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
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!
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!
As 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.
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.
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.