Winter cycling gloves

Seeking out a good pair of winter cycling gloves can sometimes seem like one of the hardest challenges for cyclists. You usually end up with a pair that is too sweaty, not warm enough or one that lets so much water in, you wonder why you ever put the glove on in the first place.

With this challenge in mind I though this post would be a good place to list everyone’s recommendations, some of my winter cycling glove recommendations and see also what you guys here on London Cyclist Blog had to say on the matter.

Are winter cycling gloves worth it?

As with any specialist cycling equipment the question often arises as to whether it is worth it. I’m often asked: Am I not just okay with my normal gloves? You can replace the words normal gloves with: normal shorts, normal trainers, normal jacket etc.

Usually this is absolutely fine in two situations. A) You only cycle a small distance and B) You are really not interested in any of the performance and comfort benefits.

Good winter cycling gloves should provide grip so your hands don’t end up slipping off the handlebars. They should not be too bulky so you still have a good feel of the cycle. Also they should provide a good combination between being breathable and waterproof. Finally they should look good (or at least not ugly!).

 

Your winter cycling glove recommendations

winter cycling glove recommendations twitter

As always my Twitterers came to my rescue with these useful recommendations:

  • cg__ I’ve seen mixed reviews but personally I swear by my Seal Skinz Road cycling gloves #wintercycling
  • garylee007 I have a pair of assos thin inners under a pair of north face windstoppers. About £45 for both sets combined. The NF ones are excellent in themselves down to about +2 degrees. Any decent outdoor shop sells them.
  • suspectpackage had endura strikes for 2 years now, nice but not quite warm enough for the last couple of days though. Would recommend
  • grant_clark (Web) I’d be interested to hear recommendations. Not Sealskinz, wore them over the weekend and almost got frostbite.
  • Von_Cheam Tried Endura Strikes & Seal Skins this year. Seal Skins MUCH better! The best gloves I’ve ^ever^ seen, though, are nautical gloves – they’re insanely pricey, however! Motorcycle gloves are better at retaining warmth & offer better protection than cycle gloves – but they can be pretty bulky. I use winter cycle gloves for autumn & early spring (& for winter rides less than 1 or 2 miles) & motorcycle gloves in winter. Oh – and electrically-heated gloves are a useless, overpriced gimmick unless you get super-expensive skiers’ ones!
  • gavspicer All about the Sealskinz in the winter
  • dangingery (Web) Sealskinz by a mile!

 

My recommendations

Product shot of the DHB Amberley glovedhb Amberley Glove 2011

At the budget end of the scale the DHB Amberley Winter cycling glove 2011 is a good choice. It offers excellent value for money and offers good warmth and waterproofing. I can highly recommend the Amberley and it can be bought from Wiggle for £25. That’s the sort of price I like!

Sealskinz All Weather cycling glove

Red Sealskinz winter cycling glove on a snowy backdropAs you can see from the comments on Twitter opinions on the Sealskinz cycling gloves are always split though most tend to lean towards the positive. In my own personal experience with the Sealskinz I found them comfortable and providing the exact correct amount of warmth. That was without needing an extra under-layer of gloves. What I did find however is that the medium size was a little small and the big size a little on the big side. I chose the medium all weather winter cycling glove and regretted it as my thumb doesn’t fit very well. So I recommend leaning towards the larger size. The Sealskinz are priced roughly at the same point as the DHB Amberley winter cycling gloves at £25 – £30.

Altura night vision waterproof gloves showing the fluorescent and the black designAltura Night Vision Waterproof Winter Cycling Gloves

At £35.99 the Altura winter cycling gloves air on the more expensive side but do provide great warmth, comfort and waterproofing. They come with an inner liner glove that is detachable from the outer layer. This is an very useful as your body temperature rises. Sticking to the Altura trademark design, these gloves are also good for high visibility. The downside is the bulkiness.

Tips

This is another part of cycling where layers are really useful. If you are cold try putting an extra pair of thin inner gloves underneath. I recommend the deFeet cycling gloves which I’ve reviewed here. Then, as you warm up you can pull them off.

A tip I once had recommended to me and that works well if you are getting wet hands is to buy some latex or non-latex gloves from the chemist and put them on underneath your cycling gloves. This prevents any water that tries to sneak in.

