Mavic Helium Jersey ($120) and Bib Short ($180)
In addition to boasting the lightest weight in Mavic’s clothing repertoire, the Helium line is also the coolest. Along the shoulders Mavic uses a sleek, shiny textured mesh pattern to spur airflow through the jersey, and it seems to work. On a 90-plus-degree day, I didn’t unzip the jersey at all. . The matching bibs use a very light and thin mix of polyamide and elastane. The saddle area is slightly textured to keep you perched solidly—I never slide or scooted around the saddle involuntarily. A wide soft gripper keeps the legs in place.
The medium Helium jersey had the best fit of the bunch for me and was my favorite of the group. It was close to the body without feeling tight. The open knit in front allowed so much ventilation even on hot climbs that I wasn’t pulling the zipper down much. It also dried out quickly after getting a soaking of water over my head. The fabric is pretty sheer, so I used sunscreen just to be safe.
The Helium short is equally performance oriented. Mavic’s six-layer pad was great for longer days, and the soft, wide silicone grippers were comfortable. One of the lighter shorts in the bunch, they were great when the heat was on. The solid black is a bit bland, but somehow it looks formal.
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