Pearl Izumi Superstar Skirt
Size Tested: Medium
- SELECT Transfer Dry fabric
- Flattering wide waistband
- Detachable liner with Women’s MTB 3D Chamois
- Reflective elements for low-light visibility
- 15.5” front length
Fabric: Body: 86% nylon 14% elastane/ UPF 50+; Liner: 80% polyester 20% elastane/ UPF 40+
Reviewer Info: 5’2”, 115 lbs., Waist: 26”. Usually wears a Medium.
Days Tested: 15
Location: Kalispell and Whitefish, Montana; Salmon, Idaho; Jackson Hole, Wyoming; Wasatch Mountains, Utah
The Pearl Izumi Superstar skirt is a simple, lightweight skirt that is meant to be very comfortable on the bike, and looks good, too.
Fit / Sizing
I usually wear a size Medium in bike shorts, and the Medium Superstar skirt fits me perfectly. The waistband is snug, without feeling restricting. The skirt is designed with two pieces of overlapping fabric: one that wraps around the back, and a smaller panel that covers the front. There are two slits that run up over the thigh to the waistband on either side.
This design prevents the Superstar skirt from feeling restricting, and I have complete range of motion. The only issue I’ve had is how much of my legs the skirt reveals. The slits along the sides open up while pedaling, showing my thighs completely. The skirt also blows open while I’m standing up on descents. Since the Superstar’s chamois generally rides up while pedaling and is quite short, I am a little more exposed than I would like when the Superstar skirt blows open. Some people may not find this to be a problem, however.
I’ve also worn the Terry Flare bike skort, which has much smaller, three-inch slits on both sides; while these slits are much shorter than the openings on the Superstar skirt, I never felt restricted while biking in the Flare skort. While Pearl Izumi probably designed the Superstar with such large slits to improve range of motion, I would prefer that the slits didn’t run all the way up to the waistband so that the skirt offered a little more coverage.
The Medium chamois liner that comes with Superstar skirt has a similar fit to the Canyon shorts’ liner. It is snug, but not uncomfortable while standing, but once I start to pedal, the shorts ride up my legs, and I have to stop frequently to pull them back down. This is most likely because the chamois does not have a tighter elastic band on the bottom of the leg.
The Superstar skirt is made of a soft, stretchy material that feels almost like a very light, thin, spandex. The outer skirt is breathable and quick drying, and the chamois liner is also quite breathable and very thin. The lightweight material and generous side slits helped keep me cool on some of the hotter days biking around Utah.
After a ride, I found the chamois to be incredibly easy to remove under the skirt. The slits are quite revealing, however, if the skirt is worn just over underwear. I’ve worn the Superstar skirt several times without the chamois while hiking, and though it is really comfortable, I have to extra careful about taking large steps, or else my entire thigh is exposed. Again, this may not be an issue for some people, but I found it to be a little too revealing for me. On cooler days, I also liked wearing the Superstar over long underwear, which solved the coverage issue.
The Superstar has one, horizontal pocket on the back, which can fit a granola bar. I didn’t use this pocket often, however, since it is covered with a backpack, and I was usually wearing a pack while riding.
I’ve recently started biking with knee pads, and the bottom of the Superstar often gets snagged on the Velcro at the top of the pads. I was worried about the skirt’s fabric pilling from repeatedly pulling it off the pads, but I haven’t experienced any issues yet.
All mud has easily come out in the wash, too, and there are no stains on the skirt.
The Pearl Izumi Superstar is a comfortable, simple biking skirt that does not restrict any range of motion. While the skirt exposed a little too much skin for my liking, it would be a good choice for anyone who doesn’t mind a skirt with a little less coverage.