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review

Megmeister Women’s L8 Bib Shorts

8
£169.96

VERDICT:

8
10
High-quality bibs with a very comfortable and well-placed chamois using innovative suspension tech
Excellent supportive chamois
Great breathability
Sizing is off
Weight: 
140g

At road.cc 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 Megmeister Women's L8 Bib Shorts feature Megmeister's innovative pad that incorporates suspension technology with the aim of improving pressure distribution – and it works impressively well. Just check the sizing of the shorts before you buy.

The pad is at the heart of any bib shorts, and Megmeister has put in a lot of effort here, having researched and developed the chamois in-house over the past two years.

> Buy these online here

Made in Italy, the innovative chamois is designed to rid rides of saddle discomfort. To achieve this, Megmeister developed its own fabric with in-built damping qualities, similar to suspension systems found in cars, but by matching spring and damper rates to the pressure created by cyclists.

What Megmeister calls suspension refers to the idea that the padding material absorbs the initial impact and then quickly returns to its original state to deal with the next impact.

Megmeister says it has been able to create the crucial damping performance between two outer layers of the fabric by filling the space with threads that act as shock absorbers.

Before even trying on the shorts, the chamois feels a lot firmer than you might expect, and giving it a squeeze, the bounce back feel is noticeable.

> Buyer’s Guide: 16 of the best women’s saddles

Now to the part that matters, does it work?

I found the pad in the L8 shorts really comfortable, whether sitting back on long endurance rides or giving it some over rougher terrain on off-road tracks. It knocks the edge off vibrations and the pressure distribution is excellent. Of all the shorts I've tested, the only one that comes close is Endura's medical grade silicone elastomer pad, but I didn't quite get on with its shape/sizing.

2021 Megmeister Womens L8 Bib Shorts - legs back.jpg

I've also been attacking some Zwift races indoors, and thanks to the laser cut perforations in the chamois, I found the breathability to be very good too.

The fit

Now for the rest of the shorts... The main body is made from a 71% polyamide, 29% elastane blend. As well as boasting good breathability, the shorts also give 50+ UV protection which makes these a solid choice for sunny outings.

This four-stretch woven fabric moulds wonderfully, while supplying a compressive fit in most places – the exception being at the hips.

2021 Megmeister Womens L8 Bib Shorts - back.jpg

The sizing of these is completely off, in my experience. Depending on brands, I'm usually a small or medium. Based on Megmeister's sizing guide on its site and assuming the hip dimension to be the widest point around the bum, I should fit comfortably into the small (93cm-96cm) with my measurement of 94cm. Yet the size small was impossible to pull on.

> Buyer’s Guide: 38 of the best cycling bib shorts

As the hip measurement for the medium, according the Megmeister's site, is 97cm to 101 cm, this should definitely fit. However they're still a squeeze to get on and there's so much pressure around the hips that it causes some discomfort when riding. From my experience it's best to go at least one size up, and I could probably do with going up another because of the tightness that's still there around my hips.

2021 Megmeister Womens L8 Bib Shorts - legs front.jpg

Elsewhere is very good, though. Holding the shorts comfortably and securely in place are two stretchy straps which merge together into an integrated knit back panel. This construction is supportive and doesn't dig in or cause bunching.

2021 Megmeister Womens L8 Bib Shorts - straps back.jpg

A 7cm-wide leg elasticated band with 4cm of silicone gripper keeps the ends nicely in place with pressure evenly dispersed – there's no bulging and the shorts didn't ride up.

2021 Megmeister Womens L8 Bib Shorts - gripper.jpg

Length-wise, these are shorter than most. If you have proportionally longer legs or prefer a longer style you're better off going for something like Nopinz's Pro-1 shorts or CHPT3's Most Days Grand Tour Bib Shorts.

2021 Megmeister Womens L8 Bib Shorts - cuff logo.jpg

Priced at £169.96, these are at the premium end of the market, but not unreasonable given the quality of the pad.

