Fox First Layer jersey/base layer £25

Trendy and versatile

BikeRadar score 3.5/5

The First Layer is as simple and fuss-free as its name implies. The fit is close, but not porn star skinny, and the body length is generous enough to avoid skin exposure in even the slouchiest of freeride shorts.

It doesn’t have the multi-panel construction of some of the more expensive styles of base layer, relying instead on the stretch of the fabric to provide that sleek fit. Still, the cut is generous enough to ensure plenty of movement in the shoulders and the body stays put when you move your arms.

Because it doesn’t ride up, it doesn’t cause cold spots – a common problem with more basic styles. It also incorporates heat-transfer back neck detail and flat-lock seams, which make a real difference to comfort if, like us, you often wear a pack for an extended time.

The fabric is exceptionally smooth, feeling more silk than synthetic, and it’s proved extremely comfortable to wear. We’ve washed it quickly overnight to wear between crowded assignments and true to the promise of its anti-bacterial qualities, it hasn’t yet become smelly either.

It’s quite warm when layered beneath another long-sleeve jersey, but for now we’ve been pairing this with a softshell jacket and it’s an effective combination. And yes, it’s shallow, but the discreet Fox logo peeking out at the neck adds a certain something…

For mountain bikers or commuters who are investing in a baselayer for the first time or don’t want to spend too much money, this style ticks all the boxes – it’s versatile enough to take you through three seasons and has the easy-wearing performance of a higher-priced layer.

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