rides the temps were in the upper 70’s.
I wear a small in a majority athletic tops and a small Raglan Jersey fit just right and was very similar to a slim-fit t-shirt, which I like. It is constructed with flat seams and has reflective details under the vertical stitching on the back to help increase your visibility at night. The Raglan Jersey sports three pockets, two on the sides and one in the back. I really like the placement of the side pockets, which allowed me to have easy access to my cell phone to take pics on the trail. The pockets are just over 5” deep and are held shut by two small magnets sewn into the fabric. The magnets on my jersey did not hold the pockets closed while I was wearing the jersey, and I found this occur regardless of there being items in the pocket. I think a stronger or larger magnet would solve this issue.
The back pocket zips close, is waterproof (more on this later), and is extra roomy, with plenty of space for a wallet, phone and keys. I liked that pocket was placed low enough that the bottom of my Osprey Raptor hydration pack hit just above the zipper, allowing me access with my pack on.
The Raglan Jersey is a polyester/spandex mix that offers UPF 50+ protection from the sun. I am someone who sweats a lot when they workout and found that the waterproof rear pocket caused the area to hold moisture and did not allow the bottom portion of the jersey to breathe. On the mountain bike, my lower back was uncomfortably wet and the lower part of the jersey clung to the small of my back.
Overall, the Lift Raglan jersey has some solid design principals, but I think there is room for improvement in the construction and materials. Using a lighter weight, more breathable waterproof fabric on the rear pocket would greatly help with moisture management and stronger magnets would help the side pockets stay closed. I would also prefer mesh panels on the sides and back to help with ventilation, especially on hot summer days.
Will I continue to wear it? Sure, but I’ll most likely wait until fall comes and the temps drop 20 degrees or more. Do I recommend it? In my opinion that depends on the type of rider you are and what you’re looking for in a jersey. If you’re a looking for a jersey that can hold the essentials in it’s pockets and are you are a 1) casual rider, or 2) someone who does not sweat a ton, then I would say definitely take a look at the Lift Raglan Jersey.
Brand: Lift Cyclewear | Model: Raglan Jersey | Price: $60.00