The best cycling overshoes will keep your feet warm and dry as well as protect your best cycling shoes in the wet, cold winter months. As we move further into winter, especially in the northern hemisphere and temperatures plummet and we see more water on the roads, a pair of good overshoes can keep you a lot more comfortable when out riding and training.
Ride for anything more than about an hour in cold winter temperatures without overshoes and your feet are going to know about it. Combine thin cycling socks with breathable, stiff summer cycling shoes and single-digit temperatures and unless you are riding really hard you are going to quickly have cold and numb feet.
Once the cold sets in and your feet go numb it’s hard to ignore and you are going to have an uncomfortable time on the bike. If your doing a decent amount of winter cycling investing in some cycling overshoes is definitely worth it. Overshoes will keep the rain and road spray out of your shoes and greatly reduce windchill and freezing temperatures numbing your feet and toes.
Overshoes come in a range of designs and fabrics and some are more effective than others. You can always invest in winter cycling shoes, which are weatherproof and better insulated and suited to poor conditions than thinner summer shoes, although cycling overshoes are more versatile and easier to keep clean. A set of the best road bike mudguards are also a solid choice to keep the majority of spray from the front wheel especially away from your feet.
Keep reading for a roundup of our favourite cycling overshoes, or scroll down to the bottom to find out how to choose the best cycling overshoes for you. We have ridden hundreds of miles in some foul and wet weather to see what works and what doesn’t so you can choose easily from our pick of the best cycling overshoes.
The best cycling overshoes you can buy today
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Made from 3.5mm neoprene rubber, the dhb Extreme Weather overshoes are designed to keep the nastiest elements on the outside. There is only one seam on the front which gives water little opportunity to sneak in, and it’s flat stitched and taped on the inside to maximise ingress protection. The overshoes also close with a single YKK zipper.
The toe and heel are reinforced with Kevlar fabric, so these dhb overshoes should last you a few winters. With so much rubber wrapped around your feet, it should come as no surprise that they are a bit bulky, watch out for them rubbing your cranks depending on how your cleats are placed.
If you’re looking for extreme weather protection on a bit of a budget, the dhb Extreme Neoprene are the best cycling overshoes for you.
The simply named Endura Road Overshoe in Hi-Viz Yellow is another competitively priced neoprene option. The Road Overshoe has been a cornerstone of the Endura overshoe line for years.
The main body of the overshoes features soft neoprene and the Hi-viz fluoro sections really stand out, there is also a reflective strip on either side of the zip to help you stand out in the gloom and dark.
The Road overshoes keep your feet warm and dry for long periods of time, they fit snugly around your shoe and the durable lower sections around the cleat opening feel solid. The offset zip makes getting them on really quick. The only thing I would like to see is for them to extend a little higher up the ankle. But if you are looking for an affordable good quality overshoe and like the Hi-Viz elements, the Enduras are a solid buy.
These are about as thick and plush as they come. The Estremo is the warmest offering from Castelli and will be comfortable handling sub-zero conditions. The overshoes use the popular Gore Tex Infinium material on the outer to keep the wind at bay and a seriously plush Polartec Power stretch fleece on the inside. There are also reflective details and a bright red YKK aqua guard-sealed Zipper.
The Estremo goes on easily and there is a handy pull tab on the rear which is really well placed and lets you pull the overshoe up over your shoe heel tab easily. Extending halfway up the calf, the Estremo’s don’t look super bulky given their thick lining and provide a good fit. Castelli also reduced some of the material in the inner front section to prevent crank rub which is a nice touch. There are also several reflective details and details to help you be seen on dark winter days.
If you want to invest in some seriously warm, stylish overshoes for the coldest days the Estremo will fit the bill. I think due to the Polartec fleece and Infinium material they will become waterlogged in sustained heavy downpours, but this can be said of many overshoes.
Toe cover overshoes are a popular choice for when it’s a little warmer or you are riding hard. Made from Neoprene fabric, Castelli’s Toe Thingy blocks wind and water to provide warmth over the most sensitive part of your feet, looping over the back of your cleat to stay on, the bottom features a rubberised outsole for added grip and durability.
