The OneTen Intimo is a good, well thought-out base layer for cooler rides.
OneTen is a new British bike-clothing brand that concentrates on 'thermophysiological interactions'. Do what? They've used thermal body mapping in the design process - looking at where you produce heat and where you sweat - to decide what fabrics to use and how to use them.
The Intimo base layer is 100% polyester throughout, but in very different weaves. The back, shoulders and the underside of the arms are made from a mesh. It's not quite an open mesh - you can't see through it - but it's lightweight and very breathable. It's textured so that it sits off your skin slightly for extra ventilation and it wicks sweat away fast.
The front panel - which loops around the sides too - and the tops of the sleeves are made from a denser weave. These are in no way windproof, but they do provide more protection from cold air. The Intimo is similar to many jerseys and gilets in that you get solid panels for the exposed areas and mesh panels for the more areas that are more sheltered from the airflow.
I've had base layers with front panels that are windproof in the past and they've not worked well for me. The windproof areas are never breathable enough and I've ended up with them sticking uncomfortably to my skin as I sweat on the first big climb. I'd rather have the windproofing further away from my body.
The Intimo's front panel isn't like that. It's simply a bit denser than the back to keep the chill off your chest and even out the temperature between the front and rear. This base layer doesn't add as much insulation as a full-on thermal, but it's a good option for autumn and spring, or worn under two (or more) other layers in the winter.
It does a good job of drawing moisture away from your skin as well, so you stay comfortable. Work hard enough and any base layer will eventually become waterlogged but the Intimo puts in a good wicking performance and it dries out quickly enough.
The rear of the Intimo is slightly extended so your back always stays well covered while the arms and the neck hole are slightly forward to sit properly when you're in your riding position. There are no internal labels to irritate you, the care label being printed on the outside of the fabric, round the back where it won't be seen.
I guess I'd prefer flat-lock seams over conventional seams for the ultimate in comfort but that's really not a biggie. The seams here aren't prominent.
The Intimo is also available in sleeveless (£24.99) and long sleeve (£29.99) versions
Very good base layer for cooler rides, with a little extra wind protection at the front
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Make and model: Oneten Intimo Short Sleeve Base Layer
Size tested: Grey/White - M
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
OneTen say, "We've designed the Intimo base layer for riders of all levels and disciplines, and it's as practical on the daily city commute as it is essential for high-level competition.
"Used as part of a layered clothing system it will make sure you stay warm and snug on the coldest of winter days; while its ability to help your body regulate heat and moisture will also keep you cool, dry and comfortable in milder conditions.
"Simple, durable and versatile, the Intimo is an essential element of your cooler-conditions cycle wardrobe."
Yes, that's all fair enough although it seems more useful for the performance-type rider than for the city commuter.
I've got on well with it. A little extra protection from cool air at the front without sacrificing breathability.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Age: 40 Height: 190cm Weight: 74kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, sportives, general fitness riding,
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now pushing 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.