With the right motorcycle rain gear, you can ride in the wet without a fuss – but what products are the best? There are plenty of products out there, some that look waterproof but aren’t, others that claim to keep the water out, but end up letting more in, and there are those that genuinely are waterproof, but aren’t breathable in the slightest! To take the headache out of shopping for motorcycle rain gear, we’ve put together a list of the best products out there that will keep you dry and comfortable when you’re out riding and get hit by an unexpected downpour.
Thanks to new textiles and technologies, staying dry has never been easier. If you’re armed with the right gear and you’re wearing it properly, you can keep the rain out better than ever. Gone are the days of water dripping down your back from the exposed neck gap between your helmet and jacket, or that uncomfortable wet, sticky feeling you get when your jacket and pants can’t breathe. You don’t need to cover yourself in WD-40 either, or resort to other home-waterproofing ideas like oiling your jeans, or waxing everything you own. Here are 10 of the best motorcycle rain gear outfits you can buy, and for a reasonable price too.
Motorcycle Rain Gear Buying Guide
What You Need To Know About Motorcycle Rain Gear
Good motorcycle rain gear can make the difference between an awesome wet weather ride and a miserable, soggy experience. Good rain gear will keep water out, keep the wind out, fit nicely over the top of your regular protective gear, and it should breathe nicely so you don’t feel like you’re riding in a sauna. There are lots of different kinds of wet weather gear available, all boasting that they’re the best motorcycle rain gear ever made – but before we have a look at what to look for when you’re shopping for new weather protection, here are some things to take into consideration:
Is Anything Truly Waterproof?
Even the best rain gear can still let the water in. Modern waterproof riding gear is great, but at the end of the day, if the rain’s really coming down and you’re driving into it at speed, water will find a way inside. What’s more, really waterproof materials can make you sweat, which means you can get soaked underneath your waterproof layer thanks to sweat, condensation, and evaporating water. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t give up on rainproof gear altogether. Good quality products will reasonably keep the rain out, and a good rain jacket and pants combo will have breathable vents that stop you from sweating, and circulate any moisture right out from underneath that waterproof layer. Almost every item on the list above will keep you dry through a light to mid-strength downpour. Heavy downpours though? Well that depends on the product.
For the best results, make sure you put your rain gear on before it starts raining. That little tip will go a long way.
Why You Should Wear Rain Gear
It’s important that you wear the best motorcycle rain gear that you can afford. While shopping for rain gear isn’t as fun as buying a new full face helmet or a new set of motorcycle boots, it’s a necessary evil if you’re a serious motorcyclist that rides in all weathers. Riding in the rain is dangerous for motorcyclists. The roads become slippery, other motorists can’t see you as well (if they’re even bothering to look in the first place), and the cold and wet can seriously hamper your riding abilities.
If you’re getting wet, you’re probably getting cold, and if you’re getting cold your reaction times won’t be as fast, your concentration won’t be as sharp, and your overall vehicle control won’t be as good as it normally is. Wearing good quality rain gear that keeps your dry and warm, keeping you and other road users safe. Plus, the right rain gear will also have nice highly visible details on it which will make your more visible to other traffic.
Even if you’re not getting cold and losing your concentration, you don’t want to arrive at your destination soaked to the bone. Nobody looks cool with a nice wet patch around their crotch and ass regions. That’s a fact.
What Else You Should Use To Keep The Rain Out?
We’ve focused on a basic outer layer for the purposes of this list, but if you truly want to have an enjoyable ride experience in the wet, you’re going to need more than a jacket and pants combination. Luckily, there’s no shortage of specialist motorcycle gear that you can throw your hard earned cash on to keep the rain out. There are special motorcycle gloves, or “over gloves” that go over the top of your regular gloves to stop you from getting wet hands. You can invest in special boot covers that can be fastened over the top of your boots to keep the rain from soaking your feet. If you want to be hard-core, you can even get specialist rain boots that have been designed and constructed to keep your feet dry, even in the wettest conditions. Of course, proper full face motorcycle helmets are the best way to keep your face protected and your head dry. If you team all of those things up with a good motorcycle riding rain suit, then you’ll be as waterproof as humanly possible! And if you live in a colder climate, heated gear won’t hurt either!
