If you are new to cycling you are probably looking into purchasing your first set of bike shorts. After the initial sticker shock from many cycling bibs, you probably started looking for more affordable cycling shorts. That search has led you to this Pearl iZUMi Escape Quest cycling shorts review because they are one of the best values in bike shorts on the market.
Even expert cyclists know the Escape Quests to be one of the best value apparel items in cycling. As you ride longer and farther, cycling shorts become a necessity instead of a luxury. I would argue any bike ride over 20 miles must have the rider in cycling shorts.
Cycling shorts come in many shapes and sizes. Form fitting shorts can be worn when road cycling or mountain biking. When on my mountain bike I still put on the Escape Quest shorts, but throw a pair of athletic shorts over top for aesthetic and styling purposes. The Escape Quest shorts (Check Price on Amazon) are definitely good to go as-is when road cycling.
Pearl iZUMi Escape Quest Fit
When reviewing the sizing chart my 33 inch waist fell in the medium sized category. I normally wear a large but I know most cycling shorts are prone to stretching over time. I went with the size chart recommendation and purchased the mediums.
Pulling the shorts up around my waist for the first time had me nervous. When the shorts hit my knees I thought “These are going to be really tight,” but as I pulled them up to my waist the fit went from a little tight to perfectly comfortable. Most form fitting apparel will feel too tight as you are putting it on, but once in place that sensation goes away.
Once in place the Escape Quest shorts felt securely in place and were very comfortable. The turned hem ensures the shorts stay in position without sacrificing comfort. Keep in mind, when standing the shorts will not feel “right.” You need to get into a riding position on your bike before everything feels like its supposed to.
Escape Quest Style
You can’t do an Escape Quest cycling shorts review without also talking about style. As I mentioned, these are made for road cycling. I also mentioned using them while I ride my mountain bike. They are that comfortable. If style is a primary concern and you are on a road bike the shorts will look great. You will immediately gain the respect of any serious rider that knows the Pearl iZUMi brand. (And any serious rider will know the brand.)
I am also a big fan of the 9.5 inch inseam. Many cycling shorts come in 10 inches or longer which is way to long for someone of average height. If you are in the 28-34 inch inseam range for pants you will appreciate these shorts. The alternative to shorts that are too long are shorts with inseams under 9 inches. At that point you start looking like a 1970s basketball player instead of a cyclist.
I’ve never cared about style when on my bike, but knowing I look as good as I feel seems to help me ride longer. The chamois in these shorts doesn’t feel as out of place when standing like many other pairs. In fact, its so comfortable I want to stay on my bike even longer. There is a lot to be said about the placebo effect of good style when riding. If you look like a cyclist you will pedal with confidence and see better times as you chase the local KOM records on Strava.
Escape Quest Bike Shorts Review: Final Opinion
The bottom line is these cycling shorts look and feel great. It is no surprise PEARL iZUMi is one of the largest brands in the cycling apparel industry. The second you pull these shorts up you know they are high quality. You will pedal confidently knowing you look and feel great on your ride.
The best part about these cycling shorts is the reasonable price tag. When you buy bike shorts you are paying for the chamois more than the shorts themselves. Its the most expensive part of the shorts and bib manufacturing process. Finding a high quality set of cycling shorts like the PEARL iZUMi Escape Quest for $50 or less is an incredible value. (Check Current Price on Amazon) I have a $180 set of bibs that provide the same comfort level.
If you are in the market for a great pair of cycling shorts and don’t like the feeling of suspenders the Escape Quest shorts will be perfect for you. They are comfortable around the waist and the 9.5 inch inseam provided the perfect fit and look. Both beginners and experts will agree, these are the most comfortable bike shorts under $60.
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