The Best Reflective Clothing for Running and Walking
Keep up your outdoor exercise regimen even in the morning, evening, or at night, with these stylish reflective clothing options, from pants to socks, for running and walking.
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How to choose reflective clothing for running and walking
Depending on your schedule and the time of the year (shorter days in fall and winter, for example), your outdoor exercise routine may take place at dusk or dawn—or even at night. While safety is a concern at any time of the day, if you are walking, running, or biking in the dark, it’s even more important to take steps to avoid accidents.
During this time, there are some general exercise strategies that can help keep you safe while exercising outdoors.
“Runners have to ensure that they’re staying safe when they’re running outside,” says Jason Fitzgerald, USA track and field-certified run coach. “Reflective gear can help alert other pedestrians, cars, bikes, electric scooters, and others that you’re on the road.”
The same goes for those walking during the early morning or late evening hours. (Here’s a walking routine to try.)
Illuminate moving parts of your body
Any gear that reflects light will work well, explains Fitzgerald. But making sure your head and feet are visible is especially important.
“The feet and head are valuable parts of the body to light up because the feet are always moving, and your head is the tallest part of your body,” he says. “That will help motorists, bikers, and scooter [riders] see you before a potential accident.”
While brands don’t necessarily matter when it comes to reflective gear, you should choose pieces that you’ll want to wear each time you hit the pavement.
“Safety is the first priority, so whatever a runner will actually wear consistently is what works,” says Fitzgerald. “We should all be brand agnostic and instead choose a product that fits our budget and needs.”
That being said, there are a lot of reflective clothing products for workouts on the market. Take the guesswork out of your exercise safety with high quality and stylish reflective clothing for running and walking. These options are available for men and women or are unisex.
Tracksmith Bislett Pants
Choose to zip the bottom of these Tracksmith Bislett pants, available for both men and women, or leave them open to allow for more airflow. The stirrups on the bottom help keep your legs fully protected by preventing the pants from sliding or shifting up on your calves. And you can see the reflective piping details from afar. (If you like leggings, check out these black leggings with pockets.)
Under Armour ColdGear Reactor Run Vest
Add an extra layer of warmth to your running kit when you throw on this Under Armour ColdGear Reactor Run vest available for both men and women. The vest repels water, making it perfect for rainy mornings or evenings. Plus, it’s extremely warm, yet breathable, too. (Pair this vest with one of these breathable exercise face masks.)
Brooks Running Women’s Carbonite 4″ 2-in-1 Short
$65-$75, depending on fit
The sweat-wicking liner on these Brooks shorts, available for both men and women, has a side pocket large enough to stash your cell phone, so you can take it along on runs. You’ll love the thick waistband, that stays put on your hips, so you won’t have to readjust mid-stride. The large reflective details are hard to miss, too. (Here’s how to choose the best running shoes.)
Balega Endure Reflective Quarter Socks
These Balega unisex socks are made of a fabric that works to pull moisture away from your skin, so your feet stay dry and cool. The toes are seamless to prevent any chafing or possible friction blisters or hot spots. Reflective detail is knitted around the ankle, providing high visibility. (Try compression socks, too.)
Asics Lite-Show Jacket
We love the large reflective details on this Asics jacket, tailored for both men and women, that will allow you to be seen when you’re in low-light conditions. Pull up the hood and tighten it with the elastic band to keep your ears warm. The jacket has two zippered pockets for you to stash personals.
Lululemon Run for it All Gloves
Perfect for crisp days, these water-repellent Lululemon women’s mitts will keep your fingers toasty and dry. The four-way stretch makes them easy to get on and off—though you won’t have to take them off to use your phone or smart device, thanks to the tech-friendly tips that work with touchscreens. You don’t have to worry about dropping your phone—or keys—thanks to the silicone grips on the palms. (Also, opt for these workout leggings.)
Headsweats Reflective Race Running Hats
As Fitzgerald mentions, reflectivity on your head is a good way to ensure you’re seen when you’re out running in dimly lit conditions. This Headsweats stretchy cap is adjustable via the buckle in the back (which also gives way for a ponytail opening). The reflective lining goes almost all the way around the hat. Bonus: It’s machine washable, so throw it into the laundry after a sweaty run!
BSEEN Glow-In-The-Dark Running Armband
Choose from nine different colors for this BSEEN unisex two-pack of reflective armbands—from green to pink to blue to red and more. Adjust them for a comfortable, personalized fit. They run on batteries and come with an extra set, so you should never be left high and dry. (Strap on the bands, and hit the ground running.)
Reebok Forever Floatride Energy 2 RFT Women’s Running Shoes
Lightweight foam will give you a responsive feel as you run or walk your morning or evening route in these Reebok shoes that are available for men and women. The mesh upper allows for ample ventilation, so your feet won’t get too sweaty no matter how long you’re out there. (Here are some podiatrist-recommended walking shoes.)
BioLite HeadLamp 330 Lumen No-Bounce Rechargeable Head Light
Sport this BioLite unisex headlamp in red, blue, or orange depending on which color you like best. It sits flat and securely against your forehead, with a sweat-wicking band, and doesn’t bounce as you run or walk. It’s rechargeable, and you can get 40 hours on the low setting and three-and-a-half on the high setting. Adjust the headlight height as well as the type of light you want—there’s a red night vision option, continuous light, or flashing options.
Next, here are the best exercise bikes to stay active.
- Jason Fitzgerald, USATF certified run coach, 2017 Men's Running Magazine's Influencer of the Year, and creator of Strength Running