The Best Motorcycle Rain Gear: Features To Look Out For
When you’re shopping for a new rain suit, there are a number of things you should look out for and keep in mind. Here are a few handy hints about what to look for when buying new wet weather riding gear:
First things first, it’s essential that you make sure that you’re buying a waterproof product that can actually keep the water out! While most wet weather gear is typically made out of genuinely waterproof materials, some are more waterproof than others. Some may only be water-resistant. There is a difference between waterproof and water resistant!
The terms are often used interchangeably, but the fact of the matter is that you want something that describes itself as waterproof if you want the best level of protection possible. Start your search looking for that word, and from there you can delve into the different materials used, and whether they come with PVC or none-PVC backings, and special waterproof coatings. The best kind of waterproof garment is the kind that offers excellent waterproofing whilst simultaneously offering exceptional breathability. The right combination of those two things makes for the most comfortable and dry ride experiences possible in wet weather conditions.
Since a lot of waterproof products are made entirely out of impermeable PVC and plastics to stop water from getting in, without adequate ventilation and air circulation, they won’t be able to let any water or moisture out! Any moisture that’s trapped underneath a waterproof barrier needs to be able to escape, or you’ll get really hot, sweaty, and uncomfortable really fast. It’s not a pleasant feeling. It’s tolerable over short distances, but if you’re planning on covering any significant distances, you’re going to want good vents, air-circulation, and breathability.
While breathability isn’t necessarily essential, it’s something you should seriously consider when you’re buying motorcycle rain gear. Riding around soaked isn’t ideal, but riding around in your own mobile sauna isn’t much fun either.
Sizing is another very important thing to consider when buying new motorcycle rain gear. Once you’ve found a suit or 2-piece that you like the look of, try and locate the manufacturers sizing charts and instructions and follow them exactly. Similarly, make sure you read any online reviews and find out how real life customers found the sizing guide to be, and how they recommend you choose a size. Why do this? Because getting the size wrong isn’t just a matter of looking silly.
If you buy a suit that’s too small, and it doesn’t fit over the top of your regular riding gear, then it’s completely useless to you. Even if it’s a little bit too small: if you can’t get in and out of your new suit with ease, it’s going to be a nightmare to use.
If you buy a suit that’s too big, it will catch the wind as you ride, inflating in awkward places that could limit your field of vision, or even pull you in directions that you don’t want to be pulled in. While having your rain gear acting as a sail isn’t likely to happen, having some plastic blowing around uncontrollably while you’re trying to ride is going to take your focus off of the road. That’s not ideal in dry and clear conditions, so you certainly don’t want to be distracted in wet and miserable ones either. Choosing the right size is imperative.
Visibility is another thing that you need to consider when shopping for the best motorcycle rain gear. We all know that plain black riding gear is obviously the coolest, but we also know that other motorists aren’t particularly good at properly paying attention to the road at the best of times, let alone in poor weather conditions. High-visibility details on your rain gear can make you more visible to other road users, and a bit of fluorescent piping will go a long, long way.
Luckily, the vast majority of modern rain gear comes with high-visibility details as standard. When you’re searching for rain gear, make sure the suit that you’re looking at has enough fluorescent features to make you feel comfortable riding in poor conditions.
The price is probably the most important thing to look out for. Just because something is the most expensive doesn’t always mean that it’s the best, and something that’s outrageously cheap can also be outrageously good, too. It doesn’t really matter what the price of a garment is, providing that you’re buying something that actually does the job, is useful to you, and fits like it should. There’s no point dropping a stack of cash on something so expensive that you’re never going to use it. Rain gear is your first defense against the weather, and it will be facing some punishment. You want to buy something that can withstand a beating…but you don’t want to spend the world buying something you’re too afraid to ruin. If you can find something that will keep you dry, that breathes nicely, and won’t break the bank, consider it a win and make the purchase immediately.
