As an avid motorcyclist with years of experience on both city streets and winding back roads, I’m well aware of the importance of good riding gear. It’s not just about the helmet, boots, and jacket; what you wear underneath your outer gear matters, too. Your base layer can play a big role in comfort during summer rides, especially when the temperature starts to rise. Today, I want to share my top five picks for the best summer motorcycle base layers in 2023. These selections are based on personal experiences, in-depth reviews, and features that motorcycle riders value the most.
Top 5 Best Summer Motorcycle Base Layers for 2023: A Rider’s Perspective
1. Dainese D-Core Thermo Tee SS
If you’re looking for superior moisture-wicking with a comfort-focused design, then the Dainese D-Core Thermo Tee SS should be on your radar. Made from environmentally friendly recycled yarn, this base layer ensures excellent breathability while offering superior moisture management to keep you dry even on the hottest summer rides. Its seamless build and active cooling system make it comfortable to wear for extended periods. Additionally, the press-structure design supports the muscles and helps combat fatigue, which comes in handy during long-distance summer rides.
2. Klim Aggressor Cool -1.0 Base Layer
Another high-performing option that I’ve come to appreciate is the Klim Aggressor Cool -1.0 Base Layer. It uses Coolcore’s chemical-free cooling fabric that is engineered to transport sweat away from your skin and regulate body temperature. This keeps you cool when it’s hot and warm when it’s cold, allowing for year-round use. This base layer is also lightweight and has an ergonomic fit, making it an ideal pick for those long, scorching summer rides.
3. Rev’it! Airborne LS Shirt
The Rev’it! Airborne LS Shirt has been my go-to base layer for the summer, and for a good reason. It uses a blend of polyamide and elastane to provide a snug fit without restricting movement. This shirt’s key feature is the PWR|Cool technology, which uses a special polymer to absorb and store water from your sweat, gradually releasing it for evaporative cooling. This unique feature, coupled with excellent breathability, makes it a great choice for beating the summer heat.
4. Alpinestars Ride Tech Summer Base Layer
The Alpinestars Ride Tech Summer Base Layer offers riders a body-mapped design with strategically placed open mesh inserts for optimized cooling performance. The construction of this base layer is stretchy and body-conforming, providing an ideal fit. One of its standout features is its compression functionality, which can aid in muscle recovery during long rides. Plus, it’s designed to work with Alpinestars’ suit ventilation for superior cooling, making it a perfect option for hot weather rides.
5. Under Armour HeatGear® Armour 2.0 Leggings
Though not specifically designed for motorcyclists, the Under Armour HeatGear® Armour 2.0 Leggings have been a surprising addition to my summer gear. The HeatGear® fabric is ultra-lightweight, and wicks sweat fast, keeping you cool. It fits like a second skin, and the stretch-mesh gusset ensures strategic ventilation. These leggings are also equipped with a built-in “moisture transport system” that accelerates evaporation, enhancing its cooling ability. They have been a game-changer for my lower body comfort during sweltering summer rides.
Choosing the right summer motorcycle base layer is a balance between comfort, performance, and personal preference. While my picks may provide a good starting point, it’s important to try different brands and styles to see what works best for you. No matter what base layer you choose, always remember that summer riding is about staying cool, dry, and comfortable while enjoying the open road. Safe riding!