Reflective and high-vis clothing
Before we get into this bit, let’s make this clear: no amount of other stuff makes up for a good set of lights. You can be so hi-viz that your skin is reflective, but having something that gives out its own light rather than relying on outside light sources is the very best thing for riding at night or in poor light conditions.
Having said that, we’re big fans of the ‘more is better’ approach, and backing up your lights with some high-vis or reflective clothing is a smart thing to do. Some commuter-style jackets are almost completely high-vis now (have a look at what Hump offers and you’ll see what we mean), but even seemingly small touches like reflective logos or stripes can make a big difference.
All of Pearl iZUMi’s bib shorts and tights have reflective logos, and their jackets have reflective touches too, all of which add up when you’re out riding at night.
One other innovation from Pearl iZUMi comes in the form of BioViz. Far from just another high-vis thing, BioViz has been designed from the perspective of drivers and has been real-world tested to make sure it grabs attention. It’s a system that combines 3M reflectivity, true fluorescents and the movement of the rider to make sure that you’re seen on the road.
That brings us onto one of our favourite places for high-vis and reflectives – your feet. As the only bit of you that’s constantly moving on the bike, feet are perfect places to attract attention and so flashy overshoes are far more than just a fashion statement.
Other eye-catching kit and accessories
One other bit of kit that gets a bad rap from a ‘bike fashion’ point of view is reflective tyres. Sure, they might not be the coolest things in the world, but if you’ve ever seen a set of headlights hit some reflective sidewall stripes side-on then you know just how effective they are – the perfect bit of kit for anyone who has a lot of roundabouts or crossroads on their regular winter riding route. There’s nothing cooler than making it home safely.
If you’re keen to really accessorise your visibility then Hump’s sticker sheets are the perfect way to make anything you want a little more visible in the dark. They come in both reflective and high-vis versions and you can add them to almost anything. Similarly, Hump’s ankle and wrist bands are a great old-school way to make your normal clothing a bit more visible. These are neoprene with a Velcro closure, so they’re more secure than those snap-on ones that can move around as you ride.