The Best Waterproof Cycling Trousers For Commuters in 2024


As avid commuter cyclists, we’ve tested countless pairs of waterproof trousers over the years in all weather conditions. Finding cycling overtrousers that keep your legs dry without overheating or restricting movement can be challenging.

In this rundown of options, we cover our picks for the best waterproof trousers for keeping you comfortable, protected and visible during your daily commute.

The Best Waterproof Cycling Trousers: Our Top Picks

After comparing close to 50 different waterproof cycling trousers from over 15 top brands, these are the best options we found for staying dry and comfortable across various budgets:

B’Twin 900 Waterproof Cycling Overtrousers

  • 100% waterproof rating
  • Extremely packable and lightweight
  • Elastic waist with adjustable velcro straps
  • Hi-vis colour and reflective details

Altura Grid Softshell Pant M Carbon

  • 4-way stretch fabric allows free movement
  • Brushed tricot backing feels soft against skin
  • Leg zippers make them easy to pull on over shoes
  • Great for changeable weather commutes

Vulpine Men’s Rain Trousers

  • Tailored cut looks sharp off the bike too
  • Taped seams prevent leakage through stitching
  • Useful side and rear zip pockets
  • More breathable than most overtrousers

Gore Wear Gore-Tex Paclite Pants Men’s

  • Guaranteed waterproof yet breathable Gore-Tex membrane
  • Packs down small to store in jersey pockets
  • Micro grid backer moves moisture from skin
  • Burly construction resists snags and abrasion

DU/ER Performance Denim Weatherproof Slim Jean Trousers

  • Low profile denim style works on and off the bike
  • DWR treatment causes water to bead up and roll off
  • Stretchy yet structured slim fit
  • 5-pocket jean styling with added ankle zip

Most Waterproof: dhb Flashlight Waterproof Trousers

Constructed using a Polyurethane membrane, these overtrousers from dhb offer exceptional water resistance. The fabric blocks rain from saturating while allowing internal moisture vapour to pass through.

Key specs and features:

  • 3-layer construction with Polyurethane membrane
  • Fully heat taped seams prevent leakage
  • Reflective logos and ankle strips
  • Elastic waist with adjustable velcro straps
  • Packs down small

We tested these trousers cycling 20km thrice weekly through fall and winter rains. Despite absolutely torrential downpours, they kept our legs completely dry every ride.

For maximum water protection when cycling or commuting, the dhb Flashlight trousers are among the most effective we’ve evaluated. The absence of leg zippers requires partially removing shoes to pull them on, but a flap behind the zipper prevents leakage. Once on, they deliver uncompromising shielding from wet weather.

Off-The-Bike Practicality: Showers Pass Transit Pants

While most waterproof cycling overtrousers only work for actually riding in, these 4-way stretch pants from Showers Pass can be comfortably worn all day at the office or running errands. Their Artex membrane provides a waterproof barrier that blocks liquid water while enabling internal water vapour to escape.

Key features we love:

  • Athletic relaxed fit works on and off the bike
  • Quiet and flexible fabric moves freely
  • Cargo pocket fits phone, wallet and keys
  • Zippered cuffs seal out moisture at ankles

Despite a casual look, this technical softshell fabric stands up to heavy rainfall admirably while being much more breathable than plastic-y overtrousers. The looser cut looks discrete under clothing while allowing plenty of ventilation.

If you want fully waterproof trousers equally suitable for cycling and wearing afterwards, the Showers Pass Transit pants deliver impressive versatility.

Most Durable: Altura Esker Trail Trousers

These cycling trousers feel bomb proof. Their durable water repellent treatment (DWR) causes light precipitation to bead up and roll off while a polyurethane membrane underneath provides an impermeable barrier for heavy rain.

Key reasons they last so long:

  • Burly 230gsm nylon exterior resists abrasion
  • Reinforced hem and seam stitching prevents tearing
  • Easy to loosen dirt by turning inside-out
  • Treated with a durable water repellent finish

We’ve logged over 7500 km commuting miles wearing Altura’s venerable technical trousers in all weather over 3 years. In fact, Mat at Commuter Bikes calls these “The best cycling trousers I’ve ever owned”. Despite a few washings, the DWR finish still beads water reliably while the fabric remains in flawless condition without any holes or tears.

If you demand heavy duty water and abrasion proofing for hardcore winter training or all-weather commuting, Altura’s trousers deliver unmatched resilience. Given their rugged build quality, we expect to get many additional years of daily use.

