A good base layer is key to cold-weather riding. My go-to options are typically some sort of Merino blend, so it’s no wonder that the Pearl Izumi Transfer Wool Base Layer has been so impressive.

Pearl Izumi Transfer Wool Base Layer Features:

  • P.R.O. Transfer Dry Merino blend
  • Optimized for moisture transfer and dry time
  • Anti-microbial properties
  • Cycling-specific fit with rotated sleeve construction
  • Body-mapped sleeves
  • MSRP: $85.00

Pearl Izumi Transfer Wool Base Layer

The Transfer is a superb cycling base layer

I love a good wool base layer. There’s just something about natural Merino wool fibers that just feels good next-to-skin. Itchyness is minimal (but still noticeable) and the fit is absolutely spot-on for use under a long-sleeve jersey like the Pearl Izumi PRO Aero LS or a cold-weather jacket like the Castelli Alpha Jacket.

The wide collar plays well with winter-height collars and never causes undue bunchyness that can happen when base layers have a mock turtleneck or a traditional zipped collar. Every bit of the Transfer Wool Base Layer is well-constructed and body-mapped for outstanding fit in the saddle and moisture management. I can’t emphasize that enough — this thing breathes with magical precision and never gets soggy. As a result, it dries out in no time at all and retains little, if any body odors.

You can't see it, but it's under there -- keeping me warm.

You can’t see it, but it’s under there — keeping me warm.

With a nice, long length, this base layer fits well under all the flavors of bibs I’ve worn it with. Straps sit nicely and it tucks into the bibs with ease. Additionally, I’ve appreciated the thumb loops that help keep the sleeves in place when pulling on a jacket. More on the sleeves… they are body-mapped and really fit my arms well. It’s surprising how much my arms sweat while riding and is base layer is optimized for that.

Some of the magic is due to the blend of materials. Particularly, the front is 86% Merino wool while the waffle-like back and arm bands are 38% Merino wool. This blend of materials really does well and helps this piece maintain its form.

I’ve just tossed it in with other dark clothes and it has maintained it’s size just fine. In a house full of six people, segregating laundry is difficult — just know that you can toss it in a load of darks and it will come out dandy.

For reference, I’m 5’11” and 170 lbs and the size Large was spot-on.

The Good

  • Excellent moisture management
  • Remains stink-free
  • Body-hugging fit
  • Thumb loop straps help when wearing under a jacket or jersey
  • Body-mapped sleeves
  • Excellent length to tuck into bibs/bibtights

The Bad

  • Has a tendency to attract long hairs (not mine, but when there are 4 girls in my house, you get the picture)

The Bottom Line: Pearl Izumi Transfer Wool Base Layer

Pearl Izumi has really knocked this one out of the park. The perfect combination of Merino wool and modern materials with top-notch construction has me singing praises. The Transfer Wool Base Layer is my new standard for midweight base layers.

Buy Now: Visit JensonUSA.com

The Verdict

9.3 My New Favorite
The Pearl Izumi Transfer Wool Base Layer is the perfect combination of Merino wool and modern materials with top-notch construction. It wicks moisture amazingly-well and fits great under jerseys or winter-weight jackets.
  • Comfort 9
  • Performance 10
  • Value 9

About Author

A native of the Pacific Northwest, Jason quickly developed a love for the outdoors and a thing for mountains. That infatuation continues as he founded this site in 1999 -- sharing his love of road biking, mountain biking, trail running and skiing. That passion is channeled into every article or gear review he writes. Utah's Wasatch Mountains are his playground.

Leave A Reply