The textiles are cleverly layered and are suitable for all-year riding. The outer layer has air pockets that can be clipped open for summer rides as well as perforation on the upper body. There are four ventilation pockets, two on the leg and two on the chest area. You can wear textiles without any layers on those hot and sunny days.
The waterproof layer is separate and acts as windproof, too. It zips neatly inside the main jacket and trousers the only downside is, if you get caught in the rain it’s not a quick fix.
There is a further layer for cold weather riding. A thermal layer that zips in either with the waterproof layer or on its own. The zips are cleverly layered so there is no bulging of the zips sitting too close together. As the inner layers zip into the jacket (and trousers) this means you still only need one zip to close the jacket fully.
Both, the jacket and the jean zip together around the waist to retain the warmth and keep the rain out.
The jean have a high back which sits nicely around the lower back. The waist is adjustable with two velcro straps which might need tweaking depending on how many layers you wear on a cold day. Together with stretch panels, it does make for a good fit. There are two hip pockets with zips.
The jean and the jacket feel a bit stiff for the first couple of wears but they do settle around your body nicely and feel very comfortable.
I felt the trouser leg could have been a tiny bit longer for me. The trouser leg in a size up was perfect for me but the rest of the jean was too big. Not an issue once you put the boots on just my personal preference. Of course, they come with knee protectors and the jean is CE Certified to Level A.
The jacket is well designed and contoured for ladies’ fit. Stretch panels, arm and waist adjusters offer further options to adjust the jacket for comfort and fit. It has several pockets, inside and outside of the jacket as well as a large one on the back of the jacket for storing larger items such as maps, documents or a spare pair of gloves.
The jacket closes with a zip and the textile secures over it with velcro. This is a bit of an annoyance when the jacket is open and you are not riding. The velcro on the left cuffs tends to stick to the velcro next to the zip and so find your left arm getting attached to the jacket a lot. As the jean, the jacket is also CE certified to Level A and comes with Level 1 back protector, shoulder and elbow armour.Personally, I feel the sleeves are a bit too wide around the wrists, too. There is a velcro strap to tighten the cuffs but I find too much textile around my wrists makes it quite uncomfortable. It does mean that the gloves are easy to put on when I wear them inside my sleeves.
The boots are my absolute favourite so far. They really are waterproof. I mean proper, Welsh downpour waterproof. Top marks for that. The boots have two zips at the front, one on each side of the leg which means they are really easy to put on and take off. But more importantly, you can adjust how tightly you want them to fit around your calf. Boots are usually too wide for me but these are a perfect fit thanks to the design. They are incredibly comfortable, too. I wore them for 5 days constantly on the bike and to walk around sights we stopped at. The soles have good grip and I felt secure exploring sights off the paved paths. My feet didn’t even feel tired at the end of the day
The gloves feel soft and snuggly on the inside. They feel a little big on my fingers and I guess that’s down to all the padding and layers to keep my hands warm. I have summer gloves from RST which are designed for ladies, they are the same size and they fit perfectly. The Paragon waterproof gloves are not specifically designed for ladies’ hands and it shows in sizing. My pair are size 7 or extra small so anyone with smaller hands might find these too big. They are waterproof and they have certainly been tested in the wet!
Overall the whole outfit is excellent value for money. The jacket and jean are suitable for all-year riding, excellent for long touring trips, they will protect you from most weather elements and they fit well. The boots and the gloves will keep you warm and dry in the colder months but will be too hot for the summer months.
Unfortunately the seam on the hip and next to the pocket on the jean came undone on day 3 of the tour. I just noticed a gaping hole on the side and luckily I carry heavy duty thread and a needle in my toolbox. I stitched up the tear and carried on. As soon as I informed RST about it they sent a new pair of trousers to my house and collected the ones with a tear to investigate what went wrong. In my book, things happen and it’s how you deal with them that tells me if you are a decent person (or a brand). RST have been absolutely brilliant in rectifying the unfortunate fault and if anything, I think even higher of them now.