Padded bib shorts are an essential part of any cyclists wardrobe. Although bib shorts may look like a cycling version of a leotard, they are far superior to standard bib shorts and improve comfort and performance. Padded Bib shorts perfect an excellent blend of comfort with built-in chamois and fit with the use of straps to avoid waistbands from sliding. Whether you are a new cyclist or long-time cyclist, you’ll likely realize one barrier to quality bib shorts is the high retail price. As with many cycling products, there is a large void between cheap entry-level bib shorts and $100+ premium versions. In today’s review we are going to be looking at the men’s Santic Asgar padded bib short.
With a low retail price, the Asgar bib shorts offer an affordable option. These shorts are a mid-level option from Santic, which also offers bib shorts for as little as $35 to as much as $100. Designed to be a highly breathable with large mesh paneled upper, Santic rates the optimal temperature for wear to be between 24-30°C . The bib shorts are a blend of 80% nylon and 20% spandex to provide elasticity for additional comfort. According to the specifications, the 4D padded chamois is designed for long 8+ hour rides.
The Asgar bib shorts are an affordable option for cyclists looking to add to their wardrobe. Once you have purchased the correct size (size up!), they have a great club-fit with wide straps that prevent pressure points.
|Likes||+ Lightweight and comfortable feel |
+ Well ventilated and Wide straps
+ Subtle monochrome design
|Dislikes||– Size runs Small |
– Small arm holes due to tall upper panels
– Lacks grippy texture on legs
|Where to Buy (US)||Santic|
The Santic Asgar bib shorts are shipped in a simple poly mailer. They come well folded and due to the thin design are very compact. There are a few tags that describe the bib shorts and the fabric composition attached to it.
Visually, the Asgar bib shorts have a matte black design broken up by glossy/shiny like panels. The matte panels feature a subtle geometric pattern using the same contrasting glossy material. On one side of the bib shorts you have ‘Santic’ printed with the glossy fabric which provides subtle branding. Similarly, on the other side printed is ‘Born To Cycle’ which is consistent with other Santic clothing. Although black bib shorts are popular these days, they don’t help visibility especially in low light conditions. Santic has incorporated some (although relatively small) reflective elements in the form of small tags with ‘Cycling For Freedom’ printed on them on either side of the shorts. These likely won’t make a big difference on the road, but are better than nothing. One additional item to point out is that the Asgar bib shorts have more panels than more expensive bib shorts.
One major design element that makes the Asgar bib shorts different from the typical bib shorts is the tall meshed upper portion. The bib shorts extend upto your chest and have a wide rear portion that comes up nearly to the shoulders. These panels are all meshed for improved ventilation and are wide to prevent any discomfort on the road. Although these panels are comfortable, they make putting these bib shorts on/off more difficult due to the small shoulder holes. Additionally, bathroom breaks with this design will require undressing. We’d have preferred a lower panel or an openable front panel that some bib shorts feature.
Santic sells their clothing according to Asian sizes which means some conversion is required to find the correct size. We found this to be a little unflattering, as it’s a little odd to order a 2XXL clothing despite being a stereotypical skinny cyclist. In addition to the sizing confusion, Santic rates each of their items according to ‘fit version.’ The Asgar bib shorts are described as ‘regular fit, prevents wind flap’ however the Asian 2XXL we tested on a 6’1” 160lb male (who typically wears a US large in other brands) would be something we describe as a club fit.
Bottom line is we’d definitely recommend sizing up from your normal US size unless your smaller and want a tighter fit. At 6’1” we also found that the strap lengths in the Asian 2XXL size was almost too short. Thanks to the elasticity of the material it was comfortable enough, but anyone with a taller torso should consider sizing up. Also, with the taller upper panel of the bib shorts we found the arm holes to be fairly small. This makes putting on or taking off the bib shorts more work than typical bib shorts.
One of the perks of using a bib short over standard cycling shorts, is the comfort as well as the coverage they provide. You don’t have to worry about the shorts sliding down and accidently giving riders behind you a shot of your behind. The Asgar bib shorts are no exception with the elastic fabric and form fit design makes you forget that your wearing them. As we mentioned previously, the tall upper panels are an inconvenience but are comfortable on the road. Even though the recommended temperature rating by Santic is 24-30°C (75-86°F ), the Asgar bib shorts are only slightly thinner than typical bib shorts. We wore these on colder days without an issue by using additional layers and leg warmers.
Like a bike saddle, bib short chamois comfort is a highly subjective topic and will vary person to person. The Asgar bib shorts are said to feature a 4D padded chamois with a recommended ‘duration of ride’ to exceed 8 hours. However, compared to our other bib shorts, the Asgar padding lacked the multi-level contouring and seemed relatively flat inside but had a comparable thickness. Nevertheless, we found them comfortable for short to medium length rides (upto 5 hours). For longer rides, we still prefer the feel of our other bib shorts.
Overall, the Santic Asgar is a comfortable and affordable pair of bib shorts. With a retail price of only $57 they can cost nearly half as much as other brands. Compared to more expensive bib shorts the biggest differences we found was that the Asgar had more panels and a less elaborate chamois shape. If you do end up purchasing the correct size (size up!), you’ll notice that they have a great club-fit with wide straps that prevent pressure points. Although the mesh upper panels are comfortable, they do make putting them on/off and bathroom breaks more difficult. The Asgar bib shorts are an affordable option for cyclists looking for budget gear.
Disclaimer: The product for this review was provided by Santic. The views expressed on this website are solely those of the authors and are here to help people make an informed choice before a purchase. The authors or the blog itself does not get any monetary compensation from the product manufacturer or third-party websites/vendor links that are posted here.