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Galibier Female Specific Route Jacket



Light and packable but limited in scope and the fit won't suit all – though the price is very appealing
Well made
Great protection against cold winds
Poor breathability
Doesn't withstand rain
Short body
High pockets

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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The Galibier Female Specific Route Jacket is a classy looking and exceptionally well-made top for cold conditions. However, although it performs well in terms of insulation, its poor breathability and lack of water resistance are a little disappointing, and its tailoring won't suit everyone either.

For more options, check out our guides to the best waterproof jackets and – for drier days – the best windproof jackets.

> Buy now: Galibier Female Specific Route Jacket for £53.44 from Galibier

We've had a real cocktail of conditions for testing, which has been ideal for finding out if this jacket lives up to Galibier's claims of what it's all about on its website: wear this and 'braving cold and wet conditions becomes effortlessly manageable'.

While I'd agree with the former, its ability to stand up to even light rain is minimal. Galibier actually rates it 1/5 in the technical section for 'waterproofness', which makes the worded description a little misleading. Though it can handle road spray, the jacket didn't stand up to more than five minutes of very light rain. Thankfully, when it did get soaked it didn't feel too weighty.

2024 Galibier Female Specific Route Training Jacket - shoulders.jpg

Galibier also states a 6-15°C window for the jacket in its technical section, which is a big ask of any jacket (though the list of features below that says it's 'suitable for temperatures ranging from 3-13°C'). Regardless of the ambient temperature, I never sensed any wind chill – protection here is first rate – but there's a real price to pay for this in terms of breathability. A moderate effort – what some might call zone 3 – in double-digit temperatures led to a serious moisture build-up inside the jacket.

Ideally I would have lowered the zip, but the jacket's loose fit up top (more on that in a minute) led to cold air rippling down over my shoulders and torso – not great when you have a saturated baselayer. If I kept the jacket zipped up, it simply felt clammy – I was unaware of the extent of sogginess that lay beneath.

I rode several times in the early hours to see how the jacket fared in lower temperatures – more recently we've had 4-5°C first thing. Provided I rode with a consistently steady effort I didn't sense moisture building up, and I was comfortable in terms of body temperature. A few degrees more, though, and the build-up of sweat commenced. In short, I think the 6-15°C window is not great guidance; 3-13°C is heading in the right direction, but 2-8°C might be more appropriate.

While it's not the performance I'd look for in a jacket to wear on my road bike – its breathability simply isn't good enough for faster riding and group rides – it could be useful for commuting, stowing in a pannier for a touring trip, or for a varied day on the gravel, with a view to removing it and packing it away. Its lightweight nature – it's a mere 270g – and low-bulk fabrics make it very portable.

Fabrics and construction

To say I was impressed when I pulled the jacket out of its packet would be an understatement. The royal blue fabric is eye-catchingly bold, and its ribbed texture looks stylish and feels robust. The seams and finishing details – zipper garage, embroidered logo, thoughtfully sized zip toggle (much appreciated, especially for the colder rides when I'd donned my lobster gloves) and reflective trims at the rear – are all first class.

2024 Galibier Female Specific Route Training Jacket - chest logo.jpg

The deep elastic band (with grippy silicone trim) at the rear looks smart, too. It's positioned below a panel of perforated, reflective fabric, which is very welcome, because although the blue is bold it's still not great on dull days.

2024 Galibier Female Specific Route Training Jacket - pockets reflective.jpg

Because the jacket is short in the body, the pocket openings sit high up the back which makes access challenging, particularly while riding. I even found that if I had my phone in the middle pocket for a longer outing I acquired a red patch on my spine, as it was sitting much higher up my back than it should have been.

2024 Galibier Female Specific Route Training Jacket - back.jpg

The pockets aren't super deep (16.5cm), though their width compensates somewhat, and the top edges have no elastic trim, so contents don't feel as secure as with some jackets I've tested.

2024 Galibier Female Specific Route Training Jacket - zip pocket.jpg

There's a zipped one for valuables if you are worried about keys, cash or cards.

Niche tailoring

Galibier says the cut is designed around a female form and it can be worn 'as a standalone or layered'. It might fit some riders well, but I found the jacket notably short in the body, with minimal coverage for my lower back when I was on my road bike.

2024 Galibier Female Specific Route Training Jacket - hem.jpg

And while it was being baggy around the chest, shoulders and upper arms, it was comparatively tight around the forearms, and even more so around the wrist (not always a bad thing in cold weather).

2024 Galibier Female Specific Route Training Jacket - cuff.jpg

As I said earlier, the over-generous fit at the shoulders meant that if I lowered the front zip more than about 10cm, the jacket ballooned. And while sizing down might address the fit up top, I could then be left with an even shorter jacket, and forearm seams that get over-stretched.

2024 Galibier Female Specific Route Training Jacket - zip detail.jpg

So, for me personally, the fit was all wrong. It could suit a large-chested lady with a short body, but if you are not so generously endowed up top and have a longer-than-average torso, you may be disappointed.

