Base layers (2-10C range)

Started commuting by bike and looking to keep it up throughout the year (no plans to ride in pouring rain at this time) but live in Canada so will see days as cold as -10C. However, most interested in the +10C to +2C range, below 10 is where I find I do need something more than a jersey and bibs and long finger un-insulated gloves but am still vulnerable to overdressing, overheating and getting sweaty with hard efforts.

What I am most interested in is getting some baselayers that will work well with my SS Gabba and Perfetto ROS LS that will provide a baselayer (so I’m not just wearing bibs under these jackets) but won’t overheat me, get sweaty and hold the sweat. I generally have a warm core and cold hands and feet.

Don’t have any SS baselayers, mostly LS with one SL but would like to get some SS baselayers for this range to pair with the SS Gabba and with SS jersey when needed (I do wear either sun sleeves or arm warmers).

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Hey @Dexvd!

From what you’re describing, I’d probably wear something like this base layer:

Then, your jersey on top, arms warmers, and a vest. Why do I like this setup?

  • Base Layers- These are meant to pull moisture away from your body and evaporate quickly to keep a consistent core temperature. I even use them during the summer, as I find jerseys are not great at pulling moisture away.

  • Arm Warmers- It’s an easy way to keep warm, but you can easily take them off if you find you’re too hot and put them in your jersey pocket.

  • Vest- This one I especially LOVE because it acts as a wind barker for your core, but if you’re overheating, you can simply unzip it open and let it be. You can also quickly zip it back up for a descent or if you are feeling cold again.

Lastly, I personally almost always wear a light neck warmer when cold outside to protect my throat and not get sick. It also works great for descents to cover a bit more of your face and ears :sweat_smile:


I have basically the same kit pieces…except both my SS and LS jerseys are Perfetto, but not much difference.

I have a number of different baselayers that I use with them, depending on temps. For 10*C, I would probably wear what Caro suggested above. Lower than that, I would probably do a slightly warmer SS base layer…the one I have is by Craft.

For the LS , again, I have a number of different weights….ranging from LS version of the SS baselayers above to a merino / poly blend. If things get really cold, I use a thick polypro baselayer with the LS Perfetto.

Check out 32 Degrees for inexpensive baselayer options. Great way to get a multitude of weights without breaking the bank.

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Thanks @Caro.Gomez-Villafane my hesitation with that one is the S/M sizing, I generally wear an XS if available. Have a Castelli Entrata jersey (which is a relaxed fit) in size small and its soo baggy it drives me crazy when its flappy around in the wind. Bought a size small Endura LS baselayer and had to get it tailored all around. Like my kit to fit tight so would be concerned this might not be tight enough to go with the rest of my kit which is mainly XS. If they had a XS-S size it would probably work for me. Want something with a little wind blocking in the front but will keep me dry and let my back vent heat well. Was looking at the Giro Chrono SS, Castelli Prosecco Tech SS, Spatz Race layer SS, Assos Spring Fall SS and other similar options. May order a few different SS options and then based on what I like best order the LS versions.

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Hello Dexvd,
I live and ride in Italy, therefore, with much less rigid temperatures than those of (fantastic !), Canada. However, in winter, there are some days and/or weeks when the cold is felt. I live in the North of Italy, in a hilly area. So… during outings with temperatures similar to those you indicated (range +2°+10°C), as a first layer (base layer), I feel very comfortable with the SIXS short-sleeved shirts . As the cold increases, so as you get closer to +2°C, I choose this but long sleeve. Then, in fact, the question is very personal, I don’t like the heat, I always prefer to ride or run in cool or cold weather. I’m really sick with temperatures rising above 22/23°C! A pathological case I think! ;O) I don’t go out when it rains or snows, (during winter preparation with bad days I run, swim, workout at home, smart trainer…), but I don’t go out. However, even in winter, I do one long outing a week, starting in January. Other brands with which I get on very well are Biotex (which among other things supplies underwear to an Italian Pro team), precisely SIXS, Assos (very expensive) and Castelli; just with regard to Castelli, the garments like the gabba that you use, Ros, are excellent, but I find the underwear a little less performing, that’s why I prefer the garments that I described to you just now. SIXS and Biotex in the first place (I suggest you try the Biotex Lupetto 3d long sleeve! You will forget what it means to have a wet back, absolutely perfect and at a very reasonable price). Keep an eye on their site, as they occasionally make offers and issue promotional codes. It’s Italian, I don’t know if the shipping costs across the border are expensive or not but, if you want, knowing the owner and the staff who work there, I can ask him. Without hesitation, I highly recommend the 3D long-sleeved turtleneck! There is both the version with zip and without. Below I provide you with all the links of the producers that I have mentioned to you and I will mention them in order of preference, entirely personal of course:

