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Unless you find yourself involved in an unfortunate series of acrobatics once you’ve departed your bike in a crash, your hands are likely to hit the ground first. So why do so many of us choose not to wear motorcycle gloves when riding?
It isn’t as if there isn’t plenty of choices. You could go for a short cuff Summer glove with ventilation for hot weather, or you could go for a full gauntlet glove for the best protection. You could even try a fur lined glove for Winter. As long as your motorcycle gloves are leather, your hands will be well protected.
As we always say, the best motorcycle gloves are the ones you wear so make sure you buy a pair you’re happy to ride in, all the time.
Best Motorcycle Gloves
Best Overall – Alpinestars SP-2
We’re kicking off this review with a great entry from Alpinestars. They’re a company known for making great gear and these gloves are no exception.
They’ve secured the top spot because they are one of few pairs on the market that offer gauntlet protection for your wrists and forearms. We know a lot of people prefer to get a little wind up their sleeves but you really notice how vulnerable your hands and arms are when you’ve tried these on after wearing a short and lightweight glove.
With Alpinestars SP-2 you’ve got reinforced leather impact zones on the palms as well as a hard plastic knuckle protector for the back of your hands. All of this tech is going to add up to great abrasion resistance, leaving you without the worry of your skin coming into contact with the road.
We found that these fit really well due to their anatomical design which makes use of pre-curved sections of material. We do suggest you measure your hands and consult a size chart first to get the right fit.
Best Short Cuff Motorcycle Gloves –Alpinestars GPX
We have a feeling this next entry is going to be a favorite. Available in a range of colors, the GPX is sort of a halfway house between a full gauntlet race glove and short cuff street glove.
What you get is a well built leather shell with reinforcement in all of the vital areas. Protection for the knuckles and padded inserts for your palms are present which will serve you well if you ever come off your bike. You’re also getting a hard plastic palm slider which is going to mitigate some of the impact forces as you put your hands down in front of you.
Adequate perforation is provided which is going to flow a ton of air, making these great for summer. If you can’t bear the thought of a full length glove, these are for you.
The fit on these runs a little tight so you might find yourself sizing up.
Best for General Use – BMW Airflow Glove
These are our top pick for those of you who have more than one bike and need a versatile glove or those of you who don’t engage in anything too hardcore like track riding but need a good protective glove.
A 3 season glove, these are going to be perfect for spring and fall as well as mild summers and winter. BMW Airflow Glove features a liner which makes them warmer than other similar gloves but the AirTex material on the wrists will provide plenty of airflows when those temperatures begin to rise.
The attention to detail and the quality of these are up there with the best. We’ve only had ours for a few weeks but we have heard reports of them lasting for 8 years of regular use. These gloves fit well and offer great protection so we would not hesitate to recommend that you take a look.
Best for Winter – Cortech Scarab 2.0
The glove for all of you cold weather riders is here. Cortech doesn’t really have the branding profile that some of the other manufacturers enjoy but their gear is up there with the best.
Wind chill is a major issue when the mercury starts to fall which is why a lot of people look for a specialist winter glove. We found that the lining and Thinsulate insulation on Cortech Scarab 2.0 was warm enough to endure temperatures as low as 30 degrees Fahrenheit. And at that temperature, most of us will have given up and gone home.
Of course, these gloves are waterproof and should keep your hands dry in the heaviest of downpours. The liner we mentioned earlier is also breathable so you shouldn’t have an issue with sweaty hands.
In conjunction with heated grips, you could honestly ride to the North Pole. You’re getting a sturdy, well built protective glove, and for the money, these are hard to beat.
Best for Touring – Gerbing 12v T5 Heated Gloves
Heated gloves you say? Yes indeed. You might be wondering why these didn’t make it into the best winter gloves category. Well, to provide power to these gloves you’re going to need an appropriate power supply, of which you’re only going to find on a large touring bike without making any modifications.
If you can make use of these gloves, they are incredible. We haven’t been able to test them in extreme conditions but have it on good authority that they work below freezing. Some users have even said that they find them too hot above 35 degrees which we can understand.
Of course, with a glove positioned at this price point, it is also going to be as protective as some of the best on the market. With Gerbing 12v T5 Heated Gloves, you’ll get a full gauntlet that is wide enough to fit over a heavy touring jacket, making the design of these gloves simple yet effective.
In case you’re wondering, you can power these gloves directly from your battery or you could hook them up to a Gebring rechargeable 12v battery, stored somewhere on your bike. The choice is up to you but either way, you won’t be disappointed.
Best Budget Option – ILM Air Flow
And finally, we finish up with a glove for those of you who want protection but aren’t prepared to pay the earth for it.
ILM isn’t a manufacturer which we have had many dealings with but these gloves are actually fairly well designed if you can look past some of the shortcomings in construction quality.
ILM Air Flow has an air scoop sitting just above the knuckles which provides a little airflow and doesn’t compromise hand movement. There is also a lot of hard plastic that should provide enough protection to allow you to walk away from a crash.
We did find the fit to be a little inconsistent across the fingers as well as being tighter than we would expect for the size, but in all honesty, they were one of the best pairs of gloves we could find in this price range.
Choosing Your Motorcycle Gloves
Hopefully, you found this review useful. There are many other purposes made motorbike gloves on the market but we think that the ones reviewed here offer the most in terms of price, quality, and functionality. If you’ve tried any of the products on review, feel free to drop us a line with your thoughts and experiences.
On a related note, head over to our motorcycle helmet lock reviews to purchase a great helmet lock you can use to secure your helmet when off the bike. With one of these, you will then be able to place your gloves into the under seat storage compartment on your bike.
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Last update on 2020-12-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API