The 9 Best Biking Gloves for a More Comfortable, Safer Ride

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Giro Monaco II Gel Glove
Giro LX Glove
Souke Sports Winter Cycling Gloves
Tanluhu Cycling Mountain Bike Gloves
LERWAY Cycling Gloves
collage of the best biking gloves of 2021 isolated on a green background
SIMARI Winter Gloves
Pearl Izumi Women's ELITE Gel Glove
Pearl Izumi Men's Attack Glove
Castelli Tutto Nano Glove
Snag a pair of the best biking gloves right now to keep your palms comfortable and joints safe as you ride.
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com

Never, ever overlook the importance of bike safety. And while you may already have a bike helmet and bell (kudos!), don't underestimate the power of a good pair of biking gloves.

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Not only do these help protect your hands and joints, they add comfort to a long bike ride or leisurely cruise.

Ready to find your perfect pair? We chatted with Jake Harcoff, CSCS, cyclist and founder of AIM Athletic to narrow down your search.

Most bike gloves are unisex. But some companies make and market leggings according to gender, so we have listed both women's and men's picks below (and included that terminology). However, these are designed to accommodate physical differences between people who are assigned male or female at birth (AMAB or AFAB). Choose whichever style feels best to your body.

1. Best Overall: Giro Monaco II Gel Glove

  • Material:​ mesh upper, ventilated leather palm
  • Finger Length:​ half
  • Size:​ S to XXL
  • Padding:​ gel

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Giro's Monaco glove is best for those who love long rides. With their sweat-wicking mesh upper fabric and ventilated palm, they will help keep your hands from getting too sweaty, even if you ride in the sun or hot weather.

The palm features leather with double stitching. Translation: It's durable and lasts wash after wash, according to Harcoff.

Buy it:Backcountry.com; ​Price:​ $42

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2. Best Luxury: Giro LX Glove

  • Material:​ ventilated leather
  • Finger Length:​ half
  • Size:​ S to XXL
  • Padding:​ gel

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For cyclists who want some high-end bike gloves, this Giro product is a winner. The upper features a leather fabric with ventilation holes for extra breathability. The palm pads contain gel for a comfortable grip.

Plus, these even a have little fabric tab on the palm so you can easily pull them on and off. And you can use the absorbing fabric on the back of the hand to clear away sweat from your bike seat or handles, Harcoff says.

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Buy it:Backcountry.com; ​Price:​ $70

3. Best for Cold Weather: Souke Sports Winter Cycling Gloves

  • Material:​ double-layer fleece, silicone grips
  • Finger Length:​ full
  • Size:​ S to XXL
  • Padding:​ foam

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For a cold-weather bike ride, winter biking gloves are a must-have, according to Harcoff. And Souke's pair gets the job done. Fleece-lined, water-resistant and wind-proof, this option works hard to keep your hands toasty through brutal temperatures.

Unlike warm-weather models, these have a snug, extended elastic to keep your wrist completely covered. Plus, the tech-friendly pointer finger and thumb pads let you use your phone to take pictures and text without exposing your fingers to the air.

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Buy it:Amazon.com; ​Price:​ $28.99

4. Best Weatherproof: Castelli Tutto Nano Glove

  • Material:​ lycra Nano Flex 3G
  • Finger Length:​ full
  • Size:​ XS to XXL
  • Padding:​ none

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Come rain or chilly weather, this Castelli pick has you covered (pun intended). Their full-length cycling gloves are water-resistant and lined with a warm, soft fabric to prevent the weather from interfering with your ride. They also have silicone grips.

These are the perfect autumn or early spring option — they're not too heavily padded but still offer enough warmth and water-protection for cooler fall temperatures or spring showers.

"The biggest thing to get excited about is the fact that they're so minimalist in their design without sacrificing their ability to keep your hands warm and dry," Harcoff says.

Buy it:Backcountry.com; ​Price:​ $49.99

5. Best for Women: Pearl Izumi Women's ELITE Gel Glove

  • Material:​ polyester
  • Finger Length:​ half
  • Size:​ S to XXL
  • Padding:​ gel

Are unisex gloves too big or bulky for you? Pearl Izumi's women' bike gloves are designed to fit the hand shape of people assigned female at birth (AFAB).

Harcoff especially likes the soft, seamless design. The polyester construction feels like suede but offers the flexibility of synthetic materials. Together, that means a smoother fit and a lower chance of chafing while you ride, he says.

Buy it:Pearlizumi.com; ​Price:​ $38

6. Best for Men: Pearl Izumi Men's Attack Glove

  • Material:​ polyester
  • Finger Length:​ half
  • Size:​ S to XXL
  • Padding:​ gel

Most bike gloves for men have wide padding on the palm for extra cushion. That can get heavy and bulky. These gloves take a more minimal approach for superior performance.

