Best Winter Cycling Gloves [Top 8 Warm Gloves for Cyclists]

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Once the seasons turn more glacial, you have to have a little more willpower to make good your commitment to cycling. Be that whether you are making a short trip to the shops, or commuting, or getting some exercise. Getting your choice of clothing right in winter includes choosing the right gloves.

The human body is up to the task if you give it some assistance. We all remember and have experienced no doubt how it ensures the core is warm enough to keep the vital organs going by moving blood to it from the extremities. This means hands and feet tend to lose heat first and quickly.

Putting your finger on the best way to keep those hands warm depends on a range of factors as it does with most cycle clothing. You need to consider budget, sizing, length of your ride, local weather conditions, dexterity, breathability, wind / rain protection – resistant or repellent – as well as other on-bike practicalities like wiping your nose, using a touchscreen or smartwatch, gripping your bars and brake levers and even how frequently you can wash them.

How to Keep Your Hands Warm While Cycling

First, some practical tips and considerations. Make sure you buy the correct size and do not assume all sizing is the same. Most retailers, especially online, have measuring guides and product reviews are also a good indicator of whether a product sizes up to you.

One of the challenges of reviews is subjectivity. Because we each have differently-sized hands and tolerances to temperature, different heat regulation within our own bodies and different riding styles, it’s always important to do your research into performance and quality. I tend to filter to the ‘most relevant’ reviews and look at other sites as well as the manufacturer’s own.

The way any glove fits is an essential part of your hand’s working capabilities. Too small and it cuts off blood circulation, too loose and not only will you lose some air insulation but your grip will be less assured.

As recommended with cycle clothing, think carefully about riding to the conditions you will be expecting, but make sure you remember how long you expect to be riding for and that in most cases, you will be leaving from a warmer place than outside.

Eat well, drink well and keep your head warm too. This will help with your body’s performance and regulation of heat. Consider a thermal water bottle instead of cold drink. Make the most of your coffee stop by using a radiator or hand dryer to stay warm.

There is no harm investing in a pair of inners or liners. Many now easily double as lightweight summer gloves as needed and you may just be able to trap some more air by adding a layer. Slip them into your jersey or jacket stow pockets until you need them. Remember, riding with inners will impact sizing requirements for your winter gloves.

Other practicalities to support keeping your hands dry and warm include having warm hands before you start your ride, putting them on when you are indoors and avoid exposing your wrists to the cold when you are outside. Do you need an excuse to have another cup of coffee to clasp onto?

There is value in guarding against leaning your hands on railings at traffic lights to prop yourself up. If they are wet, this will make your gloves wet, heavier and will likely speed up the heat transfer away from the hands.

Try to keep your fingers moving even when they are placed on the handlebars. Wiggling them will promote blood flow and if you are very safe and no-one is around you, then whirling your arms around will do the same.

The layering and material of your gloves is vitally important in regulating the temperature to avoid the perspiration which has evaporated turning back into liquid and making your gloves wet. The construction of the glove may help keep this liquid from reconnecting to the skin.

If you have room in your pockets or bag, give some consideration to a spare pair of gloves, or keep another pair at the workplace, that you can rotate during or in-between rides.

Should You Wear Gloves When Cycling?

The reasons for cycling with gloves tend to outweigh the reasons for not doing so. Picking out gravel from the palms of hands is usually only done once because the inconvenience and pain are not worth repeating. You might lose some ‘feel’ but you are not playing a Steinway or performing surgery. 

Do I Need Winter Cycling Gloves?

Riding in winter, like most outdoor activities, lends itself to choosing more specialised equipment. Winter gloves have additional layers and are often built with technology which supports temperatures which get below freezing. Wind-chills needs to be reduced too, while maintaining some dexterity. I have a great pair of clamshell, or lobster gloves – they are fantastic and toasty but it’s hard to get into the pockets, or open up food, when on a training ride.

Winter cycling gloves will offer more proofing against wind and rain than just resistance. Gore-Tex, or Gore Windstopper is a fabulous, thin membrane keeping the wind out but allowing moisture to evaporate. Your everyday or summer cycling gloves may not offer the same levels of protection.

One way to test how much wind you can keep out comes by blowing against the material of your glove as hard as you can. An average adult can generate a maximum pressure equivalent to a 20 mph wind. If you can feel your breath coming through the fabric or not, you can determine a gauge for wind-resistance.

