It’s not very often that new kit becomes your go-to so quickly, but the Peppermint Glow SS skinsuit was a roaring success on this front. Now, with the piece in the front of my closet, I select it for everything, from commuting to racing, and rides between.
Pink it and shrink it
Peppermint is leaps and bounds ahead of the default “shrink it and pink it” when it comes to the styles and colour ranges they offer women riders. The company is run by a group of female cyclists who felt that there weren’t enough options out there. They have successfully chiselled out a brand that is immediately identifiable.
As a female cyclist, I once found the task of getting a stylish and relatively inexpensive women’s specific skinsuit from off the shelf almost impossible. Often restricted with minimum-order quantities, brands are limited to one style. Many companies can’t seem to justify stocking them at all, so they toy with their custom range to squeeze around the issue. Peppermint, however, have an entire range of skinsuits in a variety of colours to suit every taste.
The women at Peppermint also understand that in a bike shop setting, female riders frequently get advice about the patterns and styles of a women’s range by the same guy who is replacing brake cables. To address this situation, Peppermint invites women to contact the company directly for advice: from sizing to style and any other queries that might pop up. After all, they designed and created the kit, so they know all there is to know.
Before I got the Glow SS skinsuit, they asked for my height, weight and normal dress size. They even requested a few photos and my social media links to get a better idea of my shape. This, I thought, was a nice touch and really added to the experience without making me feel pressured or without being intrusive.
The casual skinsuit
Sizes can vary drastically between brands. Most of my height comes from my legs and almost all of my kit is size small, so I was surprised that Peppermint recommended a medium. They were right, of course. The body is a little long on me, but this is somewhat unavoidable given my shape and the length is relatively unnoticeable.
The shorts are so well tailored that they hug in all the right places without any unwanted bulges. With a comfortable and breathable Italian made CyTech chamois, I never felt a need for creams or adjustments. Even following plenty of use and just as much washing, the fit, elegant fabric, and fabulously sharp colours are as good as new.
The cuffs and relatively lose fitting silicone gripper hold the legs in position comfortably. Coupled with a laser-cut finish, the shorts have an elegant, professional feel. The dreaded “sausage leg” phenomenon fades into a distant memory. As the company progresses and orders increase, I hope to see the same finish on the sleeves, especially on one-piece item such as a skinsuit.
Surprisingly bigger than they look, the two rear pockets could easily hold my phone, a few snacks and a lightweight jacket. Usually, I prefer an inner pocket or zipper for valuable items, such as a bank card and/or cash, but the pockets are deep enough to carry these with some confidence.
From selecting your kit to taking comfort breaks everything is a touch easier with a skinsuit. Gone are the days of matching your outfit or searching for somewhere to hang your jersey whilst you deal with your bibs.
Peppermint Glow SS skinsuit
The verdict on the Peppermint Glow SS skinsuit
It’s not very often the words “casual” and “skinsuit” are found together in one sentence. All too often, we associate skinsuits with a tight head-down/bum-up race posture, largely because of the relative inability to stand up once you have threaded yourself into it. Branching away from the norm, the Peppermint Glow SS skinsuit ($275) hasn’t been designed with pro racing in mind. Instead, it boasts a casual fit that is perfect for longer days in the saddle.
Finally, we have some kit that will make the boys envious! The colour and pattern is bright, bold, and put quite simply, very Peppermint. Coupled with quality fabric and an elegant fit, you feel confident and feminine, with a touch of badass.