IN TERMS OF armour, Richa’s Original jeans are the best I’ve used because they’re packing D30 protection at the knees and hips as standard.
The knee armour is a bit bulky but removable and well-shaped, so it always sits in the right position, regardless of what style of bike I’m riding, making Originals as comfortable on a sports bike as they are on a scooter or cruiser.
The hip armour sits in exactly the spot where you’re likely to bash the outside of your pelvis in a spill, which is reassuring, but at the expense of making the Originals feel tight at the hips. Don’t get me wrong, they’re comfortable enough, but they aren’t my favourite pair of casual jeans.
The hip protection is also removable, but seeing as the armour is one of the best features of the Originals, it seems pointless to take it out.
When it comes to protection from the material, these aren’t Kevlar lined, instead they’re made of a mix of Denim Cordura, cotton and polyester. The stitching is more robust than your standard casual jeans and like all Richa products I’ve tried in the last couple of years, quality is high everywhere – at the zips, buttons, and stitching.
The cut is straight and they fit nicely over my casual-looking riding trainers and boots, but because of how narrow they are at the ankles, getting a pair of my usual TCX or Alpinestars riding boots under them is impossible. That means I can't wear those boots with these jeans because as we all know, tucking jeans in to boots is a crime against fashion.
The lining is comfortable and allows enough air through on a warm day.
They come with smalls straps to fit under boots. The straps are detachable and I ditched them immediately because the Originals fit well and don’t ride up.
These are pretty much what I’ve come to expect from Richa – well made, not too expensive, comfortable and protective. Job done.
Tested: Richa Originals jeans
Colours: Stonewash blue