Getting good exercise is even more essential these days, and one great way to get outside AND get moving is cycling. And as bicycle-loving ladies like Britain's Got Talent star Amanda Holden proved when she rode a fire engine red Electra wearing hot pants, you can even look pretty cute doing it! (Don’t forget to wear a helmet, though!) And whether you want a women's hybrid or mountain bike with all the bells and whistles or prefer a retro-style ladies' bike with a basket that doesn't shirk on quality, thankfully, there’s a perfect bicycle out there for you.
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It’s important to remember that not only are bikes great for exercise, they’re a great independent mode of getting around that can lessen your time on crowded public transport when you're headed to school or work daily – something that’s definitely a plus as social distancing measures will likely be in place for some time, even as lockdown eases.
A new bike is in order whether it is to get into shape or to get ready for your socially-distanced commute. Above, Anne Hathaway cycles on set in NYC
In fact, in honor of 2020 Bike Week back in June, insurance company Urban Jungle revealed that there has been a big uptick in people cycling, with insurance enquiries up 60 percent year on year in May.
Designer Stella McCartney knows how to do a city commute in style
Now that we've addressed the practical part, we have to admit: We love a bike with style, whether we're getting inspired by Audrey Hepburn's vintage bike with a basket or Stella McCartney's thoroughly modern bicycle in trendy Tiffany blue.
So here is our edit of the best ladies' bikes, from city bikes and hybrid bicycles to women's folding bikes.
Best ladies bike with a basket
Let’s face it – some of us just aren’t into bikes that look, well, too sporty, which accounts for the popularity of bicycles with a flowers-and-baguette-in-your-basket vintage vibe.
Also available in black, this bicycle has a retro style but with all the modern details you'll need, from Tektro 810C dual pivot caliper brakes to a lightweight aluminum frame
Pinnacle Californium 1 2020 Women's Hybrid Bike, £350, Evans Cycles
Best ladies hybrid bike
A hybrid bike is the closest to an all-purpose bicycle as it’s a fusion of a mountain bike and touring bike – the best of both worlds!
This sassy lilac bike is ergonomically designed with a lightweight alloy frame and boasts a five-star rating
Specialized Sirrus 1.0 2021 Aluminium Hybrid Bike, £478.99, Rutland Cycling
Best ladies electric bike
E-bikes run on rechargeable batteries – they will get you to your destination faster and you’ll never have to worry about climbing up a hill on just thigh power again.
This E-bike is a popular entry electric bicycle for commuters and recreational riders
Lapierre E-Sensium 300 Women's Electric Road Bike 2020, £2,349, Tredz
Best ladies folding bike
A folding bike is a great option if you want to travel light, especially on city commutes or if you take a trip by car because it folds up to be compact enough to fit just about anywhere.
This three-gear wonder is simple, folds quickly and easily to be stashed just about anywhere and has a five-star rating
Brompton Folding Bike, £745, Halfords
Best ladies mountain bike
Hit the trails with a mountain bike, which features specially-designed suspension systems and rugged wheels so you can tackle various types of terrain.
If you're VERY serious about cycling, go all-in with Scott’s Contessa Spark, a 12-speed full-suspension cross-country bicycle
Scott Contessa Spark RC 900 Women's mountain bike, £5,399, Leisure Lakes Bikes
Best ladies city bike
If you are going for shorter rides on flat roads – for example, for rides around your neighbourhood or a city commute – an urban bike is for you.
Dutch city bike styles like this one are designed so you ride in a sitting up straight position – meaning they're good for strengthening your lower back and fighting those aches and pains
Ortler Van Dyck Women's Bike, available in three colours, Was £439.99 Now £339.99, Bikester
Best women's bicycles under £250
MOUNTAIN BIKE: If you are on a tight budget, check out bicycles from Apollo, which are known for their excellent quality for price
Apollo Twilight Women's mountain bike, £135,
CITY BIKE: Decathlon's 6-speed roadster has a 4.5-star rating and comes in three colours
Elops 520 city bike, £249, Decathlon
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Once you've got your bike sorted, you'll need the kit too. Check out these accessories and safety gear below.
Using cutting edge technology, this one-size-fits-all helmet using a unique Enkayse liner so that you can use time and time again despite any bumps you might get along the way, while it is recommended that you should replace standard helmets after one knock. The helmet is available in a variety of different colours, or you can design your very own unique helmet, where you can choose any colour and add any pictures or text you fancy to the helmet.
Hedkayse helmet, £150, Hedkayse
Waterproof pannier bike bag
There's nothing worse than arriving at your destination with a clammy back, which is why you might want to invest in a pannier. This waterproof bag is perfectly designed to carry your everyday items, and also comes in a fetching Bordeaux colour.
Waterproof pannier bike bag, £24.99, Decathlon
Of course, you'll need a rack to fit your new bag on too! This sturdy rack easily attaches to the rear of your bike.
Pannier rack, £26, Halfords
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