The Rivelo Lanterne Women's Jacket offers decent protection against cold winds without causing you to instantly boil in the bag. However, its unique glow properties aren't so impressive, and it may struggle to compete with some brighter, more reliable high-vis tops. It doesn't have to be pigeon-holed into night-time use or low light conditions, but it's not as versatile as you might hope.
I've used the jacket in a range of weather conditions and would say it's at its best in cold, windy, dry weather, doing a good job of keeping you warm.
The side panels are an open mesh, which really helps with ventilation, while the front and rear are a more solid weave – it reminds me of crepe paper, without the visible wrinkles.
If the weather warms up (after an early start), as is typical for this time of year, you can easily unzip at the top or bottom to create some airflow. The zips are smooth running and I never found myself fighting to use them in either direction. The guard is also wide enough to sit well away from the zipper and not get caught up in it.
The jacket is rated 3K for breathability, which isn't particularly high, but we haven't had many days where the temperature has hit double figures – testing's been mainly between 2 and 8°C, and I've found it perfectly tolerable for steady rides of any duration. Putting in any kind of prolonged effort induces sweating, for sure, but I've found it better than some higher rated jackets. I suspect the mesh side panels are contributing to temperature regulation.
The Lanterne has a 5K waterproof rating, the minimum for a garment to be called 'waterproof'. It doesn't stand up to anything more than a light shower, though it continues to offer some protection from the wind if it gets wet.
It weighs just 113g and packs down very small into its rear pocket when not needed.
Perhaps the main selling point of the jacket is its phosphorescent fabric, which charges up by absorbing UV light during the day (or from a torch/smartphone) and then actively glows for up to an hour. You can see the intended behaviour of the fabric in this video. It's quite fun, and works well, but the intensity of the glow has faded a little over the four weeks of testing. It still offers some glow, but it's not quite as strong as it was.
Once the 'charge' has run out, I'd describe it as lightly reflective. The trims on the cuffs, hem and zip are very effective in headlights, but overall I'd say the whole jacket would struggle to compete in the night-time visibility rankings with the likes of Proviz and ETC, though you lose out on packability.
Going for a gilet as an alternative, such as Proviz's Reflect360 CRS Plus or ETC's Arid, could still lend you more reliable visibility while reducing bulk, and without needing to be charged. Both are cheaper at rrp too.
Leaving aside the glow-in-the-dark properties, the Rivelo fits well on the bike and comes up true to size. The fabric is quite stretchy, moulding well to your body shape. I didn't find it restrictive on the bike and have even used it for gravel riding, when I tend to be moving around a little more than on the road. It moves freely with your movements on and off the bike.
It has good length in both the body and sleeves. I could pull it right down over all my jerseys, even with full pockets. The neckline isn't as high as some – I could do with a bit more here – but you can zip it right up and it's not stifling. It sat below or level with all of my jerseys, so there was no direct contact with the skin, and there's a decent zip garage to protect your neck in any case.
The cuffs are pretty tight, which means no air rushing up your arms or flapping sleeves, but I did always have to resort to pulling the jacket off inside out. If you have gloves on, they'll probably need to come off before the jacket – I found only very tight mitts allow it to pass over. It doesn't lend itself to quick, on-the-bike removal.
The seams and workmanship throughout are good. Although I've frequently yanked the jacket off and pushed it to its limit over a bulky jacket, it's not showing signs of giving way.
When wearing the jacket, the storage pouch works as a rear pocket. The flap makes it pretty secure, if a little awkward to access anything as big as a smartphone.
There's also a hook for hanging up the jacket, which is always handy, though perhaps not recommended in the bedroom unless you like a night light...
The Lanterne only comes in this one colour option, and it's had plenty of washes – mud splatters at this time of the year are a part of virtually every ride. I've followed the care instructions provided by Rivelo and it's not as bright as it was. The fabric is clinging to some stains too (bananas in a rear pocket).
I'd say the fabrics haven't deteriorated in terms of their stretch, breathability or water resistance, but perhaps the regular washing has affected the glow property.
