If you ride mountain bikes for long enough, you will witness your hands take a beating. The outdoor conditions of mountain biking coupled with the high-friction grip you need to control your bike will result in calloused and rough hands which are both painful and unpleasant to look at.
So how can you protect your hands when you are mountain biking? How can you guarantee maximum comfort during prolonged rides? Well, the answer is simple; buy yourself a pair of mountain bike gloves.
I have therefore chosen the five best mountain bike gloves on the market, and I am going to provide the mountain bike glove reviews later.
The Benefits of Wearing Mountain Bike Gloves
There are many advantages of wearing mountain bike gloves during your exercise, and here is why it’s critical to your comfort, safety, and performance that you invest in only the best mountain bike gloves available.
Protection in The Event of an Accident
One minute you’ll be fully in control, and the next, you’re lying on the floor with your bike thrown in a bush. It happens. But in moments like this, it’s important that you’re fully protected to avoid any serious injury. If you’re skidding across the pavement (even if not at an excessive speed), you can tear your palms on the floor.
A pair of mountain bike gloves provide a barrier between gravel and grit and the skin on your hands. The gloves will take all of the impacts instead of you.
Wearing bike gloves prevents your hands from getting cold and stiff while you’re biking in cold weather. This is an ideal feature if you tend to feel the cold more than others, and it means there’s no excuse to not get out on your bike even though it’s cold outside.
You can also choose well-insulated bike gloves that attach to the handlebar and you then cover your regular mountain bike gloves. This allows you to grip the handlebars and still remain in control even though they’re thicker than most.
When looking at the best mountain bike gloves available, you might have noticed that most come with cushioning built into the palms. This feature acts as padding so if you’re involved in an impact, the gloves absorb the shock rather than you. This is also a handy feature if you regularly travel along bumpy and uneven surfaces.
Have you ever felt that your neck and back aches after riding your bike? This could be a result of you taking the impact from your bike, rather than your gloves. Instead, mountain bike gloves will reduce any aches by receiving some of the energy the bike transmits.
Improved Grip on Your Bike
Have you ever rode a bike when your hands get sweaty? If so, you’ll appreciate that it becomes difficult to maintain a controlled grip on the handlebars. As well as improving your grip, gloves act as a barrier to prevent sweat from falling onto your bike and causing the paintwork to deteriorate.
Mountain bike gloves also give you better control as you’re more able to move the handlebar around freely without the lack of grip on your palms preventing you.
How to Choose the Best Mountain Bike Gloves
It’s important that a rider wears a pair of gloves that will protect their hands when riding a bike. There are many important factors to consider, and I’ll share the best pointers below before presenting you with mtb gloves.
The best mtb gloves will be fully breathable to allow any excess vapor to escape out of the gloves. Non-breathable gloves allow moisture to get trapped inside next to your skin so you become clammy and cold. A huge benefit of opting for breathable gloves is that your skin remains dry and at the right temperature so you don’t feel too hot or cold while riding.
Depending on the time of year you intend on riding your bike and the weather in your area, you’ll likely want waterproof mtb gloves. One factor to remember is that waterproof gloves aren’t always breathable due to the different materials used, so this type of glove is best suited in cold weather.
For your own safety and ability to control your bike, it’s important that your mtb gloves have a proper grip. Most gloves are made with leather to improve their gripping ability. But, there are also some gloves on the market that have silicone elements so you can easily grip onto the brake levers and shift gears.
If you use your bike in the cold weather, you’ll need a pair of gloves that can retain any heat. Winter mountain bike gloves keep your fingers warm, even when the temperatures outside are low. These types of gloves are fully insulated, so they’re not ideal for summer months or your hands will become sweaty.
Another element you’ll want to consider is the material your mountain bike gloves are made of. You’ll mainly come across four types of materials. Polyester is a highly breathable option that combats any sweating, although this isn’t suitable for when it’s raining or cold.
Acrylic is another breathable material, though this also has the benefits of being stretchy and maintaining heat, regardless of the temperature outside. Fleece is commonly used on winter mountain bike gloves and keeps your fingers nice and toasty, though your hands can sometimes get too warm. Thankfully, some fleece gloves are also equipped with a toweling panel to remove any sweat. Finally, polypropylene is a wind and weather-resistant material, but isn’t ideal for sweaty palms and allowing vapor to escape.
The 5 Best Mountain Bike Gloves| Review & Guide
The mountain bike gloves that I will be looking at below are well constructed using top-grade materials, and therefore offer ultimate coverage and protection when you are on your mountain bike. Enjoy!
5 Best Mountain Bike Gloves Comparison Table
The Bomber is a Fox Head innovation that has been made to protect the hands of every mountain bike enthusiast who hits the trails on a regular basis. These Fox Bomber gloves offer full-coverage, and in turn provide you with an almost armor coat for your hands.
Construction of the Bomber comes in the form of an individually molded polycarbonate ballistic plate, which forms the knuckle pieces that protect your delicate knuckles. The plated gloves also have a Pittard’s leather upper body with perforated features that ensure optimum ventilation on hot days. You, therefore, do not have to worry about sweating in your gloves, as there will be airflow to prevent this from happening.
When it comes to the fit, the rugged Bomber has superior MX glove ergonomics, which ensures that you have premium comfort and a perfect fit for your ride. This MX glove ergonomics are enhanced by a hook-and-loop closure that guarantees a secure fit when you ride.
