The ventilated mesh jacket is the perfect garment for summer riding. Here are 7 of our best.

Protection and comfort should come hand-in-hand when it comes to riding, but when the peak of summer rolls around and the weather forecast is baking hot, it can be really tempting to ride in a hoodie, or worse, a t-shirt.

Obviously, we don't need to tell you how much of a bad idea this is, but when the only option in your wardrobe is the heavy, sweaty Gore-Tex jacket you've been rocking all winter, you would be hard-pressed to favour comfort over protection.

Mesh motorcycle jackets provide a happy medium between the abrasion resistance of a traditional bike jacket with the comfort and style of a bomber or urban jacket. Lightweight, ventilated fabric provides more airflow than perforated leather, but more critically, they're also cheaper!.

You shouldn't need to choose between protection and comfort, so we've come up with 7 of our best mesh jackets that perfectly balance both so you can ride cool and calm all summer long.

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You can use the key below to skip to the corresponding section:

  1. RST F-Lite Textile Jacket
  2. Dainese Air Frame D1 Jacket
  3. Knox Urbane Pro MK2
  4. Revit Eclipse
  5. T.UR J-Four
  6. Rukka Forsair Pro Mesh
  7. Belstaff Tower Mesh

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RST F-Lite Textile Jacket

 

RST's latest textile jacket is also their lightest and most ventilated to date, boasting a robust shell with 

The RST F-Lite marks a new standard of textile jacket for the British brand, as their lightest and most ventilated jacket to date. The jacket boasts a CE A protection rating with a comfortable interior lining and a slim-fit design - and for the money, £130 to be exact - there's a lot to like about this urban jacket!

The main body is made from K540 mesh supported by high tenacity nylon, which combines for an extremely well-ventilated jacket with a lot of abrasion resistance. Underneath this outer layer lies a windproof lining with a nice shower resistant finish for light protection should the weather turn, and can be removed when it warms up.

CE level 1 shoulder and elbow armour is installed as standard, with a pocket for a back insert (sold separately), shoulder cups and reflective detailing provide additional protection and visibility. The collar and cuffs are lined with soft-to-touch Amara, the hook and loop cuff and waist adjusters provide a tailored fit, with an additional press fastener at the sleeves, and a 360-degree connection zip to pair with an RST trouser.

Overall, the large mesh panels, detachable windproof lining and body armour make the RST F-Lite an ideal jacket for summer riding. And weighing just xxx grams - the jacket is really f***ing lite!

£129.99

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Dainese Air Frame D1 Jacket

The Dainese Air Frame D1 is a testament to the saying "don't fix what isn't broken". As one of our best-selling jackets around this time of year, every year, this Dainese jacket will happily see you through the hottest summer rides whether you ride on the road or off of it. 

The Air Frame D1 sports a durable QuickDry textile outer shell, with large ventilated mesh panels throughout the front, back, sides and arms for direct airflow at a riding position. The interior of the jacket is lined with a sanitized, perforated fabric that wicks moisture away from your body, along with a detachable windproof lining to prevent cold air from entering the jacket when riding in the morning, and can be removed later in the day.

In terms of protection, the elbows and shoulders are equipped with a removable CE level 1 composite protector, with a pocket for an optional Dainese back protector (sold separately) and reflective inserts for increased visibility,

The Air Frame uses an 'anti-floating sleeve system' which basically translates to thumb loops that you can tuck underneath your gloves to prevent riding up. Soft inserts at the collar and cuffs make the jacket feel extremely comfortable at its edges, and a fastening system allows you to combine it with a pair of Dainese trousers.

When the weather warms up, the Air Frame D1 makes for an ideal alternative to riding in bulky leathers or heavy-duty textile in the summer, and priced at a very respectable £199.99 - there's no wonder we have issues trying to keep these in stock!

£199.95

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Knox Urbane Pro MK2 Body Armour

As one of the leading motorcycle brands in innovation and technical design, we've always been impressed by Knox's range of body armour, but their latest Urbane Pro MK2 in all honestly is especially well designed.

