Making a jacket that does one thing well is pretty easy. Making a jacket that does one thing perfectly is pretty hard. And making a jacket does everything exceptionally is next to impossible. Well, you could say that they specialize in the impossible, because the new Deflect Reflect Hybrid Jacket flawlessly performs a bevy of duties, from protection to visibility.
Starting with protection, it's made from Specialized's wind- and water-resistant Deflect material. This fabric is extremely lightweight and breathable, so you won't ever experience that rainforest feeling in high humidity conditions. But if things do start to heat up while you're throwing down the watts, they've included two front vents, a large back vent, and laser perforated exhaust points throughout the jacket. To keep water out, the jacket also features adjustable wrist seals, a zipper garage at the collar, a drop tail to deflect road-spray, and an adjustable drawcord hem.
Specialized also designed this jacket to be extremely versatile, and to complement this, the sleeves are made to be completely removable. This way, you're able to wear it as a jacket when it's pouring, and then zip off the sleeves and stow them away after you catch a break in the weather.
Now, to tackle the "reflect" portion of the title, this jacket features a Schoeller fabric with 3M reflective technology that takes millions of microscopic glass beads and permanently seals them to the fabric structure. As you can imagine, this feature will increase your visibility to others on the road when it encounters light. And better yet, this benefit will not wash out over time.
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Yes, I was foolish enough to spend my dough on this jacket. Not even worn outside yet and the so-called 3M reflective material seems to be flaking off on the back...I just swept my hand over it once or twice while trying it on for size, these 'holes' (where the reflective cover seems to peel off) leaves 'black holes' on the otherwise reflective surfaces. Totally disappointed as I can only imagine that with use...things will simply worsen. Have I gotten a defective, not a reflective one??