They are low profile, lightweight and provide the bit of extra warmth needed for riding in moderate weather.
Check out our review for a detailed look at the Castelli Toe Thingy 2 overshoes.
The major negative that befalls even the best cycling overshoes is the gaping hole through which you place your foot when putting them on. When rainwater hits your legs, it often seeps down the gap between your calf and your overshoes, and down into your socks. Many brands offer a sealed edge, but British brand Spatz tackles this issue by raising the length of the leg portion further than any other resulting in an overshoe that extends to just below the knee. This feels a little unusual at first, but if your spending long hours on the bike it’s a game changer. That’s not all though, the Pro 2 overshoes are made using ‘aero-armour’ neoprene which means a close aerodynamic fit and abrasion resistance.
Kevlar-topped neoprene is used for the ankle area and toe box to offer flexibility and durability, whilst on the inside, there’s a thermo, fleece-like fabric that is designed to breathe, whilst keeping your feet nice and cosy. You will see many pro riders logging their winter base miles in a pair of Pro 2’s.
For anyone looking to make cold feet a thing of the past, these are the best cycling overshoes available. If you are putting in the hours out on the road all winter look no further. You will feel ready for battle with a pair of these on. To read more about why they are worthy of the coveted five-star rating, check out our Spatz Pro 2 overshoes review. We’ve also reviewed the Spatz Roadman 2 and Legalz Pro overshoes, which also garnered five-star ratings.
The Le Col neoprene toe warmers have been developed with direct feedback from World Tour riders and are aimed at insulating your feet in milder conditions.
They are made from neoprene with a soft brushed fleecy interior and are around 3mm thick. They slip on really easily and look stylish with the simple white Le Col logo. I really like using them in milder temperatures when the roads are relatively dry or perhaps a little damp, they do a really good job of keeping your toes warm and I felt glad of the extra protection from the spray and wind. If you’re heading out for efforts or a hard session they will keep you warm and protect the front of your shoes without adding the bulk of a full overshoe. I did notice some light scuffing to the underside front panel of the overshoe on my clipping-in foot after just a few rides so watch out for this when clipping in and out or stopping, as the section is not reinforced, I fear it would wear through relatively quickly if you were hard on it.
If it’s raining or really wet it would be better to opt for a full overshoe as the exposed rear of your cycling shoe and ankle will get wet quickly and this will spread to your toes.
Galibier produce good quality cycling kit that’s great value for money. The Arctic 3 overshoes are hefty 4mm neoprene units and have a very interesting moulded rubber toe box. This should offer great durability and I can’t say I’ve personally seen it on any other overshoes. It should offer great protection from the elements and not suffer wear and tear from clipping in or walking.
The cleat opening is wide enough to accommodate 2 bolt-mount gravel or mtb shoes and the toe box may lend itself well to off-road use. The neoprene outer is not quite as soft as the Endura offerings but still feels well made.
There is a gloss black Galibier logo on each side and 3M reflective stripes on either side of the zip to aid visibility. There is also a velcro closure at the top of the ankle to keep things in place. My only gripe would be that on my size large pair the cutout for the shoe heel tab seemed a little off with the overshoe sitting over the heel tab itself, so you may want to size up if you have bulky or winter cycling shoes.
The Assos GT Ultraz winter overshoes are a premium offering from Assos and like all Assos equipment are a sleek and stylish offering. The overshoes are relatively thin compared to some neoprene offerings.
Constructed mainly from Polyester, the overshoes have a soft fleece interior, strengthened toe area and what Assos call Zerocuff which is to ensure a slick unbulky transition from the top of the overshoe to your tights.
In use, the overshoes were deceptively warm for their weight and thickness and kept my feet warm down into single digits without feeling bulky which is something I like. I don’t however think these are the best overshoes to use if you are doing a lot of riding in the wet, they have a DWR coating but water gets in relatively quickly with the overshoes becoming saturated. These will be the best option for dry, cold days.
The Sportful Fiandre booties are constructed using Gore Tex Infinium fabric and are a thinner overshoe designed to offer excellent wind blocking protection as well as water resistance.