As part of their 2021 collection, this slim-fitting garment more resembles a shirt than a standard mesh jacket, but regardless is absolutely STACKED in the ventilation and protection departments.

Let's start with the build - the MK2 is made from high-tenacity stretch nylon with superior resistance to abrasion, cutting and tearing, as well as breathable arrow mesh for optimal ventilation. The stretch mesh panels allow a lot of room for flexibility, the low-profile of the shirt means you can wear the Urbane Pro underneath a waterproof outer jacket when the heavens open, and the thumb loops and security belt loop system prevent the shirt from riding up and keeps the armour in place.

Speaking of protection, the Urbane Pro MK2 achieves a staggering Class AA CE rating, usually reserved for much thicker, bulkier motorcycle jackets! It achieves this rating through the use of Knox's proprietary Micro-Lock body armour, installed at the shoulders and elbows (CE level 1) as well as the back (CE level 2) - an additional pocket at the chest can allow for a separate protector to be installed, purchased separately. 

Using Smart technology and properties, Micro-Lock armour retains a soft and stable state during riding and regular wear, but when met with force, the molecules in the armour instantly lock together, absorbing the energy from the impact and protecting your body from harm in the process.

Finished with a long YKK zip on the front, as well as two exterior zippered pockets for ample storage - the MK2 bleeds premium quality and is well worth the £229.99 price tag for its Class AA protection alone.

£229.99

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Revit Eclipse Jacket

Taking it back to the basics, the Revit Eclipse is the quintessential mesh jacket this summer, encompassing urban style, CE level 1 protection and all-ride comfort at the low, low price of £199.99.

Featuring a main body of abrasion-resistant polyester 600D, this regular-fit jacket sports large breathable mesh panels along the front, back, arms and sides for complete upper body ventilation. Velcro adjustment straps at the cuffs and waist allow for a more fitted look, the stud fasteners at the collar and upper arms, and the subtle laminated logo on the front and back perfectly compliment the street look.

Knox Flexiform shoulder and elbow armour is ready installed to provide CE level 1 rated protection, with a pocket at the back prepared for Knox's Seesoft back insert to boost protection up to CE level 2 (sold separately). Two elasticated loops at the back of the jacket enable attachment to a pair of jeans to prevent creeping up in a riding position, and two slit pockets on the front provide convenient storage on the move.

For a sub-£200 jacket, the Revit Eclipse provides the basic necessities in their finest form. For what it lacks in a windproof lining or some of the bells and whistles in some of the other jackets on this list, the Eclipse does a brilliant job at what it was designed to do: provide efficient airflow and protection during the hottest months of the year.

Let's put it this way - if the term "Summer Motorcycle Jacket" was to be included in the Oxford dictionary, the Revit Eclipse would be pictured. 

£129.99

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T.UR J-Four Jacket

We've so far only mentioned urban riding jackets on this list, but this next jacket from T.UR will break that mould!

As an off-shoot of Tucano Urbano, T.UR represents an entirely new range of adventure-touring focused clothing that blends the spirit of Dakar rallies with the latest in cutting-edge textiles and CE certified motorcycle protection. So in this respect, the J-Four jacket is already an exciting prospect, but when you also take into account its Class AA certification, removable waterproof inner jacket and is modest £249.99 price tag - now that's impressive. 

But at that price, have Tucano cut any corners? No siree.

The main body of the jacket is made from extremely durable mesh that allows direct airflow to the body, with abrasion-resistant Cordura on the shoulder and sleeves, and a wickable mesh interior lining. Cowhide leather inserts can be found at the elbows, with contrasting padded stripes on the right shoulder for styling.

Inside this outer layer is a versatile thermal, waterproof and windproof inner jacket, connected to the main jacket via a zip. This interior jacket features three layers: a hexagonal, thermal outer lining, a Hydroscud waterproof and breathable membrane, and a micro-mesh liner, that combine for a weather-resistant jacket that can be installed and removed as and when needed. 

Moving onto protection, the J-Four is armed with D3O's exclusive LP2 Pro breathable protectors (CE level 2 rated) at the shoulders and elbows, which not only greatly dissipates impact forces and protects your limbs from harm, but also allows air to pass through for the coolest ride! Among the other jacket's other features are adjustments at the biceps, arms, cuffs, and waists for a custom fit, a micrometric neck adjustment, and a plethora of exterior and interior pockets.