There aren't many alternatives that combine wind protection and packability with such visibility aims, so it's hard to find direct comparisons.
As mentioned already, Proviz and ETC offer jackets and gilets that do some of this for less, while some cheaper packable jackets offer wind protection without the 'glow'. The Huez Starman we tested a few years ago was both packable and reflective – and £160.
If you put the glow feature aside, the Lanterne offers decent protection against cold winds. In that case, it could be compared with something like Liv's £64.99 Cefira Wind Jacket, though the fabric isn't as accommodating as Rivelo's. Alternatively, something like Sportful's Hot Pack Easylight is an option for £75, available in three different colours, including white and bright orange. (Tass tested the Hot Pack NoRain a few years ago, but that's gone up to £150.)
I can't fault the workmanship, fit and cut of the Lanterne, but £100 seems steep compared with others offering the same breathability, packability and protection for less. Okay, they don't have its 'glowing' property, and if you really want that then you might deem it a price worth paying, but this is not as powerful as it was on day one, making it harder to justify the investment.
Good fit, packable and decent protection, but questionable 'glow' life makes the price hard to justify
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Rivelo Lanterne Women's Jacket
Size tested: Small
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?
Rivelo says, 'Our essential emergency jacket, the unique phosphorescent fabric offers wind resistance and glows in the dark to aid low light visibility. 'Charge it up' in daylight, with your phone or a torch, and depending on the intensity and time in the light source it will glow for up to 1 hour. Reflective binding at the cuffs and hem as well as reflective logos provide further visibility. It also packs down small into the rear pocket ready for when you need it.'
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the jacket?
Rivelo lists these features:
-100% Polyester Phosphorescent lightweight fabric - absorbs UV light and glows in the dark
-Stretch Polyester mesh underarm & side panels aid freedom of movement and breathability
-Reflective stretch binding at cuffs & hem for added low light visibility
-5K water resistancy & 3K breathability
-Full length 2-way cam lock zip with zip garage & guard for protection
-Angled collar, lined in mesh, for comfort and weather protection
-Patch pocket at back hem doubles as a stuff sack
-Reflective printed logos
-Soft gros grain ribbon back neck hanging loop
-No scratchy labels - care label is sewn flat
Sound, with no obvious weaknesses. It's taken some rough handling, getting pulled on and off, and hasn't paid a price, to date.
Offers good ventilation to improve breathability. Glow performance has declined over the test period.
While the jacket itself might be durable, its primary design feature is not outstanding here.
It handles the lightest of showers and nothing more. Rivelo only claims a 5K rating, the minimum to be described as 'waterproof'.
I'd say it's as good, if not better, than the claims. The mesh side panels are helping here, I think.
Snug but stretchy. Plenty of length. Tight cuffs.
Stay true to size.
Not the best value given its performance is already compromised, but there are few direct comparisons that aim to combine packability and protection with such visibility – the Huez Starman is one, and that was £160 when we tested it. It's still a decent protective layer, but there are better value alternatives.
How easy is the jacket to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
'Mild, non-bio detergent. Hand or machine at 30 degree' are Rivelo's instructions. Sadly, it's not the bright white it was at the start and it's clinging to stains too.
Tell us how the jacket performed overall when used for its designed purpose
If you consider it solely as a 'glow' jacket, its performance has deteriorated a little. It performs well as a lightweight, packable windproof.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the jacket
Cut – length in body and sleeves.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the jacket
Glow feature is already deteriorating.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market including ones recently tested on road.cc?
There aren't many alternatives that combine the aim of high visibility with wind protection and packability. Proviz offers some jackets and gilets that do some of this for less, while some cheaper packable jackets offer wind protection without the 'glow'. The Huez Starman we tested a few years ago was £160.
Did you enjoy using the jacket? It didn't set my world on fire.
Would you consider buying the jacket? No
Would you recommend the jacket to a friend? Unlikely
Use this box to explain your overall score
A great cut and fit and good breathability, but with a 'glow' that isn't as bright as it was four weeks ago, making the £100 rrp hard to justify over cheaper alternatives that protect, pack away and breathe just as well.
About the tester
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…