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29 Responses to Winter cycling gloves

  1. Greenwich 23/12/2009 at 1:54 pm #

    Another winter cycling glove well worth considering is Altura Night Vision. They a bit more expensive but are fully water and windproof as well as very warm. Don’t buy the matching coat though unless you’re a very slow cyclist – it’s not very breathable…

  2. Kenny 23/12/2009 at 5:09 pm #

    I’ve used seal skinz white-water molded gloves for the past 4 years, (the same pair) they are a bit $$ but worth it on cold wet winter days

  3. Olivervelo 23/12/2009 at 9:23 pm #

    As a matter of fact, the best gloves I have ever had are fleece gloves (the fiber name is Thinsulate) that I bought on the market for 6€ seven years ago (I check on the web and they are now at 15€)
    I can use them even with 0°C on rmy road bike…
    Only drawback : they are not waterproof..

  4. Pete L 27/12/2009 at 4:01 pm #

    Is there a good winter glove out there that has the tips of the inner liners attached to the outer so that they don’t pull out and get tangled into an impenetrable knot, preventing you getting the glove back on?

    • Faizan 16/11/2012 at 7:15 pm #

      Hi

      Try Craft new Siberian glove,It is the best Winter bike glove.

  5. thereverent 30/12/2009 at 11:37 am #

    I might just not feel the cold that much, but I use the same gloves all year round. Normal full fingered gloves seem to work and in London if my hands get a bit cold I can always warm them up at the next set of traffic lights.

    I did have a pair of sealskinz a few years back and they were good. Can’t find them now, as I’d like to try them out again.

    While we are the subject of gloves I did hear about some good cycling gloves that had a reflective patch on the base so when you stuck your arm out to signal it was visible to vehicles behind you. Anyone know what these were?

  6. Angi 31/12/2009 at 3:58 am #

    I settled for the Pearl Izumi Women’s Softshell Winter Cycling Gloves…though I’ve yet to try them out. They seem sufficiently warm and not too bulky. I’m sure they will be much more adequate than my fluffy angora mittens (also surprisingly warm…just not practical for cycling…or the rain…and using them for cycling has actually ruined them now).

  7. Andreas 03/01/2010 at 9:53 am #

    Pete – loggically there should be. Otherwise it may be worth buying some little clips from a DIY shop.
    thereverent – Not sure about the ones you are referring to though I’m sure many of the glove designs feature reflective materials
    Angi – Thanks for the recommendation! Those gloves seem good

  8. Gary 28/01/2010 at 11:12 am #

    BTW, I was bought a pair of gore wind stopper gloves for Christmas.

    They are rubbish.

    Thin and you cannot wear them by themselves as the wind stopper fabric gets really cold.

    DO NOT BUY THESE unless you get inners for them.

  9. Andreas 28/01/2010 at 11:19 am #

    Hey Gary, thanks for sharing your opinion on them and helping others

  10. Wenners 24/10/2010 at 5:40 pm #

    I get most of my clothing from Mountain Warehouse. Cheaper then most cycle shops and works as well. Water proof gloves, base layer top, breathable top and a pair of good quick drying winter socks for under £40. Try to beat that in Cycle Surgery.

    • vicky 14/11/2010 at 8:02 pm #

      Thanks Wenners,
      I had a look at the mountain warehouse website and there is some really good value stuff there. I think that cycling is currently perceived as trendy and that manufacturers are making an unusual profit on items that are not really much different from the kind of clothing designed for outdoor sports of any kind – the only possible add on cycling gear sometimes provides is a visibility element which is perhaps important on roads. But … base layers etc? the price differences here are fantastic, either given mountain warehouse 2 for one deals or on more specialist stuff. Also specially good for womens clothing (which is not particularly well covered in the cycling gear shops). Moreover, buying stuff that is meant for more general use means that you wont feel stupid when you want to wear them for other purposes.

  11. diana 16/11/2010 at 5:58 am #

    I realised the need to buy professional cycling gloves due to a) my gloves getting soaking wet in rain, so need waterproof ones and b) a lack of grip, especially since I need to carry my bike up stairs.

    I’ve ordered Altura Night Vision ones since they seem to come in two parts – waterproof glove and an inner glove & have good reviews but have yet to get them and try them out..

    • diana 20/11/2010 at 2:56 pm #

      Thought I’d update this – the waterproof outer glove is bulky and ugly, like so many of them seem to be, but warm. The inner glove as a removable layer is slim and close fitting which means I can fit my lock and stuff without having to have bare hands in the cold and is Ok for walking about town in as well.

      • Andreas 15/02/2011 at 9:27 pm #

        Thanks for adding the feedback on these winter cycling gloves Diana – Always appreciated :)

  12. Mike 30/11/2010 at 11:05 am #

    I use a pair of fleece Karrimor gloves that have rubber palms – solves the grip problem that diana mentioned. They do need liners when it’s really cold though, so I use a pair of silk ski glove inners – work brilliantly.

    Only problem – the gloves aren’t fully waterproof, but they do dry quickly.