Castelli's Premio Black Women's Bib Shorts are much more expensive at £200 but they do provide impressive all-weather performance. With minimal seams and a supportive pad, they're comfortable for all-day rides, too.

The Velocio Women's Ultralight Bib Shorts are a similar price to the L8s and are very breathable. They also have comfortably wide, flat straps that work as an effective easy-pee design for increased versatility on longer rides, though the Megmeister's pad is superior.

> Read more road.cc reviews of women’s cycling clothing here

Overall, Megmeister has developed an exceptional chamois for these performance bibs. The four-stretch material used in the main body is comfortable and supportive, but the fit around the hips is tight; you'll likely need to size up at least one size, potentially two...

Verdict

High-quality bibs with a very comfortable and well-placed chamois using innovative suspension tech

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Megmeister Women's L8 Bib Shorts

Size tested: Small

Tell us what the product is for

Megmeister says: 'The L8 bib short introduces the 3D WAS (Warp Aero Suspension System) chamois to the cycling world. Saddle discomfort can become a thing of the past following the launch of this new pad technology, developed and designed over 2 years in-house by the research and development team at Megmeister. Guided by science, foam has been replaced by a warp knitted suspension system which improves pressure distribution in the saddle and maintains excellent dampening over time. When scientifically pressure map tested, the 3D WAS pad outperformed conventional foam chamois used by all cycling brands, resulting in a more comfortable, long lasting pain free ride.

The L8 bib shorts are made in an innovative French 4 way stretch woven fabric providing effective muscle support and vibration dampening and excellent dynamic performance for long summer rides whilst being 20% lighter the standard knit fabric. The L8 bib short is ultra-fast drying, breathable, absorbing and dispersing sweat keeping you dry and comfortable on warm days, whilst offering protection from UV radiation at the highest level: 50+

The signature L8 bib short remains true to Megmeister's commitment to push the boundaries with new technical innovations to create the highest performance and comfort."

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

Megmeister lists:

cool touch 4 way stretch woven compression fabric

highly breathable with excellent moisture management

seamless integrated knit back panel

fully integrated customised grip tape

Megmeister reflective logo print on legs

Chamois:

improves pressure distribution in the saddle

maintains excellent dampening over time

excellant breathability and comfort

saddle pain significantly reduced compared to foam chamois

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
9/10
Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the product for fit:
 
6/10

Tight around the hips, elsewhere is good.

Rate the product for sizing:
 
5/10

Megmeister's sizing chart is off; you'll need to go at least one size up, maybe two to get a comfortable fit around the hips.

Rate the product for weight:
 
8/10
Rate the product for comfort:
 
7/10

Comfy straps and incredibly supportive chamois which helps prevent saddle sores and chafing.

Rate the product for value:
 
5/10

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

All good when machine washed at 30 degrees.

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

The chamois is excellent for everything from aggressive to relaxed all-day style riding, as well as from smooth tarmac to rougher stuff off-road.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Very comfy, supportive, breathable and well-placed chamois.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The sizing/fit around the hips.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

At the premium end, but a similar price to Velocio's Women's Ultralight bibs. The L8s have a superior chamois, but the Velocios are very breathable and have an effective comfort break design.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

Overall, the pad is truly excellent. It worked a dream for endurance rides as well as off-road adventures. The sizing chart is off, though; I'd say you'll need to go at least one size larger than the site recommends, and even then you may find the fit around the hip is on the tight side.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 23  Height: 177cm  Weight: 62kg

I usually ride: Road bike  My best bike is:

I've been riding for: 10-20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, Gravel riding, indoor turbo and rollers, track

Anna has been hooked on bikes ever since her youthful beginnings at Hillingdon Cycle Circuit. As an avid road and track racer, she reached the heady heights of a ProCyclingStats profile before leaving for university. Having now completed an MA in Multimedia Journalism, she’s hoping to add some (more successful) results. Although her greatest wish is for the broader acceptance of wearing funky cycling socks over the top of leg warmers.

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