If you're after a mesh jacket for touring or adventure riding this summer, the J-Four surpasses expectations.

£249.99

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Rukka Forsair Pro Mesh Jacket

Rukka are specialists in waterproof touring suits, thick Gore-Tex laminate layers and winter apparel; so the Finnish brand probably isn't the first name on any list when you think of summer jackets. 

Yet here we are including the Rukka Forsair Pro on our list of best mesh jackets. No waterproofing here. Just mesh. So why is it here?

Priced on the high end of the spectrum, the Forsair Pro represents the most expensive jacket here, but it justifies the price tag with a uniquely comfortable, durable and well-ventilated design, perfect for hot weather riding.

The main body of the jacket is made from 500 denier Cordura AFT, which stands for 'Air Flow Technology', with AFT+ mesh on the sides and inner arms. Traditional Cordura is woven in a hexagonal pattern, which helps to form a strong bond between its links for superior abrasion resistance. Cordura AFT is instead woven in a chain-like pattern, resulting in more airflow passing through the space between the links, whilst retaining the incredible strength of the Cordura material. 

AFT+ extends this further, with larger perforated panels that dramatically increase the amount of air allowed in the jacket at the arms and sides to cool down these hot spots. 

Moving on to protection, this Rukka jacket sports the latest CE level 2 D3O XTR armour at the shoulders and elbows which provide outstanding impact protection as well as airflow through its perforated structure, and these areas are further reinforced with additional layers of Cordura textile in case of a possible slide. There are also pockets for additional chest and back protectors here (sold separately, but if you already own a Rukka jacket, you can remove these inserts and install them here in the Forsair Pro).

Other features of the jacket include a moisture-wickable interior mesh lining that feels comfortable against your skin, a YKK zip front closure with a snap bottom and collar, and a long 360-degree connection zip for a Rukka trouser.

While the jacket does scream for a detachable waterproof liner seen in other jackets (especially for the price tag), Rukka have developed a specific waterproof outer jacket to remedy this, albeit sold separately. And that's not to say Rukka have eliminated any mention of waterproofing here: the jacket does feature a tethered, watertight pocket big enough to accommodate a phone or wallet so you needn't worry about getting your device wet soaked. 

All-in-all, the Forsair Pro Mesh jacket is one of the most breathable jackets on the market and boasts D3O's very best protective armour. For what it lacks, the jacket excels in what it was made for - summer riding, and should definitely be considered if you're even remotely aware of Rukka's other premium products.

£399.99

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Belstaff Tower Mesh Jacket

Sometimes you just can't beat the classics, and since their foundation 80 years prior, Belstaff have built themselves a reputation for producing exceptional, heritage-style clothing.

The British brand are famed for their leather and wax cafe racer jackets, including the iconic Trialmaster jacket adorned by the likes of David Beckham and Ewan Mcgregor, and their latest collection includes a new summer mesh jacket, dubbed the Tower Mesh, which combines their expertise of urban style with the performance and comfort of a summer jacket.

The Belstaff Tower Mesh jacket is made from textured, abrasion-resistant nylon with large high-tenacity mesh panels on either side of the front, sides, inner arms and back, attributing to a lightweight yet durable outer shell that allows a lot of direct airflow at hot points of the upper body. The interior is lined with a soft moisture-wicking mesh, and the collar lined with a comfortable textile for a plush feel against your neck.

The Class A certification rating can be attributed to the level 1 shoulder and elbow armour for effective protection against impacts, though a back insert can be installed for increased protection (sold separately). 

The collar and bottom of the jacket use rubberised snaps to protect your bike, two zippered side jet pockets allow convenient storage and the subtle and stylish reflective Belstaff logos on the back collar and sleeves increase rider visibility. 

This cafe-racer style jacket is perfect for any cruisers or urban riders who want to show a bit more style and sophistication this summer and will set you back £275. 

£275.00

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This article was written by Jonah Son.