  13. Jon 30/11/2010 at 12:42 pm #

    The Sealskinz gloves do their job up to a point. They are fine in temperatures of around 1 or 2 degrees for short rides. Anything colder and longer and you will struggle to keep warm. This is because the lining is simply not thick enough for serious winter weather. I also had the size problem that Andreas mentioned. My thumb also didn’t fit well although the other digits were fine.

    The claimed waterproofness is good up to a point. I wore these for an hour in a heavy continuous downpour and my hands got chilled and soaked to the skin. Another minus point is that they have no reflective markings.

    I would say that these gloves are perfect for short commutes or cold spring/autumn rides.

    This winter I have invested in a pair of Trek Heavyweight Winter Gloves which so far have kept my fingers toasty warm. I have yet to experience a serious downpour so cannot comment on their waterproofness yet!

    • Andrew 31/12/2010 at 4:57 pm #

      I recently bought the Trek heavyweight gloves too (on sale at Evans). They initially feel warm and very comfortable with good grip. I must have bad circulation though, because below about 2 degrees my fingers still get really cold (even with Icebreaker merino glove liners underneath)!

      Pearl Izumi Cyclone’s are ok in dry, cool weather but I’m not that impressed for the money. Otherwise it’s amazing how good a cheap pair of fleece gloves can be.

  14. garyj 02/12/2010 at 10:09 am #

    i have bought a pair of gore countdown gloves for these icy times, i have a couple of pairs of other gore (much thinner windstopper gloves , mistral and xennon, which are both super but not insulative enough to keep out the cold, they do stop the wind though, as in the name, and are comfy) . the countdown gloves are super super warm and are goretex waterproof, they are a much better cut and not nearly as bulky as other warm waterproof gloves like the nightvision from altura and do not need a separate liner. i have not felt the cold at all in the last week, nor have i found the size impeding on control. These are the best thing i have bought this year to be sure. not even clammy……………….but…………………………………………………………..they were £50,,,,,,,so i need to remember not to leave on the rack.

  15. thomas p woodward 18/01/2011 at 3:00 am #

    I’am from the states. I use a glove i ordered from performance bike ,a online bike store here in the states. the glove is a few years old, somewhat bulky, yet kepts my hands very warm.

  16. John 01/02/2011 at 9:31 pm #

    Hi,

    I bought a pair of Seal skins a couple of weeks ago after losing one of my Thinsulate fleece gloves.
    As some other readers have said except for rain Thinsulate are a good cheap cycling glove.

    Any way, I settled for the Seal skins and have to say I am very pleased with them after doing my daily commutes, rode the other morning in minus 7c temperature and my hands were fine, have only had some light rain so far but no complaints on that front either.

    John

  17. Nico 17/02/2012 at 1:33 pm #

    If you have any sort of hand numbnesse I do recommend Spenco Cycling Gloves, it’s a small U.S. company,
    I found a pair of their gloves in New York and since then I never stopped used them…my hand pain is gone

    Downside: the full finger-winter gloves are mostly made of a sort of neoprene, no rain-proof!

  18. Chris 29/10/2012 at 3:54 pm #

    I used to have a pair of ‘lobster claw’ mittens which worked pretty well. They were part way between a glove and a mitten in that each glove was divided into two parts with two fingers going in each. This reduces the surface area exposed to the cold. A similar design is still available from Sealskinz but it’s certainly not cheap:

    http://road.cc/content/review/52374-sealskinz-handlebar-mittens

    I’m also considering heated gloves this year, (which are actually cheaper than those mittens). Microwaveable or Phase Change types are available as well as electric. No idea which of these works best – perhaps people who’ve tried ‘em can contribute?

  19. Faizan 16/11/2012 at 7:21 pm #

    Hi Guys,If you want a really good and warm glove You can contact me directly.I am manufacturer myself,I can customize a glove for you on your demand.For example if you want a detachable liner it is possible,if you want to wear the glove in -5 to -10 C temp i can add 70G Thinsulate 3M to it and thin fleece liner which will make it really warm,And the shell Will be made of Windproof fabrics which is highly breathable.Price would also be very good.And i can do the print of your name on the glove ,Any size you want is possible.

    So do contact me on my email: faizangloves@yahoo.com

  20. Hugo 19/01/2013 at 12:45 pm #

    Hi there, I bought a dhb Amberley II Glove from Wiggle one month ago, and yesterday after some couple of hours exposed to rain / windy I started to feel my hands wet. when I arrived home I had to dry them close to an heater. someone had the same problem with these gloves? cheers.

  21. Mikey 26/04/2013 at 4:17 pm #

    My favourite is Altura Night Vision gloves, very warm, good grip and waterproof

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