Swrve Cordura Slim jeans review£77.00

Leave the kit at home, these are urban jeans done right

BikeRadar score4.5/5

Jeans are a staple in almost everyone's closet, and while most are acceptable on short rides, there are a handful of companies that think merely being acceptable isn't good enough. One example is Swrve, a Los Angeles-based company that aims to make jeans work just as well on the bike as in the office or the bar.

Cordura material is claimed to four times more abrasion resistant than regular denim
Cordura material is claimed to four times more abrasion resistant than regular denim

Swrve Cordura jeans spec overview

  • 55% cotton, 30% polyester, 15% nylon T420
  • Triple chain stitch on high-stress areas
  • Front coin pocket
  • Low waist in front
  • Higher waist in back
  • Seamless diamond gusset
  • Rear accessories pocket
  • Reflective strip on both inside legs 
  • YKK metal zipper 
  • Rivets 
  • Sold in waist sizes 30in-36in
  • Available in 32in regular and 34in long leg lengths

Swrve Cordura jeans fit

Swrve offers its jeans in Skinny, Slim, and Regular designs. We tested the Slim version of the Cordura jeans and the fit was just that. Based on our experience with the Slim versions, you'd better have very thin legs if you have the Skinny version in your shopping cart. Thankfully, there is a bit of stretch in the material.

The slim fit was slim, even on my gangly legs
The slim fit was slim, even on my gangly legs

Regarding the comfortable bit of give, Swrve says: "We added the stretch element into our denim as we wanted the garment to not only move comfortably with the user, but also have the right amount of spring back after wash. We tried very hard to eliminate sag and/or deformation of the fabric." 

Swrve Cordura jeans on the bike

Riding in the Swrve jeans is where they stood out the most. Despite the trim fit, the slight stretch worked wonderfully – we never noticed any binding or interrupted pedaling. 

The low rise of the waist in front and the higher waist in the rear are a well thought out detail. The reflective seam at the lower leg opening also shows that the folks at Swrve are paying attention. 

There's a smaller pocket inside the right rear pocket
There's a smaller pocket inside the right rear pocket

The gusset through the crotch area worked well with no unnecessary hot spots or rubbing coming through at the saddle area.

Nylon fabric Cordura claims to be four times more abrasion resistant than regular cotton denim material. We didn't crash in them, but we did wear them a lot and washed them numerous times and they're holding up very well, with zero issues so far. The fit and color (they come in blue or black) has remained consistent.

Swrve Cordura jeans vs the competition

We recently tested another pair of riding jeans, Thunderbolt Sportwear Original Mark II, and found the Swrves are definitely more trim fitting. The Swrves are also more jean-like in appearance and feel. 

Both cuffs have reflective detailing
Both cuffs have reflective detailing

On the flip side, the Schoeller Dryskin material that makes up the Thunderbolts has way more stretch and much more water resistance, but also has a shiny finish and a more technical feel. 

As for pedaling, the Thunderbolts would be our pick for long commutes, whereas the Swrves would be our choice if we knew we were getting drinks after work. 

Russell Eich

Tech Writer, US
Russell fell head over heels in love with bikes in the '90s, and has been involved in the bike industry ever since. Between wrenching in bike shops, guiding professionally, and writing about bikes, Russell has honed an appreciation for what works, gained knowledge of what doesn't, and can barely contain his enthusiasm for what comes next. His two-wheeled passion continues in the Rocky Mountains high above Boulder, Colorado.
  • Age: 39
  • Height: 6'3"/190cm
  • Weight: 175lb/79kg
  • Waist: 34in/86cm
  • Chest: 42in / 107cm
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: High altitudes, forgotten singletracks, bike parks, roads without cars
  • Current Bikes: Custom Meriwether steel hardtail, Specialized S-Works Enduro 29, Kona Jake the Snake, Trek 69er, and a bunch more
  • Dream Bike: Yeti SB5c, Intense Tracer 275C, Black Cat custom road
  • Beer of Choice: Gin + Tonic
  • Location: Rollinsville, CO, USA

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