Mountain biking is not a cheap sport, and it’s nice to see companies like Cycorld seeking to provide decent quality riding gear at lower price points. I got to try out two pairs of Cycorld’s shorts (one which included a chamois). And while I wasn’t too impressed with one pair, the other style fit better, looked a bit nicer, and left me with hardly anything to critique.
As I really had no issues with construction or on-trail performance, I’d say Cycorld’s price-point shorts could be a good option for budget-minded riders who don’t care about being seen in the most prestigious brands’ gear, for weekend warriors, or your half interested partners who only occasionally join in for a ride.
Cycorld Comfort Shorts with Liner:
Right off the bat I have to say the semi-shiny main material on the Comfort Shorts with Liner looks and feels a bit cheap compared to my pricier shorts. That said, the actual material performed perfectly well…
The main fabric offers some stretch, and combined with the black stretch panels, the shorts offered unhindered mobility. The fabric also provides a light degree of water resistance – I rode through about 20 minutes of light but steady rain, and the shorts were just starting to soak through at the leg hems. I didn’t yet get to ride the Comfort Shorts in really hot temperatures, but the main fabric and stretch panels both feel light enough that I expect they’d breathe well on mid-summer rides, too.
The Comfort Shorts’ leg hems easily fit over my knee pads, and the leg length keeps you covered up. I found no issues with Cycorld’s construction – the panels are all straight and the stitching looks solid. The Comfort Shorts offer a zip fly, one button at the waist, and hook-and-loop waist adjusters. While I don’t see many people wearing a belt while riding, Cycorld (like many other brands) does include belt loops.
Some riders might not love the look of the bunchy elastic waistband, but it works well for people like me who are between sizes (I buy size 32 shorts, but usually have to cinch them down a bit), Plus, it hides under your jersey while you ride anyways.
I’m always happy when I don’t have to cinch down my shorts’ waist adjusters all the way to keep them in place, and the small Comfort Shorts (size 29-32) held themselves up with the elastic waist alone. Nice.
The Comfort Shorts offer two jeans-style curved slash pockets from the waistband, and two zippered patch pockets on each leg. My one gripe with these shorts is those leg pockets.
I really don’t think putting one pocket right on top of another is worthwhile. Sure there’s a thin layer of fabric between them, but I wouldn’t put multiple hard objects in there… items like keys, multi-tools, or smartphones will just bounce off each other and possibly suffer damage (especially in a crash). The large zipper pulls make it easy to open the leg pockets with gloved hands, but for style points I think they could be a bit smaller.
I did notice heavier objects in the leg pockets do move around while you pedal – I tried my smartphone in one pocket for just a few minutes before finding it too annoying. Thankfully the waist pockets are deep and my phone/keys seem secure in them.
The Men’s Comfort Shorts with Liner sell for $43. There are six color options, and sizes range from S-3XL. While I tested the Dark Olive Green shorts, the all-black version probably does a better job of hiding the two different fabrics and those big pocket zips.
The Cycorld chamois (which has no specific separate model name, as they just come with the Comfort Shorts with Liner) perform their main function well-enough, but don’t offer anything fancy in terms of construction features.
Cycorld’s chamois pad is a bit on the firm side, but thankfully it does line up nicely under my sit bones. The padding gets fairly thick where your sit bones should lie, but again since the pad is well-positioned I didn’t find the thickness uncomfortable or excessive.
I was happy enough with the chamois’ saddle cushioning after many rides in them, although I think a slightly softer pad would probably be more comfortable. That’s a pretty personal preference, though.
What I’m not a big fan of though are the hems, which leave seam marks pressed into my waistline. They didn’t rub or move around while riding, but they’re just basic hems with exposed internal stitching and not the most comfortable option out there. More expensive chamois (like my 7mesh MK3’s) usually feature a much wider, sleeker, flatter, and much more comfortable gripper hem at both the waist and on the legs.
The chamois jived well with the Comfort Shorts, Multi-Pocket Breathable Shorts, and several other brands’ baggies. While a softer pad and nicer hems would be great, I didn’t truly have any serious comfort issues that would prevent me from wearing these padded shorts again in the future.
Multi-Pocket Breathable Shorts:
The Multi-Pocket Breathable Shorts are a lightweight pair, ideal for warmer rides. Between the main fabric (in Grey, here) and the black panels they offer a good amount of stretch. Again, the construction quality is okay with no sloppy stitching, crooked panels, or loose threads.
However, I can’t stop thinking about how much they look and feel like a bathing suit! Maybe more board shorts than bike shorts… These shorts use a zip fly with a button + mini Velcro waist closure.
The leg length is only a little shorter than the Comfort Shorts, but I found this pair rides up on my legs as I pedal around, leaving a considerable ‘pad gap’ up top. The Multi-Pocket shorts are baggy enough to fall over your knee pads, but really only stay there if your legs are short enough for them to reach that far!
I like the Multi-Pocket Breathable Shorts’ elasticised waistband. These shorts have a drawstring in the waist as well, but I plan to pull mine out as the waist stays snug enough by itself. Sizing is a bit different between the two pairs of shorts, with the small Multi-Pocket shorts fitting 30-32 waists. Belt loops are included in case you need to really cinch them down… that is for those whoever they are mountain bikers that ride with a belt.
Storage-wise you get two deep slack waist pockets, a cargo pocket on each leg (one zipped, one with a Velcro flap closure), and one zippered rear pocket. The only thing I don’t like is the elastic pull loop on the right cargo pocket; it stretches a lot before pulling the Velcro open, and frankly I don’t think it needs to be there.
The Men’s Multi-Pocket Breathable Shorts retail for $38 (without a chamois padded inner short) an are on-sale-now for 21% off. They come in four colors (including this grey or all-black), and in sizes S-3XL.
All in all I’d say Cycorld offers some reasonable options for those who don’t care about wearing high-end brand labels, or just want to save a few bucks. While I didn’t love the Multi-Pocket Breathable shorts, I think you’d have to look pretty close at the Comfort Shorts with Liner to notice they’re a little less expensive than most established MTB brands. Choose wisely within Cycorld’s extensive lineup of shorts, and I think you’ll get great bang for your buck.