Rapha Silk Jersey - Our lightest ever jersey

Silk Jersey

To help riders beat the heat and humidity, Rapha’s design team looked to cycling’s past. Bringing a forgotten fabric back to the vanguard of clothing technology, they created our lightest and fastest-drying jersey yet.

25 July 2019


For a more in depth look at what makes silk so well suited to hot and humid conditions, we spoke with our Head of Design, Maria Olsson.

Why make the Silk Jersey?

As soon as we sourced the fabric I knew we had to use it in a hot weather jersey. Silk is very strong, exceptionally light, naturally antibacterial and UV-protective. Mixed with polyester, it becomes the most technical hot-weather fabric in our range.

But this isn’t the first time silk has been used in a jersey?

No, far from it. The first silk cycling jerseys were created in the 1940s. Instead of wool, they started using silk for the base of track jerseys. It has a really important place in the history of cycling but stands up to scrutiny as a performance fabric in modern jerseys, just like our RPM150 merino wool.

What are the ideal conditions for the jersey?

It’s the perfect jersey for hot and humid conditions. Throughout wear testing, I was blown away by how well it works. It was 38 degrees in Mallorca but the jersey kept me cool and dry, which is amazing considering how light it is.

What elevates it above our other flyweight jerseys?

The Silk Jersey is our lightest jersey ever, 30% lighter than our Flyweight. It excels in hot and humid conditions because of the wicking and drying time, and the UV protection. It’s the most comfortable jersey I’ve ever used in hot weather.

In hot and humid conditions – anything over 25 degrees Celsius – you need three things from your cycling jersey: low weight, quick drying time, and UV protection. Made with a blend of silk yarns and polyester, the Silk Jersey delivers on each. Find out how:


Practically weightless fabric, a lightweight zip and slimline hem grippers combine in our lightest jersey ever – just 98 grams in a size medium.


The absorbency of silk yarns is comparable to other fibres, but it is the ability to evaporate moisture quickly that makes it so effective at regulating body temperature.


Natural antibacterial and anti-odour properties counteract the humid conditions created by sweat on the skin.