Cycling is one of the best ways to enjoy the great outdoors and keep fit while doing so.
It’s not only fantastic for you but the environment too. They’re a quick, 100% green way to get from A to B, making them the perfect substitute for cars and public transport.
It’s not all smiles and sunshine though. Every cyclist on this earth has felt the cruel, indiscriminate touch of saddle soreness.
It’ll leave you sitting strangely for days on end and ruin any riding plans in the immediate future, but fear not, or should we say...butt fear not!
In this article, we’re going to review five of the best gel bike seat covers around.
Prepare for the softest, squishiest, most comfortable and streamlined covers you’ve ever seen.
You’ve been in pain long enough. You shouldn’t have to suffer for your passion or choose between your push and your tush.
Once we’ve toured through our reviews, we’ll be looking at an in-depth buyer’s guide and brief FAQ section so you can give your dear rear the respect it deserves.
Not to worry. Our top pick is right here for a quick fix.
OUR TOP PICK
Taking your bum to heaven as you cycle the lofty routes of our number one spot is an amazingly comfortable gel cover beloved by cyclists all over America.
Zacro have used a high quality, springy yet durable gel to generously fill the cushioned zones of this seat cover. It’s suitable for seats up 11 inches long and 7.2 inches across the widest stretch.
It’s not a problem if your seat is slightly smaller than that. It fits on over the top and secures easily with a cord tie underneath. They do warn of 1 to 0.5-inch discrepancies in the measurements as they’re a hand-measured product.
If you prefer a contoured design, then look no further. This gel padding is strategically placed to give you the most comfortable ride of your life.
The cushions run around the edge of the seat growing larger towards the rear to support your sit bones, and the central depression helps to reduce the chance of compressed nerves and soft tissue irritation.
It makes for a good fit on your average narrow road or racing bike saddle, but it should suit your typical multi-purpose bike perfectly well too.
Some customers claimed that it shifted a bit during a ride, so maybe an extra cord tie would be preferable here, but ultimately it’s a quality product at a great price. It also comes with a water and dust-resistant cover.
Contoured design helps reduce the chance of injury
Extra padding towards the rear to support you sit bones
Frontal padding for your thighs as you sit back on the bike
Easy cord tie fastener
High quality, comfortable gel cushions
Comes with water and dust cover
Suitable for narrow bike seats
Suitable for slightly larger traditional bike seats
Shifts slightly during use so it could do with more secure fastening
Sizes may differ slightly due to manual measurements
Saving your bacon in our number two spot, we have a cover specifically designed for larger bike seats found more commonly on multipurpose, cruiser, or mountain bikes.
You still get a slightly contoured cushion arrangement with this cover, only it’s not quite as defined. A pronounced central cutout will help prevent soft tissue irritation; however, fewer cuts means more padding for your money.
It’s 11 inches long and ten inches wide, secured with a drawstring and straps. This is great for longer rides over tricky terrain.
It’s not just a supportive gel at work in this design, but a comfortable foam topper as well, so prepare for maximum relief.
Foam isn’t exactly a heavy-duty material, but as long as you don’t have a razor-sharp bum, you can expect years of use from the Bikeroo cover.
Does your Peloton have you feeling the burn and bruising too? The Bikeroo covers are incredibly popular choices for fitting over the Peloton style saddles, so you can keep both fit and comfortable.
Secures with both a drawstring and straps
Suitable for larger seats on cruiser, mountain, and multipurpose bikes
Both gel and foam padding for extra comfort
Lots of cushion for your sit bones and thighs
Central depression to prevent soft tissue irritation
Fits perfectly on Peloton saddles
You can choose from a range of colors
Cutout isn’t as defined or well placed as our top pick
Slightly more expensive than our top pick
Foam isn’t as hard-wearing as other materials
The key to a cool keester at our number three spot is a much-beloved full cushion option sure to keep you comfortable no matter how much you shift and fidget about.
Yep, this is a full cushion design with no cutouts or contouring. It leaves shaping to your saddle and simply provides the extra comfort you need to keep up a rigorous cycling schedule.
As we’ve mentioned, a central cut out can provide extra comfort during those long rides, but as long as your saddle shapes the cover well, it shouldn’t be a huge problem.
