Columbia Unisex Freezer Zero Cycling Arm Warmer
Phiten Compression Single Arm Sleeve
Castelli Nanoflex+ Armwarmer
Cycling arm warmers are one of the most versatile pieces of kit you can take on a ride. They can be worn under other layers for extra warmth, on their own to keep the wind of your arms, or you can take them off and shove them in your back pocket. They’re an essential bit of kit for those days when you don’t know what the weather’s going to do. Here are the best cycling arm warmers on the market.
The Best Cycling Arm Warmer
Columbia is a pretty solid choice when it comes to protective, cold-weather clothing. So, when we saw these Unisex Freezer Zero Cycling Arm Warmers, we knew they’d be a hit. They’re pretty standard arm sleeves in that they have all the features you’d expect (we’ll get to that in a second), but it was the design that made them stand out for us. They come in a range of modern and retro designs that will spice up your monotone riding gear.
But the design alone wasn’t enough to make these our Best Choice product – they have to perform well. They’re designed to be used on hot sunny days, instead of as an added layer in winter. Because of this, Columbia has put a lot of focus on its ability to protect against harmful UV rays, which is equivalent to UPF 50 protection. They also have advanced cooling and moisture-wicking technology that pulls sweat away from your arm and lowers the temperature of your skin efficiently. In short, they are the best cycling arm sleeves for hot weather and are easily one of the best looking. An ideal gift for cyclists in your life.
6 colors available
- Weight1 pounds
The next product isn’t technically a cycling arm sleeve. Well, it can be worn as one, but it’s designed to assist in muscle recovery and fatigue. It’s commonly worn by baseball players, tennis players and other sportspeople that use their arms a lot. The tight-fitting design helps increase blood flow around the arm, which improves muscle recovery. The reason we’ve included EvoShield Compression Cycling Arm Warmer on this list is that it could really help out cyclists that struggle with arm injuries. Sometimes a standard cycling arm sleeve doesn’t feel tight enough and your arms can feel unprotected.
It’s worth mentioning that you only get 1 sleeve in this pack, which makes it more expensive than a lot of arm warmers. But, it is really high quality and EvoShield are a well-known brand in the industry, so it’s money well spent. It also has moisture-wicking technology to stop the sweat from building up but there’s no cooling features or any extra protection for the winter. So, it’s not designed as a seasonal accessory. If you do struggle with fatigue or you’re carrying an arm injury, you might find it useful to wear this underneath another pair of cycling arm warmers. For more amazing protective equipment for cyclists, check out our guide to the best mountain bike helmets.
- Weight22.7 Grams
Louis Garneau is one of our favorite cycling brands. Started by the Canadian cyclist of the same name, they make some of the best cycling gear and the prices are reasonable. One of the things we like about Louis Garneau Cycling Arm Warmers 2 is the simplicity of the design. They come in four block colors and have a small, reflective logo for safety. They will go with most cycling outfits, which makes them versatile.
The feature that really stood out to us is the silicone grip system. They have a sticky strip that grips the bicep and stops the arm warmers from falling down. This was a huge problem in old-school arm warmers and it’s a huge relief when you don’t have to keep pulling them up. They also have effective moisture-wicking technology that keeps your arm dry and at the perfect temperature. Plus, the fabric used is a 4-way stretch, so whichever way you bend your arm, the fabric will move with you. They’re one of the most comfortable arm warmers on the market. Be sure to also check out our guide to the best cycling gloves and pick your favorite pair.
4-way stretch fabric
Reflective for safety
4 colors available
- BrandLouis Garneau
Gore Bike Wear arm warmers are designed to be used in wet and windy weather. So far, the products we’ve seen have been mainly aimed at fairweather days where you need a bit of protection from the sun and the wind. These are water-repellent, so they’ll keep your arms dry when you’re cycling in the rain. They’re also completely windproof, which makes them useful in pretty much any type of weather. If you’re looking for a pair of cycling arm sleeves that can handle harsh weather, these are the ones for you.