The Biotex 3D long sleeve shirt: Lupetto 3D: maglia tecnica invernale

Keep in mind that Biotex also makes 3D socks!

As far as hands and feet are concerned, I feel very comfortable with Biotex 3D socks and, exceptional for the intense cold, those of QIK: their site:

and the Castelli gloves.

Castelli: Il miglior abbigliamento da ciclismo al mondo - Castelli Cycling

*Remember, it’s always better to have a light underglove, (for example in merino wool), and then an overglove than just a super thick glove! The underglove works as an insulator and prevents the dispersion of the heat that your body gives off, in this case your hands. *

I hope I have been helpful, at your disposal. Have a good ride !

Corrado, Italy.

Castelli Prosecco. Yes. It’s my go to layer with my Perfetto and Gabba. Also? Merino wool for the win, it handles such a wide range of temps. Isadore does really great merino kit.

Merino wool base layer or Gore Windstopper top and bibs with windstopper crotch area.

Wool socks. light wool glove liners. All good to have close to your body.

If it’s not too late, bike closet has the alpha ros 2 jackets marked down to $99, usually $390. These are the Cadillac of winter cycling jackets

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Hello, I’m also live in Canada (NB).

For this range, a merino base layer is enough for me. A gilet might be necessary depending on how hard the wind is. Above this, I have a Bontrager Velocis Subzero Softshell Cycling Jacket, which is unbelievable good!

I don’t do fatbike or mtb, only road. I ride until the first snow, and resume about the end of march. At this point the wind is brutal and cold, and this jacket has kept me warm enough, as well as a regular pair of bib tights, nothing crazy.

What I’m struggling are my feet. I’ve been using covershoes, which clearly didn’t work. This year I’ll invest in some proper winter road shoes. I saw a fizik artica r5 and I’m very interested in. Waiting to find a good/better price.

I have a mix of SS and LS merino base layers, a couple of lightweight LS jerseys, gilet, and LS soft shells. Between the bunch, I can mix and match for that temperature range. The key is the wool - it wicks well, doesn’t cost any more than fancy synthetic kit, and doesn’t hold odor like some synthetic kit.

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We don’t quite as cold down here in DC, but a few of my friends swear by winter cycling shoes. Seems to have solved all their cold/numb toe problems. Fortunately, I seem to be fine with quilted, windproof shoe covers.

I’ll definitely try them. Overshoes didn’t work for me. Just making my research to see which one. There was a good price on those fizik arctica last week and I missed it. I’ll keep an eye in something.


Yeah! Those are great options too :slight_smile:

Have you ever thought about giving the Women’s base layers a go?? :face_with_hand_over_mouth: This option can give you more size variety!

I used to work at a bike shop, and a lot of the time, I would recommend trying a “Women’s” size if the men’s felt big. A lot of the time, the men’s and women’s wear are basically the same; they’re just labeled differently.

Just a thought!


Have you tried pepper in your shoes?

The CX Belgians racers dropped me that hint once and I was like :exploding_head:

Okay now that’s just crazy talk right there.

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The wool socks are a must!

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How exactly does that work?

Not sure about your specific use case but I’m a big fan of the Galibier Mistral base layer which I wear in all sorts of colder conditions, including under my v1 Gabba SS. Quality and pricing is amazing, although shipping to the USA pushes iup the total cost. Also have their Mistral winter bib tights and love them too.

Can’t find the link I have a dab thermo base layer which works well for me in those type of temps… They also do merino base layers for a reasonable price.