Without added padding, they're more lightweight, flexible and responsive. They also mold to the arch of your hand to help prevent numbness during your ride, Harcoff says.

Buy it:Pearlizumi.com; ​Price:​ $30

7. Best for Mountain Biking: Tanluhu Cycling Mountain Bike Gloves

  • Material:​ elastic microfiber
  • Finger Length:​ full
  • Size:​ S to XL
  • Padding:​ synthetic fiber

These full-finger gloves are ideal for those who like to spend most of their bike rides on mountains or bumpy trails.

Why? Because every time you go over a bump, the joints in your hand take some shock impact. To keep your wrists and fingers comfortable, this pair has palm, knuckle and thumb-joint padding to absorb some impact.

It also has secure Velcro straps to help you fit wrists snug against your skin for a distraction-free ride. Plus, it's a great bang for you buck, Harcoff points out.

Buy it:Amazon.com; ​Price:​ $15.90

8. Best Multi-Sport: SIMARI Winter Gloves

  • Material:​ polyester
  • Finger Length:​ full
  • Size:​ S to XL
  • Padding:​ none

This pair can take you from a cool bike ride to an afternoon of skiing or hiking. Lined with cashmere, it has rubber grips on the palm, which are perfect for gripping your bike handles, ski poles or phone. (It features tech-compatible finger pads, too.)

Harcoff especially likes the elastic wrist cuff for helping to keep water or snow away from your skin.

Buy it:Amazon.com; ​Price:​ $16.989.

9. Best for Road Biking: LERWAY Cycling Gloves

  • Material:​ polyester fabric
  • Finger Length:​ half
  • Size:​ S to XL
  • Padding:​ gel

The padding on this pair is a little more dense than others, making them a perfect pair for road biking. Not only is this padding excellent for absorbing the shock of a pothole-filled road, it adds extra safety in case of falls. Falling on concrete can be damaging on the palm, so it's good to take every precaution possible.

Another bonus? The upper fabric is breathable and sweat-wicking, so you can use the back of your hand to swipe any moisture off your face or handlebars.

Buy it:Amazon.com; ​Price:​ $14.99

4 Factors to Consider When Buying Biking Gloves

1. Size

All gloves come in different sizes, so it's important to find the perfect fit for your hands. However, different companies base their sizing on different measurements, according to Harcoff. For example, one company may size gloves by palm length while another uses palm width.

So, before you buy a pair, make sure to take a look at the size chart and measure your hands accordingly.

A good trick to make sure a pair of biking gloves fit: Put them on, then, close your hand into a fist. If you struggle against the fabric, then it's probably too snug. If, after making a fist, you feel extra fabric around your fingers, then it's too big.

2. Finger Length

Cycling gloves come in half-finger and full-finger lengths.

Half:​ This length gives warm-weather cyclists a little extra air flow.

Full:​ This length is best for biking in colder temperatures and help protect your hands from the weather. These tend to be the best option for mountain biking. If you have to grab a tree trunk or branch in your way, they offer more skin protection.

3. Fabric

You can find biking gloves in a variety of fabrics, and breathability is definitely something to look for in all of them.

Synthetic Fabrics:​ Polyester is one of the most breathable and flexible fabrics, making it perfect for sport purposes.

Leather:​ Although this is a pricier option, leather options are among the most durable, Harcoff says. If you decide to invest in a pair of leather biking gloves, look for a vented pair. That way, you can still give your hands good ventilation.

4. Padding

Padding on the palm adds extra comfort and can even help keep your joints safe.

When you bike, the joints in your hand absorb shock from bumps in the road. Over time, this can add unwanted pressure on the bones (and potentially cause injury). Just like the padding in your shoes protects your knees, padding in your gloves can help protect your hands.

It's also a nice safety precaution. When you fall off a bike, often the first instinct is to reach out your hand onto the pavement or dirt. The padding can help protect your hands from injury, cuts or scrapes.

Gel:​ These are the most protective and shock-absorbing. They mold to your handlebars while you ride, Harcoff says. Gel can be a little heavier than the alternatives.

Foam:​ This the lightest padding material. Foam-padded gloves are squishy and feel light and comfortable.

Fiber:​ Also called microfiber, this padding is a lot like foam. This material is lightweight and gives a thin layer of cushion.

No Padding:​ You can also opt for a minimal, no-padded pair. These are a little more versatile and can be used for other activities, like skiing or tennis. Just look for a pair that has silicone on the palm to give you some extra grip.

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