If you’re riding in foul weather conditions and want excellent wind and rain protection without the full bulk of something like a neoprene overshoe then the Fiandre is a good option. For milder conditions where it’s not freezing but there’s plenty of road spray I would opt for the Fiandre. The cuff extends a good way up the ankle and there’s a wide elastic gripper to keep it in place. I cant stand overshoes slipping down during a ride so this was welcome. The zip is moved to the side to keep it out of the way of spray and has a neoprene guard inside to prevent water working it’s way in.
Visually the Fiandre looks good, with two reflective Sportful logos and a prominent red band across the left overshoe which matches the bibtights very well if you want to co-ordinate. I would like to see a slightly tighter fit overall as there is some wrinkling but this is partly due to the nature of the Infinium fabric.
Combining an Outdry waterproof membrane and Primaloft Gold insulation, the Pearl Izumi Pro Barrier WxB shoe covers are designed to keep the elements out and trap as much heat as possible. When water does eventually overcome the membrane or sneak in through the cuff, the Prima Loft insulation maintains its warmth.
The base of the shoe is made with Kevlar face fabric, and the toes are rubber reinforced to prevent abrasions. At the back, the overshoes feature a two-stage hook and loop closure for a tight fit and to seal them closed. This also makes getting them on a breeze, perfect if you’re one to be rushing out of the door in the morning. Some overshoes can be a battle to get on due to their tight neoprene so easy fitting is a definite plus point.
Do bear in mind that while the retail price is high, the Pearl Izumi Pro Barrier WxBs are regularly available for much less, which makes them a better value proposition than they might first appear.
Learn how we tested them in our Pearl Izumi Pro Barrier WxB review.
These overshoes use a hook-and-loop sole that is easy to fit over mountain bike and gravel shoes while still keeping the tread available for walking. Despite the thickness of the neoprene they are smartly shaped around the shoe and fit flush, with a snug fit around the toe box where there’s a larger durable reinforcement material, which is replicated around the sides and at the heel. A wide Velcro strap secures the bottom of the overshoe opening across the sole of the shoe and a tall vertical zipper secures the overshoe around your ankle with a small Velcro tab for good measure. They’re also available in a road-specific version which uses a similar design.
For riding off-road or commuting, these are easy-to-fit overshoes with adequate reinforcement and impressive warmth and the ability to keep you dry on everything but the most flooded roads. The durability is good, though you need to keep the zipper clean from mud for best performance, pay particular attention to the fit around the toe box and ensure the bottom Velcro strap is sufficiently tight to prevent the tendency for the front of the overshoe to pop up.
Read our Shimano S3100X NPU+ review for an in-depth look.
Velotoze offers a simple, yet very effective solution for waterproofing. By creating a fully-latex membrane that encases the shoe like a swim cap, its original Road overshoes were able to offer complete waterproofing, but the downside was a lack of durability, meaning they very easily tore and were regularly damaged if ever walked in. The solution to this was the Velotoze Road 2.0, which offers reinforcement at the bottom and around the toe to add durability.
We say ‘complete waterproofing’, but it’s worth remembering that there are still holes at the top, cleat, and heel, so like any of the options here, water can find its way in during the worst of the downpours. Also be aware that breathability is reduced, so you might find your feet damp from sweat too. If you’re looking for a super warm, waterproof overshoe the Velotoze isn’t a quick fix for this, but they will keep large amounts of water at bay, and if and when moisture seeps in your feet should be wet but warm. They are also a hugely popular choice for racers and time triallists thanks to their aerodynamic fit.
How to choose the best cycling overshoes for you
The best overshoes for you will be determined naturally by the type of riding you do. If you’re on something of a budget and are heading out on plenty of winter rides and club runs etc a fairly thick neoprene pair will stand you in good stead, keeping your feet warm but also doing a god job of waterproofing. If you’re really mile munching during the cold months look for something that extends as high up your leg as possible for extra warmth and the most tech you can afford. If you’re riding a bit less outdoors and maybe just doing winter race series or fast club rides a thinner option such as the Velotoze will probably cover it.
Temperature range obviously needs to be considered; if you live somewhere with constantly sub zero conditions you will need the right tools for the job and a heavier weight overshoe. If it’s a lot milder you can get away with something less bulky.