They also have a couple of interesting features we haven’t seen before. The elbow section is separated from the arms, which makes them feel most natural in a riding position. They also have elasticated sections at the cuff and on the bicep. This isn’t as effective as the silicone grips we saw in the Louis Garneau warmers, but it does a good job of keeping the arm warmers in place. On top of that, they’ve got a reflective logo and moisture-wicking technology. If you need a solution for transporting your bike, check out our guide to the best bike travel cases.
- BrandGore Wear
- Weight8 ounces
The next pair of cycling arm warmers on our list is the Pearl iZUMi Elites. There are a couple of things that really stood out about these warmers. Firstly, the right and left arms are different. They are designed to fit your arms anatomically, rather than being interchangeable. The reason for this is that it makes them more flexible and they’ll stay fitted to your arm. The other thing we liked is that they’re designed for use in colder weather. A lot of cycling arm warmers are designed to keep the wind off you in spring and autumn or for UV protection in the summer. But these can handle all of those seasons and winter as well. The thermal fleece fabric alongside the water-shedding technology makes them just as effective in cold temperatures as they are in the heat.
They also have elastic cuffs and a silicone grip system to keep them from riding down your arms. Plus, they have reflective elements to add visibility in the dark. All in all, they are one of the best-designed cycling arm warmers you can get. To keep your bike looking perfect on the road, be sure pick one of the best bike cleaning sprays from our list.
Anatomic right and left fit
- BrandPearl iZUMi
- ModelPearl Izumi
- Weight7.8 ounces
The Castelli Nanoflex+ Armwarmers are the Rolls Royce of cycling arm sleeves. They cost a little more than the other products on this list, but you are paying for an increase in performance and comfort. From the outside, it’s difficult to tell what makes these arm warmers better than the rest and that’s because the difference is in the fabric. They use their own fabric called Nanoflex. It basically does the same things as the fabrics used in other arm warmers, it just does them better. The material is ultra-warm and very stretchy, which makes it great for performance cycling because it allows you to train all year.
The other great thing about these cycling arm warmers is how waterproof they are. Raindrops will literally slide off without ever reaching your skin. Despite that, it’s still really breathable and wicks sweat away from the skin. It’s hard to describe why these arm warmers are better than the rest, you just have to try them to see. If you’ve got plenty of money to spend on your cycling accessories, these are the arm sleeves for you. If you are looking for the right bag to store your cycling gear while on the road, check out our guide to the best cycling backpacks and pick your favorite.
Next up, we’ve got another pair of arm warmers specifically designed for cold weather. DEFEET Armskin Wool Arm Warmers have been worn in all major bike races around the world, and they’ve won. That should be enough to get you to go and buy them straight away. But if it’s not, we’ll tell you a bit more about them. The main fabric used in their construction is Merino wool, which is one of the most effective thermal fabrics around. Whether you wear these with a t-shirt or underneath something thicker, they will keep your arms warm on a cold day. They also have a long-wristband that stops the wind from getting inside the armband. They’re the warmest cycling arm sleeves on this list.
However, they’re not just thick, woolen socks for your arms. They are still designed for performance. For example, they have a SeCurl no-slip band to keep them warmer on your bicep, they have a streamlined aerodynamic fit, and they’re surprisingly lightweight to say how warm they are. If you’re going cycling this winter or you live in a cold place, these arm warmers are a must-have piece of extreme cold weather gear.
80% Merino wool
Long wristband for warmth
SeCurl no-slip band
- Weight9.3 ounces
The Endura Thermolite Cycling Armwarmer is a direct competitor to the DEFEET arm warmers we just featured. They are designed for cold weather, but these ones are a bit more versatile because you can wear them in all seasons. They are a lot thinner than the DEFEET sleeves but they still manage to keep you warm thanks to Thermolite® insulation. This technology keeps a layer of warm air between your skin and the outside of the arm sleeve. In addition to the warmth, they are water-repellent enough to stop raindrops from reaching your skin. In addition, there is a layer of Teflon® fabric protector, which helps these last for a long time and maintain their level of performance.
Like most of the high-quality, modern arm warmers, they have silicone grippers to keep it in place on a fast-paced ride. Plus, you can get it in the 3 different sizes, so you can find the perfect product to fit you. Some customers have complained about the sizing and it’s recommended that you go for a bigger size than you normally would because they run really tight. For more useful cycling equipment, check out our reviews of the best bike pumps.