Best Thermal Gloves for Cyclists [TOP 8]

We’ll examine below the different types of winter gloves for cyclists by their differing specialities and look across the range of budgets depending how deep into your pockets your warm hands will go.



Waterproof Winter Gloves for Cyclists

1. Sealskinz Unisex All-Weather Gloves

Materials: Outer: 52% Polyester, 27% Polyamide, 18% Polyurethane, 3% Elastane; Middle: 100% Polyurethane Membrane; Inner: 100% Polyester

Windproof? Yes

Water-Resistance: Waterproof

Touchscreen Friendly? Yes

Temperature Suitability: “All temperatures”

Price: £40.89

Sealskinz are a UK company who have operated since 1996. Their stated mission is to combat extremes via updating their technologies. They came to cycling after producing products for other outdoor activities.

This product offers enhanced control via a zero liner movement, dexterity is covered via pre-curved fingers and grip is enhanced via a PU suede palm. The velcro-activated cuff is not the longest but the denser material on the palm side might help air from escaping.

A fleece thumb wiper takes care of anything runny. It is advertised as a four-season product. User reviews suggest sizing up to get what you need from these gloves. The manufacturer says you can throw this in the wash with the rest of your gear.

These are also 100% waterproof cycling gloves and even come with a “Lifetime Waterproof Guarantee”, such is Sealskinz’ confidence in their effectiveness.

Good-looking gloves that are capable – as the name indicates – in all weathers.



Reflective Winter Cycling Gloves

2. PROVIZ REFLECT360 Waterproof Cycling Gloves

Materials: 80% Polyester, 20% Cotton

Windproof? Yes

Water-Resistance: Waterproof

Touchscreen Friendly? Yes (index finger only)

Temperature Suitability: “All temperatures”

Price: £44.99

Proviz is a British lifestyle brand started in London in 2008 by two brothers.

One of their stated purposes, visions and values is to be the world’s most innovative enhanced visibility sports brand.

The REFLECT360 gloves have a 100% reflective outer shell which will help with hand signals at night. There is a silicone web grip and padded palm reinforcement.

A micro-fleeced lining will keep your hands warm whilst allowing moisture to escape.

The closure mechanism is an adjustable hook and loop on the cuff.

Reviewers on their own website indicate a true fit and cosy hands, as well as increased visibility at night.

COLOUR OPTIONS


Stylish Bike Gloves for Winter

3. Rapha Winter Gloves

Materials: 85% Polyester, 10% Leather, 5% Elastane

Windproof? Yes (Insulated on the back of the hand and fleece inner-lining)

Water-Resistance: Water-resistant (DWR treated)

Touchscreen Friendly? Yes

Temperature Suitability: Ideal for 0˚C to 5˚C

Price: £80

Rapha was founded in 2004, with the stated aim of redefining comfort, performance and style. This product’s details and features include a low-profile shape and a pulling mechanism to maintain a close-fit.

A suede palm, some reflective logos, a nose wipe and a fleece lining help shape the finished product. Reviewers on their own website indicate good stitching, no loss of feel, and expected sizing.

These gloves – as their name suggests – have been built to hold off the winter elements. They’re water resistant (i.e. they’ll hold off all but extreme rain) and they’ll keep your hands toasty thanks to the warm fleece lining on the inside, while the gloves are insulated on the back of the hand.

The suede palm also features gel padding in order to ensure maximum comfort on longer rides.



Warm Cycling Gloves

4. Le Col Hors Categorie Deep Winter Gloves

Materials: Shell: 94% polyester, 6% elastane; Cuff: 60% rubber, 40% nylon

Windproof? Yes

Water-Resistance: Water resistant with DWR coating

Touchscreen Friendly? No

Temperature Suitability: Ideal for-5˚C to 5˚C

Price: £75

Le Col was founded by a former Great Britain cyclist Yanto Barker. Their kit is produced in their own factory in Italy.

Their stated routines include a wide testing and development regime with pro-cycling feedback.

These gloves aim to reduce bulk and offer support for your coldest rides.

They offer some reflective logos to improve visibility when turning, an elongated and elasticated pull on neoprene cuff and have reinforced areas for durability.

Reviewers on their website indicate a true to fit sizing and the quality and comfort reflect well in the posts.



Best Cheap Winter Cycling Gloves

5. Elite Cycling Project Malmo Waterproof Cycling Gloves

Materials: Synthetic

Windproof? Yes

Water-Resistance: Waterproof

Touchscreen Friendly? Yes

Temperature Suitability: Temperature Suitability: Ideal for 0˚C to 5˚C

Price: £24.99” value=”price”]

This product has been around for several years.

