Road-Test: Void WS Softshell Jacket
Ria Osborne gets up close and personal with this pared-back Scandi winter jacket
I hate the cold and I’m a bit of a wuss, especially if it's dark, early or below seven degrees. To get my reluctant arse out of bed, I wanted a good jacket that I would look forward to putting on.
I’m very selective when it comes to my riding clothes and searched for ages before I discovered the Void WS Softshell. It comes in black and red, but I went for the ninja black version because black goes with everything – it’s a neutral, just like leopard print, right?
My other big driver was that I didn't want to feel or look like I was wearing a crisp packet and this looked cool, matte and well cut.
The jacket was packaged really nicely in a little drawstring bag and came with free UPS shipping, which is a bonus. Picking it up for the first time, it felt premium and well made, with the material boasting a cool matte finish. When I tried it on, it fit really well, I didn’t feel like I was wearing a crisp packet and I immediately set my alarm for 5.45am so I could squeeze in some laps before work.
My first ride out was a decidedly chilly, early lap session around Regent’s Park. My cycling mates made suitably impressed noises when I rocked up and me and the Void got on really well. It’s comfortable, breathable yet windproof and has awesome extra details, such as reflective piping at the front zipper and Lycra cuffs at sleeve end for a comfortable fit.
For our first medium-sized jaunt, me and the Void went out for a Kent loop one Saturday morning. By the time I reached the top of Star Hill I was both simultaneously sweating and freezing cold, yet still felt comfortable.
When it came to packing in the essentials, the Void did the job brilliantly, with the three back pockets managing to accommodate my bank card, a bagel, a pump, some blocs, a flapjack and my phone.
I then went on a 70-mile ride over the Brecon Beacons and it still fit fantastically, kept me warm and dry and looked brilliant at the finish - even if I looked a little rough around the edges.
I love this jacket. The fit is great, it looks good, it’s super lightweight and I'm happy wearing it on a long ride or a quick cycle to the pub. It’s also really good value. The free tracked postage is a massive winner for me.
Void WS Softshell
Was €130/ Now €60
Scores on the doors
Fit = 5/5
Performance = 4/5 (the zip occasionally gets stuck, but no other complaints)
Style = 5/5
I’m a food photographer living in Hackney. When it comes to my cycling CV, I commute most days; I do Regent’s Park laps a few mornings a week and I go for longer Surrey loops and sportives at the weekends. This Christmas I am off cycling in Sri Lanka.
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