Quality road bike mirrors on your handlebars or helmet can be a trusty companion, helping you to stay safe while navigating busy roads.
Removing the need to peer over your shoulder to see what's coming from behind, a mirror allows you instead to remain looking forward and might help you feel safer as you ride.
This bar end style of rearview mirror from The Beam is unique with its lid mechanism which provides protection when not in use. It's a neat and compact system that has 360-degree adjustability so you set it up for the optimal view and the wing of the body is designed to minimize the mirror's air resistance.
If you close the mirror/lid it will take a second before each ride to find the ideal position but this is worth it for preserving its life. It is available in red, blue, green, grey, white or black — and with so much choice this mirror will blend in effortlessly with the current aesthetics of your bike.Mirror size:: 62 and 68mm optionsWeight:: N/ARRP:: From £15.99+Durable stainless steel frame+Works with drops and flat bars
Boasting an HD Automotive Grade glass mirror, you will benefit from a crystal clear view of any traffic behind when riding along with this mirror from Hafny.
It can be slotted into the end of either drop or flat handlebars, with an inner diameter of 17-21mm, and this provides a solid, snug fit that has no movement or vibration — even with its 360-degree adjustability mechanism.
There's also a slightly more expensive option which has HD anti-glare glass fitted, and both glass options are available in two sizes, 62mm and 68mm.Mirror size:: N/AWeight:: 20gRRP:: £23.99+Lightweight+Wide field of vision+Easy to install+Wide range of colours
Designed to attach to your sunglasses or cycling helmet, Bike Peddler's mirror option is a versatile and unobtrusive method of clearly seeing behind you with minimal head movement or eye strain.
It features a frameless acrylic mirror that provides a wide, uninterrupted field of vision, while the stainless steel and brass frame is durable. With three pivot points there is no shortage of adjustability and it can be used on either the left or right side, depending on which side of the road you are riding on in different countries.Mirror size:: N/AWeight:: 41gRRP:: £12.99+Tool-free installation+Lightweight-Prone to vibrate
Sticking to your helmet with an adhesive pad, Blackburn's helmet mirror is easy to install and is made out of high-quality materials that will last.
It's a cheap and lightweight option at just 41g but the mirror can be a bit sensitive to vibration and become misaligned if you are riding along poorly kept roads littered with potholes — although somewhat expected at this low price point.
Handlebar road bike mirrorsMirror size:: N/AWeight:: 118gRRP:: £17.99+Tool-free installation+Front reflector+Fits on all standard hoods
For full adjustability on flat and drop handlebars the LuTuo can be set to any angle with its 360-degree rotation capability and the long flexible arm can be bent into position with ease.
It's made from a blend of polymer and aluminium for increased durability, with the lens made from a shockproof and anti-break acrylic. Finally it incorporates an easy-to-install rubber gasket to help improve its stability.
It fits handlebars between 22mm and 32mm in diameter and can be used for either left or right handlebar mounting, so it's a good option if you're planning on taking your bike on vacation abroad.Mirror size:: 105 x 55mmWeight:: 75gRRP:: £44.99+Large mirror size+Wide viewing angle+High build quality-More expensive than other bar mounted mirrors-Only mounts on left lever
Designed to be integrated into the brake lever hoods of drop-bar bikes and with a double pivot, Selle Italia's cycling mirror is a high-end option that will provide you with an unparalleled view of behind.
Larger than those mounted via the bar drops, the centre of the handlebars or helmet, this mirror is 105mm wide by 55mm high and has a unique curvature radius that provides a wide and clear viewing angle. To protect you in case of a crash, the 2mm thick glass of the mirror has an adhesive net that prevents the shattered pieces from flying out.
This practical choice of mirror is compatible with Shimano and SRAM shifter levers, but do note this version mounts on the left brake lever for riding on the right side of the road in Europe and the Americas, etc. Therefore, it's not as useful in the UK.
What to look for in a road bike mirror
There are many design aspects to look out for when buying a road bike mirror to suit your individual needs. We run through a few of the most important.
A larger mirror is not always preferable as the increased size could result in glare and take up a lot of space at the front end of your bike, which is often cluttered with other useful bolt-ons. To see clearly what's behind, the size of the mirror is not the only factor; in the optimal position, a mirror with a smaller diameter can be sufficient and ideal for staying safe while riding.
Although this doesn't mean the smallest mirrors are the best either: too small and you really won't have a large enough field of vision. Vehicles could easily sneak up just outside the range of the mirror and therefore relying on a small mirror could be riskier than double-checking over your shoulder.
A mirror that can be easily adjusted is useful for making quick changes as you ride along and also when setting up the mirror in an optimal position. However, with greater adjustability, the mirror is also more prone to vibrating out of position; to what extent depends on the surface quality of the roads you are riding.
Bike mirrors are available for all styles of rides including road, hybrid, gravel, fixed and singlespeed bikes. Most bar end and handlebar options tend to have a range of diameters they can fit, but it is worth measuring the inside diameter at your bar ends and the external diameter around the top of your handlebars, because sizes can vary.
Left and right-sided mirrors
Although partially down to preference which side of your handlebars or helmet is best to mount your mirror, in countries like the UK and Australia that drive on the left, a mirror mounted on the right will be the most useful, while in countries that drive on the right, like the US and Canada, a mirror on the left will provide the best view of the road behind.
Alternatives and additions
There are other options to up your view to the rear.
One is to fit a rearview radar like the Garmin Varia RTL515. This picks up approaching vehicles up to 140 metres behind and transmits a warning to a compatible cycling computer (many brands now have rearview compatibility built in so you don't need to have a Garmin Edge unit), a smartwatch, a smartphone or Garmin's dedicated Varia bar mounted head unit. It's an expensive option but might help you feel safer as you ride.
Likewise, we've tested the Hindsight sunglasses, which have a mirrored outer segment to give you some rearward vision.