Spring may be just around the corner, but many of us will still have some serious winter weather left. Biking can be intimidating, especially during the winter.
In this installment of Bike Stylish for elephant journal, learn tips to help you bike safely, easily, and, of course, with style!
For those who are unfamiliar with Bike Stylish, this project began over the summer when I set out to shift the perspective on what it means to be a bike commuter by creating my 38 Days of Bike Stylish Photos . I’m not a hard-core hipster bike commuter, nor a cycling athlete—I’m just someone who loves biking and (hopefully) looking stylish. How to Bike in a Miniskirt and other Bike Stylish Tips will help you look great and feel confident on your bike in the warmer weather.
Bike Stylish is going pro, partnering with Tanya Dueri Photography for the next series of Bike Stylish for Elephant Journal. Below check out my 13 favorite winter biking accessories and a few stylish winter biking photos to inspire your four season biking life.
Winter Biking Accessories:
- Helmet & Warm Liner Hat. I admit I don’t always wear my helmet, but during the winter and at night I especially wear it—black ice, snow, and cars are all real winter biking risks. Stay warm with a thin hat worn under your helmet. Feel free to pack a more fashionable hat in your bag to swap out when you get to your destination.
- Scarf or Neck Gaiter. Scarfs are one of my favorite winter biking accessories—a perfect way to add warmth and a flash of color to the often dark colors of the typical winter ensemble. For seriously cold or snowy days, my wool and stretchy neck gaiter is a lifesaver.
- Reflectors & Bike Lights. Winter’s dark days and inclement weather can make it especially difficult for drivers to see you. Make it easy to be seen and avoid being hit!
- Long Gloves or Mittens. Gloves of any kind will do, but long gloves are ideal. When you bend over to bike, the sleeves of your jacket will ride up your arms—long gloves help to keep your arms warm. Arm warmers will also do and are a unique style accessory. Really cold? Use a pair of thin, long gloves as liners under a pair of mittens.
- Warm Socks & Tights. Keep your legs and tootsies toasty while you ride. Knee high socks are particularly useful to keep your legs warm if you’re wearing pants and need to roll up the leg. Exposed skin in the winter is a fashion and comfort faux pas.
- Boots. Warm feet, style, and comfort? Yes, please! Boots are a winter bike stylish staple. Keep your pants and tights clear of road splatter and look great. My thrift shop cowboy boots and Hunter rubber boots are my favorites for winter biking.
- Layers. Riding in the winter will warm you up; dressing in layers gives you a lot of style and warmth options. I suggest keeping a wind-blocking jacket handy. I also love sweater tights with skirts and silk long underwear underneath pants.
- Glasses. Wearing glasses during the winter is something I never thought of until my first bike in the snow. Snow and rain hurt your eyes when you’re biking! Sunglasses will work and are definitely the most stylish, but can be too dim on dark days. A pair of work glasses from your local hardware store work great—you can just say they are the new Google Glass.
- Jacket – Warm & Bright. Stay warm and visible with a wind-proof and light colored jacket. My favorite is a knee-length white puffy. I have biked in darker colored jackets, of course, but prefer to stay as light as I can on my top layer.
- Bike Fender. Fenders are a new addition to my bike this winter and they are fantastic! You can have them put on any bike for $50 or under and they prevent snow and rain splatter on your stylish outfit.
- Waterproof Gear. Rain boots and bags can be really handy all year round, to help keep you and your valuables dry. I often ride with my Hunter rubber boots in the winter and like to keep a lightweight Sea to Summit waterproof bag for my computer, phone, and other items that can’t get wet.
- Fat Bike Tires. The one winter biking accessory I currently don’t have. I have thin road tires and I am able to bike 95% of the time in Boulder because we have so much sunshine and limited snow. However, I used to commute in Boston and recommend fat mountain bike tires or studded tires for the snow.
- Puggle. Ok, not just a puggle. If you bike with your pooch, make sure they have appropriate gear. Tupac, my puggle friend, stays warm and stylish with his embroidered LL Bean jacket and booties. Bike Stylish with your Dog will be coming to Elephant Journal this spring!
My Winter Bike Style
Help us show your non-biking friends and family that biking is stylish, attainable and aspirational. Visit www.bikestylish.com and submit your stylish biking photos for a chance to be featured on the site and in an upcoming elephant journal article (full photo credit given).
Share your favorite winter biking tips in a comment below!
In the next Bike Stylish installment, we will feature our favorite stylish bike commuters from around Boulder and give you their tips for biking stylishly all year round.
*Full disclosure: I bike all year round and in Boulder, CO, we are lucky to enjoy 300 days of sunshine. I bike in rain and light snow; however, I currently do not have a mountain bike and thus cannot bike in deep snow with my road bike. The photos we shot in the deep snow above I could not actually ride in and are just for our bike stylish enjoyment. However, I do wear all of those outfits biking all year round without deep snow. All other photos are actual riding outfits. Photos shot in Boulder and Denver during January 2014 (temperature was 7° on the snow day to 55° during our shoot in Denver—true winter in the Rocky Mountains).
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Editor: Bryonie Wise