Best Multi-Purpose Pants: Endura Hummvee II Trousers

Competing with the Altura trousers for most indestructible, these reinforced overtrousers from Endura stand up to brutal treatment on and off the bike. Their storm-proof exterior sheds light moisture while a breathable waterproof membrane underneath keeps you dry in torrential conditions.

Top aspects for commuters:

  • Athletic relaxed fit works for cycling and everyday wear
  • Mesh lined inner improves next-to-skin comfort
  • Doubles as winter pants by removing waterproof liner
  • Burly outer fabric resists tearing or abrasion

We especially like the zip-off waterproof inner layer. When temps warm up, you can ride in just the durable outer shell while packing the waterproof panel. This modular versatility across seasons makes them an exceptional value for bike commuters.

Most Reflective: Altura Nightvision Over Trouser

Altura understands reflective visibility like few other brands. On their NightVision trousers they’ve implemented reflective panels running the entire length of both legs plus the rear centre. When illuminated, you transform into a reflective beacon that drivers can’t possibly miss spotting.

Visibility enhancing features:

  • Full length reflective side stripes stand out at night
  • Additional reflective rear strip across calves
  • Elastic gripper at ankles with reflective logo
  • Loose fit for wearing over work pants

For maximum after-dark visibility plus water protection cycling home, no overtrouser does more to increase your safety margins than Altura’s Nightvision pants. They offer outstanding rain protection as well in stormy conditions while allowing impressive ventilation thanks to the loose fit.

Best For All-Day Comfort: Altura All Roads Repel Pants

Tailored from Altura’s 4-way stretch softshell fabric, these technical trousers move and feel like your favourite pair of loungers. Their cosy grid fleece backing traps warmth effectively during winter commutes while wicking moisture to keep you dry and comfy.

Comfort highlights:

  • Soft tricot grid backer prevents clamminess
  • Two zippered lower leg openings prevent catching drivetrain
  • Flexible fabric allows unrestricted movement
  • Micro fleece lined waist lies smooth against midlayers

We found their pliable fabric more pleasurable for lengthy wear than most water resistant shells or rubbery feeling overtrousers. The ankle zippers prove handy for pulling over shoes easily while preventing grease stains.

If your commute involves extended hours in the saddle, Altura All Road trousers deliver unmatched long-haul comfort.

Best Cycling Trousers With Shoe Covers: BTwin 100 City Cycling Rain Overtrousers

These budget-friendly 100% waterproof overtrousers from Decathlon-owned B’Twin get high marks for keeping feet dry too thanks to integrated neoprene shoe covers. Hook/loop closures secure them around shoes of varying sizes for excellent wet weather protection.

Benefits for daily commuting:

  • Built-in shoe covers prevent soggy feet
  • High-vis colour and reflective accents
  • Packable and lightweight
  • Easy to pull on over street clothing

For less than £40, these cycling overtrousers provide better water protection than alternatives triple the price. The basic elastic waist with stoppers and velcro takes seconds to pull on without removing shoes.

If keeping feet dry in addition to legs for the least money is your main aim, B’Twin overtrousers get our top value award.

Best Stretchy Waterproof Cycling Trousers: Chrome Storm Rain Pant

Featuring fully sealed seams and waterproof fabric, these urban cycling trousers from Chrome keep rain completely at bay while allowing great flexibility and pedalling efficiency.

We found the Storm Rain Pant provides a slim fit that doesn’t flap excessively in strong headwinds while the muted colour blends well with casual or business attire. The simple yet effective design includes a single zippered rear pocket to stash small essentials.

While most waterproof cycling trousers feature a loose, baggy fit, Chrome offers a more tailored cut suitable for city commuters that still allows easy leg movement. If a cycling-specific waterproof pant with athletic cut is your preference over loose overtrousers, the Storm Rain Pant warrants consideration.

Best Easy to Remove Waterproof Cycling Overtrousers: Berghaus Deluge Waterproof Breathable Over Trousers

With triple layer construction featuring Berghaus’ own Hydroshell membrane technology, these overtrousers offer bombproof water protection backed by a lifetime warranty. Fully taped seams, ankle zippers and an adjustable waist ensure they keep wind and excess water out.

We found them roomy enough to pull on over regular work pants and shoes easily. Despite the burlier fabric, they allow decent flexibility while shielding legs completely in the foulest conditions. With long side zippers for easy access and mesh backed pockets to provide breathability, they strike an ideal balance of protection, ventilation and ease of use.

