Primal Wear Clothing Review

Reviews & Tech

08/22/2008| 0 comments
by Ron Meisel and Rhonda Osborne
Primal Wear Vagabond short.
Primal Wear Vagabond short.

Primal Wear Clothing Review was given the opportunity to test men's and women's clothing from Primal Wear.

Recently, was given the opportunity to test men's and women's clothing from Primal Wear. Let's see if a company founded by cyclists responds to cyclists' needs.

The women's short sleeve Dragonfly jersey and Prima road short were tested.
From a female perspective, the most appealing part of the jersey was the design. I loved the way the dragonfly is integrated into the combination natural/techno background, and I love the soft blue color choice. The zipper is virtually undetectable, hidden within the artistic design. What craftsmanship!

As a first time wearer of cycling sportswear, I found the top surprisingly light and airy. It never clung to my skin as other tops do when I perspire. The zipper length makes it easy to put on and to adjust while wearing. The zipper's action is smooth and easily adjusts. The jersey's fit is true to standard sizing.

The eleven-panel women's Prima road short made for a perfect fit. The leg elastic was not too tight. I rode in the drops continuously, and the waistband never rolled or pinched. Obviously, this was because of the design of non-roll elastic only in the back of the short. The pad was thick enough to provide good cushioning on a rough road. In addition, it didn't feel or look bulky.

In keeping with the artistic theme, the design on the men's X-Ray jersey gave the appearance of an airbrushed art piece. The hidden zipper did not detract from the design of the jersey. The double-knit Pro Sensor fabric wicks moisture off your body to the fabric's outer layer. This allows moisture to spread out and evaporate quickly.  The jersey remained comfortable in the hot sun and never stuck to the body.

I own another Primal Wear jersey that I purchased in 2002. The flameout design still appears brand-new with no fading. The zipper functions as new. Unlike other used jerseys, I cannot find one loose thread in any seams. The stitching has not unraveled, and the elastic has remained taut. I was pleased to test and compare another piece of superb artwork from Primal Wear. I expect several years' worth of problem free wear.

The men's Vagabond Baggy Short was a first-time test for me. The most appealing function was the integration of the lycra portion into the waistband of the nylon outer shell.  The joining of the two fabrics did not create excessive bulk in the waistband. The 1-3/8"-wide elastic waist was not too tight yet kept the shorts on the waist. There are two convenient quick release buckles that can be cinched for size adjustment. There are additional reactive side and back panels that allow for ease of movement. While pedaling, the bottom of the legs ride a couple inches above the knee and do not creep up into the crotch.  Even though there are inner and outer fabric for the legs, they do not get hot. Though they are called baggy, they never hindered movement on the bike. While in and out of the saddle and during technical maneuvering, I experienced no problems with snagging on any parts of the bike or its components.

The style is that of a leisure non-cycling short. Therefore they can be worn anywhere before, during, and after a ride.  It is amazing how they feel like an everyday short but are incredibly durable and breathable. You can imagine the difference between walking into a local, small-town watering hole wearing a "normal" short such as the Vagabond as opposed to a skin-tight traditional road short which would normally draw a few stares from the patrons.

This review contains comments not only about the function but about the style of Primal Wear clothing. This is not by accident. Their colors and artwork stand out from the crowd of cycling clothing. One of the foundations of Primal Wear is to create art from the world around us. They do this by using "the finest materials, craftsman, and advanced technology" without taking a shortcut. I believe that Primal Wear truly meets this standard. So go out there and buy yourself a piece of art.

Visit Primal Wear at

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