At 10.5 inches long and 7 inches wide, this should fit over most small to medium saddles easily. It’s secured by a single drawstring - like our top pick - which means there’ll be a small amount of shift, but nothing that’s going to irritate you enough to throw off your focus.
This Domain cover is another favorite for those who attend spin classes or own exercise bikes. It fits on in an instant, secures easily and firmly enough for long stints of static cycling, although some claim they’re not ideal for Peloton.
There were also a few complaints from customers who claimed the gel shrunk and shifted after being left in high temperatures, but we feel that would happen to any gel cover.
No contouring or pad placement lets you feel the shape of your saddle
Fits a wide array of saddle sizes
Secures easily with a drawstring
Full padding means it doesn’t matter where you sit, you’ll always be comfortable
Perfect for use on most spin class saddles
Not quite as supportive as more stylized designs
Shifts a little bit during intensive use
Not great for Peloton saddles
A little more expensive
Our next rear revivalist is the perfect choice for those who ride bikes with jumbo sized saddles. It’s a whole lot of cushioning.
Much like our third pick, this is a fully cushioned cover, meaning there are no raised sections or depressions. It simply morphs to the shape of your saddle, giving you about 2 inches of deluxe full coverage gel padding.
This cover is likely too big for most traditional pushbikes, but at 13.5 inches x 14 inches, it will fit nicely over the wide seat Exerpeautic and recumbent bike saddles.
Taking a look at the inside of this thing, you get a really neat non-slip material to prevent shifting during use and a locking drawstring to secure everything in place.
If it’s slightly too small for a seat, it should still fit, but the sides may start to shimmy up the edge of the seat during intensive use.
A couple of straps would be perfect to reduce the shifting on imperfect size matches, but it shouldn’t be too much of an inconvenience. It’s not going to fly off and abandon your bum during a workout.
It’s a little pricey for a seat cover, but when you consider just how much materials you’re buying here, it starts to make a bit more sense.
In addition, it’s highly rated, durable, and covers a pretty specialist area in the market.
2 inches of gel cushioning
Lack of contouring lets you feel the natural shape of your saddle
Perfect for jumbo-sized saddles
Non-slip underside to prevent shifting during use
Simple drawstring fitting
It will allow you to reach new goals in your exercise
Not suitable for standard bike seats
Could do with a second drawstring or accompanying straps for the most secure fit.
Our last remedy for reducing the pinch on your peach is another great cover for your standard saddle styles, which should definitely motivate you to maintain a cycling schedule.
Measuring 11 inches long x 7 inches wide, this should slip nicely over road bike and mountain bike saddles. Wider saddles that you’d normally find on cruisers are probably too big in this instance.
Let’s talk about the squish factor. 1.5 inches of soft gel padding run throughout the cover with the exception of the posture-friendly valley carved through the middle.
It’s a simple design, but sometimes simple is best. The simplicity also equates to a friendlier price tag which is always nice, and some cyclists claim their quality is comparable to more expensive high-end products.
Great for exercise bikes with smaller seats, this cover should be more than enough to keep you fighting fit and sitting pretty.
It has both drawstring and straps for a really secure fit, so it'll be good for those long bike rides out in the great outdoors as well.
The non-slip material inner is another premium appointment providing extra stability during a hard ride, and the included water and dust resistant cover is the cherry on top.
Makes a good fit on traditional saddle sizes
Uses both a drawstring and straps to stay put
Really great price
1.5 inches of soft gel keeps your comfortable
Has a high end look
Comes with a dust and water-resistant cover
Not as well shaped as our top pick
Does slide laterally on occasion
Best Gel Bike Seat Cover Buying Guide
Just to be absolutely certain you find exactly the right deal for your derriére, let’s spin through some of the factors we considered when we were looking for our five fantastic gel-based bottom buffers.
The Cheap Seats
A gel seat cover is an affordable way to stave off the bruising of bums and determination, which is why we think a low budget is a good thing.
Unless it’s incredibly large or specialist, we think that $30 is the absolute maximum you should be willing to pay.
A larger sum could go some way to replacing the saddle itself with something far more comfortable and supportive.
