The Vermarc Vento Kaos Trevalli is a stretchy, slim-fitting gilet that does a top job of keeping out cold air and even rain, as much as a gilet can. It has become my gilet of choice over the past couple of months.
First off, I really like the fit (that's not me in the photo). Being tall and quite wiry, I often find jerseys, jackets and gilets too loose, especially around the middle where they can bunch up when I'm leaning forward on the bike.
That doesn't happen here, though, because the Vermarc gilet is slim-fitting. The brand actually refers to the cut as 'tight', although to me that could imply that it's restrictive. That hasn't been the case for me; all the fabrics used here are stretchy and I've felt perfectly comfortable.
I have a hatred of flappy clothing so the fit is cool with me. I've found that the close-fitting armholes, for example, do a great job of sealing out cool air, and the same goes for the collar which has enough give that you don't feel like you're being throttled. It's very much a sports cut throughout. If you're more of a chunky build, the best approach would be to try before you buy.
The front, side and shoulder panels are all made from a polyester that's both windproof and waterproof, and a flap inside the top of the rear is made from the same fabric. It goes down far enough to cover your shoulder blades, protecting you from the wind even when you're bent low over on the drops.
You might think that using a waterproof fabric for a gilet doesn't make much sense on the basis that something without arms only offers limited coverage, but sometimes you just don't want to put on a jacket because it'll make you too hot. In those situations this gilet helps keep out mist, light rain and spray.
The inner face of the fabric can get a little damp with sweat if you start to overheat, but it's easy to just whip off the gilet and sling it in a jersey pocket if you turn up the intensity. It'll fit easily enough.
The full-length front zip goes up and down really easily and it stays in place wherever you position it. A flap behind the zip stops any cool air tiptoeing through there.
The polyester/elastane back panel is really lightweight and breathable. It looks a lot like a summer base layer mesh and it's very stretchy in all directions, helping to give you that close and comfortable fit I mentioned.
The whole of the bottom hem is elasticated so there's no chance of any draughts and a silicone strip inside there keeps it from riding up.
Overall, I like this gilet a lot largely because of the slim fit and the fact that it completely stops the wind getting through. It's a really good option.
Slim-fitting gilet that blocks the wind and also offers some protection from rain and spray
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Vermarc Vento Kaos Trevalli Gilet
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Vermarc says: "The Vento Kaos Trevalli Gilet is the perfect Mid-Season Gilet to help help make the wind and rain a bit more bearable without having to wear a full Wind and Rain specific Jacket. It's Lightweight, breathable and fully windproof so it's a great piece of clothing to take out when the conditions are just that little bit tougher. It's got a tight fit so fits snugly against you and avoids being a bulky and obnoxious over-layer when out riding.
It's a sporty-type gilet that easily packs down small enough to fit into a jersey pocket. "Mid-season" is a good description. You'll find lighter weight gilets out there but this offers a touch more weather protection than most.
There are lighter gilets out there but this one offers more protection from the weather than most.
This is more expensive than most gilets out there (there are plenty that are more, though, too).
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
It puts in a great performance, blocking the wind totally to keep you warm.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The slim fit and the fact that the front, side and shoulder panels block the wind out completely.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
It's a very good gilet and I've marked it accordingly. If it was 15 to 20 quid cheaper we'd be talking a 9 but even at £74.99 it still offers reasonable value for the level of performance. It's the sort of expenditure I'd class as an investment rather than an extravagance.
About the tester
Age: 43 Height: 190cm Weight: 75kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding
Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over 20+ years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for eight years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.