As well as the standard black there is a hi-vis yellow option.

The close-fitting cuff is adjustable.

It utilises 3M Thinsulate technologies within the core of the glove to retain heat from the insured and offer insulation outside. A waterproof membrane in between should keep water away from your hands.

My own experience of 3M is that it can leave the hands slightly more damp than other materials.

Reviews suggest that the fit is true to slightly small fitting.



Padded Winter Cycling Gloves

6. Chrome Industries Midweight Cycle Gloves

Materials: 70D Nylon Ripstop, synthetic PU leather palm, Polyester lining

Windproof? Yes

Water-Resistance: Water-resitant (70D has a DWR coating)

Touchscreen Friendly? Yes

Temperature Suitability: Ideal for 0˚C to 10˚C

Price: £47

Chrome Industries Inc is based in Portland, Oregon and started life over 20 years ago making urban gear that work well on bicycles.

Chrome is focused on utility clothing for riding in cities. These gloves are described as midweight, with a padded palm and thumb for riding the handlebars.

The protection around the wrist looks hardier on some of the other gloves in this guide. The glove is described as being insulated with a waterproof layer built in.

Reviews on their website suggest the sizing is OK although attention should be paid to the thumb area flexibility for one or two riders.

They seem to look pretty cool according to those who have worn them.



Heated Cycling Gloves

7. day wolf Rechargeable Heated Gloves

Materials: Materials: Glove material: Lycra, Polyester; Wrist area: Neoprene; Liner: Velvet

Windproof? Yes

Water-Resistance: Water Resistant

Touchscreen Friendly? Yes (index finger and thumb)

Temperature Suitability: Ideal for -5˚C to 5˚C

Price: £119.90

DayWolf has been active since 2010 and specialises in making heated gloves and cycling gloves.

The USP for this type is the fact that it can be heated with a powered hand warmer via a rechargeable battery. The heating element covers the entire back of the hand and fingers.

There are three temperature settings between 100 and 150 degrees Fahrenheit. According to the sales website it offers heat, depending on the setting, for between two and six and a half hours.

We couldn’t find any verified time to recharge the battery. The gloves are advertised as having passed CE certification. Once the battery is removed the gloves are safe to machine-wash.



Warm Cycling Gloves

8. GripGrab Ride Winter Cycling Gloves

Materials: 95% Polyester, 5% Polyamide

Windproof? Yes

Water-Resistance: Moderate rain protection

Touchscreen Friendly? Yes

Temperature Suitability: Ideal for 0˚C to 10˚C

Price: £25.56

GripGrab is a family run company from Copenhagen in Denmark.

Their stated aims are to make the world’s best cycling essentials that will have riders covered on all surfaces and all conditions. Your author uses their liner gloves and windproof toe covers.

The RideWinter glove is a aimed at all-round riding in both wet and cold conditions. They use DoctorGel padding on the vulnerable Ulnar nerve which can become irritable on longer or rough rides causing numbness.

This system has been developed in collaboration with athletes and doctors. Accurate sizing is important for specific improvements and benefits like this.

Reflective graphics are available to help your visibility when riding in the dark.

These gloves can be machine washed.



What Are the Best Winter Cycling Gloves for Sub-Zero Temperatures?

The Le Col Hors Categorie Deep Winter Gloves just pip the GripGrab gloves. The specialisation of the long cuff, the quality of the materials and the commitment to their own factory plus minimalist design keep things simple but focused. I can take or leave touchscreen capacity until I am in a warm coffee shop.

Read More:

Kevin Glenton



TOP 5 FAVOURITES FOR WINTER RIDES


1. 🧥Rapha Lightweight Commuter Jacket
Stylish, waterproof and easy to throw in a bag.

2. 📍Sherlock Anti-Theft GPS Bike Tracker
Get alerted if your bike moves without you.

3. 👖DUER All-Weather Denim
Waterproof cycling jeans - need I say more?

4. 🪖LIVALL BH60SE Smart Bike Helmet
A helmet with lights that plays music.

5. 🥾Chrome Storm 415 Workboot
Waterproof shoes. No more soggy feet.




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If you're a fan of Discerning Cyclist and would like to support us (and help us get our caffeine hit), you can do so by buying us a coffee via the link below. Cheers!



IMPORTANT NOTE: Coffee funds may be converted into beers funds on Fridays.