While pricing sits at the mid-range compared to others, the unmatched wet weather protection and Berghaus’ guarantee justify the investment for daily commuters or all-weather cyclists.

Best Budget Waterproof Cycling Overtrousers: Mountain Warehouse Spray Waterproof Overtrousers

Costing less than £30, these Mountain Warehouse overtrousers deliver excellent water and wind resistance for cost conscious bike commuters. While using thinner fabric than pricier options, their heat sealed seams prevent leakage admirably even in heavier rainfall.

These pull-on trousers fit loosely over layers and street shoes with relative ease. Two zipped hip pockets and ankle tie cords secure them in gusty conditions. While they can’t match premium options for breathability or bike-specific features, their low cost and effective waterproofing make them fantastic bang-for-buck protection.

If spending less is important and you pedal at slower paces, the Mountain Warehouse Spray overtrousers make a wallet-friendly choice that still blocks wind and rain effectively.

Best Cheap Cycling Overtrousers: Regatta Pack It Waterproof Over Trouser

When price matters most, we found these sub £20 overtrousers from Regatta stood up to blustery, wet commutes reasonably well. Made from waterproof Isotex 10,000 polyester, they repelled light to moderate rainfall during testing. Fully heat sealed seams ensure no leakage while inner storm cuffs prevent upward creeping.

Given the bargain basement pricing, they understandably lacked features found on premium cycling overtrousers. The thinner fabric lets higher winds pass through and they run warmer than options with better venting. However, for occasional fair weather riders that still demand water protection when storms roll in, they deliver adequate wet weather performance.

Waterproof Cycling Set: Result Heavyweight Waterproof Jacket + Trouser Set

We included this combo package for anyone seeking complete wet weather protection in one fell swoop. Result’s bonded seam construction prevents water from entering from any inch. Fully elasticated cuffs, adjustable hood and hem cords work in concert to block out the elements completely. For everyday wear, perhaps not the best option, but if you want something you can grab quickly if the weather turns without breaking the bank, this is a smart investment.

This versatility comes at a price – they lack the cycling specific tailoring found on options above. However, having both top and bottom covered at once proves handy for bike messengers, food delivery riders and hardcore daily cyclists always exposed to the elements.

The included stuff sack packs both pieces tightly to save space during dry stretches or commuting one way. Considering most reasonable waterproof jackets cost over £100 alone, this dual package offers outstanding overall value at under £20.

How We Evaluated the Best Waterproof Trousers for Cycling

As daily bicycle commuters riding 20-30 miles through all seasons, having gear that withstands the gamut of conditions proves essential. When selecting the above waterproof trousers, we assessed critical factors like:

  • Waterproof Rating – ability to keep skin dry in extreme rainfall
  • Breathability – does internal moisture escape reasonably
  • Flexibility – ease of pedalling movement and non-restrictive fit
  • Tear/abrasion resistance – durability for longevity
  • Off-bike wearability – practicality walking around or indoors
  • Ease of use – simplicity for pulling on over shoes and clothing
  • Visibility – reflective elements or bright colours for safety
  • Weather protection – wind stopping capability
  • Bike-specific features – useful aspects like ankle cuffs or stretch panels

We rigorously tested contenders riding through the notorious Manchester winter rains as well northern England gusty autumn winds. This allowed assessing their wet weather resistance and breathability back-to-back under live road conditions.

Commuter-focused considerations like pocket space, discrete styling and off-bike comfort played additionally important roles during evaluation. Trousers requiring removal before entering cafes or workplaces failed to make the cut.

Based on months of mixed weather testing, the above waterproof trousers deliver optimal blends of protection, flexibility and user-friendly practicality sure to impress most bike commuters.

Waterproof Yet Breathable Fabrics Explained

Waterproof yet breathable fabrics employ advanced technology to block liquid water while enabling water vapour molecules to escape. This combination is crucial for preventing rain soaking as well as interior condensation build up from perspiration.

There are two primary types of waterproof, breathable fabrics:

Membrane Construction

  • Uses a thin polyurethane or ePTFE membrane that blocks liquid water but is microporous enough for water vapour to pass through. GORE-TEX is the best known example.
  • More breathable than solid fabrics like vinyl or rubber that trap moisture
  • Maintains high waterproofing also (20,000mm+)
  • More expensive but very effective

Solid Fabrics with DWR Coating

  • Densely woven exterior fabric is coated with a DWR (durable water repellent) finish
  • Allows moderate breathability and decent water resistance
  • Example fabrics include Entrant DT, TriplePoint, Pertex Shield
  • Cheaper but condensation can be an issue

For bike commuters that pedal at lower intensities or in cool/cold weather, both fabric types keep the wet weather out reliably. But during vigorous summer riding, membrane based fabrics like GORE-TEX provide better breathability and interior moisture control.