Value and conclusion

While I wouldn't recommend this as a training jacket, for touring and commuting it's quite a bargain at £53.44 (if it fits you). Okay, it's not a 'performance' jacket, but you could buy six of these and still spend less than you would on Le Col's Hors Categorie Jacket. Even Gorewear's Everyday Women's Jacket, which is more comparable to the Galibier in terms of performance, is three times the price, and Altura's Nightvision Storm, which I reviewed back in 2020, has gone up to £100 (though it impressed me more than the Galibier).

Overall, I think the Route Jacket is a reasonable choice for touring or bikepacking adventures, as well as casual commuting. Its stylish design, which seems tailored for a more upright cycling position, combined with a practical colour and some excellent reflective detailing, make it appealing for functional bike journeys or sedate days in the saddle when you're really not exerting yourself and its lack of breathability won't be such an issue. Its lightweight design is a bonus too. Just be aware that the fit won't suit all; in my opinion it'll be better suited to those with a bigger-than-average bust and shorter-than-average body.


Light and packable but limited in scope and the fit won't suit all – though the price is very appealing test report

Make and model: Galibier Female Specific Route Jacket

Size tested: Medium

Tell us what the jacket 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?

Galibier says: 'A flattering and minimalist soft-shell jacket, contoured to the female form.

'Experience the superior protection and style of our Route Softshell, meticulously designed for the female cyclist.

'Braving cold and wet conditions becomes effortlessly manageable, thanks to the innovative lightweight membrane of this jacket. Weighing just under 270 grams, it stands as one of the lightest full winter membranes in the market. Whether worn as a standalone or layered, its efficient design ensures minimal bulk.

'Functionality meets convenience with its three rear pockets: two side pockets for easy nutrition access and a central pocket for layers or pumps. Additionally, a zipped security pocket provides safe storage for essentials like keys and cafe-stop cash. The storm-proof YKK zip, adorned with a reflective toggle, allows for easy adjustments even with gloves, ideal for regulating heat during intense climbs.'

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the jacket?

Galibier lists:

-Lightweight Protection: Weighs just under 270 grams with a 100% windproof SoftShell fabric.

-Functional Storage: Three rear pockets with an additional zipped security compartment.

-Visibility & Safety: Sea Blue design with 3M reflective pocket highlights for after-dark rides.

Rate the jacket for quality of construction:
Rate the jacket for performance:
Rate the jacket for durability:
Rate the jacket for waterproofing based on the manufacturer's rating:

Galibier rates it 1/5 in the technical section, which I'd agree with. The worded description, 'braving the cold and wet conditions....' is perhaps a little misleading.

Rate the jacket for breathability based on the manufacturer's rating:

Rated 3/5. I'd argue it's lower.

Rate the jacket for fit:

Really not a brilliant cut for me personally: big up top, short in the body.

Rate the jacket for sizing:
Rate the jacket for weight:
Rate the jacket for comfort:

The bagginess up top wasn't ideal, especially in windy conditions.

Rate the jacket for value:

Much cheaper than most – if it fits you it's good value.

How easy is the jacket to care for? How did it respond to being washed?

No issues.

Tell us how the jacket performed overall when used for its designed purpose

It absolutely needs cold weather, and ideally dry as its ability to fend off rain is minimal. I'd say the temperatures Galibier claims are too high.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the jacket

Quality of fabrics and construction.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the jacket

Fit and poor breathability.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market including ones recently tested on

If it fits you, it's a bargain! Gorewear is probably considered mid-range and Le Col premium; Galibier's comes in significantly less.

Did you enjoy using the jacket? Not for training/group riding. On cold morning/evening commutes, yes.

Would you consider buying the jacket? Unlikely

Would you recommend the jacket to a friend? Unlikely

Use this box to explain your overall score

Though the jacket isn't great for training rides on the road bike, for casual commuting or taking with you touring it's a decent option – if it fits you. The quality of construction, styling and price are all positives. The temperature guidance is rather misleading, though, especially given the fabric's lack of breathability. Overall, putting that all together, I think it deserves a 'quite good' score of 6.

Overall rating: 6/10

About the tester

Age: 42  Height: 173cm  Weight: 64kg

I usually ride: Road  My best bike is: Carbon road.

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: commuting, touring, club rides, general fitness riding, Getting to grips with off roading too!

Emma’s first encounters with a road bike were in between swimming and running. Soon after competing for GB in the World Age Group Triathlon Championships in Edmonton in 2001 she saw the light and decided to focus on cycling. 

After a couple of half decent UK road seasons racing for Leisure Lakes, she went out to Belgium to sample the racing there and spent two years with Lotto-Belisol Ladies team, racing alongside the likes of Sara Carrigan, Grace Verbeke, Rochelle Gilmore and Lizzie Deignan. Emma moved from Lotto-Belisol to Dutch team Redsun, then a new Belgian team of primarily developing riders, where there was less pressure, an opportunity to share her experience and help build a whole new team; a nice way to spend her final years of professional racing. 

Since retiring Emma has returned to teaching. When not coercing kids to do maths, she is invariably out on two wheels. In addition to the daily commute, Emma still enjoys getting out on her road bike and having her legs ripped off on the local club rides and chain gangs. She has also developed an addiction to touring, with destinations including Iceland, Georgia and Albania, to mention just a few. There have also been rare sightings of Emma off-road on a mountain bike…

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Freddy56 | 1 month ago

My wife has this very jacket and loves the shape for a female fit jacket.  

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