Why does my bellybutton show? And all your other questions, answered.

Why does my bellybutton show? And all your other questions, answered.

We spend our whole day trying to make rad gear you’ll love to wear, but because we’re up to our eyeballs in zippers and grippers, sometimes we forget that not everybody outside Eliel HQ knows the ins and outs of our stuff. Our goal is happy butts on bikes everywhere, so today we’ll share insider info to make sure you’re as happy as can be!

So about that bellybutton thing. Why do some jerseys let that little patch of belly poke out?
Our jerseys are cut to fit you perfectly while you’re sitting on the bike, which means they’re not going to fit as flawlessly when you’re standing totally upright. If we made your jersey fit beautifully while you’re standing, you’d end up with awkward bunching and scrunching down your front when you bent over to reach your handlebars - we call it the dreaded zipper bulge. Besides, you’re going to look fabulous at the coffee shop and on the podium no matter what, so let us make sure you look sleek and styling while you’re digging deep in the pain cave.

What’s that little flappy thing at the bottom of the jersey zipper?
Meet the zipper garage. When you zip up your jersey, that little flap protects the bottom of the zipper from rubbing against your bibs and causing wear and tear.

Why isn’t there a zipper garage at the top of the zipper by the neckline?
A lot of people ride with their jersey partially unzipped, so putting a zipper garage up there would mean a weird little piece of fabric would be flapping in the breeze. We never want you to flap.

What are those dots on the inside edges of some of the jersey pockets?
These reinforce the edges of the pockets to protect the jersey fabric even when you’ve loaded your pockets up with snacks, tools, a phone, a laptop, a rotisserie chicken, a sleeping bag, etc. On that note, we also design our jerseys to accommodate full pockets without sagging – nothing is less flattering than a jersey drooping and swaying under the weight of a single Honey Stinger waffle.

Speaking of jerseys, what’s the difference between the fit of the Solana, Rincon, Diablo, Soledad, and Malibu jerseys?
That’s a big answer! Our jerseys are all designed to meet a range of fit and performance needs. If you scroll to the bottom of this page, you’ll find detailed descriptions of all our gear.

Since it’s getting chilly out, let’s talk thermals. Eliel uses the designations T1, T2, and T3 to describe levels of thermal protection but what do these actually mean?
T1 is the lightest weight while T3 is the heaviest. How you use them is up to your personal comfort preferences - this author is reptile who comfortably adapts to most temperatures with some light layering so she prefers T1 gear for most days, but she is married to a highly sensitive rider who busts out the T3 gear when the mercury dips below 55 F.

Back to basics: should you wear underwear under your bibs? And where is the base layer supposed to go?
Underwear - no! never! Climbing into your cycling bibs or shorts with a bare butt is the only way to have a happy butt. The base layer is meant to be the first thing you put on, even under your bib straps. With that said, ladies might want to consider my secret tip for wintertime pee stops - put your base layer and your jersey on and THEN pull your bib straps over both and put your jacket or vest on top. When it’s time to stop, you’ll stay warmer and get the job done quicker.

What’s the best plan for Laundry Day?
Tempting as it may be to aggressively launder post-workout grime out of your kits, we really recommend you hand-wash or at least use a delicate cycle and cold water to keep your gear in the best shape. And please, please, please air dry only - the dryer is murder on cycling kits.

Should you worry about using products like Amp Human?
We love Amp Human - who doesn’t want free watts?? But if you don’t apply it correctly, it can be hard on bib shorts and speed up the wear and tear of your gear. Fear not! There are several solutions to keep your bibs safe while reaping the benefits of this magic lotion. Amp Human recommends you either:

• Apply PR lotion, wait 30 minutes (science states the bicarb is fully absorbed in this time), wash it off, then put your kit on and go ride without the worry of the lotion degrading your kit.

• Apply PR Lotion from your bib tan line down to your ankles to avoid it being on your kit, as recent research shows PR Lotion has a systemic affect.

• Wash your kit immediately after riding to clean off any residual lotion.

Why does it seem like gear sells out so quickly?
Well, in part we have you to thank for that – we are so grateful to our awesome customers for supporting Eliel and snapping up our new gear! We’ve also dealt with some production setbacks this year due to COVID causing our facility to shut down for several months and implementing new safety procedures to ensure the health and safety of our staff during the pandemic. While we’re up and running in safe and socially distanced ways now, we did lose an important chunk of production time.

But most of all, we print, cut, and sew all of our Best of the Best cycling gear in our own facilities, so we can only make so much at a time. When a new collection comes out, offering women’s and men’s styles in a range of sizes means even a small collection includes hundreds of pieces. But our company is growing every day and working hard to bring you more of the gear you love with the top quality you’ve come to expect.

If you want to learn more about our products or see sizing information, check out this page: https://www.elielcycling.com/pages/size-guide. Still have questions? Drop a note to orders@elielcycling.com so we can help you and figure out what information we still need to share with our whole community!

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