Ski gloves are, without a doubt, absolutely crucial when heading to the slopes.
Much more than a simple accessory, ski gloves are vital when being active in such cold temperatures as they enhance circulation and keep you warm when you need it most. Furthermore, they have a strong set of functions that enable skiers to pursue the sport comfortably while maintaining high-performance levels.
Much sturdier than a pair of woollen winter gloves, a good pair of ski gloves can be relied on for many years so should be looked at as a small investment rather than a one-off purchase. If kept clean and handled with care, they will become your new best friend who helps keep frostbite at bay.
There are a large range ski gloves with differing levels of flexibility and grip. This can get confusing, so we’ve outlined their varieties below for you to find out all you need to know before venturing out and purchasing the pair that suits your needs best. We also guide you through what size of ski gloves you should be looking for.
There are two main kinds of ski gloves: the regular five-digit version and the mitten style. But what’s the difference between them?
The ‘Five-Digit’ Version
The regular and reliable ‘five-digit’ version is the classic ski glove with individual fingers. Most popular for skiers and snowsports fans alike, they offer optimal mobility and functionality.
They can have either short cuffs or long cuffs, which is important to note as everybody will have a personal preference when it comes to this.
Short-cuff gloves are the racing style that will fit underneath or over your ski jacket sleeve, while long-cuff gloves are the rarer kind with forearm fastenings that provide a little extra warmth. Due to the additional benefits of long-cuff gloves, we would recommend investing in a pair of this kind for extremely harsh weather conditions that may be found when skiing.
If you’d rather tuck the gloves under the jacket, though, then short cuffs are the way to go. Just double-check the waterproof and breathability ratings to make sure they’re as warm as possible before buying.
Mittens were once associated solely with snowboarders, but more and more skiers have taken to them in recent years, preferring their functionality for skis.
Due to the rise in popularity, mittens are not just excellent for warmth nowadays but have also been re-designed in ways to provide better grip to help skiers hold on to ski poles with less concentrated effort.
Once you’ve decided if you’re a glove or mitten fan, it’s time to get the sizing right.
Ski Glove Size Guide
When choosing ski gloves, getting the size right is super important and all about finding the balance.
You want to be able to move your fingers around without much restriction, but you also don’t want them to be too big that you can’t catch your grip. Similarly, your hands will need room to breathe, but you don’t want a loose fit at the wrist as then there’s a higher chance of cold air getting to your hands and up your sleeves.
Our ski gloves come in small, medium and large sizes. Our official sizing chart below can help you identify which size will fit you best.
Please note: when buying mittens, we recommend selecting one size down from your glove size to help improve grip.
To ensure optimal performance, grip, functionality and flexibility, here are the essential features to tick off when shopping for ski gloves.
Whether the cuffs are short or long, ski gloves will almost always have adjustable toggle fastenings that secure the gloves into place and into or over the sleeve of your jacket. These will help keep snow and debris from getting through the cuff, keeping your arms and hands dry, clean and most notably, warm.
Have you ever been skiing, stopped for lunch and left your gloves at the table? Or accidentally dropped on your descent down the slope, or worse: from the top of the chairlift?
Wrist loops take care of that issue, preventing any unnecessary drama and/or tears as you can take the gloves off to eat, drink or even just take a photo on your phone without dropping or losing them. They wrap around your wrist for hands-free glove-free freedom. We strongly recommend you use them.
Textured Palms and Fingertips
Some of our ski gloves are designed with an embossed texture along the palm and fingertips, which help skiers with their grip when handling ski poles or holding on to ski lifts.
A fleece lining tends to be the norm in top-quality performance gloves, although the inner lining can also be made of polyester and other synthetic materials so it’s worth checking that they’re fleeced if possible for maximum warmth.
Certain pairs will feature a heat vent that simultaneously improves breathability – improving circulation within the glove to prevent your hands from getting too stuffy – and allows the hot air to get through when you blow on them.
In-built goggle wipes come under the guise of rubberised plastic inserts that let you wipe off snow, water and debris from your goggle lenses to clear your vision with ease (and save fingerprint residue left behind).
Similarly to the goggle wipe, nose wipes are built into the fabric of the glove as soft patches where you can wipe your nose if (when) it gets runny.
Ski gloves should always contain extra padding to shelter you from the full impact of falls and the bitter mountain cold. Padding also helps boost insulation levels and provide further warmth.