Craft Zero Extreme Windstopper base layer review

The spring weather is finally spreading across the UK and with the warmer temperatures, I can finally switch from the long sleeve base layers that have been a mainstay of my riding kit the past few months, to short sleeve base layers.

The Craft Zero Extreme base layer uses a Gore Windstopper front panel to block cold wind.
The Craft Zero Extreme base layer uses a Gore Windstopper front panel to block cold wind.

I always wear a base layer under my riding kit. They keep you dry by wicking sweat away from your skin, so you don’t get that horrible clammy feeling. Even on a really hot day I’ll still wear a thin base layer. And if it’s cooler, I’ll reach for a thicker base layer to provide some extra insulation.

The Craft Zero Extreme Windstopper base layer is a very smart product because it has a double layer front panel. A Gore Windstopper panel is placed on the chest, which is highly breathable despite being 100% windproof. Underneath and used for the rest of the base layer is a very soft polyester fabric with channels that help to add breathability.

A mix of Gore's Windstopper membrane and a soft stretchy polyester combines well.
A mix of Gore’s Windstopper membrane and a soft stretchy polyester combines well.

Sizing is a little on the small side. Fitted is probably the best way to describe it. I tested a medium and it felt like a second skin, so it’s worth checking the sizing guide carefully if you’re carrying a few extra pounds. The Windstopper material doesn’t have much stretch, so it’s a little more of a wrestle to get it on.

Once on though, this is an incredible base layer. It transforms your approach to layering, and opens up new options. If windy but too warm for a windproof jacket, wearing this base layer lets you leave the jacket at home, or in your hydration pack, and rely on the base layer to keep the cold wind at bay. I found wearing a long sleeve jersey for warmth over the top has been perfect on the past couple of rides.

You pay a bit more than a regular base layer, but it's worth it.
You pay a bit more than a regular base layer, but it’s worth it for that tag.

It costs a bit more than a regular short sleeve base layer because you’re paying for the Windstopper material. The flexibility of clothing options it provides you with, not to mention the protection from the cold wind, makes it a very versatile choice. It’s a premium base layer and does work very well; it’s ideal for spring weather.

Verdict

A versatile wind-resistant base layer ideal for cool spring days.

Price: £52

More information: www.craft.se

What Craft says:

Developed to keep you at the optimal temperature throughout any workout in fair , cold and windy conditions. Be Active ExtremeWindstopper® is made of a thin, lightweight and elastic micro polyester fabric and GoreWindstopper® panels. The polyester combines CoolMax Extreme and Thermolite fibers to provide excellent moisture transport and body temperature management. TheWindstopper® panels are placed in exposed areas and move individually, providing wind protection and freedom of movement simultaneously.

 

 

  1. Stan

    I’ve been wearing the LS version of this all winter on my road bike. Its a superb piece of kit, very thin, but very warm and the windstopper panel makes a massive difference to your chest on those cold days. Highly recommended.

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