First look: Ashmei Lite Jacket

The product: Ashmei Lite Jacket (£125, ashmei.com)

In a nutshell: A thoughtfully designed, beautifully executed go-to outer layer for chilly, blustery days.

The technology:Water-repellant with a highly windproof front fabric panel, and a high-stretch, perforated rear fabric panel to increase breathability and regulate body temperature. Reflective hem with silicon gripper. A mere 158g and packs away into a small sack if you want to shed it mid-run.

What Ashmei say: “A perfect option if you are facing a cold morning start with the chance of wind and rain. Our lightweight, windproof Lite Jacket provides superb protection against the elements in the areas that they are most needed.”

What we say: “An awful lot of attention to detail has gone into the design and construction here and it pays off on the run. This is a genuine running jacket, not just a jacket you can run in. The fit is close, body-hugging and flap-eliminating, and moves and stretches with your body beautifully, largely thanks to the super-stretchy rear fabric panel. I found the elasticated cuffs and gripping silicon blocks on the inside of the hem worked well to help keep it in place, too. (The outside of the hem is also reflective, which is another well-considered detail).

I’m not sure how much the asymmetric zip helps the ergonomics but it adds to the stylish, understated aesthetics, which caught the attention of other RW team members during testing. Style certainly doesn’t come at the expense of substance though, and it’s the deployment of different fabrics – highly windproof on the front, perforated at the back for breathability – that delivers in terms of comfort and performance. At just 158g, it’s barely noticeable on the run and when I peeled it off on warmer days, not a hardship to carry. It also scores highly on stow-ability, scrunching into one hand if, like me, you’re not a fan of the waist-tie option when de-layering. All in all an excellent, lightweight outer layer to protect you from the chill of winter. Perfect for gusty days but versatile enough to cope with a bit of rain, too.”