Mountain bikers will also benefit from a silicone lever grip and a double layer Clarino palm, which is breathable, durable, flexible, comfortable, abrasion resistant, strong, and extremely important for excellent grip on your handlebars in all conditions.
Some of its features include:
- Plated motocross gloves
- Leather construction
- Double-layer Clarino palm
- Silicone lever grip
- Hook-and-loop closure
- One-year manufacturer’s warranty
If you are looking for a big bang for the buck, then the Dirtpaw Race glove is perfect for you. This 2014 glove is a revamped gloving option, which targets all entry-level riders who want to hit the trails. Furthermore, the high performing glove is extremely affordable, yet it manages to provide mountain bikers with the superior features of more expensive bike glove options.
The most impressive feature of the Dirtpaw Race glove is its top grade construction, which gives you the protection needed for aggressive gravity riding and the comfort and lightweight feel needed during single track riding.
The tried and tested design of the Fox Dirtpaw Race glove also includes a padded knuckle, which packs a punch (no pun intended) on the trails. This padded knuckle is exceptionally comfortable and is assured of protecting your knuckles in the case of a crash. Additionally, the Race Glove has a lightly padded Clarion palm which is highly tensile, amazingly comfortable, and incredibly breathable, as well as lycra finger gusset that provides excellent grip in your fingertips. A hook and loop wrist closure finishes off the glove, by providing a secure fit for all mountain bikers.
These flexible features ensure that you can power through all trails without fear of messing up your hands and your knuckles, and with the knowledge that you can still carry out the shifting and braking functions with ease. You will also be pleased with the wonderful rubber logos and graphics that make up this glove, leaving you looking stylish as you ride.
Some of its features include:
- 48% Polyamide
- 22% Polyurethane
- 15% Neoprene
- 15% Polyvinylchloride
- Lightly padded Clarion pal
- TPR Hook
- Loop Wrist Closure
The synthetic Bravo gloves from Giro have been designed to feel good and perform even better. These exceptionally affordable gloves are a great choice for mountain bikers, though they differ from the gloves above due to the fact that they do not provide full coverage.
Regardless of the lack of full finger coverage, these gloves ensure that your hands are kept safe throughout your riding journey. The suede synthetic leather gloves have been engineered with a Super Fit design, which is composed of three panels and a pull tab that has been sonically welded.
This sturdy and flexible design is complemented by gel padding, which is there to ensure that your comfort is at the forefront when you are riding your mountain bike. Comfort is also achieved via a 4-way stretch mesh that is breathable and moisture wicking in nature, ensuring that you do not end up with clammy hands after your ride.
As if that is not enough, the gloves have a Velcro closure which ensures a secure fit as you ride. The gloves are also composed of a microfiber wiping surface which is highly absorbent, as well as a variety of colors for your style needs.
Some of its features include:
- 4-way stretch
- Breathable mesh
- Highly absorbent microfiber wiping surface
- Low-profile Velcro closure
The Select fingerless glove from Pearl Izumi highlights the strides that this company has made in the mountain biking world, by providing a comfortable and protective gloving option for all mountain bikers. The Select glove uses Comfort Bridge gel-foam padding, which provides ultimate riding comfort by relieving the pressure that is placed on your Ulnar and Median nerves.
The glove performance is also emphasized by the soft and durable Clarino synthetic leather palm, which guarantees breathability, abrasion resistance, high tensile strength, and comfort. The glove is also known for its low-profiling wiping surface and its hook and loop closure which works to ensure that you have a secure fit at all times.
If you are conscious of style when you head out riding, then you will be pleased with the multitude of colors that include black, blue, red, yellow, and white gloving options.
Some of its features include:
- Comfort Bridge padding delivers benchmark cycling glove performance and comfort
- Loop closureBack: 62%
- Polyamide 22%
- Polyester 16%
- Spandex Palm: 40%
- Polyester 36%
- Polyamide 24%
These Fox Racing gloves have many unique functions and features. They fit true to size and conform to the shape and size of your hand. With finger slots appropriate for all lengths, these gloves are versatile and adjust to you with no squeezing. It’s important that mountain bike gloves have a secure and snug wrist closure, which is why I’m happy that Fox Racing offers this function.
Fox Racing armored their gloves to protect you during a fall or accident. The top of the glove is plated with rubber patches to offer excellent protection against rocky roads. A significant feature of these Fox Racing gloves is that they provide ample protection at all times.
These gloves are designed to last a long time which is why the back of the hand is created in a way that reduces any wear and tears on the fabrics. They’re also equipped with velcro sections on the wrist to firmly remain in place, even during high-speed moments.
Some of its features include:
- Cordura material on the interior
- Glove Material: 100% Polyester
- Brand: Fox Racing
Winning Mountain Bike Gloves
What did I tell you! Aren’t these the most appealing mountain bike gloves that you have ever read about? I can assure you one thing, if you select one of the five gloves above, you will experience comfort, protection, and quality like you have never known before.
But, if I had to narrow this article down to one winning pair of gloves, it’d be the Fox Head Dirtpaws. These high-performance bike gloves come without an extortionate price tag and feature a built-in stretch for optimum comfort. With a padded knuckle and palm, you never need to worry that you’re not protected when riding again. Although this brand also takes your comfort into consideration.
What are your thoughts on our best mountain bike gloves? Have any caught your eye, or would you like to share some additional advice about choosing the right pair for you? Leave your suggestions in the comments.