Nothing can ruin a ski day like cold weather. Frigid fingers and toes while skiing is a common issue. That said, the best ski gloves mean cold fingers don't cut your ski day short. There are plenty of ways skiers can keep their hands warm. A simple solution is wearing the appropriate gear when tackling the slopes.
Ski gloves help keep your hands warm while providing a full range of mobility on the slopes. The right gloves will help you avoid frostbite and maintain complete control of your ski poles, no matter how cold it gets. It will also allow skiers to move freely, without having to worry about getting back inside as the temperatures dip.
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Ski Gloves or Mittens?
The first thing a skier has to decide between is whether they prefer a ski glove or a ski mitten. Mittens are generally warmer than gloves. They're also thicker. The fingers share a single compartment, helping to increase insulation and heat. Mittens will, however, limit mobility. For those who prefer a high range of movement on the slopes, ski gloves may be the superior alternative. They are lighter, feature individual slots for each finger, and are typically thinner than ski mittens.
Important Features to Consider When Choosing Ski Gloves
Skiers should think about overall construction. Additionally, it's important to consider warmth rating and design, as well as the material of the lining and shell.
Every skier is different. Therefore, the levels of heat they desire will vary. When comparing gloves skiers must consider the material, thickness, and interior warming capabilities. Skiers have to determine the types of activities they'll wear the gloves for as well. For example, faster sports like skiing or snowboarding might require something warmer. Additionally, the winter conditions skiers encounter will play a role in deciding on the perfect levels of warmth and insulation.
Exterior shell material
Shell materials include synthetic and leather. Synthetic materials include nylon, Gore-Tex, PU, or other Teflon finishes. Leather is usually cowhide or goatskin, both of which are naturally water resistant. Your budget will have a significant impact on the material chosen. But comfort and fit should also play a role in your decision.
Down insulation is best for dry weather skiing. Down plumules and feathers are comfortable, soft, and perfect for cold and dry weather conditions. Primaloft is another common insulation material. This patented synthetic microfiber material is warm and breathable. The compression-style finish is ideal for wet or snowy conditions. Thinsulate is a thin microfiber material. It is weather resistant, and warm, making it perfect for skiing and winter sports.
This material is an extra layer in some ski gloves. It adds a layer of warmth and interior comfort for skiers in the coldest conditions. It will vary by brand, but wool and fleece are two common materials manufacturers use for the fabric lining.
Skiers don't want their hands to become wet because this causes them to become cold quickly. Not only does this result in discomfort but it can also be dangerous if conditions get too cold. The interior membrane of the ski gloves should be 100 percent waterproof. Gore-Tex, Hipora, WINDSTOPPER, and Polyurethane, are a few options to consider when choosing ski gloves.
Palm and cuff style
The palm area of most ski gloves typically has some grip reinforcement. Vinyl and leather are two materials manufacturers often choose to design the glove's palms. They increase the longevity of the gloves while providing skiers more grip control of their ski poles.
The cuff style is either over or under-cuff design. The under-cuff style is typically a shorter glove length. These don't feature any straps on the wrist. The over-cuff design provides more protection and warmth. These slip on over thinner jackets easily and provide an additional barrier of warmth for skiers in colder conditions.
When choosing ski gloves, some skiers will look for additional features, such as:
- Touchscreen compatible finger design (for operation with smartphones/touchscreens)
- A zipper or compartment for storing small items in the gloves
- Articulated or pre-curved finger design for better grip of ski poles
- Wrist loops for storing the ski gloves or hanging them when not in use
- A mini-Squeegee in the thumb, for cleaning/wiping ski goggles
Extra features vary by manufacturer. These additional features will naturally increase the cost, so skiers should consider this when comparing gloves.
Proper Sizing and Fit
The last thing a skier wants is a ski glove which is too tight or too loose. A suitably fitting glove should fit snuggly onto the skier's hands. They shouldn't move around, but they shouldn't restrict mobility either. An excellent way to measure how well it fits is by making a fist when wearing the gloves. The gloves should allow skiers to mobilize their hands and fingers at all times easily.
How We Reviewed
In comparing the best ski gloves, we cover many different aspects. The brand-name, quality, design, and material were a few determining factors in our review process. Additionally, the fit, comfort, features, and overall quality of the gloves, were also part of the review process. In addition to the basic features of ski gloves, we rely on professional reviews written by industry experts. Some features reviewers consider include features including warmth, the range of mobility the gloves afford skiers, and material quality.
Ski professionals put the top ski gloves to the challenge. Considering aspects like warmth and dexterity while wearing the gloves in different weather conditions, they determine the most appropriate styles for different ski conditions. Ski professionals determine the best ski gloves for specific purposes. Considering design features alongside reviews written by industry experts, we provide an in-depth listing of the best ski gloves.
The ski gloves we reviewed range depending on the size, material, and manufacturer, prices can vary significantly.
