The Best Motorcycle Overpants For Commuting and Touring


Motorcycle pants are great, but what if you’re commuting and need to wear your work clothes? Or what if you like wearing jeans but need some protection from the weather? 

Personally, I like to use overpants to keep me safe and dry while wearing something more convenient underneath. As a result, I’ve spent a long time looking for the best motorcycle overpants, and these are the five I’ve found.

Best Overall
Icon Contra 2 Leather Overpants Icon Contra 2 Leather Overpants

Made with both leather and textile, these pants provide protection from abrasions and impacts while still being comfortable and flexible over your base layer.

Best Waterproof
REAX Traveler Waterproof Pants REAX Traveler Waterproof Pants

These REAX overpants are compact and foldable but have extensive waterproofing features, making them great backup gear to keep on hand in case of inclement weather.

Reviews of the Best Motorcycle Overpants

Icon Contra 2 Leather Overpants

My favorite thing about the Contra 2s is that they’re leather. Even if you’re not big into the leather style, it provides superior protection and abrasion resistance if you slide across the asphalt.

At the same time, leather is a partly flexible textile, so you’ll be more agile and comfortable on your bike, especially if you have a sport bike with a forward lean.

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There’s plenty more protection on top of the leather as well. You get protectors at the hip and knee, which are removable for easier washing and versatility. Plus, the pants have reflective accents that make you more visible when riding at night and even in the daytime.

Finally, I’m a fan of the fit of these pants. Running from small all the way to 4XL, you can get something that fits you specifically, especially if you pay attention to the size chart.

The ankles are a bit narrower than some other pants, an issue if you’re wearing thick boots, but the inseam zippers help with that.


  • Leather-textile combination
  • Flexible
  • Removable hip and knee protectors
  • Reflective accents
  • Extensive sizing
  • Inseam zippers


  • Narrow ankles

REAX Traveler Waterproof Pants

The REAX Traveler pants are an ideal choice for backup rain gear to keep with you in inclement weather. They’re super compact and fold down so you can fit them in your luggage or the compartment under your seat.

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Whether commuting or touring, you can pull out the pants whenever bad weather hits. Not only are they windproof and waterproof, but they have extra features like taped seams and a high waist to prevent water from leaking in underneath. 

Remember that these are mainly an extra waterproof later, so they aren’t especially protective. That said, they do have reflective material. This helps keep you safe in bad weather since there’s usually less light and visibility.


  • Compact and foldable
  • Wind- and waterproof
  • Taped seams
  • Reflective accents
  • Pre-curved fit


  • Baggy
  • Minimal abrasion resistance

Knox Walker Waterproof Unisex Overpants

The Knox Walker overpants are an especially good choice if you have Knox jeans underneath because they fit well together. However, they also work with other pants. The fit just might not be quite as comfortable.

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Where these pants really shine is their trilaminate design. It’s fully waterproof, but it’s highly breathable at the same time, so you won’t overheat underneath. This is great if you know a storm is coming and want to wear them for the whole ride. At the same time, they’re good backup gear since they fold down so easily into their own bag.

I also liked that these pants include a Velcro strap and elastic cuffs. This way they better cover the entire layer underneath and keep it dry.


  • Trilaminate fabric
  • Waterproof but breathable
  • Packs in included bag
  • Velcro strap
  • Elastic cuffs
  • Reflective stripes


  • Better fit with Knox jeans
  • Minimal abrasion resistance

Wicked Stock Motorcycle Over Pants

These overpants provide some of the best protection you can find. While mostly made of tough 600D polyester fabric, the lower legs are made from 1680D matte polyester that’s melt-resistant too. Plus, there’s CE armor at the knees and hips.

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Wicked Stock made these pants pretty comfortable too. I like that there are both standard and short options, so you don’t get ones that end up bunching up at your ankle.

They’re a bit on the baggy side in general, but this actually makes it easy to put them on over your boots and pants, especially since there’s an inseam zipper.

Though comfortable, they’re also secure thanks to an elastic waist and adjustable belt. A unique feature is the pant-jacket integration zipper that allows you to connect the overpants to your jacket for a more complete overlayer.


  • Abrasion- and melt-resistant fabric
  • Short options
  • Inseam zipper
  • Adjustable-waist belt
  • Pant-jacket integration zipper


  • Baggy

Alpha Cycle All Season Motorcycle Pants 

These Alpha Cycle overpants are my recommendation for motocross. They have tough, removable CE armor at the knees and hips, important for dangerous riding. They also have hi-vis piping to keep you visible in the dark.

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Additionally, these pants can keep you safe year-round. This is due to the closable air vents that let air in when it’s hot but keep it out when it’s cold. In fact, you can even open or close them on the same ride to adjust to changing conditions. 


  • Removable hip and knee armor
  • Hi-vis piping
  • Closable air vents
  • Velcro waist and ankles
  • 10-year warranty


  • Hard to put on over boots

Buyer’s Guide

Considerations, Care and Cost

Protection and Armor

Depending on what your base layer is, you may want overpants with considerable protection. For example, if you’re commuting to work in slacks, those aren’t going to protect you at all in case of an accident, so the overpants can serve this purpose.

At the very least, if you’re getting overpants for protection, they should be made of a tough, abrasion-resistant material. Leather is generally regarded as the best, but thick polyester fabrics rated 600D or above are good as well.

Additionally, you can also check for armor. Many overpants come with armor in the knees and sometimes the hips. These areas tend to strike the ground first in an accident, so the armor absorbs the impact and protects the bones and joints.


Another big reason people get overpants is to protect them from the weather. Maybe you’re a commuter and don’t have a choice but to ride in bad weather. Maybe you’re a tourer and never know when a storm might hit. Regardless, it’s always nice to keep your base layer dry and warm.

Basic weatherproofing involves wind- and waterproof fabric that keeps out water. However, you should ideally look for pants that also have features to keep water from entering through the waist or ankles, like elastic or Velcro fastening. Check for taped seams as well. This will prevent leaking.

Fit and Adjustability

Fit can be complicated for overpants. You need them big enough to fit over your pants and boots but not so big that they’re baggy and blowing in the wind.

One of the best ways to accomplish this is the inseam zipper. This way, you can unzip the pants down the side and easily slide them on. Then when you zip them up, they’re secure.

It’s also nice to find features that let you adjust the fit. These could include adjustable belts or Velcro straps.

Finally, check the fit. Most manufacturers have a size guide that you should match with your waist and inseam measurements.

Unfortunately, many overpants only have one length per size, so if you have particularly long or short legs, consider one of the few with multiple length options or fitted inseams.


With two layers on, your legs can start to heat up pretty fast, especially if it’s warm outside.

The best way to deal with this is breathable mesh fabric, which you’ll find integrated into many models of overpants. In some cases, these mesh panels may be adjustable or fully closable, keeping the pants comfortable in both hot and cold weather.


Many motorcyclists want a pair of waterproof overpants to keep on hand in case it starts to rain, but they don’t necessarily want to wear them all the time.

If this is you, you’ll have to store the pants with your bike, either in your luggage or a storage compartment on your motorcycle such as under the seat.

This is much easier if the overpants are compact and easy to fold. You may even consider getting a pair that comes with its own storage bag.

Final Thoughts

Overpants can serve many useful purposes, from extra protection to a waterproof overlayer in inclement weather. If you’re looking for a pair, I highly recommend the Icon Contra 2 Leather Overpants.

If you just need a backup pair to keep with you in case it rains, look at the REAX Traveler Waterproof Pants