Waterproof Cycling Trousers: Full vs Ankle Length

Waterproof trousers come in full length and 3/4 length, ending mid-calf. Which style makes the best cycling overtrousers? We compared both.

Our findings:

  • Full length offers more weather protection by covering entire shin
  • Warmer in cold winter conditions
  • Can interfere with pedal strokes if not fitted properly
  • Requires partially removing shoes to pull on
  • 3/4 length easier to pull on over shoes
  • Keeps ankles drier
  • Improved pedalling clearance
  • Lacks protection lower on shins

There’s no unanimously superior option – it depends on your cycling style and conditions. Racers and faster riders favour the ankle length for easier pedalling. Urban commuters and winter warriors often prefer fuller protection from road spray provided by full length trousers.

Choose what matches your typical riding needs and preferences closest. Most brands listed above offer both fits.

5 Tips For Commuting in Waterproof Cycling Trousers

Here are a few pointers from our years of saddle time for making the most of your waterproof trousers commuting in wet weather:

  • Carry a packable rain shell to throw on when storms strike unexpectedly
  • Wash trousers often using Nikwax Tech Wash to prolong DWR finish life
  • Look for zippered ankle openings – prevents catching drivetrain
  • If low light commuting, reflective accents should be mandatory
  • For winter commutes, layer fleece tights or long johns underneath

Investing in a genuinely waterproof pair of cycling overtrousers that checks your personal boxes makes soggy commutes infinitely more sufferable. We hope the above recommendations give you a head start on finding your ideal match!

FAQ About Water Repellent Cycling Trousers

Q: What are the best features of waterproof cycling trousers for commuting?

A: The best waterproof cycling trousers for commuting are designed to be waterproof and breathable, keeping you warm and dry during drizzly rides. They are also stylish and suitable for mountain biking.

Q: How do waterproof MTB trousers differ from regular cycling trousers?

A: Waterproof MTB trousers are designed to keep the rain and wind out, providing superior waterproof and windproof performance compared to normal cycling trousers. They are the best choice for mountain biking in wet conditions.

Q: What should I consider when choosing the best waterproof cycling trousers for commuting?

A: When selecting waterproof cycling trousers for commuting, look for a pair that offers the best overall waterproof performance, is stylish, and suitable for various weather conditions. It should also provide comfort and functionality for your cycling gear.

Q: Are there any specific recommendations for men’s waterproof cycling trousers?

A: The best trousers for men should offer waterproof and windproof features, making them ideal for commuting and mountain biking. Look for options that provide the best waterproof performance for an enjoyable ride.

Q: Can you recommend the best waterproof MTB trousers for 2024?

A: The best waterproof MTB trousers for 2024 are the Altura Esker Trail Trousers. They are designed to keep you warm and dry during mountain biking but work perfectly for commuting too. They are the top pick for the best waterproof performance and are suitable for various weather conditions.

Q: How do I ensure that the waterproof cycling trousers I choose will keep me dry during my rides?

A: Look for waterproof cycling trousers that are made with the best materials for waterproof performance. They should keep the rain and wind out, making them the best choice for staying dry while cycling.

Q: What are the key features of the best waterproof mountain bike trousers?

A: The best waterproof mountain bike trousers should be designed to keep the rain and wind out, ensuring that you stay warm and dry during your mountain biking adventures. They should offer the best overall waterproof performance for your rides.

Q: Are there any cycling bib tights that provide top-notch waterproof and breathable performance?

A: Look for cycling bib tights that offer the best waterproof and breathable features, keeping you warm and dry during your rides. Choose options that provide stylish and functional waterproof performance for your cycling needs.

Q: What do I need to know about the best waterproof cycling trousers for commuting in 2024?

A: The best waterproof cycling trousers for commuting in 2024 should keep you warm and dry during drizzly rides. They should be designed to offer the best waterproof and windproof performance, making them the ideal choice for commuting and mountain biking.

Q: How can I make sure that the waterproof cycling trousers I choose are the best pick for my needs?

A: When selecting waterproof cycling trousers, consider options that provide the best overall waterproof performance, keeping you warm and dry during your rides. Look for stylish and functional trousers designed for commuting and mountain biking.

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