Howies Jesse Merino Polo – Review


Howies Merino Polo IllustrationIt’s getting cold and you still want to hold that little bit of style whilst you cycle, but you don’t want to have to carry a change of gear with you.

There are now quite a few options about to peruse and ponder over when looking for stylish, yet practical cycling clothes,  but which is best for you? One of our favourites is the  Jesse Polo t-shirt from Howies. It’s Merino, meaning it’s perfect for cycling but not just to keep you warm. It’s a material for all seasons as it’s also designed to keep you cool in warmer weather. The ideal material for a cyclist.

Howies Merino Polo Shirt

Howies have very kindly shaped this wool into a rather fetching casual t-shirt that comes in f different colours and four different sizes. Nearly every bloke in the land at one time and another has worn a polo t-shirt and they never go out of fashion; and Howies have kept a classic, slim fit look with this polo. Slim fit is important for two reasons. First, it looks a bit more refined if you have something that fits your body shape (not overly baggy or long one way and tight the next) and also, as a cyclist, you’d prefer to prevent any drag from the wind.

Urban Style/Weather Test

Given the chance to test it out the weather duly complied by going a little chilly. First off I tested it as a piece of discerning style walking around Liverpool. There was a chill to the air and whilst my fingers suffered my body certainly did not.  The t-shirt fitted perfectly. Not too tight and not too loose and I especially appreciated the slightly longer back a good feature for cycling and if you’re not partial to showing a bit of bum when you bend over. So it passed quite comfortably the walking around town criteria, certainly a smart looking t-shirt that does not look out of place in the urban surroundings.

What about as an actual layer in a cycling gear ensemble. Well again it did it’s job superbly, keeping me nice and toasty during the cold, wet early morning bike ride and then again during the cold, a bit less wet early evening trip home. I’ll run out of superlatives for this t-shirt it’s simply as close to the perfect discerning t-shirt that looks good and works well on and off the bike.

Howies Merino Polo

Value for Money?

It’s not without one or two points of contention, but these do not involve the construction of the t-shirt or it’s quality finish.

Simply speaking, for a lot of people, £59 is a lot of money to pay for a t-shirt. That said, as soon as this flaw is brought up it can be countered argued that you are getting a well-tailored, well-made, high-quality piece of cycling clothing made from a high-quality material. And a look around at what else is there is quite revealing. Another high-quality Merino polo t-shirt from Vulpine comes in at £70 but that comes with a front and back pocket. Is that worth the extra £11?  Elsewhere John Lewis sell a long sleeve Merino polo and that’s over £100. The bottom line is if you want a Merino top you’re going to have to pay for it and the level of quality you’re getting from the Jesse Polo for £59 is probably one of the best valued Merino t-shirts out there.

More Colours Please!

The only gripe I have with the actual polo myself is the colour range. You’ve basically only got three shades of grey and two shades of blue. I’m unaware of any plans to bring out more colours but having at least one completely different shade would be nice. That said the five colours available are all classy and appealing, but a bold colour would certainly give this range an advantage, not least because blue and grey seem to be the only colours anybody is doing for a merino t-shirt, polo’ed or otherwise. Functionally a bolder, brighter colour would help to stand out whilst cycling, style wise some people like to make a statement and be seen even when they’re not pedalling around on 2 wheels.

Howies Jesse Merino Polo Grey

So what does Discerning Cyclist think?

To sum up this is a quality t-shirt, looks good, fits well and works better plus it’s good value for money.

I will do a follow up review when the weather gets really cold and see where this fits when you need a lot of layers to stay warm. I have the feeling that it will do it’s job superbly.

Howies Jesse Merino Polo Shirt

Howies Jesse Merino Polo Shirt
8.2

Fit

80/10

    Function

    80/10

      Style

      90/10

        Value

        70/10

          Quality

          90/10

            Pros

            • - Slim Fit
            • - Longer Back
            • - Great Style
            • - Merino Wool

            Cons

            • - Lack of Colours

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