TEFLON® fabric protector
Silicone grip system
Three sizes available
Giordana is a well-known cycling brand that makes professional-looking products, without you having to pay professional-equipment prices. Their Sport Super Roubaix Arm Warmers are designed for use in all seasons, but they are probably best used in autumn or spring. They don’t have the warmth required for seriously cold-weather cycling and they’re not breathable enough for the heights of summer. To be honest, if you’re looking for a hot-weather cycling arm sleeve, you should look for UV protection as well.
These arm warmers are tight-fitting and are made primarily from Lycra. That means they are extremely aerodynamic and will also go some way to increase the blood flow in your arms, which has a whole host of benefits. They have silicone grippers to keep them in place and are super-stretchy, so you can move your arm in the same way as if you were wearing nothing. In addition to all of the features these arm warmers offer, they are one of the most stylish products available and you can get them in either black or white. Our guide to the best bike speedometers features more cool gear for your bike.
Silicone grip system
Available in 2 colors
Last on our list is the Phiten Compression Single Arm Sleeve. We’ve selected this product to be our Best Value because they’re cheaper than the other products we’ve featured and there isn’t a huge drop in quality. In fact, they are still one of the best pairs of arm warmers on here. They have a compression fit, which means they increase the blood flow and improve circulation in your arm. It also means they are less likely to slip down unless you have really thin arms. We would have liked to see a silicone grip system, but they haven’t included one – probably to cut down on costs.
These arm warmers have been lengthened so that they reach right up to the top of your arm, which means none of your arms is left unprotected. Plus, they have an improved level of UV protection to stop the sunlight from damaging your skin. They do have moisture-wicking technology, but it’s not as advanced as some of the more expensive arm warmers. But still, if you’re looking for the best option on a budget, this is the product for you. Be sure to also check out our guide to the best bike lights for more must-have cycling equipment.
Available in 5 colors
Cycling Arm Warmer Buying Guide & FAQ
How We Chose Our Selection Of Cycling Arm Warmers
Brand - Some cyclists want all of their riding gear to be from the same brand. We’ve tried to include arm warmers from all of the main brands, but we’ve also included a couple of options from lesser-known brands. More importantly, we’ve done some background research into these brands to make sure that they are all reputable, offer good customer service, and make fantastic products.
Price - There isn’t a huge difference in the price of arm warmers, with most of them selling at between $20 and $60. Towards the top end of the pricing spectrum, you’ll find higher quality products with a few more features. Look out for our Best Value and Premium Products for the cheapest and most expensive items.
Reviews - Whenever we write Buying Guides like this one, we look at hundreds of customer reviews. It gives us a chance to read the opinions of customers who already own the item and live with it on a day to day basis. This allows us to have a more informed idea about the product without having to get hundreds of product testers to use it. We also read the opinions of other expert reviewers to see if they have picked up on anything we’ve missed.
Features To Look For In Cycling Arm Warmers
Material - Cycling arm warmers are normally made from a mixture of polyester or nylon and elastane, which is also known as Spandex or Lycra. This mixture of materials makes them the perfect mixture of comfortable and stretchy.
Placement - Your arm warmer should reach from your wrist to past your elbow. Because cyclists don’t have large biceps, they can sometimes fall down past the elbow, which is annoying on a ride. However, most modern arm warmers have a grip to stop them from falling down.
Grip Type - The most effective grip-type is called a silicone gripper. This sticks to your skin and stops the arm warmers from falling down.
Comfort - Comfort is important with any cycling equipment. Both nylon and polyester are comfortable materials. You can also look for arm warmers that are made from stretchy materials, so they don’t restrict your movement at all.
Cycling Arm Warmer FAQ
Q: What are cycling arm warmers?
A: Cycling arm warmers are an accessory worn by cyclists to stop their arms from getting too cold. The reach from the wrist to above the elbow. When riding a bike, your legs are doing the majority of the work, which can cause your arms to feel cold. Arm warmers are very versatile and can be worn in every season.