Are cycling overshoes worth it?
If you’re doing any sort of cycling in colder winter temperatures and conditions a pair of cycling overshoes are worth investing in. Anything over around an hour on the bike in the cold and wet and there’s a fair chance you will have soaking and cold feet. Yes, you can tough this out and ride for hours but we can promise it won’t be comfortable and you’ll be using energy trying to stay warm that could be used elsewhere. We’ve ridden for hours in winter with frozen feet and it’s miserable. A pair of overshoes will protect your feet and keep them warmer and if water eventually does work its way in, you will be ‘wet but warm’ instead of frozen to the bone. Our advice is to invest in a budget set of neoprene overshoes, put some time in with them on the bike and get an idea of what you like, and what you don’t.
Should I get overshoes or toe covers?
Just as you may not need full winter boots, full shoe covers might be too warm. Toe covers, as the name suggests, only cover the toe box of your shoe, ending just past the cleat, which helps to hold it in place. They tend to be fairly cheap but could fill a useful gap in your wardrobe for spring and autumn cool conditions.
Cycling overshoes, on the other hand, engulf your whole shoe and see a cuff that will continue up the calf, the length of which varies by brand and model. Of course, the further up the leg, the greater the protection against the elements, and with the additional coverage, it should come as no surprise that full overshoes are considerably warmer.
Read more in our overshoes vs winter boots feature.
How do you wear cycling overshoes?
The majority of cycling overshoes are worn over your cycling shoes, most pull on after you have put your shoes on. Some go on before your shoes but most are on in seconds and are easy to get on.
Most cyclists will wear their overshoes on top of their bib tights or legwarmers but you can wear them underneath against your skin. This may prove a bit tricky with big bulky overshoes though.
If you are wearing winter overshoes, wear some leg warmers or bib tights too, it’s not very smart keeping your feet nice and warm and then bleeding body heat from your exposed legs and knees. The more heat you can retain the better; it will help you put all of your energy into pedalling the bike.
What are the warmest cycling overshoes?
The thicker the shoe cover, the warmer it’s going to be. An overshoe that also extends higher up your ankle and calf will really help promote warmth. One thing to keep in mind is how much of the bottom of your shoe it covers.
Carbon is a terrible insulator which, combined with the metal cleat screws, sap heat from your feet and leads to discomfort. Unfortunately, there needs to be holes in the bottom of your cycling overshoes to accommodate the cleat and heel pad, but in most cases the more of the sole that is covered, the warmer you will be.
Also, it’s worth noting that thick neoprene overshoes can scuff against your cranks as you ride. It’s not so much of a problem for your cranks besides some scuffing, but the overshoe is likely to wear through more quickly. You should also stay on top of cleat and pedal wear as worn-out cleats and pedals can exacerbate this problem.
How should cycling overshoes fit?
Cycling overshoes should have a snug fit, so as to keep the water and cold air out. If they’re too loose, you could find them slipping and letting in all the elements. However, if they’re too tight, that could spell other troubles. Check your shoe size against the size guide for overshoes, and that should give you a good starting point. Most cycling overshoes have enough stretch to accommodate your feet.
Another thing to consider is whether to opt for overshoes with zips or velcro straps. Wrestling shoe covers onto your feet can be a workout all on its own, but well-placed zippers can make the process considerably more manageable.
Look for a pair of cycling overshoes that feature a pull tab built into the heel to simplify the process. Velcro straps at the top cuff can allow you to tighten up the opening and help to prolong protection against water ingress, but its effectiveness will eventually deteriorate.
How long do overshoes last?
Don’t expect to have your overshoes to last forever. The combination of abuse to the uppers from rubbing against your cranks and damage to the undersides from walking in them and putting a foot down at stops means that they’ll often wear quickly. If they’ve got a DWR coating, it’s likely to wash off if you launder your overshoes, while outer surfaces can crack and break over time, letting the water in.
Many overshoes have kevlar inserts in their bases, but even so, wear may be an issue and any straps or velcro used under the foot are also likely to wear quickly. Zips can break if the overshoes are a tight fit.
Expect to have to replace your cycling overshoes after two or three years of use, if not less depending on how hard you are on them.