Still, I know people who loved the design, so I’m putting this down to personal preference, and will now review it as if the design is something much more neutral – because as a practical jersey, it’s very good. (It’s also available in a ‘Fleur’ design, also likely to divide opinion…)
What I like about it is that even in a medium the cut is generous (I normally fit a large jersey), allowing space for people with a more rounded profile than myself. On me, that means the jersey feels relaxed rather than my usual tighter fare, with plenty of space around the mid-section.
The overall fabric is incredibly breathable and lightweight, while there’s lots of stretch in the silicone band around the waist to suit thinner wearers like myself and more substantial riders too. That give extends to the rear, where the pockets also benefit not only from an elasticated top cuff, but from the general elasticity of the fabric too.
As a result, you can fully load your pockets to almost uncomfortable levels without running out of secure space. Plus, if security is important, there’s a zipped pocket for valuables, though it’s not waterproof.
The neckline is a little bulkier than the rest of the fabric, but that’s a good thing as it doesn’t collapse or roll down, in turn protecting your neck from the beating sun a little. In warm weather I find silicone grippers against the skin can cause chafing when combined with sweat and sun cream, so I’m pleased that the Zahira jersey doesn’t use them at all, instead relying upon the natural elasticity and slim-but-not-tight cut of the arms for retention.