Other Features To Consider
While the above mentioned details are the most important, while you’re shopping around you might want to keep an eye out for a few bonus features that could really influence your purchasing decision. Firstly, you should think about what kind of motorcycle you ride, and what kind of motorcycle riding you do. If you ride a dirt bike, the position of the exhaust pipe might mean you need rain gear that has special melt-proof material installed. If you’re a sport rider, you might want a streamlined sport rain suit with grippy seat pads that keep you glued into your seat instead of an aerodynamically challenged piece of plastic that’ll make you slide out of your seat at the first corner. If you’re into dual sport riding, rain should be a regular menace, so you’ll probably want something that does all of the above!
The bottom line is this: do your research, find the best item for the job, buy it, make sure it fits, and remember that even the most waterproof riding gear can’t resist the power of Mother Nature completely.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What to wear when riding a motorcycle in the rain?
A: The only way to stay dry in wet weather is to wear appropriate waterproof and breathable motorcycle rain gear, which includes a full face helmet, waterproof over-gloves, waterproof boot covers, and either a one-piece or two-piece motorcycle rain suit. These motorcycle rains suits are designed to cover your entire body and keep the rain out. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and they’re manufactured from a wide range of materials. Whatever you wear, make sure you put your rain gear on before any rain starts to fall. If you put your gear on after you’ve already gotten a bit wet, you won’t be completely dry underneath your rainproof later.
Q: What materials are really waterproof?
A: There are many man-made waterproof fabrics, but the vast majority of motorcycle rain gear rely on a combination of Nylon and PVC materials. Gore-tex is also another popular waterproofing material, and Gore-Tex motorcycle rain gear is probably the best stuff you can buy. Leather jackets and pants that have been treated properly are quite good at keeping the rain out. Waxed cotton and leathers are also quite good, but they’re not nearly as good as man-made fabrics at keeping the elements out – they’re not very breathable either. For the best results, stick with man-made fibers and fabrics. Even then, a man-made waterproof fabric is only as good as the quality of the stitching and fastenings that hold it together. Before you buy a product, try and take a look at the stitching, gluing, and what protection the joins have.
Q: Where to buy motorcycle rain gear?
A: If you’re looking for the best deals on rain gear, then buying online is the way forward. There’s no shortage of products for sale on sites like Amazon or Revzilla. There are risks to buying online though: it’s hard to gauge the quality of a product, so we recommend that you read the reviews before hitting the buy button. When reading the reviews, it’s also a good idea to read a broad selection of them. Some people unfairly give bad feedback to an otherwise great product for reasons totally unrelated to the product, or they use the product incorrectly and refuse to take responsibility for their actions. Similarly, some products are just…plain awful. The reviews should also give you a good idea on the fit and sizing of a product too – use other people’s experiences to give you a good idea of what to buy, and in what size.
Q: Where should I store my gear when riding?
A: Under you seat. In your saddlebags. In a storage box. If you can fit is somewhere that you can reach easily, then that’s the place to put it. Luckily, modern motorcycle rain gear is lightweight, compact, and stores down into a small transport bag or something similar. There’s always room for it somewhere if you’re inventive enough. If in doubt, a good bungee cord can secure it down tightly on to the back of your seat or on a luggage rack. If in doubt, you can always carry it around in a special backpack if there’s rain forecast, and leave it at home if the weatherman says it’s going to be clear all day. It’s always good to have you rain gear on your bike, just in case you get caught out by an unexpected downpour.
Q: How do you clean and maintain motorcycle rain gear?
A: Follow the manufacturer’s washing instructions! This is essential because your rain gear isn’t like ordinary clothing. You can’t just stick it in your washing machine and hope for the best; most rain gear features special waterproof agents like Gore-Tex and other special fabrics that can easily get damaged. Damaged rain gear is useless rain gear. If in doubt, hand wash all of your rain gear to ensure that the waterproof integrity of the garment isn’t compromised. Air dry your rain gear too. Hot dryers can also damage the waterproofing features, and direct heat from other sources can also unstick joining compounds and glues that also work to keep the water out. Hand washing and natural air drying are the safest ways to care for your waterproof motorcycle rain gear.