Although gel as a word connotes a soft, liquid consistency, it can be made to be quite firm. Different rumps will require slightly different support. You should have a conversation with your bum (please, not literally) to ascertain exactly what kind of protection will be best.
A softer gel will seem more comfortable for short use, but it’s not as supportive in the long run. A soft gel is probably not quite as durable either. Firm gel seats are equal and opposite. They’re not as comfortable, but far more supportive and durable.
Finding a seat cover with the perfect balance can be quite difficult. Cyclists often run through a few options before finding one they like. If you’re buying in-shop, give them all a really good squeeze.
Imagine how it will pair with the shape and cushioning of your saddle. For online purchases, read the description carefully and check out a few customer reviews. That’ll give you an idea of how firm the gel is.
There may be a little bit of leeway with size, although the closer you can match it to the dimensions of your saddle, the more secure the cover will be.
Make sure you have some accurate measurements of your saddle before you start looking for covers.
A good fastening system couldn't be more essential when it comes to seat covers. This along with the correct sizing is what’s going to keep it in place as you wheel yourself through the world.
Typically, you’ll come across drawstrings and straps. A cover that uses both is preferable to a single fastening option, but If you’re a casual rider, a single drawstring is probably fine. For more intensive riders, go for the double fastening.
Remember, no matter how many ways there are to fasten a cover, there is almost always going to be some shifting. It’s the concession you must make for the practicality and affordability of seat covers as opposed to replacing the whole saddle.
Shaped Vs Flat
There's no wrong answer here, but it’s definitely something to be aware of. The shaping of your seat cover is going to drastically change the way it feels.
A shaped cover is good as it provides strategic comfort zones and cutouts for support but they might be too exaggerated or uncomfortable paired with a heavily contoured saddle.
A flat gel cushion is great for maintaining the saddle feel without the discomfort that comes along with it, however, they may not be as supportive on longer rides. The absence of cutouts may also cause soft tissue discomfort, especially in women.
Some gel seat covers will have a specialist internal layer to provide extra traction on the surface of the saddle.
If your cheeks crave consistency and security, we highly recommend keeping an eye out for this additional appointment.
Covers for Covers
Gel covers aren’t exactly weatherproof, especially if they’re paired with foam. In fact, they’re probably designed to have subtle water wicking qualities to deal with sweat, which means they’ll actually absorb moisture.
Some gel seat covers will come with a waterproof cover as standard, but if yours doesn’t, please do look for one. It will keep the gel in top shape and keep you comfortable for longer.
Gel seat covers don’t really cope that well in extreme heat.
If you live in a hot area, make sure you keep it in a cooled environment.
Leaving it in your car, on your bike outside, or in an unventilated garage will affect the shaping and density of the gel.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why are most gel seat covers unisex?
Seat covers are unisex as the saddle itself is what defines gender.
It’s a bit of a generalization as it can differ vastly from person to person, but typically speaking, a wider seat with more defined cutouts is considered a women’s saddle as it provides support for a wider pelvis and diminishes soft tissue irritation.
Men’s saddles tend to be thinner with less emphasis on frontal cutouts.
You can use the gendered saddle descriptions to help you find a cover that leans one way or the other and find something perfect for you.
How do you set saddle height so it doesn’t hurt?
A bad saddle is always going to cause some discomfort, but you can set it a certain way to minimize pain.
You should prop up your bike, stand next to it with your hands on your hips, then set it to the height of your hand.
Depth-wise, there should be a forearms gap between the nose of the saddle and the handlebars.
Are bike seat covers better than padded shorts?
It depends on how you use your bike.
Padded shorts are convenient for more intensive or long distance cycling as you don’t have to worry about stability.
A seat cover on the other hand means you can wear whatever you want and ride comfortably.
Sweet Cheeks - Summing Up
If you own the bike, a gel seat cover is a palliative option, and thus, not perfect, but they’re an awesome way to kit your bike out with a bit of luxury while you’re saving for a new comfortable saddle.
If you’re borrowing a bike or using static fitness equipment, they may be the perfect way to ease the strain of a workout and push your fitness to the next level. Revere your rear!