Review: Oakley Cycling Cap
Oakley has come full circle into the world of cycling with their increased presence in the apparel side of things. A company who got their start with BMX grips now has lines of helmets, jerseys, bibs, warmers, gloves, and caps. With their absurd attention to detail we were excited to receive our Oakley Cycling Cap. Here are our thoughts.
Cycling caps are the guilty pleasure around creakybottombracket.com. It can’t be just any cap, though. The cap needs to be functional and appealing. Oakley, the sunglass giant, has always made edgy offerings. Their cycling line is no different. When we received the cap we were a bit confused. The cap (in blue) fades to sea foam in the back. The L/XL sizing was more than generous and initially felt like a shower cap. The fabric looked like it had the potential to stick rather than wick. Would that all change once a helmet was thrown over top and the sweat began to bead? And would it earn its place in our regular rotation?
One positive Oakley has impressed on its apparel is simplicity in design. The Oakley Cycling Cap is mostly void of decoration aside from the color fade toward the back. The bottom of the brim has some zig-zag action but for the most part the Oakley O is the only thing standing out from the cap’s appearance. It was why the cap was lusted after. Because helmets cover caps, it was always thought caps should possess a get-in-get-out approach: keep it simple, it’s rarely seen anyway.
Despite its baggy feel, the Oakley Cycling Cap felt at home under the helmet. Any concerns of bunching up faded as we bounced along backcountry roads in the late afternoon sun. The brim had a satisfying snap to it, remaining in place angled upwards. Often we had to make observations about it because it was stealthy in its presence. The cap was winning us over.
Despite the rule that cap brims should always be up, for the return trip the brim was needed to block the evening sunset glare. Again, we had to remember the cap was part of the kit; it wasn’t making us scratch our heads or demanding a reset. We enjoyed the simplicity of its feel after the umpteenth bug zipped into the helmet vent, bounced off the cap, and was shot out the back. And all the while sweat never cascaded on the warm outing. This cap was becoming the real deal. Even the fade matched the helmet and kit for the day. That was by accident.
Where we felt about the cap before the ride and where we were at its conclusion were two separate places. There were doubts about the comfort, worrying it could be scratchy or sticky and yet we regularly forget the cap was there, a good sign when something so simple could disrupt a ride so enjoyable. Now that we have concluded that the Oakley Cycling Cap has passed the fashion and function test, as well as earned its place on the kit hook, our curiosity has been inspired. If Oakley can make simple caps that well, just how comfortable are their other cycling designs? Perhaps it is time to find out.