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Best retro cycling jerseys: Look retro cool on the bike

Cyclist magazine
27 Aug 2021

They may look like they all hail from cycling’s golden ages of yesteryear, but these jerseys are all brand new

Yes, marginal gains and performance are important, but when it comes down to it, it’s also important to look the business on the bike. Casting aerodynamics aside and doing away with dye-sublimation printing, we’ve rounded up the best-looking retro jerseys on the market.

These designs closely echo the classic lines and colour schemes of the past to produce some modern-day equivalents that hark back to times of old.

So slip on that Cinelli hairnet, knock back that glass of Perrier water and get browsing below for some of the best retro jerseys money can buy.

Best retro cycling jerseys

1 Castelli Italia 20 jersey

Buy now from Wiggle for £90

Simply looking at this jersey makes us want to burst out into a rendition 'Il Canto Degli Italiani'! Castelli has done an absolutely stellar job of introducing a 'modern twist' on the national team jerseys worn by the likes of Fausto Coppi, Felice Gimondi and Francesco Moser previously.

This Azzurri blue number utilises a lightweight polyester/wool mix that is both light and helps to wick away sweat. The small details of the tricolour silicone waist gripper and metal Italian flag zipper are great too!

We'd recommend pairing this jersey with a plain set of white socks and plain black bibshorts and a bottle of San Pellegrino sparkling water to really complete the look! 

Buy now from Wiggle for £90

2 Rapha Core cycling jersey

Buy now from Rapha for £60


The block colour, single-arm stripe Core jersey has been ever-present in Rapha's arsenal for so long that it's almost become a retro piece of kit in itself.

The contrast of black jersey and white sleeve is simple but effective and the lack of design is very reminiscent of national jerseys raced back in the 1940s and 1950s.

Affordable at £60, there is still the Rapha quality trademarks such a breathable polyester fabric, a rear zipped pocket and ribbed pockets.

Buy now from Rapha for £60 

3 Ashmei Signature Jersey

Buy now from Ashmei for £128 

Merino wool is a classic material from which to produce a jersey. Incredibly soft, breathable, and naturally anti-bacterial, unlike jerseys familiar to riders from the 60s, it’s now possible to also make it into pleasingly thin garments that are no longer excessively warm or slouchy.

UK firm Ashmei makes a range of timeless looking jerseys that combine Merino wool and stylish block colours. Its signature jersey for men and women look suitably retro, yet benefit from modern features like full-length zips and silicone grippers.

Buy now from Ashmei for £128 

4 De Marchi Classica jersey

Buy now from De Marchi Cycles for €98

Is there anything more retro than a jersey designed in Italy, gold in colour and called 'classica'? I think not.

This block-coloured number from De Marchi is a blend of merino wool and lycra that has all the mod-cons such as a zipped pocket and reflective details mixed into a look that would have you fitting in with Coppi, Bartali and the like.

Additionally, being block-coloured, this jersey will match absolutely any plain pair of black bibshorts, too.

Buy now from De Marchi Cycles for €98

5 Isadore Signature jersey

Buy now from AlpineTreks for £92

With a smooth Merino wool and polyester mix, this jersey from the brand created by Slovakian pros Martin and Peter Velits is a nice halfway between old materials and new ones.

A bold retro styling of colours and lines is juxtaposed with knitted eyelets along the inside of the torso, useful for any headphones you may use when riding. From a town not far from Peter Sagan’s birthplace, this product is much like the rider, full of surprises.

The small details finish it off, like the woven wash tag on the inside silver emblem on the collar and Isadore also produces the product in both a men's and women's cut. This is one classy affair.

Buy now from AlpineTreks for £92

6 Castelli Maglia Rosa 90 Anni Cycling Jersey

Buy now from Wiggle for £105


Celebrate the Giro d'Italia with this retro-style version of the maglia rosa from Italian clothing maker Castelli. Made of a 50/50 mix of merino and polyester, it replicates the pattern for the 1982 version of the jersey.

Happily, this means it emerges from a time before aerodynamics, making its slightly slouchy cut much more amenable to more casual cycling, or indeed the occasional cafe stop.

Also easily retro enough to escape the slightly po-faced prohibition on amateurs buying themselves a copy of the race leader’s jersey, its shade of pale pink is also infinitely more wearable than the Tour de France’s garish yellow.

Buy now from Wiggle for £105

7 Magliamo Molteni jersey

Buy now from Magliamo Vintage for £121

Magliamo Vintage is busy reproducing some of our favourite kits from the past in full merino wool. Designed in Belgium, produced in Poland, Magliamo takes retro seriously with handmade crafting producing each item to absolute perfection.

This long sleeve Molteni track top (as worn by Eddy Merckx in the early 1980s) is particularly nice. In fact, nice enough that it could even double up as a jumper off the bike.

Buy now from Magliamo Vintage for £121

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