5 Best Padded Bike Shorts

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We looked at 50 pairs of cycling shorts and shortlisted 5 best padded bike shorts based on their quality to price ratio. Check them out below.


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Bike shorts are one of the most essential pieces of cycling clothing. They are usually padded to provide comfort in a saddle and eliminate or reduce saddle sores and pain. In general, bike shorts are divided into 2 main categories: waist bike shorts and bib shorts. Bib shorts do not have a waistband, but instead, come with shoulder straps and usually are a go-to option for several reasons: 

Bib Shorts
Waist shorts

The quality of cycling bib shorts is generally determined by fabric, padding, and straps. Shorts priced below $100 are mostly entry-level and anything above falls into a mid-range or a pro category. For most cyclists, the mid-range category is the best value for money and this is what we focused on here as well. We looked at 50 different popular bib shorts and narrowed down the list to these best 5 padded bike shorts.

High-Level Comparison

If you don’t have time to go through the whole article check out a quick comparison of our best 5 padded bike shorts:

Assos Mille GT Bib Shorts

Best premium quality choice

Mille S7 Evo pad

16 Speed Shimano Claris (lower entry range) Groupset

74% Nylon, 18% Spandex, 8% Polyester

Rapha Core Bib Shorts

Best affordable premium brand

Rapha’s Core category pad

16 Speed Shimano Claris (lower entry range) Groupset

82% Polyester, 18% Elastane

Sportful Neo Bib Shorts

Best value for money (budget option)

Comfort Pro seat pad

16 Speed Shimano Claris (lower entry range) Groupset

63% Polyamide, 25% Elastane, 12% Polyester

Castelli Competizione Bib Shorts

Best for performance-oriented cyclists

KISS Air2 seat pad

16 Speed Shimano Claris (lower entry range) Groupset

80% Polyamide, 20% Elastane

Endura FS260-Pro Bib Shorts

Best for performance-oriented cyclists

600 series pad

18 Speed Shimano Sora (mid entry range) Groupset

78% Nylon, 22% Elastane

1. Assos Mille GT Bib Shorts


Assos is well-known in cycling communities all over the world for its premium quality clothing and Mille GT bib shorts are an example of this. These cycling shorts were designed for maximum comfort in a saddle and ultimate performance throughout.


Mille GT bib shorts are made of high-quality fabric that is packed with different features. For example, the material is very stretchy and does not create any movement or breathing restrictions. Also, they fit like a second skin and feel very high quality and durable. 


Padding on these bib shorts is also something special. Built for all-day adventures, the Mille S7 Evo pad consists of an 8mm breathable memory foam. The seams were specifically designed to provide additional comfort during the longest rides.


Last, but not least, these cycling shorts come with several reflective elements for better visibility on a road. 

Overall, Assos Mille GT bib shorts is a state of the art for all types of riding. It is expensive, unfortunately, and the inseam length is too short for the liking of some cyclists. 

2. Rapha Core Bib Shorts


Rapha is a premium quality cycling brand and Core bib shorts fall into their entry-range category. They are more affordable and actually price competitive to other alternative choices. 


Rapha’s core bib shorts are made of high-quality and durable fabric. This product is very pleasant to wear and offers comfortable straps, which fit extremely well and don’t cause discomfort. 


Pad is also very comfortable and fits perfectly even though it is in a core category. In our opinion, it is one of the best pads you can get for the price. 


Overall, Rapha’s core bib shorts are very comfortable, durable, price competitive and a choice you most likely will not regret. 

3. Sportful Neo Bib Shorts


Sportful is another popular and well-known brand that has a lot to offer. One example is their Neo bib shorts, which are most suitable for those looking to upgrade from entry-level shorts or those looking for a great value-for-money choice. 


The fabric on these bib shorts is very comfortable to wear and durable. Also, It is stretchy in order to allow proper blood circulation, oxygen flow, and ease of rider’s movement when on a bike. 


These bib shorts come with a comfort pro seat pad, which is most often found in Sportful higher-priced legwear. The pad is very comfortable even though it is not very thick and should be ideal for short and mid-range distances in a saddle. 


Overall, it is very hard to find bib shorts that would be a better value for money choice than Sportful’s Neo shorts. The fit could be a bit of a challenge because many cyclists find them small filling so go for a size up or buy 2 pairs and send one back. 

4. Castelli Competizione Bib Shorts


Castelli’s Competizione bib shorts include several features from a pro category and would be ideal for performance-oriented cyclists. 


The fabric used to manufacture these cycling shorts is very comfortable and feels like a second skin. Even though made for a close fit, these bibs do not feel restrictive and should not cause any movement issues while on a bike. 

For padding, Castelli used their Kiss Air 2 pad, which was designed for mid and slightly longer rides in mind. It has an anatomical shape and consists of dual-density variable thickness and a comfortable skincare layer on top.


Castelli sizing is different to other brands so make sure to check their sizing guide or confirm your ideal size with a retailer before buying. 


Overall, Castelli’s Competizione bib shorts would be best for performance-oriented cyclists looking for quality cycling clothing. 

5. Endura FS260-Pro Bib Shorts


Endura is another well-known brand for its quality cycling products and FS260-Pro bib shorts are an excellent example of this. They feel and perform on a premium level. 


Fabric and overall construction on these shorts feel very comfortable, durable, and sits extremely well. The fit is designed for a more racing position and that’s why performance-focused cyclists are drawn most to these bib shorts. 


For padding, Endura used their 600 series pad, which sits and feels comfortably on short and mid-range rides. 


Overall, Endura’s FS260-Pro bib shorts is a premium choice that most cyclists would be happy with. The grippers could be slightly restrictive for some as they are designed for a tight fit. 


We know that choosing cycling products is hard and that’s why we help by narrowing down your choice with our reviews and comparisons. We looked at over 50 different options from various brands and narrowed our list to these 5 best padded bike shorts based on their quality. These are not entry-level cheaper options but are the best value-for-money choices. 


Thanks for visiting our website and we hope you found this article helpful. Stay healthy, happy, and active. 

Why should you trust us?

In order to feature and review any products on our website we do extensive research, read user feedback, carefully review forum threads, look at search trends, brand popularity, try to actually use and test as many products as possible ourselves, and evaluate other factors depending on the product category. By doing extensive research and incorporating it with our own experience we are able to shortlist only a handful of products out of thousands of options. 


We want to bring value to our readers and help them find answers to questions and buy the most appropriate cycling products. Brands and cycling professionals always try to innovate and improve to get the best possible outcome. Unfortunately, innovations and product improvements these days result only in marginal gains, but the price increase for these gains is not equally proportional. In economics, this behavior is defined as “diminishing returns”. Knowing this we focus on featuring the best value for the money products that are affordable, but at the same time have a lot to offer. We don’t want our visitors to overspend on something they will not benefit from. 

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