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Why is so much clothing dark colored.

Old 04-22-22, 08:58 AM
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tornado60
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Why is so much clothing dark colored.

This may be a dumb question but it seems like a lot of exercise clothing including bicycle gear is dark or black in color. I find this more true for pants. Has anyone heard a reason for this? I would think bright, and/or safety colors would be cooler and, well, safer. Just wondering.
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Old 04-22-22, 09:02 AM
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Not just exercise clothing, most clothing, casual and formal including jackets and coats. It's fashion. I'm guessing if all these clothing had reflector stripes around the sleeves, pant cuffs and outlining the back and part of the front, they wouldn't sell.
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Old 04-22-22, 09:04 AM
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I asked my LBS why they only have black bib shorts and they pretty much said its so your junk/bulge is not on display. I know a dude who rides with pink everything though and think its pretty sweet
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Old 04-22-22, 09:06 AM
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People today don't seem to want to stand out. Makes them uneasy to have on color that might let them be seen.

I still can't get over the guy in dark exercise clothing that matched the MUP colors perfectly and doing pushups in a heavily shadowed depression that I almost ran over when cycling a year or so ago.

Though I will say white bibs or short is not a good look for the grime and yellowish colored drinks you might spill on them while cycling that gets mistaken by others as urine stain or worse.
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Old 04-22-22, 09:10 AM
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Black shorts have been de rigueur for cycling since they started making them. Moisture doesn't show on them.

There are plenty of brightly colored jerseys, socks, and gloves available for those who want to do the peacock thing.
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Old 04-22-22, 09:10 AM
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Dark colors make things look sleeker, slimmer, etc. Black is a neutral color, so it goes with anything. Which makes picking an outfit for working out easy. It doesn't take much to make light colors look dirty, either. In the heat/high humidity of the southeast, white doesn't stay white very long.

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Old 04-22-22, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
I asked my LBS why they only have black bib shorts and they pretty much said its so your junk/bulge is not on display. I know a dude who rides with pink everything though and think its pretty sweet
You should google "Polish cycling team"
In the long ago past shorts were black so that you could wipe your hands on them after changing a tire or replacing a chain after it fell off the chainring without the black dirt and grease showing. At one time top professionals were required to wear black shorts by race organizers
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Old 04-22-22, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by alcjphil View Post
You should google "Polish cycling team"
In the long ago past shorts were black so that you could wipe your hands on them after changing a tire or replacing a chain after it fell off the chainring without the black dirt and grease showing. At one time top professionals were required to wear black shorts by race organizers
Don't do it. The mods frown upon that. I see I was too late.
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Old 04-22-22, 09:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
Black shorts have been de rigueur for cycling since they started making them. Moisture doesn't show on them.

There are plenty of brightly colored jerseys, socks, and gloves available for those who want to do the peacock thing.
IKR. Other than shorts, I don't see a lot of black cycling clothing out on the road compared to the amount of colored stuff other than maybe gloves.
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Old 04-22-22, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
Don't do it. The mods frown upon that. I see I was too late.
You can mention it - you just can't post the photo.
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Old 04-22-22, 09:50 AM
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Non-black bibs are starting to become more popular, I now have (and love) navy and maroon bibs, but I do think that keeping things relatively dark is a good idea on the lower half. Anything goes on the upper half, though lighter colored technical fabrics can get pretty sheer. I'm not particularly prudish or shy, but do have one jersey that I only wear with a base layer underneath.
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Old 04-22-22, 09:57 AM
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Leather saddles must be occasionally maintenanced. Conditioner, oil, beeswax, etc...often discolors bike shorts.

You've identified a legacy holdover from cyclings early days.
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Old 04-22-22, 10:11 AM
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Black shorts give you a place to wipe your hands after a dropped chain or tire repair. Black shorts also worked better in the days of real leather saddles that got polish and oils to keep them alive.

But dark jerseys are mostly about style and sales. Sometimes bright comes into fashion. I try to buy up when that happens. Dark jerseys strike me as a death wish.
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Old 04-22-22, 11:08 AM
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Rule 14 with nod to Rule 15.
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Old 04-22-22, 11:14 AM
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I find lots of quality highlighter colored clothes on the clearance rack for cheap.
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Old 04-22-22, 11:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
Black shorts have been de rigueur for cycling since they started making them. Moisture doesn't show on them..

This! Nobody wants to look like they're incontinent.
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Old 04-22-22, 11:27 AM
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Not just cycling clothes; looking at rain jackets, my option was dark grey or dark blue. Because who wouldn't want to be invisible in the rain?
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Old 04-22-22, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
maroon bibs
I gotta ask, what color jersey do you match with those?
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Old 04-22-22, 11:40 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
I asked my LBS why they only have black bib shorts and they pretty much said its so your junk/bulge is not on display.
He was probably referring to your junk, specifically.
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Old 04-22-22, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by tornado60 View Post
This may be a dumb question but it seems like a lot of exercise clothing including bicycle gear is dark or black in color. I find this more true for pants. Has anyone heard a reason for this? I would think bright, and/or safety colors would be cooler and, well, safer. Just wondering.
I prefer to wear dark colored clothing on the bike or off the bike or for any other situation or activity that I may find myself doing....If I feel that I need some extra visibility on the bike, I put on a hi-visibility construction vest over my dark clothing.
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Old 04-22-22, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by urbanknight View Post
I gotta ask, what color jersey do you match with those?
I have a few. One is solid black, one verrrrry light gray (almost white), one that's mottled with some reddish colors in there and one jersey from the same manufacturer (Rapha) that I *think* is intended to be a match for the bibs - light gray torso, darker blue/gray sleeves and maroon trim.
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Old 04-22-22, 11:50 AM
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Why is so much clothing dark colored? Because we are all getting FAT!!!

Lets get back some color...


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Old 04-22-22, 12:07 PM
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Black goes with everything. So it's black shorts/bibs/tights unless you're wearing an entire kit of jersey, pants, and probably socks. The you're probably worrying abut maching your helmet, too. At some point, you just have to say "no" and for most of us, that point is the pants. Besides, no color shows up in the dark and black shows up fine in the light; it's much better to have a flasher.
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Old 04-22-22, 12:38 PM
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In another thread it was argued colors and patterns incite dogs to chase you. I don't know if black was considered safe or not.
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Old 04-22-22, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by tornado60 View Post
This may be a dumb question but it seems like a lot of exercise clothing including bicycle gear is dark or black in color. I find this more true for pants. Has anyone heard a reason for this? I would think bright, and/or safety colors would be cooler and, well, safer. Just wondering.
I see highlighter yellow shirts and jackets all the time when out riding. It is the most obnoxious color to me and totally unnecessary as there are plenty of other colors that can bring attention to you for safety.
Where do you live that you dont have a ton of people in bright yellow clothing? I just figured its the most common color everywhere.

I dont ride with dark tops...the darkest I have is a sage green jersey. I have only white helmets because my brain thinks that will help with being seen since it moves around and is at the highest point on the bike.
You dont need bright pants to be seen. Just use a light to be seen and wear dark pants since they dont show sweat, dont show grease, and dont show junk. Nobody wants hiviz yellow cycling shorts.
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