Cycling shoes are something that are personal. While I like mine, you may hate the brand and the fit. Likewise, I might not like the fit and weight of your cycling shoes. There are many brands that cater to men – but women may have to look a little further into the shoe store to find a good pair. Below are some of the best cycling shoes on the market for women – and every woman can find a pair that suits their style, weight preference, and overall comfort.
Specialized Women’s S-Works 6
Historically, cycling companies have made the top women’s product in a given line a step below the top men’s counterpart. Thankfully, that’s started to change, and the best bike shoes of 2016 show that. Example: Specialized, which makes the new S-Works 6 road shoe on a women’s specific Body Geometry last while retaining all the elements of the men’s shoe: FACT Powerline carbon outsole with extra fore-aft cleat adjustment, Dyneema non-stretch upper panel, and double Boa-dial reel closure system.
Sidi’s mountain bike shoes get high marks for durability, but they’ve traditionally skewed more to the XC-style look and feel. The SD15 is definitely aimed at trail riders, with a full-coverage rubber outsole (rather than sections of cleat blocks) for great grip. The Techno3 buckle used on the brand’s higher-end race shoes holds the foot securely, and the synthetic leather upper offers the long-wearing life Sidis are known for.
Giant is known for making some of the best values in bikes, but the brand is steadily expanding into other categories, including footwear; already, it’s making some of the best bike shoes of 2016. In its women’s Liv line, the top-line Tesca features a carbon sole with a stiff, crossed-beam construction called ExoBeam that improves torsional rigidity, with a flex zone at the toe for walkability. The soft, comfy microfiber upper features mesh panels for ventilation, a roomy toebox with a reinforced bumper, and dual Boa reel closures.
Mavic Cosmic Ultimate
Some companies hedge on reel-style closures, pairing them with traditional straps. Mavic goes all in, with two Ergo Dial closures on a superlight synthetic leather and mesh upper, bonded to reduce stitch seams. The carbon fiber outsole is further vented, but should continue Mavic’s rep for making some of the stiffest road bike shoes available. And borrowing from its new clothing and glove line, Mavic puts Ortholite foam in the insole for long-lasting comfort. The Cosmic Ultimate weighs just 240g (claimed) in a 41.