The Best Ski Gloves Available
Skiers shouldn't limit themselves to one brand or style when looking for the best ski gloves. The more options they review, the easier it will be to find the proper fit and most comfortable gloves.
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An exterior nylon-shell makes these gloves both waterproof and windproof, increasing warmth and comfort levels. Ski gloves with wrist straps are simple to secure on a backpack when you're not wearing them. Interior thermal insulation helps to increase warmth, and a synthetic leather palm creates a more durable exterior.
Individual finger slots have lining throughout, making the gloves extremely warm in colder weather. The 100 percent nylon exterior is weatherproof. Snow, wind, rain, and cold won't penetrate the gloves, keeping the wearer's hands warm in all winter conditions.
One consumer complaint is thickness. The thickness can hinder mobility or lessen the grip a skier has on their ski poles. The wrist strap isn't as durable as other products. The leather palm is not genuine leather, so it isn't as durable as different material finishes either.
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These gloves are windproof and weatherproof, keeping skiers warm in all conditions. The gloves also feature a textured palm pattern. They're touchscreen compatible with phones and tablets. The finger slots have a zipper compartment, allowing skiers their choice of full or half coverage. The three-layer material is breathable but warm.
The gloves aren't as warm as others, however. The temperature rating is between 25 to 50-degrees Fahrenheit. Another complaint by reviewers is the high price. The gloves are more than double the cost of others.
These ski gloves are water- and windproof. They also feature a sensitive touchscreen function. Also, a Velcro wrist-closure helps keep the wind out.
The pocket on the top portion of the glove is perfect for storing keys, credit cards, or other small items. The gloves feature a PU leather overlay on the palm, giving wearers more grip and control. They are also water resistant.
One common complaint is how bulky the gloves are. This makes them a little uncomfortable for long periods of use. Some reviews also state that the gloves aren't true to size, and feel loose, which allows some wind to seep in.
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These gloves are perfect for multiple winter sports. They feature a touchscreen-compatible digital fingerprint design, which allows wearers to keep the gloves on and still operate their electronic devices. The gloves are light and feature compression fabrics, which keeps the wind from seeping in when moving at fast speeds.
Many owners like the overall design of the gloves and the fact that they are great for many outdoor sports. They feature a large zipper on top for storage. The gloves also have an anti-slip silicone palm design, for better control.
Sizing disparities are a common consumer complaint. Unisex design means that the sizing doesn't transfer appropriately for some individuals. Many complain it is difficult to choose between two sizes based on their hand's length and width.
These feature a fully-enclosed design guaranteeing no wind will penetrate the surface. The 100-gram Thinsulate material is lightweight. It also allows skiers to maintain a full range of motion when wearing these gloves for outdoor activities.
These gloves are breathable and feature an exterior waterproof membrane. The adjustable wrist strap allows each wearer to determine how loose or tight they want the gloves. A PU gripper palm helps skiers maintain full control of their ski poles on the slopes.
The mitten design limits mobility, however. Many reviewers note they can't move their fingers and feel somewhat constricted when wearing the gloves. Reviews also state that when the gloves become wet skiers don't feel as much protection in their hands.
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The material of the gloves is pure, long-strand mulberry silk. They are soft to the touch and provide high levels of warmth in cold conditions. A wicking fiber material also helps keep the hands warm and dry, so wearers won't sweat when temperatures increase.
Skiers like the more extended design of these gloves. They cover the wrists and have a cuffed-strap, to help keep the wind out. The comfort level of these gloves is also something skiers also greatly appreciate.
On the other hand, some consumers complain that the sizing isn't accurate in comparison to other gloves. Some reviews also complain that the gloves aren't durable. Many consumer reviewers claim that the material begins to tear quickly, especially for outdoor sports use.
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These ski gloves are water- and windproof. The material used to design the gloves is 3M Thinsulate material. It's highly maneuverable and gives wearers a full range of motion. It helps to wick away water and sweat, so the hands remain cool and dry, without compromising warmth.
Purchasers of these gloves like that they come with a free ski mask. They also feature a top-zipper design for storing small items like keys or credit cards. The gloves feature interior lining throughout each finger-slot, for added warmth on colder ski days.
One complaint many reviewers note is that the gloves are bulky. Some also state that the gloves feel tight. Reviews also claim that it is difficult to move the fingers in the gloves. This design flaw limits their range of motion when skiing.
There are dozens of options to choose from when purchasing ski gloves. For skiers who want something simple and affordable, the Unigear ski gloves are a great option. The price is reasonable, but the manufacturer didn't compromise on quality. The Velcro closure on the wrist is a nice feature to keep the wind out. The weatherproof shell also keeps skiers warm in all weather conditions.
For skiers who want high levels of comfort, mobility, and warmth, the FRDM midweight ski gloves are a great option. They feature the zipper-finger design. This design feature allows skiers to choose full coverage or only half-finger coverage on warmer days. The gloves also feature a touchscreen finger design, so skiers don't have to remove them to operate their phone. The midweight material won't feel too heavy or limit the range of mobility.